xD-Picture Card

The xD -Picture Card is a flash memory card that was designed by Olympus and Fujifilm for PDA and digital cameras as successor technology for SmartMedia memory cards. XD originally stood for extreme Digital.

The cards are 1GB and 2GB manufactured by Toshiba and Samsung in memory sizes 16MB, 32MB, 64MB, 128MB, 512MB,.


This is a card type, the NAND flash or multi -level cell technology ( M- type) works by flash storage and with new specifications (block structure ) is to eliminate the problems encountered in the SmartMedia card capacity problems.

Since the xD -Picture Card as opposed to the SD card does not have its own controller, have cameras and other devices to control the card can be prepared for the MLC technique or control the reading of SLC and MLC cards. There are provided up to 8 GB of memory on a card available currently (as of January 2011) but still only cards with a maximum of 2 GB. It is significantly more expensive compared to the SD card as well: While SD cards have a gigabyte Price 2-5 €, free 2 GB xD- cards between 10 and 20 € (as of July 2009).

The xD -Picture Card of 20 mm × 25 mm × 1.7 mm, significantly smaller, but not as thin as the Smart Media cards; they should thus be less susceptible to Torsionsschäden. The large-scale contacts of the smart media cards, favor the electrostatic damage, are no longer present.

XD -Picture Cards are manufactured in three different techniques. These are (a) the classical technique (without Type designation, 16 MB to 512 MB ​​), ( b ) the space-saving, but slightly slower multi-level technique ( Type ' M', 256 MB to 2 GB ) and ( c ) the so-called high- technology, high capacity without the loss of speed of the multi-level technique enables ( Type ' H', 512 MB ​​to 2 GB). Since February 2008, there is also the type 'M ' (1 GB to 2 GB) of Olympus, which is 1.5 times faster than the type 'M'.

Olympus xD cards are advertised with additional 3D and panoramic mode, and special effects, which the company wants to prevent the camera owners their memory cards from other producers. It is however by no means functions that are enabled by the memory card in the camera, but rather an unlock code for an outdated photo software from Olympus for the PC, which is now no longer even included with the cameras.

Readers and technical problems

Reading can be the card from the camera via a card reader and CompactFlash or PC card adapter. Occasionally, however, this card reader error about when the card is separated too early from the device during the write or read operation or collapses the voltage of the digital camera. Thus, the data will be lost and the card will be unusable. Older digital cameras and card readers may have problems with the H - and M- type, and generally with high capacities. Manufacturers shall provide appropriate compatibility information and offer may need to update the firmware via the Internet to.

The life of the xD card is specified with 100,000 write or erase operations.

The xD- art, it is likely to be an outdated standard. In any case, the manufacturers have failed to develop on the promised 8 GB. In the current website of Fujifilm Germany xD technique is enumerated only in historical devices. On today's memory cards with this technique is no longer referenced.


In cameras compatible adapter can be used, can be used in up to 8 GB microSD card -making.