MiniDV Tape Recommendations

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by Black&Tan, Dec 7, 2006.

  1. Black&Tan macrumors 6502a

    Black&Tan

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2004
    #1
    First, I just bought a Panasonic GS-300 (lots of very informative posts in here).

    After digesting the posts, i keep seeing a recurring theme. Try to stick to one brand of tape. This appears to be a catch-22, as a video newbie, I'm not sure which brand to choose, but yet I must decide which brand without experimenting too much.

    So I am appealing to the collective knowledge of the group. Advice & recommendations?
     
  2. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #2
    First find a tape suppliers that you can order from. Lots of good ones on-line. Then just order 25 or so tapes. I use Sony brand tape.

    I buy a year or 6 moth supply at a time from a place like this and they cost like $2.50 each
    http://protape.stores.yahoo.net/new...n-sony-sony-video-tape-sony-dv---mini-dv.html
    I don't think it matter where you buy them these on-line guys are just "box shufflers"

    If you are going to be re-using the tape many times the brand mattrs more but the way I do it is to put in a brand new tape and shoot it until the end, rewind it then record it to the computer's hard disk, then rewind the tape and file it away and almost never look at it again. So each of my tapes are used just one. Any decent brand of tape can handle that.

    My next step is to cull the junk. Junk means where the camera was running but nothing happening or out of focus, pointing at bare dirt or whatever. I shoot under water and have a LOT of crud to cull out. I then backup the remaining footage before I begin editing. So I would only have to ever use the tape again if I lost the backup(s) DV format is great - there is no generational loss so there is little need to ever go back to the original tape. So the brand does not matter so much because you are not making 30 passes over the tape like in the bad old days.
     
  3. Eric Piercey macrumors 6502

    Eric Piercey

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    #3
    There you go. Stick with one brand to keep your camera from getting gummed up.
     
  4. Nuc macrumors 6502a

    Nuc

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2003
    Location:
    TN
    #4
    Here is what I use in my Sony HDR-HC1 and I've never had any dropouts: Link. Also get a head cleaner: Link.

    You don't have to get sony brand but stick with what you like.

    Happy hunting,

    Nuc
     
  5. ziwi macrumors 65816

    ziwi

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    Jan 6, 2004
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    Right back where I started...
    #5
    They do say to stick with the same brand due to the oils that are on the tapes and mixing the oils can cause image degradation, but I would think if you have a head cleaner then it really should not matter if you keep it clean.
     
  6. evil_santa macrumors 6502a

    evil_santa

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    Sep 23, 2003
    Location:
    London, England
    #6
    I try to use the same brand tape as is the Camera, ie i use sony tapes in my sony camera.
     
  7. notjustjay macrumors 603

    notjustjay

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Location:
    Canada, eh?
    #7
    I've run exclusively Sony tapes in my VX2000, up until last weekend when I was caught unprepared. We did a four-camera shoot and mine was the wide shot... and I forgot to bring tape. Doh! Borrowed someone else's, so I ended up running 2 hours of Panasonic in there. We're back to Sony now, I hope there was no ill effect.

    Yesterday I brought the camera and realized I had no battery left -- good thing I had my spare. And, good thing I'm not a pro (yet!) :rolleyes:
     
  8. Black&Tan thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Black&Tan

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2004
    #8
    Thanks for the responses....

    Panasonic or Sony? Is this a little bit like choosing Granny Smith or Macintosh Apples? :D

    I know both Sony and Panasonic have good reputations in the broadcast camera field. And I do like the idea of using Panasonic brand tapes with Panasonic brand cameras...however, there are multiple grades available, and naturally, multiple prices.

    Professional Quality
    Master Quality
    Professional
    Advanced Master Quality

    In a general sense, what do the more expensive options feature? As Chris A recommended, I think we'll most likely use the tape once, download the video to my G5, and edit it there. And finally archive the tape away. How archival are Mini DV tapes? Do they experience much degradation over time?
     
  9. killr_b macrumors 6502a

    killr_b

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  10. mactree macrumors regular

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  11. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000

    bigbossbmb

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    Location:
    Pasadena/Hollywood
    #11
    AY-DVM63MQ...the only tape that will ever touch my DVX
     
  12. Black&Tan thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Black&Tan

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2004
    #12
    Wow. Pretty emphatic preferences for the Panasonic Master Quality tapes. Seems like the avenue to take.

    I know there are lots of online retailers, but are Mini-DV tapes something that are counterfeited? What's your favorite online sources for tape? I see Pro-Tape has them for $4.39 and B&H has them for $5.19.

    Thanks for all the help...I really appreciate it!
     
  13. MovieCutter macrumors 68040

    MovieCutter

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    May 3, 2005
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #13
    Ditto...I usually get mine from tapestockonline.com
     
  14. Le Big Mac macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #14
    I do the same. The tapes are relatively cheap, especially as ultimate "backups". It's $2.50 or $3 for about 11GB of space (1 hour of video). A lot cheaper than putting it on your drive for backups. Once you edit the footage, and are happy, you can dump the junk. If for some reason you need it back, you can always go back to teh tape.
     
  15. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000

    bigbossbmb

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    #15
    B&H is actually cheaper than tapestockonline and they are a great business to deal with. At most places you get a discount when buying 10 or more. This is usually a good idea, since you can really never have too many tapes.
     
  16. Eric Piercey macrumors 6502

    Eric Piercey

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    Nov 29, 2006
    Location:
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    #16
    I agree 100%. Although I didn't see the usual bulk deal this time when I was over at B&H. Maybe I just missed it. I need to restock pretty bad- I'm down to less than 5 tapes.

    To the OP -Sony uses a wet lube on their tape whereas Panny uses dry.

    To the person that said just keep the heads clean.. yes one should regularly clean their gear- but that doesn't mean one should go out of their way to muck it up either. I mean- if you've got brand A and brand B sitting there and mixing them is bad why mix them?
     
  17. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000

    bigbossbmb

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    Location:
    Pasadena/Hollywood
    #17
    theres a little bit of text that says "quantity discount" next to "free shipping" and such...when I clicked on that a little popup window showed the discounted price as $4.39/tape when you buy 10+. Not a bad price at all...
     

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