The need for speed isn't lost on us -- we're always yearning for an SSD, RAM module, you name it, with faster throughput. It doesn't end when it comes to flash cards, as the demand placed on HD-DSLRs is getting quite severe now that 1080p30 video is the norm. With more and more DSLR cameras able to shoot HD video, the CompactFlash Association recognizes that there will be an increasing need for speed in future cards. In fact, as the typical CF card is taking a backseat to XQD (a format that's just breaking through, and is featured alongside the CF card in Nikon's D4), the CompactFlash Association has seen fit to buddy up with what's next.
The CFA this week announced the development of the XQD 2.0 specification, sponsored by Sony Corporation. To date, only Sony has pushed XQD cards to market, hence the tight involvement. According to the PR: "The XQD 2.0 specification will be developed in the XQD Technical Workgroup and will leverage the XQD 1.0 specification which was released October 2010. Additional participation in this specification development will be welcomed. XQD 2.0 will leverage the same connector interface as XQD 1.0 interface for higher performance and backward compatibility. Host manufacturers and media manufacturers will be able to leverage the next generation of PCI Express technology to serve the high performance requirements of this market. The new format will have VPG (Video Performance Guarantee) capability with profiles capable of supporting digital intermediate formats such as ProResTM, DPXTM, and DNXhdTM."
What's it mean for consumers? First off, normal XQD cards should get cheaper soon -- right now, they're outrageously expensive. For those who long for v2.0, you'll be able to look forward to 8Gbps of speed, or up to 1,000MB/sec in real use, which legacy support is maintained. Obviously, we expect to see even more camera makers confess their love for XQD at the Photokina Expo this September.