ProGrade Digital 160GB Cobalt CFExpress Type A Card and Dual Slot CFExpressA / SD Card Reader Review



In our testing of the ProGrade Cobalt CFExpress Type A card using the ProGrade Reader, we found the card to get extremely hot during extended transfers as shown here:

Let me confirm flat out that you are not immediately removing that card from the camera, or reader as it be when it is that hot.  Having  said that, we don’t expect to see this whatsoever in typical camera operation and, in our testing regimen, we are moving 85GB of data onto the card non-stop.


Our sustained write performance of the ProGrade Digital Cobalt 160GB CFExpress Type A card was reduced substantially once heat built up, as shown above.  We can confirm that we had a sustained write speed just above 500MB/s for the first 40GB of our sample 85GB 8K file folder which would meet the needs of 99% of users.  It was when we hit that point and observed the temperature to reach the 80°C mark again that the transfer started to struggle as can be seen in the transfer photo itself.


We also would typically perform real world data transfer tests with 15GB samples of video, music, photos and OS files.  These tests were unfeasible, as was AS SSD Benchmark testing, because the low random data transfer performance is so low that it stops these tests before they can complete, this stop being the result of heat once again.


The ProGrade 160GB CFExpress Type A Card enters a very niche market to which we are certain it will do well.  It speaks to performance of 900MB/s read and 753MB/s write, has sustained write performance of 500MB/s in typical use, a 3-year warranty and a price point of about $329 for the available size of 160GB.  It also comes with a limited free copy of Refresh Pr0.

As we have shown, this card does get a little hot and we were able to demonstrate that during our testing.  Don’t let that dissuade you whatsoever because we intended to temperature test this card and then see if it would throttle, and that it did.  We would suggest that you won’t ever see this through camera use and may only experience it when you want to transfer large amounts of files exceeding 40GB  from the reader to PC.  Like CFExpress Type B, the temperature considerations are a first generation issue and we can say that there are several people with Lexar, SanDisk and similar cards that run hot and are still more than happy with those cards.

We have also been provided with the ProGrade CFExpress A/SD Card Reader which is a USB 3.2 Gen 2 device capable of reading both cards at top spec.  We actually have the full line of ProGrade readers and can’t speak highly enough about them.  Their build, appearance and performance are beyond reproach.

Check for the ProGrade 160GB Cobalt CFExpress A Card at Amazon.

Check for the ProGrade CFExpress Type A/ SD Card Reader on Amazon.


ProGrade CFExpress Type A Card Ratings

Product Build
3-Year Warranty
Price and Availability

Type A at last!

ProGrade is one of very few companies to offer a CFExpress Type A card and their first step out the door is a decent one. This card reaches 900MB/s read and 750MB/s write with 500MB/s sustained performance and a 3-year warranty.

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