Sandisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro: The big differences?

SanDisk Extreme Overview

SanDisk Extreme is a popular line of storage solutions known for its exceptional performance, durability, and reliability. Developed by Western Digital, SanDisk Extreme products are designed to meet the demanding needs of professional photographers, videographers, and enthusiasts who require high-speed, high-capacity storage solutions for capturing and transferring data.

SanDisk Extreme has gained significant popularity as an SD card choice for mirrorless and DSLR cameras, primarily due to its improved speed and performance when compared to its predecessor, the SanDisk Ultra. While it offers better performance, it falls somewhere in the middle as it is not as fast as the Extreme Pro version.

Sandisk Extreme
Sandisk Extreme

SanDisk Extreme Pro Overview

SanDisk’s flagship memory card, the Pro version, is specifically designed for use with advanced DSLR cameras and mirrorless cameras that excel at capturing high-resolution images and video footage, up to 8K resolution videos.

Known for producing fast and reliable memory cards, SanDisk holds a strong reputation in the industry. The Pro version stands out as one of the fastest microSD and UHS-I cards available globally, delivering exceptional performance and speed. It is optimized to meet the demands of professional photographers and videographers who require rapid data transfer and processing capabilities to handle large files and maintain a smooth shooting experience.

By leveraging the Pro version, photographers and videographers can confidently capture high-quality content without concerns about storage limitations or performance bottlenecks. With its advanced features and top-notch speed, the SanDisk Pro memory card is a preferred choice for professionals seeking optimal performance and reliability in their digital imaging workflow.

sandisk extreme pro
sandisk extreme pro

Comparation SanDisk Ultra vs Extreme

Many people who are new to photography may not have much knowledge about memory cards in general, including the specific types of SanDisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro. Let’s learn about them!


The SanDisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro have different speeds, but they share some common features because they both come from SanDisk:

  • Strong and Durable: Both memory cards are built to be tough. They can handle shocks up to 500 Gs and work in temperatures ranging from -13 to 185 degrees Fahrenheit without getting damaged.
  • Compatible Storage Formats: The SanDisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro cards use similar storage formats. SD cards use FAT16, SDHC cards use FAT32, and SDXC cards use exFAT. This compatibility makes it easy to manage files across different devices.
  • Protection against External Factors: Both cards are designed to resist damage from magnetic fields and X-rays. So, you don’t have to worry about these factors affecting the performance or integrity of your data.
  • UHS-I Technology: The SanDisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro  models use UHS-I cards, which have a single row of pins. This technology allows for fast data transfer speeds of around 104MB/s, making it quick and efficient to transfer data between the memory card and your camera.


Read speeds

We used HDD Tune Pro for testing. On the left is the SanDisk Extreme, with a read speed of up to 47 MB/s, while the Extreme Pro achieved 94 MB/s. Therefore, the Extreme Pro has twice the read speed. The high speed allows for quicker reviewing of photos and videos. However, this speed does not affect the process of capturing photos and recording videos. What we need to focus on is the write speed.

Sandisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro Reads Comparison
Sandisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro Read Comparison

Write speeds

Next, we used the CrystalDiskMark software. We tested the write speed using a 4GB heavy file to continuously stress the memory cards and observe the differences between the two types. Looking at the results after the test, the Extreme version achieved a write speed of 43 MB/s. Although the write speed is not exceptionally high, it experiences minimal degradation when the memory card is nearly full. On the other hand, the Extreme Pro memory card has significantly higher read and write speeds. It is also more stable compared to the Extreme version. Therefore, it is suitable for recording continuous 4K videos or capturing consecutive RAW photos. Additionally, the Extreme Pro card has a higher endurance level compared to the Extreme card. It is similar to the difference between budget and high-end SSDs.

Sandisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro write speeds Comparison
Sandisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro write speeds Comparison

Available Storage Capacity Options

Both memory card versions offer various storage capacities, starting from a minimum of 32GB. The Extreme version provides options of 32GB, 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB. In contrast, the Pro version offers a wider range of storage options, including 32GB, 64GB, 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB.

Consequently, the Extreme version has a maximum capacity of 256GB, while the Pro version provides more flexibility with additional options of 512GB and 1TB.

When to Use SanDisk Extreme

  1. Performance and Speed: SanDisk Extreme is suitable for users who require good performance and speed but may not need the absolute highest level. It provides fast read and write speeds, making it ideal for tasks like capturing high-quality photos, recording Full HD videos, and transferring data quickly.
  2. Everyday Use: If you are a casual photographer or use your camera for personal purposes, SanDisk Extreme offers a cost-effective option. It provides reliable performance for general photography needs without the need for top-tier features.
  3. Budget-Friendly: SanDisk Extreme is a more affordable choice compared to the Extreme Pro. If you have budget constraints or don’t require the absolute maximum performance, the Extreme version can meet your needs without breaking the bank.
  4. Moderate Storage Requirements: The SanDisk Extreme comes in a range of storage capacities starting from 32GB up to 256GB. If you don’t require extensive storage space for your photography or videography needs, the available capacity options of the Extreme version should be sufficient.

When to Use SanDisk Extreme Pro

  1. Professional Use: SanDisk Extreme Pro is designed for professionals or enthusiasts who demand top-tier performance and reliability. It is suitable for professional photographers, videographers, and content creators who require the highest level of speed, endurance, and data handling capabilities.
  2. High-Performance Tasks: If you work with demanding tasks such as shooting in 4K or capturing burst-mode photos, the Extreme Pro offers faster read and write speeds. This ensures smooth and efficient handling of large files, enabling seamless workflow and reducing any potential bottlenecks.
  3. Extended Shooting Sessions: If you need ample storage space for extended shooting sessions or have a significant volume of high-resolution content, the Extreme Pro’s larger capacity options of 512GB and 1TB are advantageous. They provide the necessary storage for intensive use and professional workflows.
  4. Durability and Endurance: The Extreme Pro is built to withstand tough conditions and has higher endurance levels. If you frequently work in challenging environments or require a memory card that can handle heavy use without compromising performance or reliability, the Extreme Pro is the recommended choice.


When comparing the SanDisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro memory cards, both provide reliable storage solutions tailored to various photography and videography needs. The SanDisk Extreme is favored by budget-conscious beginners, striking a balance between affordability and performance. Conversely, the SanDisk Extreme Pro caters to professionals and enthusiasts seeking faster read and write speeds, particularly for continuous burst mode photography and high-resolution video recording.

Ultimately, the choice between the SanDisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro hinges on specific requirements, budget, and camera capabilities. Evaluate factors such as storage capacity, speed, compatibility, and intended use to determine the most suitable memory card. Rest assured that whether you select the Extreme or Extreme Pro, both uphold the trusted SanDisk brand’s reputation for reliability and quality.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. What is the main difference between SanDisk Extreme and Extreme Pro memory cards?

The main difference lies in their performance and speed capabilities. The Extreme Pro offers faster read and write speeds, making it better suited for high-performance tasks and professional use.

2. Can I use SanDisk Extreme memory cards for recording 4K videos?

Yes, SanDisk Extreme memory cards are capable of recording 4K videos. They provide reliable performance for capturing high-resolution video footage.

3. Are SanDisk Extreme memory cards durable?

Yes, both SanDisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro memory cards are built to be durable. They can withstand shocks, operate in extreme temperature ranges, and are resistant to magnetic fields and X-rays.

4. Which memory card should I choose for professional photography?

For professional photography, the SanDisk Extreme Pro is highly recommended. It offers faster speeds, higher endurance, and larger capacity options, making it ideal for professional use.

5. Can I use SanDisk Extreme Pro memory cards in my digital camera or camcorder?

Yes, SanDisk Extreme Pro memory cards are compatible with a wide range of digital cameras and camcorders. They utilize standard memory card formats such as SD, SDHC, and SDXC.

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