It doesn’t take much to accidentally delete videos from an SD card, especially if the SD card is shared between multiple cameras and computers. Fortunately, it also doesn’t take much effort to learn how to recover deleted videos from any SD card, as we explain in this article.
Improve Your Chances of Successful Video Recovery
The results of any video recovery attempt are never 100% guaranteed, but you can greatly increase the likelihood of getting all lost data back by following the two recommendations listed below:
Stop Using the SD Card
Contrary to what it seems, deleted files physically remain stored on the memory card until new files are written in their place. If you keep using the memory card, you risk overwriting the lost files before you have a chance to recover them. When that happens, there’s absolutely nothing that can be done to get them back. For this reason, you need to stop using the SD card until you’re ready to restore deleted videos from it.
Start the Recovery Process ASAP
We understand that this may be your first experience with recovering deleted videos from a memory card, but that’s not a good reason to delay the recovery process more than absolutely necessary. By postponing it, you risk misplacing or damaging the memory card, overwriting the deleted files, or simply forgetting that you’ve lost a bunch of videos in the first place.
What Should I Look for In a Video Recovery Tool?
You can find many different video recovery tools for all operating systems, but the differences between them can be enormous. Here are five things you should look for when selecting a video recovery tool:
- Video files can be very large, so it’s best to choose a video recovery tool that can recover at least several hundred megabytes of data for free. If you need to recover multiple video files or a single long HD or 4K video file, it’s best to spend money on a paid video recovery tool with unlimited recovery.
- Without the ability to preview recoverable videos, it can be extremely difficult to find the video you want to get back since most video cameras automatically generate filenames based on the time of their creation.
- There are many video file formats, and you need to choose a video recovery tool that supports all the formats you use to record RAW video footage and render finished projects. The most commonly used video file formats include AVI, WMV, MOV, MP4, MKV, and AVCHD.
- Some video recovery tools restore deleted videos from SD cards much faster than others. The difference in performance can be caused by better optimization, but it can also stem from the support for multiple video recovery algorithms to address different data loss scenarios.
- It goes without saying that the video recovery tool of your choice should be easy to use and intuitive. There’s no reason to go through the trouble of reading lengthy manuals and watching complicated online tutorials just to recover a few video files when there are video recovery tools that make the entire process completely painless.
One video recovery tool that meets all the above-described criteria is Disk Drill for Windows (there’s also a Mac version, but it doesn’t offer free data recovery), and we explain how to recover deleted videos from an SD card with it in the next chapter.
How to Retrieve Deleted Videos from an SD Card with Disk Drill
Disk Drill makes recovering deleted videos from SD cards or other memory cards easy, and you should be able to complete the entire process in just a few minutes, depending on the speed and capacity of your card.
Download and Install Disk Drill
Scan Your SD Card
Disk Drill lets you specify which recovery method you want to use, but you can also let it run all recovery methods in the optimal order by leaving everything in default settings. The scan process can take anywhere from a few minutes to an hour or more—it all depends on the speed of your SD card and its capacity. You can see the remaining time at the bottom of the scan window.
If the scan is taking too long, and you can’t wait to see if Disk Drill has been able to retrieve your files, you can click the Review found items button in the top-right corner. This will let you browse the scan results without interrupting the scan itself.
Recover Lost Videos to a Safe Location
Which Video Formats Can Disk Drill Recover from an SD Card?
Disk Drill can recover over 400 file formats, including several dozen video file formats. The table below lists all video formats supported by Disk Drill:
|File Extension||File Format|
|3G2 / 3GPP2 / 3GP / 3GPP||Videos for 3G UMTS services|
|AVI||Audio Video Interleave|
|BRAW||Blackmagic raw video format|
|CRM||Canon raw movie file|
|DIR||Adobe Director Movie|
|DXR||Protected Adobe Director Movie|
|FCP||Final Cut Pro|
|FLA||Editable Adobe Flash movie|
|FCPEVENT||Final Cut Events|
|M2TS||Blu-ray BDAV Video|
|M4P||iTunes Music Store audio|
|MLV||LabVIEW mathscript file|
|MOV||Apple QuickTime movie|
|MPA||MPEG-2 Audio File|
|MTS||MPEG Transport Stream video format|
|MXF||Material Exchange Format|
|R3D||Redcode Raw video image|
|RMVB||RealMedia Variable Bitrate|
|TOD||JVC Everio Video Capture|
|TS||Video Transport Stream File|
|WEBM||HTML5 WebM Videos|
|WMV||Windows Media Video|