How to Format an SD Card
A quick guide on how to format your SD Card using Windows.
Nine times out of ten if you are having problems with your camera or digital video recorder it can be related to the memory card.
How to format an SD card using Windows - How to format an SD card on a Mac
Check your SD Card!
If your camera is locking up, freezing, randomly turning off or if your video and audio are out of sync or you have strange artifacts or even if the video playback is not smooth; these are ALL symptoms of the SD card being problematic rather than the camera or the recorder.
Tips for choosing and using memory cards.
1: Choosing the right SD card; If you're spending good money on a camera then we highly advise buying a good quality memory card. If you buy a cheap memory card to put in a new HD camera there is a good chance the card will fail on you. Choose a class 6 or Class 10 card and buy a quality brand like Integral Pro. Cards we have had problems with in the past are Kingston and Transcend.
2: It is important to format your memory card on a regular basis. If your camera or recorder has a format function in the menu then this is the best way to format your SD card. REMEMBER: Formatting your SD card will WIPE all the data from it and you will not be able to get that back. Back up your video files BEFORE formatting the SD Card.
3: Don't use your SD card in different devices without formatting it first.
4: If your camera or device has the capability for formatting the SD card then you should use this facility with the card INSIDE the camera.
(most cameras can do this, please check the user manual)
How to format an SD Card using windows.
1: Go to your Start Button (bottom left of windows) and click on "computer" or "my computer"
2: Put the SD Card in to your computer either by using a built-in card reader or by connecting your camera/recorder by USB.
3: When you plug the card in you will see a drive appear like this...
4: Right click on the icon and click on "Format"
5: Click "Quick Format" and then click "Start"
6: Wait for the card to finish being formatted and carry on using the card as normal
If after this process you are still having problems then it *might* be an indication the memory card is starting to fail. SD cards only have a limited amount of read/write cycles and they can go wrong.
How to format an SD Card on a Mac computer.
1: Insert your SD memory card into your computer's SD slot or SD card reader. Mac OSx should recognize it automatically.
2: Open up the Disk Utility Application and select the SD card. Select "Erase" from the sub-menu. Choose "FAT" from the re-format menu.
3: Wait a few minutes for the format process to fully complete. Once finished, a notification will alert you. You can now store files on the memory card from your Mac or an external device such as a camera.