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SanDisk 1TB Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card review: It's big, fast and pricey

SanDisk made a bold claim when it introduced the 1TB Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card in February at Mobile World Congress. The company touted it as the world’s largest and fastest microSD card. After benchmarking the new 1TB SanDisk Extreme, we can attest to the card’s speedy performance.

The card itself is the familiar microSD form factor, about the size of the fingernail on your pinkie. Every card has its standards tailored to certain storage needs (read our guide on how to choose an SD card for more details). The 1TB SanDisk Extreme carries labels for A2, U3 and V30 ratings:

  • The A2 means higher random read and write performance in Android devices.
  • The U3 means it’s rated for 30MBps sustained writes on a UHS bus device.
  • The V30 indicates it’s also fast enough for the newer V30 class speed rating, which denotes a minimum of 30MBps sustain writes for video.

The other important specs are the explicit 160MBps read and 90MBps write speeds SanDisk said the card will hit. These speeds matter when taking still pictures, or dumping a ton of videos from your PC to the card.

These are also the specs that likely make the card faster than the only other 1TB microSD card out there: Micron’s c200. While the Micron c200 carries the same V30, U3 and A2 ratings of the SanDisk 1TB Extreme, its explicit read and write speeds are 100MBps and 95MBps, respectively. While we haven’t tested the c200, we’d guess that difference in read speed is enough to give SanDisk the blessing of its lawyers to say that it’s the “fastest.”

Sanddisk extreme microsd 1tb Sandisk

SanDisk claims its new 1TB Extreme microSD card is the world’s fastest. We benchmarked it to find out.

How we tested

To test that claim, we fired up the SanDisk 1TB Extreme in two platforms: an HP Spectre 13 x360 convertible laptop with a 7th-gen Intel Core CPU, and an LG G8 ThinQ using Qualcomm’s SnapDragon 855 SOC. For context, we retested two other beefy microSD cards: A 400GB SanDisk Ultra card, and a 256GB SanDisk Extreme card.

For our read and write tests on the HP Spectre 13 x360, we used a SanDisk MobileMate USB 3.0 reader that supports UHS-I transfer rates. With the LG G8, we used each card in the phone’s microSD slot. Android’s optional Adoptable Storage mode was not used, as LG doesn’t support it in the G8. 

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