I've ordered a Sony Hi8 camcorder to play back all my old Hi8 home videos. Now it'll the first time in many years i've played back any, and want to know what procedures i should follow before i do so? I've heard you should fast forward and rewind the whole tape to rentention it?

The thing that concerns me most is if the tape gets stretched, as last year i played an old Hi8 tape in a Sony Digital8 camera (which i've since sold on) and it stretched it, so i had to immediately stop and eject the tape. Didn't snap it thankfully, but not sure if it's safe to play that part back again?

I don't know how it happened, could it have been because i was playing the camera back whilst holding it on my lap (just checking to see what was on it) or was it because it was a cheap Emtec tape, or indeed the fault of the Digital8 camera video heads running 2.5x faster than a normal Hi8 camera?