Sony 64 GB MicroSDXC Card: The Final Failure

The fourth Sony MicroSDXC card went into service in late September 2015 and has now failed after about 60 sessions in my Sony HDR-AS30 Action Camera. This one sported a U3 speed rating and I had hopes that would improve its longevity, but that doesn’t seem to be true.

The defunct Sony card (marked in red to avoid confusion) will join its defunct compadre and the Sandisk Extreme Pro card goes in the camera:

Sony 64 GB MicroSD SR-64UX - failure
Sony 64 GB MicroSD SR-64UX – failure

The 16 bike rides in December added up to 220 GB; call it 13.75 GB/trip. January 2016 shows only three rides and it failed after two February rides: barely 60 rides for a total of 825-ish GB of video data. The three previous Sony cards failed after less than 1 TB of data, putting this one in the same ballpark.

I have no way to measure the actual write speed, but the camera shuts down after recording less than a minute of 1920×1080 @ 60 f/s video. Previous cards worked fine at lower video resolutions and recording speeds; I’ll assume this one behaves similarly. It might make a capacious “disk” for a Raspberry Pi.

When the previous card failed, Sony’s “customer support” decided that there might be something wrong with the camera’s firmware causing it to trash the cards, so there was no point in replacing the card under warranty and I should send the camera in for a checkup. When I pointed out that they’d strung me along for a year, until the camera was out of warranty, without mentioning even the possibility that the camera might be at fault and asked whether they’d pick up the $100+ bill for having the camera “examined”, the Nice Man said Level 2 would get back to me after “48 working hours”. When prodded, he agreed that “48 working hours” equaled “6 working days” and didn’t include weekends; when we had that settled, I knew they had no further interest in this matter.

Sony hasn’t called back and, by now, I don’t expect they ever will. It’s not worth my time to pursue this any further, but if you’re wondering how well Sony MicroSD cards work in Sony cameras and how well they support the failures, now you know.

So, starting with this riding season, we’ll see how long a Sandisk Extreme Pro card survives…