This guide will help you find the best SD card for your GoPro camera.
GoPros don’t have internal memory, so using high-quality SD cards is essential to prevent data loss.
However, you don’t need to spend a lot to get the best SD card for GoPro usage.
I’ve owned several GoPro cameras since the first edition was released over 10 years ago.
I’ve also experimented with different SD cards, trying to find the best bang for the buck option.
There’s definitely a sweet spot between price, storage capacity and overall quality, and that’s what this guide will show you.
Let’s take a look at my recommendations.
Table of Contents
What is the Best SD Card for GoPro Cameras in 2023?
|Lexar Professional 1066x Silver Series||Check AMAZON Price → Check B&H Price →|
|SanDisk Extreme V30 UHS-I||Check AMAZON Price → Check B&H Price →|
|Samsung EVO Select||Check Amazon Price →|
|SanDisk Max Endurance||Check AMAZON Price → Check B&H Price →|
|PNY 256GB PRO Elite||Check AMAZON Price → Check B&H Price →|
|Delkin Select MicroSD Card||Check Amazon Price →|
Lexar Professional 1066x Silver Series (Best Overall)
- Fast read and write speeds
- Good storage capacity
- Durable design and build
Is this the best SD card for GoPro? I certainly think so.
The Lexar Professional 1066x Silver Series is a really popular memory card with GoPro users thanks to its speed and robust build.
It’s the best overall choice thanks to its low price and high specs.
At 256GB, it’s the maximum any GoPro camera can handle – ideal for people who like to use their GoPro for vlogging everyday activities.
With a maximum read speed of 160 MB/s and a maximum write speed of 120MB/s, it’s more than capable of handling whatever high-resolution footage you throw at it.
Those specs also mean you can transfer your files across to your computer lightning-fast.
And it’s durable too. It’s resistant to X-rays, vibration, shock, and water.
I use this exact card in my GoPro 11 and it doesn’t miss a beat, even when recording 5K footage.
SanDisk Extreme V30 UHS-I (Best Value)
- Robust build and design
- Lightning-fast read and write speeds
- Speed class U3
- Data rescue software
SanDisk memory cards are designed for shooting action and have the specs to prove it.
This particular microSD card is rated with a speed class of U3 and has a maximum write speed of 130MB/s and a maximum read speed of 190MB/s.
There’ll be no problem capturing 4K footage or transferring files with those speeds.
It’s shock- and water-proof and can withstand temperatures from -13 to 185 degrees centigrade, so can be used in extreme environments.
In the event your data gets compromised, they give you the ability to use their RescuePRO Deluxe software to retrieve it.
I consider this the best value card because although it costs the same as the Lexar above, it has higher read and write speeds and that handy retrieval software.
Samsung EVO Select (Highest Quality)
- Durable design
- High Speed Class
- Good storage
- Slightly low read and write speeds
These memory cards have lower maximum read and write speeds than the two previous ones (100MB/s and 90MB/s respectively).
But, with their UHS Speed Class U3 and Speed Class 10 rating, and minimum write speed of 30MB/s, they have the right specifications for shooting high-resolution footage.
Add to that their durability, resistance to water, shock, X-rays, and magnets, and you’re looking at a high-quality GoPro essential.
Samsung may be more familiar to smartphone users than as a manufacturer of SD cards for GoPros, but trust me when I say that they’re another great option.
SanDisk Max Endurance (Most Hardy)
- Super durable memory cards
- Will last a long time
- Fine for 4K video
- Data rescue software
- Not the fastest read and write speeds
- More expensive
One common complaint GoPro users have about their memory cards is that they eventually wear out.
The average microSD card is good for 10,000 write cycles. That’s actually a lot, equivalent to 30 years of daily use, but the reality is that they won’t last for more than 10 years.
And, if you’re using your GoPro to film high-resolution footage (like 5k) that pushes the card to its maximum, it’ll last much less than that.
The SanDisk Max Endurance is ideal for heavy users and will last for 120,000 write cycles at 1080p!
Ok, so most of you are going to want to record at a higher resolution than that, but it’s still going to last you way longer than a standard microSD card.
Although it doesn’t have the fastest read and write speeds (100MB/s and 40MB/s respectively), with its Speed Class rating, it won’t drop below the minimum required for 4K video.
PNY 256GB PRO Elite
- Good price
- Good amount of memory
- Minimum write speed of 30MB/s
- There are faster read and write speeds out there for a similar price
With its Speed Class rating of 10/U3/V30, the write speed of this memory card for GoPros won’t drop below 30MB/s, so you’re covered for all your 4K video needs.
Its maximum read speed is 100MB/s and the maximum write speed is 40MB/s.
These aren’t the fastest memory cards, but they’re more than adequate.
And, with 256GB of storage space, you can use them on all the latest GoPro Models, from the GoPro Hero 6 Black to the GoPro Hero 10 Black.
Delkin Select MicroSD Card
- 256GB memory
- Robust, durable design
- Reputable brand
- Good Speed Class
- Relatively expensive memory cards
Another no-nonsense option, this Delkin is built to withstand shocks, X-rays, and extreme temperatures.
With a memory capacity of 256GB, it’s the maximum you’ll be able to use on the latest GoPros.
It’s the correct Speed Class – UHS-I Video Speed Class 30 (V30) – to allow you to film high-resolution.
And its write speed of 75MB/s and read speed of 100MB/s will make sure that filming goes without a hitch.
Choosing the Best SD Cards for GoPro: Things to Consider
When choosing an SD card for your GoPro, make sure you think about the following factors:
- Card Speed Class: Look for SD cards for GoPros with a high-speed class rating, such as Class 10 or UHS Speed Class 3 (U3), to ensure smooth and uninterrupted video recording. Higher speed class cards offer faster data transfer rates, allowing your GoPro to handle high-resolution video and burst mode photography effectively.
- Capacity: Determine the storage capacity you need based on your shooting requirements. GoPro cameras support a range of SD card sizes, so choose a capacity that can accommodate your recording needs without running out of space. Personally, I always choose the highest capacity (256GB), since I want to record in full 4k or sometimes 5k resolution, and never want to be limited by card capacity,
- Write Speed: Consider the card’s write speed, which indicates how quickly it can save data onto the card. GoPro cameras often benefit from cards with faster write speeds, especially when shooting high-resolution or high-frame-rate videos. If you’re only shooting in 1080 or 720, the speed isn’t such an issue.
- Compatibility: Ensure the SD card you choose is compatible with your specific GoPro model. Refer to GoPro’s official website or user manual to find the recommended SD card types and capacities for your camera – for example, GoPro cameras won’t read or write to any microSD card over 256GB.
- Brand Reliability: Stick to well-known and reputable brands when purchasing SD cards for your GoPro. Trusted brands often provide higher quality and more reliable performance, reducing the risk of card failures or compatibility issues. There are tons of cheap memory cards on Amazon from unknown brands – I’d advise you to steer clear of these, if you value your video footage!
- Durability: Opt for SD cards that are designed to withstand harsh conditions, such as extreme temperatures, water, and shock. GoPro cameras are often used in adventurous settings, so choosing a rugged and durable SD card can provide added protection for your footage.
- Price: Consider your budget when selecting an SD card. While it’s important to choose a high-quality card, you can often find a balance between performance and price by comparing options from reputable brands.
Remember to regularly format your SD card within the GoPro camera (see guide) to maintain optimal performance and avoid potential data errors.
It’s also recommended to have multiple SD cards as backups during longer shooting sessions or trips.
What Memory Cards Are Fast Enough for GoPro?
When it comes to determining how fast of an SD card you need for your GoPro, it depends on the specific model and the type of content you’re capturing.
Here are some general guidelines to consider:
- Resolution and Frame Rates: Higher-resolution videos and higher frame rates require faster SD cards to handle the increased data transfer. For example, if you’re shooting 4K video or capturing footage at high frame rates like 120fps or 240fps, you’ll need a faster SD card to keep up with the data write speed.
- Bitrate: Different video modes on GoPro cameras have varying bitrates, which determine the amount of data written per second. Higher bitrates demand faster SD cards to ensure smooth recording without dropping frames. Check your GoPro’s specifications to determine the bitrate of the video mode you’re using.
- Speed Class and UHS Speed Class: Look for SD cards with Class 10 or UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) rating or higher. These cards are designed to handle the demands of high-resolution video and rapid data transfer. They offer sufficient write speeds to capture video without buffering or interruptions.
- Bitrate Chart: GoPro provides recommended SD card minimum write speeds for different video modes on their official website. Refer to this chart as a reference to ensure you select an SD card with the appropriate write speed for your specific shooting mode.
It’s worth noting that faster SD cards not only handle data transfer more efficiently but also contribute to smoother playback and quicker file transfers to your computer.
Therefore, even if you’re not shooting the highest resolution or frame rate, investing in a faster SD card can still provide benefits in terms of overall performance.
Ultimately, it’s recommended to choose an SD card with a write speed that exceeds the requirements of your shooting mode to ensure optimal performance and avoid potential issues during recording.
What SD Card Does My GoPro Model Take?
Here’s a table outlining the recommended SD card types and capacities for popular GoPro models:
|GoPro Model||Recommended SD Card||Maximum Capacity|
|GoPro HERO11 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO10 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO9 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO8 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO7 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO6 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO5 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||Up to 128GB|
|GoPro HERO4 Black/Silver||Class 10 or UHS Speed Class 1 (U1)||Up to 128GB|
|GoPro HERO3+ Black/Silver||Class 10 or UHS Speed Class 1 (U1)||Up to 64GB|
10 Tips for Using SD Cards in GoPros
I’ve been using GoPros since the first version was released many years ago, and have always tried to abide by these 10 tips when using them with SD cards.
- Choose high-quality SD cards from reputable brands.
- Check compatibility with your GoPro model.
- Format the SD card in the camera before use.
- Use an appropriate capacity based on your shooting needs.
- Backup your footage regularly.
- Avoid swapping SD cards during a shoot.
- Handle SD cards with care to avoid damage.
- Monitor available storage to prevent running out of space.
- Keep firmware up to date for optimal compatibility.
- Consider using faster SD cards for higher resolutions or frame rates.
Among all the best GoPro accessories you may have your eye on, memory cards are no doubt the least ‘sexy’!
However, choosing the right SD card for your GoPro is essential, so make sure you choose wisely.
What’s The Best Size Memory Card For My GoPro Model?
Here’s a table that includes both the recommended SD card type and the best size memory card for the most popular GoPro models:
|GoPro Model||Recommended SD Card||Best Size Memory Card||Maximum Capacity|
|GoPro HERO11 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||128GB or 256GB||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO10 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||128GB or 256GB||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO9 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||128GB or 256GB||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO8 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||64GB or 128GB||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO7 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||64GB or 128GB||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO6 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||64GB or 128GB||Up to 256GB|
|GoPro HERO5 Black||UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) or higher||32GB or 64GB||Up to 128GB|
|GoPro HERO4 Black/Silver||Class 10 or UHS Speed Class 1 (U1)||32GB or 64GB||Up to 128GB|
|GoPro HERO3+ Black/Silver||Class 10 or UHS Speed Class 1 (U1)||32GB or 64GB||Up to 64GB|
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you use a GoPro without an SD card?
Unfortunately not. GoPro cameras have no internal memory storage.
The only way to record and store your video footage is to use a microSD card.
What size SD card is best for GoPro?
The size of microSD card you use depends on how much footage you need to shoot.
A good rule of thumb, though, is to overestimate. So, get a bigger capacity card than you think you need.
Also, be aware that different GoPro models have different maximum capacities. Check the tables further up the guide.
How big of an SD card can I put in a GoPro?
The maximum capacity microSD card you can put in any GoPro device is 256GB.
But that’s the maximum for the latest models. For example, the GoPro Hero 3+ can only take 64GB.
Check the tables above to see what the maximum capacity for your model is.
Will a better microSD card improve image or video quality?
Higher quality MicroSD memory cards will definitely improve your image and video quality.
The higher the speed class and bitrate, the higher resolution and frame rate footage you’ll be able to record.
Is SanDisk Extreme better than Ultra?
The main differences between these two cards are their speed and memory capacity.
The SanDisk Extreme has a higher transfer speed and can store up to 1TB.
But, they are both excellent options depending on your needs.
Is 128GB good for GoPro?
It depends on the device.
A 128GB memory card will be fine for everything above the GoPro Hero 3+, in terms of maximum capacity (as it can only take 64GB cards).
But, it won’t be good for anyone who needs more memory than that.
Overestimate how much storage you need.
Who makes the best SD cards for GoPro?
Our choice is the Lexar Professional 1066x Silver Series.
But as you can see from the guide, there are other excellent options for you to choose from.
What SD card is best for GoPro hero 11?
I would go with a 256GB memory card and one of our top choices.
Either the Lexar Professional 1066x Silver Series or the SanDisk Extreme V30 UHS-I.
What SD card is best for GoPro hero 7?
Although the GoPro Hero 7 can take up to 256GB, the recommended maximum is 128GB.
All of the SD memory cards in our guide, apart from the PNY 2PRO Elite, come in a 128GB version.