Monday, September 01, 2008

COMEX 2008 Hoots!

Having 'quited' visiting computer and I.T. fairs for a long time, I decided to patronize the recent COMEX 2008, held at Suntec Convention Centre from 28th to 31st August 2008. My objective was to look for a good deal for Canon Powershot G9 for work purposes as well as Compact Flash (CF) memory cards for my Nikon D200. Apparantly the prices of digital cameras during the first few days of the fair was not attractive at all; the prices were escalated compared to the reputable camera retailers, nevertheless they throw in a few cheap freebies to sweeten the deal. Hence, I decided to just go for the compact flash. I would need my compact flash more urgently to meet my upcoming assignments to help do some wedding photo-shoots.

When deciding what speed of Compact Flash card to choose, I did some of homework, testing and reviewing my experiences as well as shooting style. I concluded that I do not require a high speed CF memory card. I scored the cheapest regular speed CF card instead. Why so?
  1. My Nikon D200 has an in-built buffering capacity or RAM that can store 25 JPEG (Fine) pictures or 15 RAW (Uncompressed) + JPEG (Fine) pictures. This means that I can shoot at the fastest shutter speed continuously for that number of shots before my camera does not allow me to take anymore shots.
  2. It takes about 3 seconds to clear 1 JPEG picture from the buffer into the regular speed CF card. Of course, with a higher speed card will take a shorter time.
  3. It takes about 10 seconds to clear 1 RAW+JPEG shot from the buffer into the regular speed CF card.
  4. I do not shoot continuous fast-actions. Even if I do, the buffering capacity allows me to take enough shots in a sequence. I would then usually move around and find another angle. At the meantime, the buffer will start clearing. By the time I found my other angle, I should have my full buffer capacity for another sequence.
  5. I do not need to transfer the photos urgently. The bottleneck of a regular or low speed card will be the transfering of images from the CF card into the PC via a card reader. My current card reader takes around 10mins to transfer 512MB from a regular speed CF card, hence the math of 4GB will be 8 x 10mins = 80 minutes!!! But of course, different capacity of cards as well as type of card reader transfers at slightly different rates as well. It will be faster when transfering through my D200.
  6. I will only transfer the photos when I am home when I have the luxury of time.
  7. The regular speed CF card is 75% cheaper than the fastest Kingston Ultimate (266x) CF card of the same capacity. It is 77% cheaper than the fastest SanDisk Extreme IV of the same capacity.
  8. It costs only S$19!!!
Kingston Compact Flash
Regular Speed
4GB
S$19


In conclusion,
there is really not much need for me to get a high speed CF card. The buffering capacity of my Nikon D200 is sufficient for me to use a regular speed CF card. That is the whole reason why I chose D200 over other models during that time when I upgraded.

I bought my CF card from the local distributor, Convergent Systems Pte Ltd, where it guarantees a 'hassle-free' Lifetime Warranty. I decided not to get it from Singapore's most popular and cheapest source, having learned my lesson the hard way.
Lastly, I kinda regret not to be able to grab any of the 8GB high speed CF deals as they were sold out on the first day. The 8GB high speed CF cards were the 'hot-cakes' of this COMEX 2008. Nevertheless, getting this cheap CF card that suits my need sure gives me the kick! I also kinda regret not scoring another piece. But there is SITEX coming at end of the year.
Any donations of CF cards are welcomed! :p

4 comments:

Laurens said...

dats all?!
bo hoot cam?
sianz......

thoo2 said...

hahaha, donate to me as well!!!
i'm looking to add one more CF for my canon as well.....

4gb for $19 is kind of cheap leh........ but the crowd over the comex is terrible man...

WILLIAM TAN said...

Laurens said...
dats all?!
bo hoot cam?
sianz......


yup. cam price no good.

WILLIAM TAN said...

thoo2 said...
hahaha, donate to me as well!!!
i'm looking to add one more CF for my canon as well.....

4gb for $19 is kind of cheap leh........ but the crowd over the comex is terrible man...


haha dun snatch with me! :p
yah must admit the crowd is insane! So much fo a slowing economy.
Seems like the Singaporeans are not affected by it after all. haha!