Storing music on SD memory cards
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  1. #1
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    Default Storing music on SD memory cards

    I have a question regarding SD (Flash) memory cards -

    Would saving music to an SD card in my mac book pro load songs faster than off the HD?

    I have a ton of music on my HD and in iTunes and it is getting to be quite cumbersome and messy. Too much old music, samples and low quality remixes that I would like to keep, but dont want to deal with and sort through at gigs. I would like to have all of my high quality tracks that I use for gigs in folders on a 32 gb SD card. that way I have everything I need in one place. I know SSD's will load music a lot faster, but is the SD port in my mac able to load faster than the HD?

    Also if anyone knows of a nice 32GB SD card (class 10) to invest in please let me know. It seems there are a ton of options, but lots have mixed reviews. My budget is about $30 shipped

    Thanks guys
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  2. #2
    Schreiberie Meister Afterhour Ali's Avatar
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    The access time should be fast if you've got a newer Macbook (using the IDE interface for the SD card reader instead of the USB interface). You can determine the speed yourself following this official Apple help article: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3553#4

    On my mid 2012 MBPro it says:
    • Link-Speed: 2.5 GT/s


    GT/s means Giga-transactions per second. It is the raw bits per second. So doing the math.
    2,5 GT/s = 2.500.000.000 Bits/s = 312.500.000 Bytes/s = 298,02 MB/s, minus 20% for encoding the the data comes down to 238,42 MB/s in both directions.

    What is the maximum speed that my computer can use when reading and writing to an SD card in the SD card slot?

    Macs that use the USB bus to communicate with the SD card slot have a maximum speed of up to 480 Mbit/s. Newer Macs use the PCIe bus to communicate with the SD card slot and can transfer data at a much faster rate.

    Check the packaging that came with your SD media to determine the maximum transfer rate used by that specific card.

    Determine the maximum speed of your Mac using the System Profiler:

    Choose About this Mac from the Apple () menu.
    Click More Info.
    Select USB from the hardware section (for Macs that use the USB bus to communicate with the SD card slot).
    Select Internal Memory Card Reader and look for the Speed entry.
    or
    Select Card Reader from the Hardware section (for Macs that use the PCIe bus to communicate with the SD card slot).
    Look for the Link Speed entry. Computers that use the PCIe bus express their speed as GT/s.
    Last edited by Afterhour Ali; 08-16-2012 at 04:27 PM.
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  3. #3
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    ok it says my link speed for my card reader is 2.5 GT/s. Im not sure what that means (2.5 gigs transfer per second?)
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    Schreiberie Meister Afterhour Ali's Avatar
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    I added the math to my first post (not exact science though).

    GT/s means Giga-transactions per second. It is the raw bits per second. So doing the math.
    2,5 GT/s = 2.500.000.000 Bits/s = 312.500.000 Bytes/s = 298,02 MB/s, minus 20% for encoding the the data comes down to 238,42 MB/s in both directions.
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    Hah ok I understand, but just to be sure.. how much faster is that than the average transfer speed from say a harddrive?
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    Quote Originally Posted by HedgeHog View Post
    I added the math to my first post (not exact science though).

    GT/s means Giga-transactions per second. It is the raw bits per second. So doing the math.
    2,5 GT/s = 2.500.000.000 Bits/s = 312.500.000 Bytes/s = 298,02 MB/s, minus 20% for encoding the the data comes down to 238,42 MB/s in both directions.

    ^^^this is pure geek porn!

    throughput

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    Quote Originally Posted by Emery View Post
    Hah ok I understand, but just to be sure.. how much faster is that than the average transfer speed from say a harddrive?
    It will not be faster then a internal harddrive, but the general usb 2.0 transfers around 30mb/s and usb3.0 around 80mb/s...

    If you are talking about a external harddrive it will be like 10x faster then a usb 2.0 one.
    Last edited by V-Hoff; 08-17-2012 at 08:52 AM.

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    Ok well I was talking about my internal HD. The speed is not a problem right now, I would use the SD for organization purposes. My 2.0 USB HD loads songs fast enough, so if the card is 10x faster great!

    Thanks for the help everyone! Can anybody recommend a quality brand? and class 10 is the way to go correct?
    13" Mbp i7 | TMA-1 | Tech 1200's | RANE TTM-57 | NI Audio 4 | Kontrol S4 | F1 | KrK Rokit 5s


  9. #9
    Schreiberie Meister Afterhour Ali's Avatar
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    I think you mean mb/s instead of kb/s.

    We are talking about access times as well. That should be much faster with the SD-card.

    I recommend Transcend, class 10 is the way to go.
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    Ah HedgeHog, you are the man! thanks for the insight
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