The Sony A7R II with its 42 megapixel sensor, 5fps and 4K video recording requires an SD memory card that is fast enough to write such big files.
If you buy the wrong SD card, you’ll have to wait longer for the buffer to clear and before you can start taking pictures again. In photography, every second matters, especially if you’re shooting a one time event.
For 4K video, you also need an SD card that has a minimum writing speed good enough to write the video without random pauses.
The Sony A7R II features 1 x SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card slot and supports UHS-I. UHS-II fits as well, but the camera won’t be able to use the better technology and will write at a max speed that the UHS-I offers.
Best SD Memory Cards for Sony A7R II:
- Lexar Professional 300MB/s UHS-II U3
- SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s UHS-I U3
- Transcend R95/W60MB/s UHS-I U3
Lexar Professional 300MB/s UHS-II U3
The Lexar Professional 300MB/s UHS-II U3 is our top pick, despite being UHS-II. So besides getting the max writing speed in the camera, UHS-II will actually transfer your files on your computer much quicker than UHS-I. Considering the A7R II’s photos and videos are quite large, saving time here is a big deal, especially if you often transfer hundreds of files.
For both 4K video and continuous shooting at 5fps, this is literally your best option.
Don’t have a memory card reader that supports such UHS-II speeds? Luckily you get a free Lexar UHS-II reader that’ll greatly reduce the waiting time. You also get a free downloadable Imaging Rescue software. It comes in 32GB, 64GB and 128GB sizes.
SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s UHS-I U3
The SanDisk 64GB Extreme Pro 32GB U3 is a UHS-I SD card but the writing speed will be identical to the one above, as they both easily reach the limit of the A7R’s II possible writing speed (around 36MB/s). Reading speeds on the other hand will be slower (previewing pictures on your camera, sending the files to your computer etc.) so keep that in mind.
It comes in 16GB, 32GB, 64GB, 128GB and 256GB sizes.
Transcend R95/W60MB/s UHS-I U3
The most affordable on our list, yet still UHS-I, is the Transcend 64GB UHS-I U3. In terms of reading speed it goes up to 95MB/s, while for writing the maximum is 60MB/s. If you don’t record 4K videos and care more about spending less for more capacity, the Transcend ives you the most GB’s for your money.
Transcend, just like Lexar above, gives you the option of downloading their free image recovery program and they both work pretty good in most cases. It comes in 64GB, 128GB and 256GB sizes.
Comparison of the 3 Memory Cards
|Sandisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s U3||32GB||Writing files: ~90MBs. Reading files: ~95MB/s|
|Lexar Professional 300MB/s U3||64GB||Writing files: ~240MB/s. Reading files: ~280MB/s|
|Transcend R95/W60MB/s U3||64GB||Writing files: ~60MB/s. Reading files: ~90MB/s|
What Brands are the Best?
Your photographs and videos are stored on a memory card, so you should definitely not try to save any money here by buying from unknown, cheap brands. While you save a few bucks, you probably won’t even get the advertised speeds, and are at a bigger risk of losing your shots.
We see too many beginners choosing the cheap route here, but until you transfer your shots to a computer/online, this is where they’re stored at. You want the memory card to be the most reliable piece of your equipment!