New GX7 and card woes...

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by seadragon, Aug 29, 2014.

  1. seadragon

    seadragon Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Jan 3, 2013
    Hi everyone,

    I just purchased a GX7 and have had it for a couple of days now. I really like this camera and it even has some better features compared to my GH3 like focus peaking.

    I'm off to Disney World tomorrow with it and looking forward to carrying this around with the 20mm 1.7.

    Anyway, the reason for my post is that I'm having a problem with a couple of cards when used in the GX7. The same cards work fine in the GH3. have 2 - 32 GB Lexar Professional 400x cards that I use in the GH3. When I use them in the GX7 (and after formatting in camera) it's been throwing random errors where it says the card is full (when there's really only a couple of photos on it). Plus it throws a "Write Error - Please check the card" after taking a shot.

    So, I inserted a 16 GB SanDisk Extreme Pro card in and I haven't encountered these errors (yet).

    With the SanDisk cards, the GX7 starts up quicky and stores the photos rather quickly after taking a shot. With the Lexar cards, the camera shows the card busy icon for a few seconds on startup. Then every few photos or so, it takes longer to store the shot to the card. This is when it shows the card error sometimes.

    The pins look the same on all cards with no dust or dirt on them that I can see.

    The GH3 has thrown this same error a few times (maybe once or twice a year) but the GX7 is doing it quite a bit with the Lexar cards.

    Not sure what to think. The fact the GX7 is throwing errors on both Lexar cards has be wondering if its the cards or the camera. I have a couple of more weeks in the return window to take the camera back.

    The cards are formatted in camera which I've done many times now. The GX7 was assembled in July 2014 and has firmware 1.3 already installed from the factory.

    If it was just one card causing this, I would obviously think the card is the problem. But with 2 of the same card doing this, I'm hoping it's not the camera.

    Has anyone else run into this issue? I need to determine if it's the camera and if so, I'll be returning it. Is the GX7 particularly sensitive to certain cards?

    Thanks for any help or advice!
     
  2. gugarci

    gugarci Mu-43 Veteran

    304
    Jul 8, 2012
    Lyndhurst, NJ
    Bill
    For whatever reason those Lexar card don't work well on your GX7. And you also said you've also had some issues with those Lexar on your GH3 but not as much. Don't know I only used SanDisk myself. Since you are taking this camera on vacation stick to the SanDisk. Lexars are supposed to be good cards but maybe you got a bad batch, or a bad GX7. If I had to pick the culprit I would say the problem lies in the cards since these cards have also failed you occasionally on the GH3.
    Good luck & please report back on your findings.
     
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  3. seadragon

    seadragon Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Jan 3, 2013
    Thanks for your reply gugarci. I plan on sticking with the SanDisk cards for my vacation as they haven't caused an error yet.

    Just to clarify, my GH3 has thrown the "Write Error - Please check the card" message a few times with both the SanDisk and the Lexar cards. In fact, when the SanDisk cards were brand new, I was getting that error on the GH3, but only a couple of times.

    It's very strange. I'm hoping the camera is not defective but if it is, I need to return it within 13 days from now. The problem will be trying to determine if there really is anything wrong with the camera vs the cards.
     
  4. Grinch

    Grinch Mu-43 Top Veteran

    813
    Jan 9, 2011
    Canada
    May want to take into account that the sandisk extreme pro is about twice fast for write speeds than the lexars you have.
    Lexar 400x 45MB/s write 60MB/s read
    Sandisk extreme pro 90MB/s write 95MB/s read
    I have a gx7 and use sandisk cards exclusively and have never had a problem, hence I've never tried any other brand.
     
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  5. orfeo

    orfeo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    673
    Sep 27, 2013
    FR
    had some weird stuff happend with lexars, now I only use extreme pro sandisk and am happy.
     
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  6. Paul80

    Paul80 Mu-43 Veteran

    254
    Jul 6, 2014
    Hi

    Personally I would suspect an issue with the Lexus cards, are you 100% sure they are genuine Lexus cards as those sort of errors are associated with cards that have a fake capacity.

    Have you tried formatting them in a card reader, that often overrides the fake capacity and returns them to the correct (often 4gb) or less.

    I wouldn't risk using them on a trip, buy a couple of SanDisc cards from a reputable supplier, not eBay or Amazon.

    Paul
     
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  7. seadragon

    seadragon Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Jan 3, 2013
    Thanks for your help guys...

    I bought the Lexar cards from Best Buy so I would hope they are legit. I also tried formatting them in my MacBook (FAT-32) but it didn't make a difference. The SanDisk 16GB cards haven't caused an error yet but I'll use them this week and see how it goes. I also have my GH3 with me so I have a backup system in case the GX7 doesn't play nice.

    Grinch, thanks for the speed info! I didn't realize the differences in read and write speeds between the cards. That may have something to do with it.
     
  8. Bif

    Bif Mu-43 Veteran

    380
    May 28, 2012
    San Angelo TX
    Bruce Foreman
    Lexar is "bargain brand" media card. Some will perform fine, some won't.

    I use nothing but SanDisk and have not had a problem in GH2's, GH3's, and now GH4. Also have a GX7 I use a lot.

    The cards will need to be low level formatted occasionally, Panasonic cameras do not have this option, they do a "quick" format that only zero's out the File Allocation Table. Over time this leaves a clutter of "chunks" of file data all over the card and this slows it down and can cause errors. SanDisk will let you "get away" with this longer than "bargain brand" media will but eventually this catches up with you

    The low level format goes through all the sectors on the media and zero's out everything..

    The low level format is easily done on a PC, just uncheck the "quick format" box. If your computer is a MAC it may take some special utility to do this. Some have reported just attempting a low level format on a MAC without the proper utility has resulted in a card the camera cannot recognize.

    I do the low level format on a PC about every 5-8 uses of the card, then the card gets formatted in camera so the camera can setup the file structure it needs.
     
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  9. seadragon

    seadragon Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Jan 3, 2013
    Just an update on this...

    I've been shooting with the GX7 all week at Disney World and I haven't encountered any further write errors. The only cards the camera doesn't like are the 2 Lexar cards (32GB). I also have a 16GB version of the same Lexar card and it works perfectly fine in the camera.

    The camera has been a joy to use. I also brought my GH3 with me, but it stayed in the hotel room all week. I've been shooting with the GX7 and 20mm 1.7 almost exclusively.

    One other unrelated thing I've noticed is that the battery door seems to have a bit of play in it when it's closed. It "wiggles" a bit in a side to side motion and is noticeable when holding the camera as one finger usually rests against the door. I'm assuming it's normal for this camera? I'd be grateful if anyone that owns a GX7 could confirm this. Not a big deal, but just want to see if it's normal or not as I have 5 more days in the exchange/return window.

    Thanks!
     
  10. Bif

    Bif Mu-43 Veteran

    380
    May 28, 2012
    San Angelo TX
    Bruce Foreman
    This is not unusual. The higher the capacity of the card the better the onboard card controller has to function. The 16GB versions will often work OK when 32GB and 64GB versions may not. I still would not use the 16GB Lexar for anything you care about. I'd find some "non critical" use other device you can use it in.


    Just checked mine and it has a bit of sideways "wiggle" when closed. Should be just fine if we don't "worry" at it and make it worse. I think that play is normal.
     
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  11. seadragon

    seadragon Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Jan 3, 2013
    Thank you, Bif. :smile:
     
  12. seadragon

    seadragon Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Jan 3, 2013
  13. Steven

    Steven Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 25, 2012
    USA
    Yes, I noticed the wiggle too. At first I was upset, because I didn't think the GX1 had it, but then I went back to look and yes, it also has it, it's just less noticeable because it's sideways. Frankly, I am not too crazy about the arrangement because I feel like extra pressure applied the wrong way at some point could break that door. I am thinking about getting a leather half-case just to protect it.
    the very expensive Fuji X100 also has similarly flimsy-feeling door btw Maybe it's a conscious design decision - something that is more tight fitting may be more likely to break off in that position? I would prefer a more elegant and firm-feeling solution though.
     
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  14. seadragon

    seadragon Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Jan 3, 2013
    The more I think about it, the more I like the idea of a half case. Definitely something to consider. Thanks!
     
  15. Bif

    Bif Mu-43 Veteran

    380
    May 28, 2012
    San Angelo TX
    Bruce Foreman
    Yup. That's about the amount of wiggle I have on mine. Again, I wouldn't worry about it. Just don't "worry at it" constantly and I don't think it'll get looser. That amount of play seems normal to me on that door.
     
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  16. seadragon

    seadragon Mu-43 Regular

    52
    Jan 3, 2013
    Thanks again Bif. Just for peace of mind, I went back to the store I bought it from and checked another copy. It was exactly the same. I realize now that it's normal and my camera is fine.