An SD card is an important accessory of any camera. GoPro is known for its quality and a high performance SD card would enhance its value. It’s definitely frustrating when you face some card errors while shooting; hence SD card errors are a matter of concern. There are a lot of common errors like “NO SD card” or “SD ERR” etc. which GoPro users witness in their day-to-day use.

Read on to know all about SD card errors and the troubleshooting. This article will cover all common GoPro SD card issues and will offer quick fix solutions.


Symptoms of GoPro SD Card Errors

Most common errors occur due to Formatting not done properly, incompatible card reader, some virus attack, file or directory corruption, not switching off the camera properly or pulling out the card without turning off the cam properly. Some of the errors are as below :

#1. SD Card Not Available or No SD Card

  • When you insert the card in GoPro, you see a black screen with a message stating SD is not accessible. This means that the card is corrupted or unreadable.
  • When you insert the card in a PC, it has no folders or it shows Read/Write error on SD card. It means that the data can’t be read by the computer.

#2. SD Card Can be Seen but Data is NOT Accessible

  • When you can see the content of the SD card but cannot transfer or edit it.
  • When the PC can read your SD card but there’s no content inside.

#3. Photos or Videos NOT Accessible

  • When some of the pictures or videos are unexpectedly missing.
  • When you try to access images/videos, you get an error “memory card error” or “corrupt memory card”.

If you seem to experience any of the above errors, below are few general fixes which you may try.

  1. Check if the SD card is correctly inserted – You can try to remove and reinsert the battery and SD card to make sure that the SD card is fully inserted in the camera.
  2. Connect SD Card to Another Camera – Use some other camera model to read the card and check if the problem persists.
  3. Format SD card – Formatting will wipe out the existing storage of the camera and the error will also get removed. For detailed steps click here.
  4. Scan SD Card Errors with CHKDSK – CHKDSK command will look for possible errors and try to fix the corrupted card. For this step you may-
  • Insert your card into a card reader and connect to your computer system.
  • Search for the SD card under the Devices with Removable Storage and note the drive letter assigned.
  • Click on the Start button and Open command prompt (Type CMD).
  • Type chkdsk with the drive letter and type /f and press enter.

If the files are recovered, you can see the newly assigned drive letter in the window.

Check out the below video for more details:

The 5 Major Causes of GoPro SD Card Error and How to Fix Them

Other than the general fixes listed above, below are few issues and their remedies which may be helpful.

#1. The GoPro SD Card Read and Write Speed is NOT fast enough

GoPro requires specific SD cards with a very high read and write speeds to work without any interruptions. The higher the video quality is, the faster the SD card speed needs to be. If the speed of the memory card is not compatible with the large GoPro files, SD ERR will be seen on the screen.

Pro tip: Pull out your SD Card and Check the label. Make sure that it is at least a CLASS 10 SD Card.

speed label sd card

GoPro uses H256 codec for high resolution and high frame rate video settings. It writes video footage at about 12MB/s which requires a high quality SD Card. The general rule is to pick a SD Card that has a write speed of more than 12MB/s to ensure that your GoPro would perform smoothly.

Here’s some quality SD Card you can get for your GoPro:

SanDisk Extreme UHS-I 160MB/s

SanDisk has a great reputation when it comes to storage devices. This SD Card is compatible with all GoPro model.

  • Storage Capacity: 64GB, 128GB, 256GB, 400GB.
  • 160 MB/s read and 60MB/s write speeds
  • Included SD Card Reader
SanDisk Extreme 64GB microSD UHS-I Card with Adapter - Up to 160MB/s with SanDisk MobileMate USB 3.0 microSD Card Reader
320,856 Reviews
SanDisk Extreme 64GB microSD UHS-I Card with Adapter - Up to 160MB/s with SanDisk MobileMate USB 3.0 microSD Card Reader
  • Ideal for Android smartphones and tablets, action cameras, and drones
  • Up to 160MB/s
  • Compact and durable microSD card reader

 Samsung Pro Plus UHS-I

Another brand that most GoPro owner uses is Samsung. It has a variety of good SD Cards that works well on almost all GoPro models. This particular model is built specifically for 4K video recordings. Samsung advertise that it is built to stand against heat and water.

  • Storage Capacity: 64GB, 128GB, 256GB
  • 95 MB/s read and 90MB/s write speeds
  • No Free Card Reader
Samsung Pro Plus 32GB MicroSDHC Memory Card - 95MB/s Read, 90MB/s Write
162 Reviews
Samsung Pro Plus 32GB MicroSDHC Memory Card - 95MB/s Read, 90MB/s Write
  • Up to 95MB/s Read and 90MB/s Write speed
  • Storage Capacity: 32 GB
  • Great Performance in High-End Smartphones, Tablet PCs, Action Cameras, and DSLRs

You can also check our Top 7 High-Speed GoPro Memory Card review.

#2. Firmware is NOT updated

Errors do occur when you are using a new version SD card with old models of GoPro. The SD card is not compatible with the GoPro model and thus it leads to discrepancy. To overcome this glitch, all you need to do is to check whether your GoPro’s firmware is up to date. If not, make sure you update it to the latest version.

Update using the GoPro App

Step 1: Connect the GoPro to your phone

Step 2: Open the GoPro app

Step 3: The GoPro app will alert you whenever a firmware is available. Follow the prompt on the screen to perform the firmware update

Update using Quik

Step 1: Download and Install Quik on your computer

Step 2: Make sure that your GoPro is fully charged

Step 3: Launch the Quik app for desktop

Step 4: Connect your GoPro on the computer

Step 5: Quik will inform you if a firmware update is available. Follow the on-screen instructions to perform firmware update on your GoPro.

#3. GoPro SD Card is NOT Clean

If you have been using the SD card in your GoPro for quite some time now and if the cam suddenly stops working. Chances are that the card is covered with dust. You need to clean it with a soft cloth or toothbrush, making sure the clean is complete. Once, it is all clean and dry, reinsert it into the GoPro and start using.

cleaning sd card

If cleaning the memory does not work then chances are, the card slot within the GoPro itself is dirty. First, use a can of compressed air to remove any dust that may have gotten inside.

#4. Unreadable GoPro SD Card

This sometimes happens due to incompatibility of the card reader to read drive letters C, D, E. You can assign it a new drive letter so that it can be read by the system. Follow the below steps :

  1. Connect the card to your system using a card reader.
  2. Right-click on My Computer and click on the Manage button.
  3. Open the Disk Management and the Virtual Disk service will load.
  4. Right-click on the card when it loads and tap on the Change Drive Letter and Paths option.
  5. Select a drive letter from the drop-down list to change it.

If your card is still not readable then you need a recovery tool to get your data back.

#5. Recover missing Photos and Videos

You can recover your data using the best GoPro photo recovery software which is Recoverit Photo Recovery for Windows. Mac users can get Recoverit for Mac. Once the application is  installed, follow the below steps :

  1. Select the drive to be scanned (the one with your SD card).


2. Scan the Card and Select Files.


3. Preview and Recover the files by selecting them.


Tips for Avoiding GoPro SD Card Errors

  1. Format the new card in the camera before using for every shoot.
  2. Use small cards, as the capacity expands, the card becomes more prone to being corrupt.
  3. Keep checking the space on your card and try not to use it to its full capacity.
  4. Eject your card safely after switching off the cam.
  5. Keep your card clean. Remove dust from time to time.

Now you can understand why it’s important to buy Memory card that suits your Go Pro model.

Here comes a list of Best GoPro SD Cards:


Keeping your SD card error free is not completely possible but you can avoid the errors by proper maintenance and tips to keep the card functioning properly. The SD card does impact the performance of your GoPro and hence it is very important to take good care of your little card for best experience while filming.


I hope that these tips helped you out and fixed your GoPro card error. If you liked this article please share it with anyone who has a GoPro!


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