Best Memory Cards for the Nikon Z50

I’ve worked out the recording times and capacities for the Nikon Z50 to help you work out which SD card will suit your needs best

The Nikon Z50 is Nikon’s 20.9MP pocket rocket that’s capable of 4K and 11FPS all for around $1000 with a lens. To unlock the potential of this camera you need to know which are the best memory cards for the Nikon Z50 that are right for your needs.

If you want the TL;DR version and haven’t the time to read this article in detail I’ll then recommend the best two generalist memory cards that should fit a broad variety of needs. But for a more tailored recommendation then bookmark this article to read later or continue on:

Last update on 2021-10-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

These aren’t the only good brands, further down the article I’ll recommend some more with different capacities for different needs.

For instance, Nikon Z50 users who will only use the camera for photography will not necessarily need the same card as those who want to use to film video or a combination.

Or perhaps you might be on a bigger or tighter budget, in either case you need to make sure to maximise the value to cost of the SD card.

So what we need to do is work out the numbers when it comes to photos and video capacity for different capacity cards so you know exactly what the card is capable of and compare it to your needs.

Do not be that photographer or video creator who gets a card that’s too small for your needs and have to work around bottle necks; or just as bad, get too large a card and have wasted that extra difference in cost which could have been spent on other gear.

Which Memory Cards Does the Nikon Z50 Use?

The Nikon Z50 shows it’s limitations as a lower tier camera with only the single UHS-I card slot located in the battery compartment.

The Nikon Z50 is limited to UHS-I speeds, however you can use UHS-II SD cards, you just won’t get the benefit of those faster write speeds.

But I would still recommend UHS-II cards, and I’ll be recommending ones that are not too much more expensive than UHS-I cards.

What you will be doing though is future proofing yourself. SD cards last a long time when they don’t fail. I’ve been fortunate to only had one failure in over 10 years. And I can still use all my SD cards with my current camera system.

Best SD Card for Photos on the Nikon Z50

The Nikon Z50 can record NEF (RAW) 12 or 14bit image files which are 19.9MB and 24.7MB respectively.

On a 32GB SD card you can write approximately 1376 NEF RAW 12bit files and 1100 NEF RAW 14bit files. On a 64GB SD card you can record 2752 NEF RAW 12bit files and 2200 NEF RAW 14bit files. For photo only users I would say a 64GB SD card is more than enough.

This Sandisk SD card comes in both 32GB and 64GB options:

Sale
SanDisk 64GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Card - C10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, SD Card - SDSDXXY-064G-GN4IN
  • Shot speeds up to 90MB/s, transfer speeds up to 170MB/s [requires a compatible device capable of reaching such speeds, such as the SanDisk SD UHS I card reader (sold separately)]. Based on internal testing; Performance may be lower depending upon host device, interface, usage conditions and other factors 1MB=1,000,000 bytes; X = 150KB/sec
  • Perfect for shooting 4K UHD video and sequential burst mode photography, Full HD (1920x1080) and 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) video support may vary based upon host device, file attributes and other factors

Last update on 2021-10-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

For JPEGS, obviously you can record even more files to a SD card compared to RAW. However I would never recommend JPEG for anything professional.

On a 32GB card you can write JPEG Fine Large (at a file size of 9.2MB) which is the best quality JPEG. You can write approximately 2748 JPEG files. So if you just intend to shoot JPEGS you would have more than enough capacity on a 32GB SD card.

Best Memory Cards for the Nikon Z50 to Record 4K Video

The Nikon Z50 shares a lot of the same bitrates as its bigger siblings, the Z5, Z6 and Z7, which are listed below:

So now we have that, we can work out approximately how much video we can record and which card will suit your needs:

Best Choice (Long Term)
SanDisk 128GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Card - C10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, SD Card - SDSDXXY-128G-GN4IN
Cheapest Compatible Card
SanDisk 64GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Card - C10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, SD Card - SDSDXXY-064G-GN4IN
Compatible Card
SanDisk 128GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Card - C10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, SD Card - SDSDXXY-128G-GN4IN
SanDisk 64GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Card - C10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, SD Card - SDSDXXY-064G-GN4IN
4K UHD (30/25/24p, 144Mbps)
1Hr 58 Mins
59 Mins
FullHD (120/100p, 144Mbps)
1Hr 58 Mins
59 Mins
FullHD (60/50p, 56Mbps)
2hrs 46 Mins
1Hr 23 Mins
Best Choice (Long Term)
SanDisk 128GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Card - C10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, SD Card - SDSDXXY-128G-GN4IN
Compatible Card
SanDisk 128GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Card - C10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, SD Card - SDSDXXY-128G-GN4IN
4K UHD (30/25/24p, 144Mbps)
1Hr 58 Mins
FullHD (120/100p, 144Mbps)
1Hr 58 Mins
FullHD (60/50p, 56Mbps)
2hrs 46 Mins
Cheapest Compatible Card
SanDisk 64GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Card - C10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, SD Card - SDSDXXY-064G-GN4IN
Compatible Card
SanDisk 64GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Card - C10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, SD Card - SDSDXXY-064G-GN4IN
4K UHD (30/25/24p, 144Mbps)
59 Mins
FullHD (120/100p, 144Mbps)
59 Mins
FullHD (60/50p, 56Mbps)
1Hr 23 Mins

Last update on 2021-08-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The UHS-I cards are super cheap so I have to recommend them for those on smaller budgets, but I firmly believe in buy better less often than buying cheaper but more often.

Buy the UHS-II cards and it will last generations of cameras.

Finally

When you choose your ideal SD card you will also need an SD card reader to get all that data off the card quickly and efficiently:

Anker 2-in-1 USB 3.0 SD Card Reader for SDXC, SDHC, SD, MMC, RS-MMC, Micro SDXC, Micro SD, Micro SDHC Card and UHS-I Cards
  • Simultaneously read and write on two cards to save yourself the effort of constant unplugging and re-plugging.
  • USB 3.0 enables data transfer rates of up to 5Gbps for faster Sync times, backward compatible with USB 2.0/ 1.1.

Last update on 2021-07-04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Links

If you’re building a business and one the tools is this camera, then you need to check out my definitive article on business for creative content creators, How to Start a Creative Business. All the information from starting to building a business is there.

Also don’t forget to check me out on YouTube for more video on content!