I finally spared some time to move the content of my old DV tapes to PC.
While doing it I noticed that a specific tape had the last 5 minutes of recording playing back with pixelated images and corrupted audio.
I did a lot of search and all what I found points to dirty/faulty camcoder but this seems not to be my case because the specific tapes plays properly for the initial 55 minutes and only the last 5 minutes have problems.
Additionally, I have 4 additional tapes recorded by the same camcoder (Sony DCR-TRV7E) at a later date and completely fine.
The culprit seems to be the specific tape portion (Sony DVpremium ME DVM60 miniDV) but I couldn't find any suggestion on to attempt a "cleaning" of the tape surface... if this is makes any sense.
To complete the picture, I'm playing back with the same camcoder and I had no chance so far to try that tape on another player (nobody seems to have one anymore).
Thnaks in advance
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Sounds as if the tape is damaged. Try fast forwarding to the end and back to the beginning a few times.
Just in case it's related to slack/ uneven tension.
Thanks for your answer. I tried several times to FF and rewind the tape with no improvement.
I also tried to visually check the cassette tape in the area where the problem occurs.
The tape seems to be a bit "wavy", not totally flat but far away from being wrinkled.
Unfortunately I could only check a small portion because I don't know if this kind of tape can be manually move and, eventually, how.
Would it help to blow air on the open tape?
My wife tells me that she remembers watching that tape without problems... if this is true it shouldn't the current situation would not be a result of a bad recording.
Btw, among the 5 bad minutes. I'm particularly interested in recovering about one minute... the last minute of the tape.
I had a faulty camcorder which had a tension problem in the mechanism. It caused alignment problems especially towards the ends of tapes. That's unlikely to be the problem given the fact most of your tapes are good.
I have no idea what you can do, other than trying different machines for playing it back.
I wouldn't try cleaning the tape. Unless you know exactly what you are doing, that sounds like it would be a disaster.