The PERGEAR 1TB CFE-B Pro Memory Card is a high-capacity, low-cost alternative to more expensive cards. It should be a good card for use with cameras such as the Canon R5, Canon R3, Canon C500 Mark II, Canon C300 Mark III, Nikon Z9, RED V-RAPTOR, and the new DJI Ronin 4D.
CFexpress cards have only been around for a few years and higher capacity versions can be expensive. Finding a reliable card with high capacity and good consistent read and write speeds can be a challenge.
CFE-B series CFexpress cards are claimed to enable 8K RAW continuous shooting and video recording for future premium DSLR, Mirrorless and video cameras. With the design of PCIe Gen3 interface, the fastest cards can provide speeds of up to 1730 MB/s read and 1550 MB/s write, which is over 3 times faster than the best CFast 2.0 and XQD cards.
The PERGEAR card has a claimed 1600MB/s read speed, and a 1200MB/s write speed.
So how do these speeds compare to some other 1TB cards on the market?
|READ SPEED||WRITE SPEED|
|PERGEAR 1TB CFE-B Pro||1600MB/s||1200MB/s|
|Angelbird 1TB AV Pro||1700MB/s||1500MB/s|
|Delkin Devices 1TB POWER||1730MB/s||1540MB/s|
|Silicon Power 1TB CFexpress Cinema EX||1700MB/s||1500MB/s|
|ProGrade Digital 1TB Gold||1700MB/s||1500MB/s|
|Exascend 1TB CFE4 Series||1700MB/s||1700MB/s|
|Exascend Archon 1TB||1700MB/s||1600MB/s|
|Wise Advanced 1TB CFX-B Series||1700MB/s||1500MB/s|
What you clearly need to be aware of is that these listed speeds are largely irrelevant in the real world and you are not going to see maximum read or write speeds. The most important speed to try and find out is sustained read and write speeds which are generally a lot lower than maximum speeds. Unfortunately, some manufacturers don’t quote sustained speeds.
So what are the minimum sustained speeds of the cards? Well, below you can see the ones that I was able to find information about.
|MINIMUM SUSTAINED READ SPEED||MINIMUM SUSTAINED WRITE SPEED|
|PERGEAR 1TB CFE-B Pro||Not listed||420MB/s|
|Angelbird 1TB AV Pro||1000MB/s||1000MB/s|
|Delkin Devices 1TB POWER||Not listed||Not listed|
|Silicon Power 1TB CFexpress Cinema EX||Not listed||Not listed|
|ProGrade Digital 1TB Gold||Not listed||400MB/s|
|Exascend 1TB CFE4 Series||Not listed||1000MB/s|
|Exascend Archon 1TB||Not listed||Not listed|
|Wise Advanced 1TB CFX-B Series||Not listed||400MB/s|
As you can see, the minimum sustained write speeds of the cards can vary greatly. Please note that these are the minimum guaranteed write speeds and they are not necessarily as high as what you will get in the real world.
CFexpress cards can be found in capacities up to 2TB. 512GB capacity cards tend to be the most popular, but with more cameras coming to market that are recording in higher resolutions and higher bitrates, the need for larger capacity cards will only increase.
So when I mounted the PERGEAR 1TB CFexpress card it shows the actual capacity as being 1.02TB. Given the RED Mini Mag controversy, it is good to know that you are getting what is being advertised. However, with some memory cards and media, companies reserve more space for buffer cleaning purposes which offer more stable writing performance.
According to PERGEAR the 1TBGB card is compatible with the following Canon cameras:
- Canon C500 Mark II
- Canon C300 Mark III
- Canon 1DX Mark III
- Canon EOS R3 (in testing)
- Canon EOS R5
The cards will also work with the following cameras:
- Nikon Z6
- Nikon Z6II
- Nikon Z7
- Nikon Z7II
- Nikon Z9
- Nikon D5
- Nikon D6
- Panasonic S1
- Panasonic S1R
- RED V-RAPTOR
- DJI Ronin 4D
Record 8K RAW
CFexpress uses a dual-lane PCIe 3.0 interface that enables it to meet the high read and write speeds that are quoted by card manufacturers.
Cameras with dual-lane PCIe 3.0 interfaces, can certainly take advantage of the high write speeds CFexpress offers. From what I understand, the Canon C500 Mark II, Canon C300 Mark II, and R5 all use a dual-lane PCIe 3.0 interface.
In theory, the speeds offered by the PERGEAR 1TB CFE-B Pro Memory card certainly make it capable of recording 8K RAW material from the Canon R5 without breaking a sweat.
Above you can see the card requirement speeds listed by Canon for recording 8K on the R5. The speeds offered by CFexpress Type B cards far exceed the requirements of most cameras that use this type of media.
Now, if you are using a camera like the RED V-Raptor then you may require a card with a sustained minimum write speed of 800 MB/s. That will limit your card options and it is why camera companies certify particular media and not others.
The card should be more than capable of recording 8K RAW from the Nikon Z9, but it hasn’t been officially tested by PERGEAR yet.
In cameras such as the Nikon Z6/ Z6 II and Z7/ Z7 II that only feature a single lane PCIe 2.0 interface, the camera can only read and write to CFexpress cards at throttled down speeds that are similar to what you would already get with an XQD card. As these cameras don’t even use the full write speed capabilities of XQD cards, CFexpress won’t offer any increased in-camera performance.
Not Backwards Compatible with XQD
According to PERGEAR, this memory card does not support cameras with XQD card slots, and it won’t work with XQD card readers. That seems like a strange statement given it does work with the Nikon Z6/ Z6 II and Z7 II that both have XQD card slots. I think what they are referring to is that the cards won’t work with certain cameras that have XQD card slots where the manufacturer hasn’t given that camera the ability to work with both XQD and CFexpress Type B.
Fast Media Offload
What you clearly need to remember, and this goes for any type of media, is that transfer speeds will vary depending on both the read and write speeds of your card, your card reader, and what type of hard drive you are transferring to.
If you are using a CFexpress card and transferring to an HDD drive, you won’t be getting fast transfer speeds. If you are transferring to a very fast SSD then you will see lightning-fast offload speeds.
Real World speed tests
I did a few tests to see what the sustained read/write speeds of the PERGEAR CFexpress card were and also how fast I could offload material through a USB-C card reader to an ultra-fast SSD.
For the sustained read/write speeds I was using a Wise CFexpress USB-C card reader that has a maximum read speed of 1000 MB/s
Above you can see the results for the PERGEAR card with the stress set to 5GB.
Above you can see the results for the PERGEAR card with the stress set to 1GB.
As a comparison, above you can see the read/write speeds using Blackmagic Disk Speed Test for the Wise Advanced 1TB CFX-B Series card.
I also tested the PERGEAR 1TB card using the AJA System Test Lite software under a 64GB load to see what the read and write speeds were. What concerned me a little is that the card was not consistent when reading or writing data.
As a comparison, above you can see the same test for the Wise Advanced 1TB CFX-B Series card.
I also did another test to see how many frames per second the card could handle recording 4K DCI ProRes 422HQ.
As a comparison, above you can see the difference when using the Wise Advanced 1TB CFX-B Series card. Not only can the Wise card capture more frames per second than the PERGEAR, but look at how much more consistent it was at doing so.
What you clearly need to remember, and I am going to reiterate this over and over, is that the CFexpress Type-B card readers are currently the stumbling block when it comes to speed. There are currently only a very small number of Thunderbolt 3 CFexpress card readers available. The majority of readers are only USB3.
Above are the only card readers I am aware of that use Thunderbolt 3.
- Atech Flash Technology Blackjet TX-1CXQ CFexpress Type B / XQD Thunderbolt 3 Card Reader $149.97 USD
- ProGrade Digital CFexpress Type-B & XQD Single-Slot Thunderbolt 3 Workflow Reader $129.99 USD
- Sonnet SF3 Series CFexpress/XQD Pro Card Reader $199.99 USD
Now, I also wanted to do some other tests to see how long it would take to copy and verify a 788GB file from a fast NVMe drive to the PERGEAR card.
The copy speeds started off at around 630MB/s, but they started to slow down pretty quickly. For a lot of the time, the speeds varied from around 300-400MB/s.
The total time to copy and verify the 788GB file was 34min and 30sec. So that means the average write speed was around 386MB/s.
It was interesting to see that the results I obtained during all of these tests were not as high as I was expecting. In saying that, the card is still fast enough to be able to record 8K RAW from the Canon R5.
I tested the card out with the Canon R5 and set the camera to record 8K RAW.
The card worked without any issues and I was able to record 8K RAW without encountering any problems.
In fact, the card kept recording for 29 minutes and it only stopped because of the recording limit in the camera.
I also tried some real-world tests with the Nikon Z6 where I started recording and then turned the power off. The files were saved and I didn’t lose any footage. With the Z6 if you pull the card out while you are recording it doesn’t save any of the last clip.
Price & availability
The card reader is really well built and the card will not accidentally come out because you need to push it in until a spring mechanism releases it. Considering you can get the card reader for just $20 USD when you buy the card, it is well worth it.
You can also purchase the card at the below various Amazon outlets:
How does the price compare to the competition?
|PERGEAR 1TB CFE-B Pro||$399 USD|
|Angelbird 1TB AV Pro||$599 USD*|
|Delkin Devices 1TB POWER||$671.68 USD|
|Silicon Power 1TB CFexpress Cinema EX||$449.99 USD*|
|ProGrade Digital 1TB Gold||$749.99 USD|
|Exascend 1TB CFE4 Series||$599.99 USD|
|Exascend Archon 1TB||$1,199 USD|
|Wise Advanced 1TB CFX-B Series||$749.99 USD|
*Currently on sale.
As you can see, the PERGEAR 1TB card is the cheapest 1TB option available. Now, you may be thinking that maybe the card won’t be as reliable as other options because it is a lot cheaper, however, PERGEAR offers a 5-year warranty where they will replace your card if it fails.
The card has a listed working temperature of 0° C ~ 70° C and a
storage temperature of -25° C ~ 85° C. I am a bit concerned that the lowest operating temperature is only listed as 0° C which could make it unsuitable for use in some countries in winter. However, the inside of most cameras gets fairly warm quite quickly once they are turned on.
If you own a Canon C500 Mark II, C300 Mark III, Canon R5, Canon R3, or the new Nikon Z9 the PERGEAR CFexpress cards are certainly an affordable option. However, you need to be aware that they are not the fastest cards out there and the actual read/write speeds I was able to obtain were considerably lower than cards such as the Wise 1TB CFexpress.
Despite the lower speeds, the card worked flawlessly on the Canon R5 and it can record 8K RAW and 4K HQ without any issues at all. This makes it by far the most affordable 1TB CFexpress Type B card to be able to do so. The reason you pay more for some other CFexpress cards on the market is that they have higher minimum sustained write speeds.
If you own a Nikon Z6/Z6 II or Z7/ Z7 II, the increased capacity and far greater offload speeds (depending on your hard drive) offered by a CFexpress Type B card mean it makes more sense than buying an XQD card. While you won’t get or see any increase in performance when using CFexpress in a Z6/Z7, the offload speeds make it a far wiser decision than using an XQD card.
If you are using CFexpress Type B cards with some of the latest cameras that can record 8K RAW then you can end up spending a lot of money on media, and that is what makes a budget-friendly card like the PERGEAR appealing.