There are two important areas that can affect the performance of your trail cameras and your trail camera viewer. UNDERSTANDING THE CLASS OF YOUR SD CARDS Many of the problems we are experiencing today with our cameras and trail camera viewers are due to the speed of the SD cards being used. The lower speed SD cards cannot perform at the level needed in the higher speed, higher megapixel cameras in use today. Modern SD memory cards are classed with a speed class or number on the front of the SD card. That number is within a small C stamped on the front of the SD card. Starting with a Class 2, then Class 4, Class 6 and Class 10. The lower the number, the slower the speed of the SD card. Below are examples of Class 10 SD and Micro SD cards: Most trail camera manufacturers today strongly recommend using Class 10 SD cards in their cameras. However, we know through troubleshooting that there are many Class 4 cards in use today. This can cause problems not only in our cameras, but also with our trail camera viewers when we try to view, study and save our images. Considering this, we at LOWDOWN strongly recommend using class 10 SD cards in your cameras and in the LOWDOWN viewer to prevent problems when viewing, studying and saving images in the LOWDOWN viewer. THE IMPORTANCE OF FORMATTING YOUR SD CARDS About 10 years ago I was having problems with one of my trail cameras not recording pictures. I called the camera company to troubleshoot and the first thing they asked: “have you formatted your SD cards lately?” I replied what is formatting? First off they explained in layman’s terms, what happens if you don’t change the oil in your car. I replied it becomes dirty and the car will eventually have problems. They explained, if you don’t format your SD cards, the same thing happens to them, you start having problems. DEFINITION OF FORMATTING SD/memory card formatting is the process of preparing a flash memory device (SD Card) for data storage. It cleans the SD card by removing previously existing data and information on the SD card, creating a new and clean file system (SD Card). Erasing or deleting images on your SD cards does not fully clear the SD cards of left over data. Instead it is better to get in the habit of formatting your SD cards. Subsequently it is a good practice to format your SD cards after saving the images you want or a least format your SD cards once per month. This will maintain the SD cards full speed performance, preserve it’s storage capacity and reduce the risk of storage errors. This will allow the LOWDOWN viewer to copy and save your images more efficiently and reliably. HOW TO FORMAT YOUR SD CARDS It literally takes about 30 seconds to format an SD card. The easiest way to get started, is simply ask a friend to show you how or simply Google it to get started, if you don’t have a computer or laptop, the Library can always help you out. The SD Card Association provides easy-to-use SD Card formatting tools for both Windows and MacOS, available here. “NOTE” When the formatting of your SD card is completed, it is also very important that you safely remove/eject SD cards from your computer or laptop.