Lexar Introduces 4-Gbyte Flash Memory Card

The memory card from Lexar, Fremont, Calif., was specifically designed with high-quality digital photography in mind. Its list price will be $1,500.

Professional photographers using the newest card can store about 600 photos in the highest resolution mode allowable from the latest 6-megapixel digital cameras. Such high-quality digital image files offer the greatest photo detail and resolution, but each can quickly gobble up to 15 megabytes of storage space.

"By allowing this large number of high-quality images to be saved on one CompactFlash card, we expect professional photographers will increasingly shoot the highest-quality image possible," said John Omvik, director of product marketing for Lexar Media.

Not all digital cameras with CompactFlash slots will be able to use the new high-capacity card. The 4-gigabyte Lexar card uses a file system called FAT32 and most current digital cameras on the market recognize the FAT16 file system, which can only support data cards storing up to 2 gigabytes. Cameras that can use the new card include some models from Canon, Kodak and Olympus.

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SanDisk Corp., a rival flash memory maker based in nearby Sunnyvale, plans to start shipping its own 4-gigabyte CompactFlash card in October for $1,000.