I am attempting to format a 64 GB SD memory card for an upcoming trip. Using the instructions provided by Nikon, I receive a flashing "FULL" and 0 frames/pictures after formatting.

What can I do to format this card?


4 Answers 4


The card appears to be too big. From Nikon's Support Site:

Approved SD cards for D80

The following SD memory cards have been approved for use in the D80 digital SLR. All cards of the designated make and capacity can be used, regardless of speed.

Nikon 512MB, 1GB SanDisk 64MB, 128MB, 256MB, 512MB, 1GB, 2GB1*, 4GB2* Panasonic 64MB, 128MB, 256MB, 512MB, 1GB, 2GB1*, 4GB2* Toshiba 64MB, 128MB, 256MB, 512MB, 1GB, 2GB1*

All SD memory cards indicated above can be used regardless of their transfer speed.

Lexar Media 256 MB, 512 MB, 1 GB Platinum II (60x) series: 512 MB, 1 GB Professional (133x) series: 1 GB, 2 GB1

1* If the memory card will be used with a card reader or other device, the device must support 2-GB SD memory cards. 2* SDHC-compliant.

I don't have direct experience with Nikon but can say that Canon cameras in the past have required firmware updates to use newer cards. In addition to obtaining a smaller card, you may still need to do a firmware update.


There are different types of SD cards: SD/SDSC, SDHC, SDXC, SDUC. Your camera is compatible with SD/SDSC and SDHC cards that are 4GB or smaller. See the Nikon D80 user manual for details (page 122).

A firmware update may add support for larger cards, as well as fix other issues. However, all SDHC cards are 32GB or smaller, so your 64GB card would likely still not work.


My solution to this problem was to format the 64gb card in the camera which produced a non-working card giving the Full error. I then put the card in my laptop and using Aomei partition manger reduced the partition size to below 32gb. The card then worked perfectly in the camera. Though obviously half capacity. If you reformat the card in the camera it will revert to 64gb and stop working.


SDXC cards are required to fall back to slower access modes, so from an electrical perspective, it is compatible.

However, older cameras don't support the exFAT filesystem that is typically used for volumes with more than 32 GB of data on the card. To work around that, you will likely have to repartition the card with a single 32 GB partition, and then format that partition as FAT32. It is not possible to do this with the camera itself. You would have to do this with a flash reader attached to a computer.

And note that the result will effectively act like a 32 GB flash card, not a 64 GB card. So although you can do this in a pinch, you probably should just buy 32 GB SDHC cards and save a few bucks per card.

Then again, from a wear-leveling perspective, a 64 GB flash card that only gets halfway used will last twice as long as a 32 GB flash card, if all else is equal, so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.

It may be possible to reformat it as a 64 GB FAT32 volume, but only if the camera's firmware supports working with FAT32 volumes that have a 16 KB cluster size. And the resulting volume may or may not work on Windows.

  • This answer is inaccurate. FAT32 does support partition sizes larger than 32GB (apparently up to 16TB).
    – xiota
    Oct 31, 2018 at 2:07
  • conventional wisdom (to the extent that's valuable) generally recommends letting the camera format the card. Personally, I can't recall personally ever having issues with PC-formatted SD(XC/HC) cards in my cameras, but I tend to let my cameras format the cards. Although, the SDCard Association recommends the only officially recommended way is to use the formatter software provided the SDCard Association itself to format the card. So there's that... ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ =)
    – scottbb
    Oct 31, 2018 at 2:48
  • 1
    @xiota - in theory does, if the spec is fully implemented. In practice that is not the case and absolutely should not be relied up on to work and failures may not be immediately apparent. Oct 31, 2018 at 10:35
  • @scottbb There's a difference between creating a partition on a card and then later formatting that partition.
    – Michael C
    Oct 31, 2018 at 21:14
  • 1
    @MichaelClark absolutely. I'm willing to bet that if a camera formats a card, it will obliterate the partition table.
    – scottbb
    Oct 31, 2018 at 21:18

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