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 Home > News > Digital Cameras > New CF5...
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Monday, February 22, 2010
New CF5.0 Specification Released

The CompactFlash Association (CFA) announced availability of the recently approved CF5.0 Specification.

The CF5.0 work group was formed in November, 2008 to add key features to the already popular CF4.1 specification based on the PATA (Parallel ATA) interface. The new CF5.0 specification adds the following key features/benefits to the memory card:

48 bit Addressing (Mandatory) - Capacity points beyond current limitation of 137GB (up to 144PB) & more efficient data transfer (32MB per transfer versus 128K per transfer)

Data Set Management Command/Trim (Mandatory) - More efficient cleanup of unused space on memory card (LBA's)

Update ATA References to ATA-6 & ATA-8/ACS-2 - Access to advancements in the ATA standard

Performance Control (optional) - Card performance quality of service framework

Video Performance Guarantee (Optional) - Quality of service for video capture applications to ensure quality recordings with no dropped frames

Identify Device CFA Specification Version Number (Mandatory) - Easier for host to determine card capabilities

Changed Interface Electrical Specification to Better Comply with the ATA Standard (Mandatory) - Easier and better card design, compatible with advanced hosts.

Mr. Shigeto Kanda of Canon and the CFA chairman of the board said, "The higher capacity and higher performance of CF cards enabled by the 48-bit addressing feature in the CF5.0 specification will further increase the value of DSLR cameras. The Video Performance Guarantee feature of the CF5.0 specification will help CF cards to expand into new markets such as high-speed movie equipment like professional video camcorders."

To help manufacturers and consumers differentiate the new CF5 cards, the CompactFlash Association has created a CF5 compatibility mark. Additionally, since the Video Performance Guarantee feature is optional, the CompactFlash Association has created a Video Performance Guarantee compatibility mark that host and card manufacturers can use to help end users choose the right card.

CompactFlash card slots are commonly used in digital cameras, video cameras and other electronic platforms including embedded systems, single board computers, data recorders, heart monitors, defibrillators, and slot machines.

Additional information about CF5.0 including a whitepaper on Performance Control features and the latest CompactFlash published Specification; Revision 5.0 is available to download from the CFA web site at

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