Recovering data from SD cards (cameras/phones)

We explain the different types of SD cards and the recovery processes. (15 Sep 2015)

Type 4 micro SD card repair

Recovering Data From Micro SD Cards

One of the most common items we are asked to recover data from are Micro SD cards. These are regularly used to expand memory in phones and therefore they are regularly used to store large volumes of photographs. 

Types of Micro SD Cards

The Micro SD card pictured is a Class 4 card. The figure itself relates to the speed of the card and will be chosen down to the applications and usage required. Typically, the higher the number, the higher the capabilities; for example, a class 4 card would be suitable for the average user taking images on a mobile phone, whereas a professional photographer or someone taking a lot of video would require something faster, like a 10, or a card specific to video. If we cannot obtain access to your data via the usual interface (the long contacts at the front) then we will have to remove the covering that protects the internal workings of the Memory Card. This is what your Micro SD card looks like under the surface, with the insulating lacquer removed. 

Specialist Microsoldering 

The layout or ‘pin-out’ configuration of these Micro SD Cards is varied and is often difficult and time consuming to work these out for the many new memory chips flooding the market at present. How do you access the data once you have exposed the card like this? In order for us to gain access to the information stored on the SD Card we need to individually solder extremely fine wires to each of the exposed pins and then connect those wires to a data reader that uses a custom made interface. This enables us to switch various key pins and also allow the adjustment of the voltages used to power the Micro SD Card whilst attempting to read it. Generally, when Micro SD cards require this type of ‘extreme’ data recovery, they are received by ourselves completely dead on arrival. As you can see, this is not a straightforward fix and an awful lot of time and effort goes into the data recovery attempt. As always, we are happy to perform a free inspection of Micro/SD cards and provide a detailed diagnosis for specialist data recovery works.

Get in touch

To find out if we can help recover YOUR data, call us on 01953 667 977 or email us at to arrange an inspection of your faulty device. We will be able to provide you with a no-obligation quotation within 24 hours of receipt.