Ultra 2 & Extreme 3 similar speeds?

Just call me Al

Active Member
I have got 2 CF cards for my Canon EOS 400D. The two I have are Ultra 2 ...2GB & Extreme 3...4GB. Today I tested in RAW + Jpeg together & the results were not a great deal of difference. I could take 8/9 images with both cards in succession then it cut out for about 12 seconds while it wrote to the card, before I can take anymore. The Extreme 3 lets a few odd shots be taken as it's loading the Ultra 2 just a few less. I expected the Extreme 3 to be a lot faster. Today I was going to take The Red Arrows taking off from Bournemouth Airport. They take of in 3 - 3 - 3 - 2 formation with only a couple of seconds between each one. Because of this I had to take them in Jpeg in order to get several shots, several times. Had I done them in RAW + Jpeg or even RAW I'd have missed most of the Arrows because of the time writing to the card. I expected better than this with an Extreme 3 card. Is my card writing fast enough? To me it seems there is not a great deal of difference between the Ultra 2 & the Extreme 3.


Active Member
I have the Extreme 3 and Extreme 4 and you do notice the difference when shooting continuously and when it comes to reading the card on computer.

richard plumb

Distinguished Member
when I bought my 350d I read up on the different cards. I think they recommended the ultra II as the extra speed of the extreme III wasn't used by the camera


Distinguished Member

There is a difference in the cards but you wont see it with the 400D
You certainly will on the 30D as it has a bigger buffer, Depending on image size you may find you do not fill up the buffer at all and just keep shooting!
Shooting RAW even with Extreme III , I have had the 400D lock up on "busy" while writing to the card

I have also tested the Extreme IV on the 30D compared to the Extreme III and though faster , the difference wasn't enough to persuade me

The one advantage of an Extreme III card on the 350/400D is if you use a card reader for PC transfer
The read speeds from card reader to PC will be noticeably much faster than with Ultra II

Saying that, for sedate Picture taking the UltraII even with the 30D firing away at 5fps seems to cope well:)

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