Most of the IP security cameras feature a memory card slot. The built-in microSD card can achieve local video recording, hence avoid data losing by network disruption. Now here comes another question, how to choose appropriate SDHC/MicroSD card? As we know, HD IP camera will read and write data on SD card. The read and write data speed is the main factor to consider the SDHC/MicroSD card.

When we look at the specification of an IP camera we can see that many of them offer a slot for SD, SDHC and SDXC memory card, but what does this mean exactly? These name rules are related to the maximum storage capacity of the SD cards. The table below shows the details of each type:

Type Abbreviation Capacity
Secure Digital SD Up to 2GB
Secure Digital High Capacity SDHC 4GB to 32GB
Secure Digital High Extended Capacity SDXC 32GB+ to 2TB

Before buying

First, check your camera’s specifications. Some cameras have a limit on what size of memory cards they support. For example, old IP cameras only lets you add microSD cards up to 32GB in size. To support a higher microSD card capacity, you may need to update the firmware on the camera.

Second, determine how much storage space you need based on how you plan to use your surveillance security camera. If you set up your camera to record continuously, you should use a high-capacity memory card. But if you’ll only use the memory card as a backup storage device, you can settle for one with a lower capacity.

Finally, factor in your camera’s resolution. High-resolution videos take up more storage space, so if your camera’s resolution is 1080p or 4K, use a microSD card with a larger capacity.

Speed

Another factor to consider is the card speed. The speed rating of memory cards is based on their read/write speed. However, in security camera applications, only the write speed matters. The write speed is the rate at which a memory card writes data (video) to its memory. If you use a slow microSD card, it might cause recorded videos to skip frames or become laggy.

Unfortunately, unlike with the capacity, most security cameras don’t explicitly give a recommended write speed. Most of them tell you to choose a memory card with a speed rating of SDHC Class 10, which means it can sustain a write speed of at least 10MBPS. Making the choice even more complex, the SDHC speed rating is now being replaced by SDXC I and SDXC II. So, how do you choose a memory card with the right write speed?

We suggest that you base your decision on your camera’s resolution. Cameras with a higher resolution require microSD cards with higher write speeds. For 4K cameras, look for microSD cards that can sustain a write speed of at least 30MB/second. Such cards are usually marked as SDXC I with the number “3” inside a U-bracket or SDXC II V30. For 1080 and 720p cameras, use a memory card that can sustain at least 10MB/second write speed. They are marked as SDHC Class 10, SDXC I with the number “1” inside a U-bracket, or SDXC II V10.

The best microSD cards for security cameras

1. Samsung PRO Endurance
Samsung PRO Endurance microSD cards were recently released. The best thing about them is that they are designed specifically for home security cameras. Samsung PRO Endurance cards can maintain a write speed of up to 30MB/second, which is more than enough for 1080p and 720p recordings and just right for 4K recordings. As the name implies, they are also durable.

According to Samsung, they are waterproof (IP67), high-temperature resistant (up to 185℉), magnet-proof, and even X-ray proof. Finally, they are capable of recording for up to 43,800 hours straight (that’s 5 years), making them the perfect solution for video surveillance. They also include a 5-year warranty. Overall, Samsung PRO Endurance microSD cards provide the perfect balance between performance, durability, and price, making them our top pick.

Available in: 32GB, 64GB, 128GB, other.

2. Samsung PRO+
Samsung PRO+ is Samsung PRO Endurance’s speed-focused cousin. It can sustain a write speed of up to 90MB/second, making it perfect for writing large volumes of data fast. It’s also waterproof, high-temperature resistant, X-ray proof, and magnet-proof. It’s not designed for prolonged recording. Speed is its priority, but it’s not as durable as Samsung PRO Endurance.

Available in: 32GB, 64GB, 128GB, other.

3. Sandisk High Endurance
Sandisk has their own version of a durable microSD card in the form of Sandisk High Endurance. It’s not as fast and durable as Samsung PRO Endurance, but it’s a low-cost option for lower-end cameras. They sell both a 32GB and 64GB model and are designed for cameras with a resolution of 1080p or lower. However, they are high-temperature-resistant (up to 185℉), shockproof, X-ray-proof, and waterproof.

Available in: 32GB, 64GB, other.

4. Sandisk Extreme Plus

If speed is your priority, Sandisk Extreme Plus is another good option. Performance-wise, it’s similar to Samsung PRO+ with a write speed of up to 90MB/second. However, while it’s fast in terms of write speed, it’s not designed for prolonged recording. Also, Sandisk Extreme Plus is only durable to an extent. It’s waterproof, temperature resistant, and X-ray proof. Plus, it’s pricier than Samsung PRO+.

Available in: 32GB, 64GB, 128GB, other.

5. Kingston Industrial Class 10
Our final pick is the Kingston Industrial Class 10 microSD card, and we recommend it for a very specific use: outdoor security cameras in frigid environments. Kingston Industrial Class 10 isn’t as fast as the other options, but it can withstand temperatures as low as -40℉, something the other microSD cards on this list can’t do.

Available in: 32GB, 64GB, other.