Published: April 2, 2015
The D7200 is an updated version of Nikon's top-level DX (APS-C) DSLR camera. It offers 24.2 megapixel resolution, similar to its predecessor D7100 at 24.1 MP, but it adds a larger buffer to enable longer continuous burst shooting. The maximum frame rate of the D7200 varies from 5 to 7 frames per second depending on RAW mode and crop settings. The D7200 has two SD memory cards slots and supports UHS-I cards for fast write performance.
To compare write speed and continuous shooting performance, 44 SD cards were tested in the Nikon D7200. Below are results for write speed for 14-bit RAW images as well as continuous shooting results in RAW+JPEG, RAW and JPEG modes. Following these charts, an analysis provides further details and observations from the tests. Recommended SD cards for the D7200 for fastest write speed and best value for performance are provided based on these results.
This comparison test is performed using a detailed test scene with controlled lighting. The D7200 is set to manual mode and secured on a tripod for the duration of the test. Focus is set manually using Live View at maximum magnification. A remote release with timer provides 30 second intervals for continuous shooting tests. Write speed is calculated by dividing the total bytes written to each card divided by the write time. The card access light is used to determine write time; a video of each test is reviewed and provides accuracy within a few hundredths of a second. Write speed is measured in MB/s (1 MB = 1,048,576 bytes). The write speed results are for RAW image format (RAW+JPEG and JPEG modes have lower write speed).
|Average Write Speed (MB/s)||Price|
|SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s 64GB||64||74.9||$107.02|
|Lexar Professional 2000x UHS-II 32GB||32||74.5||$54.95|
|SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s microSDHC 32GB||32||74.0||$32.29|
|SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s 32GB||32||73.2||$31.39|
|Kingston U3 90/80 MB/s 64GB||64||72.8||$34.95|
|Kingston U3 90/80 MB/s 32GB||32||72.2||$20.99|
|Toshiba Exceria Pro UHS-II 32GB||32||70.3||$149.99|
|Toshiba Exceria Type 1 32GB||32||69.8||$137.68|
|Samsung PRO 64GB||64||68.7||$59.97|
|Samsung PRO 32GB||32||68.1||$31.72|
|Kingston Class 10 UHS-I 64GB||64||67.1||$28.95|
|Transcend 95/85 MB/s U3 32GB||32||64.5||$24.99|
|Transcend R95 W85 U3 64GB||64||64.2||$48.89|
|Sony 95MB/s U3 64GB||64||60.2||$41.95|
|Sony 95MB/s U3 32GB||32||58.5||$24.99|
|SanDisk Extreme Plus 80MB/s microSD 32GB||32||55.6||$44.00|
|Lexar Professional 1000x UHS-II 32GB||32||54.9||$24.32|
|Toshiba Exceria Type 2 32GB||32||53.8||$173.88|
|SanDisk Extreme Plus 80MB/s 64GB||64||51.1||$181.35|
|Sony 94MB/s 32GB||32||49.2||$26.29|
|SanDisk Extreme Plus 80MB/s 32GB||32||49.2||$42.00|
|Transcend 95/60 MB/s U3 64GB||64||48.3||$15.49|
|SanDisk Extreme 60MB/s 32GB||32||47.5||$19.95|
|SanDisk Extreme U3 microSD 64GB||64||46.6||$38.99|
|SanDisk Extreme 60MB/s 64GB||64||46.1||$45.52|
|SanDisk Extreme U3 microSD 32GB||32||45.2||$19.99|
|Lexar Professional 600x 64GB||64||45.0||$41.94|
|PNY Elite Performance U1 64GB||64||43.8||$97.97|
|Kingston Ultimate 32GB||32||40.8||$15.95|
|SanDisk Ultra 40MB/s 32GB Card 1||32||40.7||$9223372036854775808.00|
|Patriot EP Pro 90MB/s 32GB||32||40.5||$20.67|
|SanDisk Extreme 45MB/s 32GB||32||40.1||$20.69|
|SanDisk Extreme Pro 280MB/s UHS-II 32GB||32||39.2||$60.93|
|Lexar Professional 600x 32GB||32||39.1||$37.79|
|Lexar Professional 400x 32GB||32||36.0||$209.99|
|Transcend 600x 32GB||32||33.4||$16.99|
|Patriot EP Pro 90MB/s 64GB||64||33.4||$29.99|
|PNY Elite Performance U1 32GB||32||31.6||$53.74|
|Panasonic MicroP2 UHS-II 32GB||32||31.3||$149.00|
|Samsung EVO 32GB||32||22.6||$24.95|
|SanDisk Ultra 40MB/s 64GB||64||13.8||$25.20|
|SanDisk Ultra microSD 64GB||64||13.7||$24.99|
|SanDisk Ultra microSD 32GB||32||13.6||$13.99|
|Toshiba FlashAir II 32GB||32||11.8||$53.99|
The continuous shooting test measures the number of images taken in 30 seconds using different image modes: RAW+JPEG, RAW, and JPEG. RAW setting is 14-bit lossless compressed NEF; JPEG are large, fine with optimal quality. The D7200 is set to continuous high release mode. The detailed subject in this test produces 33.3 MB RAW files and 19.7 MB JPEG files.
|Continuous Shooting – Images in 30 Seconds||Lowest|
|Lexar Professional 2000x UHS-II 32GB||32||50||77||134||$54.95|
|SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s 64GB||64||50||77||133||$107.02|
|SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s microSDHC 32GB||32||50||76||131||$32.29|
|SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s 32GB||32||49||75||131||$31.39|
|Kingston U3 90/80 MB/s 64GB||64||48||75||128||$34.95|
|Kingston U3 90/80 MB/s 32GB||32||48||74||127||$20.99|
|Toshiba Exceria Pro UHS-II 32GB||32||47||72||123||$149.99|
|Toshiba Exceria Type 1 32GB||32||47||72||123||$137.68|
|Samsung PRO 64GB||64||46||72||122||$59.97|
|Samsung PRO 32GB||32||46||71||120||$31.72|
|Kingston Class 10 UHS-I 64GB||64||44||70||119||$28.95|
|Transcend R95 W85 U3 64GB||64||43||69||112||$48.89|
|Transcend 95/85 MB/s U3 32GB||32||43||68||117||$24.99|
|Sony 95MB/s U3 32GB||32||41||63||111||$24.99|
|Lexar Professional 1000x UHS-II 32GB||32||40||59||110||$24.32|
|Sony 95MB/s U3 64GB||64||39||64||108||$41.95|
|SanDisk Extreme Plus 80MB/s microSD 32GB||32||39||60||104||$44.00|
|Toshiba Exceria Type 2 32GB||32||39||58||101||$173.88|
|SanDisk Extreme Plus 80MB/s 64GB||64||37||56||96||$181.35|
|SanDisk Extreme Plus 80MB/s 32GB||32||37||54||98||$42.00|
|Sony 94MB/s 32GB||32||37||54||96||$26.29|
|SanDisk Extreme 60MB/s 32GB||32||35||53||93||$19.95|
|SanDisk Extreme U3 microSD 64GB||64||35||53||93||$38.99|
|SanDisk Extreme U3 microSD 32GB||32||34||52||90||$19.99|
|SanDisk Extreme 60MB/s 64GB||64||34||52||90||$45.52|
|Transcend 95/60 MB/s U3 64GB||64||33||53||96||$15.49|
|Lexar Professional 600x 64GB||64||33||50||91||$41.94|
|PNY Elite Performance U1 64GB||64||32||50||96||$97.97|
|SanDisk Ultra 40MB/s 32GB Card 1||32||32||48||81||$9223372036854775808.00|
|Kingston Ultimate 32GB||32||32||47||85||$15.95|
|Patriot EP Pro 90MB/s 32GB||32||32||46||81||$20.67|
|SanDisk Extreme 45MB/s 32GB||32||31||46||84||$20.69|
|SanDisk Extreme Pro 280MB/s UHS-II 32GB||32||31||45||81||$60.93|
|Lexar Professional 600x 32GB||32||31||45||81||$37.79|
|Lexar Professional 400x 32GB||32||29||43||76||$209.99|
|Patriot EP Pro 90MB/s 64GB||64||27||41||71||$29.99|
|Transcend 600x 32GB||32||27||40||71||$16.99|
|PNY Elite Performance U1 32GB||32||26||40||73||$53.74|
|Panasonic MicroP2 UHS-II 32GB||32||26||39||69||$149.00|
|Samsung EVO 32GB||32||19||31||58||$24.95|
|SanDisk Ultra microSD 64GB||64||18||24||45||$24.99|
|SanDisk Ultra 40MB/s 64GB||64||18||24||43||$25.20|
|SanDisk Ultra microSD 32GB||32||17||23||45||$13.99|
|Toshiba FlashAir II 32GB||32||16||22||42||$53.99|
Nikon improved the performance the D7200 over the D7100 by adding a larger buffer to allow longer continuous burst shooting at full frame rate. The D7200 buffer is about twice the size of the D7100 and it also has a slightly higher write speed. The maximum write speed measured in the D7200 was 74.9 MB/s; the D7100 maximum was 72.1 MB/s (see the D7100 SD card test).
The D7200 buffer capacity shooting RAW+JPEG was 10 to 11 shots at full frame rate (compared with 5 shots in the D7100). In RAW (14-bit lossless compressed NEF) mode the range was 12 to 18 shots, depending on the memory card (the D7100 could only manage 6 RAW shots). The larger buffer allows more than double the amount of RAW shots at full frame rate because the camera is able to write images to the card while shooting, clearing space in the buffer for more images before the buffer reaches capacity. In JPEG mode the D7200 captured between 27 and 66 shots at full frame rate (D7100 range was 11 to 18 shots) before the buffer reached capacity.
These results were obtained with 33.3 MB average RAW files and 19.7 MB average JPEG files. The image subject and camera settings affect the results. Subjects with more detail create larger files which take longer to write to the card and therefore more time to clear the buffer. The numbers may differ from the "buffer capacity" provided by Nikon due to the difference in image size. The buffer capacity also varies with memory card write speed and accounts for the range in buffer capacity observed in this test.
The largest difference between memory cards is experienced when the buffer is full. At this point the camera can only continue shooting after it has cleared enough space in the buffer, which is determined by the speed it writes to the memory card. In RAW mode, the D7200 could sustain about 2.25 fps with the buffer at capacity using the fastest card. The slowest card provided about 0.36 fps—this means waiting three seconds between shots! Shooting JPEG, the fastest card in the D7200 allowed 3.7 fps with the buffer full, while the slowest card could only maintain 0.6 fps. These frame rates were measured using a detailed image subject; the frame rates will increase slightly with a less detailed subject because the file size will be smaller.
The D7200 supports UHS-I SD cards but it does not support the UHS-II interface. UHS-II cards can be used in the D7200 because the cards are backwards compatible and operate in UHS-I mode. The maximum speed provided in UHS-I mode depends on card: the SanDisk Extreme Pro 280MB/s UHS-II card reverts to 50MB/s bus speed in UHS-I mode, while the Toshiba Exceria Pro 260MB/s and Lexar Professional 300MB/s 2000x and 150MB/s 1000x UHS-II cards support 104MB/s bus speed (SDR104) in UHS-I mode. UHS-II cards do not offer any speed benefit in the D7200, but they enable faster transfers when used in UHS-II card readers, such as when downloading pictures to a computer.
The fastest SD card for the Nikon D7200 is the SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s UHS-I 64GB SDXC Card. It measured 74.9MB/s continuous write speed. The Extreme Pro microSD card also provided similar write speed.
The Lexar Professional 2000x UHS-II card reached 74.5 MB/s write speed in the D7200. This UHS-II card operates in UHS-I mode in the D7200. When used in a UHS-II device such as a card reader it is capable of much higher speed. In the card reader included with the card, it averaged 250 MB/s downloading images to a computer. The Extreme Pro 95MB/s UHS-I card provided 90MB/s downloads. If download speed is a priority, UHS-II has a clear advantage.
To be considered a good value, an SD card should be able to deliver high performance without a premium price. Both the Kingston U3 and Samsung PRO SD cards deliver great performance (72 and 68 MB/s respectively) at lower price points than the fastest cards. In 64GB capacity the Kingston Class 10 card (SDA10/64GB) measured 67.1 MB/s write speed in the D7200. It is available at a much lower cost than similar performing cards and represents the highest performance per dollar out of the 44 cards tested in the D7200.
The D7200 has a USB 2.0 port to transfer images from the camera. Downloading 4GB of RAW files to a computer with an SSD drive, the D7200 provided 28.6 MB/s transfer rate using a USB cable connected to the camera. A separate card reader can allow much faster transfers. Using a USB 3.0 card reader, fast UHS-I cards such as the SanDisk Extreme Pro provide actual download speeds up to 90 MB/s. Faster UHS-II cards like the Lexar Professional 2000x UHS-II can reach 250 MB/s. Additional memory card reader and SD card speed tests are provided in the Card Reader Reviews.