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  1. I was doing some recording for someone over the weekend. I used their Sony camcorder, but am unsure of the exact model.
    The first recording was recorded on a Sony Hi8 MPClick image for larger version

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ID:	12149, it played back very well in the camcorder (and TV via a/v cables,) sound and all. But on Sunday they gave me a different type of tape.
    It was the Maxell Hi8 XR-Metal Click image for larger version

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    When attempting to view the tape in playback mode on the camcorder, there was no sound or extremely limited sound, and the video was not clear. It was very blurry and essentially unwatchable.

    I suspect that the eXtended-Resolution tape is the culprit. It was the same with two tapes and both were unopened, fresh from packaging. Am I safe to assume that the recording on the tapes are good, but the camcorder is simply unable to play them correctly?

    Sorry for the vague nature of this post, but I currently have no way of knowing the model number of the camcorder. I wish to send these off for transfer, or purchase another camcorder, but would like to know that they tapes are not corrupted. My assumptions are that I would need a Digital 8 camcorder that can playback Hi8 and video 8 to be the safest. Thanks!

    P.S.: I suspect that this camcorder was late 80s model MAYBE early 90s. I searched the entire list of Sony camcorders and was unable to find the exact one that I used though.
    Last edited by taltal; 24th Apr 2012 at 20:08. Reason: clean-up
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  2. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    if the cam that recorded the video can't play it back, most likely nothing will. just a guess but a mix of different tape lubes from the different manufacturers may have clogged up the recording heads and gummed up the works. i'd try a tape head cleaner first and see if that helps, if not.....
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  3. Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    if the cam that recorded the video can't play it back, most likely nothing will. just a guess but a mix of different tape lubes from the different manufacturers may have clogged up the recording heads and gummed up the works. i'd try a tape head cleaner first and see if that helps, if not.....
    I read something about certain heads being unable to playback the different metal tapes. Due to what reason, I cannot remember, and I am not very knowledgeable about the difference between the metal ones and the others. Could that simply be the case, since its an older camera? The other tape from Friday played flawlessly.

    EDIT: If I were to get another tape like the one from Friday, and record with it, and it did not have the issue that the XR had, would you assume that the recording heads aren't clogged/dirty? Also, if that is what happened, then that means that the entire tape is ruined (has the issue,) and there's no way to fix it, right? Seeing as thats what the recording head recorded, it put it on the film. Thanks for the help btw.
    Last edited by taltal; 24th Apr 2012 at 20:18.
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  4. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    if the heads can't read the tape they wouldn't be able to write to it either. all hi8 tapes were metal particle deposition type. xr only refers to the type of camera. an xr cam can read or write normal or xr whereas a normal 8mm cam can read xr recordings but without the extra xr detail. both use the same tape.
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  5. Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    if the heads can't read the tape they wouldn't be able to write to it either. all hi8 tapes were metal particle deposition type. xr only refers to the type of camera. an xr cam can read or write normal or xr whereas a normal 8mm cam can read xr recordings but without the extra xr detail. both use the same tape.
    Ah, I see. So, it's not the case of Metal Particle vs Metal Evaporated then. Hm...if the camcorder was Video 8, would that affect its playback compatibilities at all? I sure wish I had access to another camcorder, at least to attempt it.

    Standing up on a balcony recording for 2.5+ hours and not even getting to watch what you recorded isn't fun. As this was my first time ever using a camcorder, and I was just using what was handed to me, I guess it's all part of the learning-phase.
    Last edited by taltal; 24th Apr 2012 at 20:35.
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  6. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    video8 and hi8 use different tapes. a v8 cam can't read a hi8 tape, but a d8 cam might be able to read both types, like the sony trv-330.
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  7. Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    video8 and hi8 use different tapes. a v8 cam can't read a hi8 tape, but a d8 cam might be able to read both types, like the sony trv-330.
    I see. I was under the impression that a Hi8 tape could be used in a Video 8 cam to record, just not play back..man..This could have been prevented if they purchased the same tape that the first recording was filmed in I guess then.
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  8. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    both those tapes you show are hi8 metal particle. the xr in one is just marketing hype as any hi8 tape could be used in a xr cam.
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  9. Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    both those tapes you show are hi8 metal particle. the xr in one is just marketing hype as any hi8 tape could be used in a xr cam.
    I guess their only hope is to test in a Digital 8,one like the one you mentioned. Thanks again for your help!

    Eh..one more thing. Would SP or LP affect it at all? I remember reading something about camcorders being unable to determine the speed at which to playback certain tapes, which would cause playback issues. Sorry for all the questions, I am just kind of stabbing in the dark here, attempting to rule out everything, so that I can give them a definitive answer about the tapes.
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  10. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    lp is harder to read in any cam as the tracks are narrower. sometimes old equipment can't handle it at all.
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  11. Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    lp is harder to read in any cam as the tracks are narrower. sometimes old equipment can't handle it at all.
    Well. I will be off to purchase a head cleaner I suppose. Good luck to me finding another camcorder for under $100 though. Auction site has the DCR-TVR340 for $32, but of course it could be 120 by Thursday. Not to mention, the condition would be questionable. :/ So many types of cameras and tapes makes it a bit confusing at first glance. Welcome back to the analog age for myself. :P
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  12. Sony Handycams tend to be fairly reliable and well built. With that being said, my CCD-TRV65 Handycam hated those Maxell Hi-8 tapes. They would occasionally bind and create an occasional jitter on a recording, you could hear a loud buzz from the tape transport when this happens. The mic on the camera even picked it up. Never had the problem with the Sony or TDK tapes. My DCR-TRV840 Digital 8 camcorder seems to have no problems with the Maxell tapes, but your mileage may vary.
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  13. Originally Posted by NJRoadfan View Post
    Sony Handycams tend to be fairly reliable and well built. With that being said, my CCD-TRV65 Handycam hated those Maxell Hi-8 tapes. They would occasionally bind and create an occasional jitter on a recording, you could hear a loud buzz from the tape transport when this happens. The mic on the camera even picked it up. Never had the problem with the Sony or TDK tapes. My DCR-TRV840 Digital 8 camcorder seems to have no problems with the Maxell tapes, but your mileage may vary.
    I have located someone with the DCR-TRV350. Do you think that it would work well at the playback of those Maxell tapes? It says it is backwards compatible with older 8mm and Hi8 tapes.
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  14. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    the ones that wouldn't play in the cam that recorded them? no. i don't think anything is going to play them, as i don't think the original cam properly recorded to it to begin with. like i said before it may have dirty heads or they may just be old and weak.


    sorry, you asked.
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  15. Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    the ones that wouldn't play in the cam that recorded them? no. i don't think anything is going to play them, as i don't think the original cam properly recorded to it to begin with. like i said before it may have dirty heads or they may just be old and weak.


    sorry, you asked.
    No problem, that is understandable. I didn't really clarify, but was mainly referring to the actual tape brand, not the particular ones that had playback issues.
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  16. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    ok, depends on the cam.... some are finicky and there is no way to know until you try. just make sure to use a head cleaner between tape brand switches and the mixed lube problem should be minimized. there are wet lubes and dry lubes and when mixed they made a mess of heads.
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  17. Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    ok, depends on the cam.... some are finicky and there is no way to know until you try. just make sure to use a head cleaner between tape brand switches and the mixed lube problem should be minimized. there are wet lubes and dry lubes and when mixed they made a mess of heads.
    Thanks a lot for informing me, as I had no idea until you told me of this.
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