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Canon VIXIA Series AVCHD and HDV Camcorders
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Old June 21st, 2007, 01:51 PM   #1
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Re-usage of DV tapes

I am using hdv tapes right now for my important stuff and dv if i am just taking whatever shots. How many times can you write over on a dv tape or an hdv tape before the quality start degrading. I have done it a few times with my hdv and have yet to see any loss. I tried it a few times with a dv tape and had one frame mess up that was hardly noticeable. I don't wanna keep using the HDV for important things if it's gonna start losing quality.
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Old June 21st, 2007, 02:15 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Borein View Post
I am using hdv tapes right now for my important stuff and dv if i am just taking whatever shots. How many times can you write over on a dv tape or an hdv tape before the quality start degrading. I have done it a few times with my hdv and have yet to see any loss. I tried it a few times with a dv tape and had one frame mess up that was hardly noticeable. I don't wanna keep using the HDV for important things if it's gonna start losing quality.
Kevin,

Reusing tapes is never a good idea but I have done it with no problems. Usually, you will notice more dropouts on a reused tape. I have a box of one time run tapes, meaning run once, capture once and put in a box. I have about 5000 tapes now, so if you want some drop me an email and you can have some for free.. Sony HDV and DV Tapes. I am in Cincinnati about 2 weekends a month for weekend for weddings.
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Old June 21st, 2007, 04:28 PM   #3
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e-mail sent, that sounds great to me!
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 10:20 AM   #4
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I have reused tapes many times in the past without issue (DV cameras). Since I got my HV20 I have reused a couple tapes several times without issue. Personally I think the "don't reuse tapes" advice which I hear from many people is a little over cautious, though to each his own.

As far as "quality degrading", since your camera is digital it's not like recording over a VHS tape 50 times where you get a gradual decline in quality. Rather, in theory at least, you increase the chances of getting dropouts with DV and HDV cameras when you reuse tapes. But like I said, I've recorded over many tapes with DV cameras 5-6 times and never noticed a problem (sometimes in LP mode!) Now with the HV20 I have tapes that have portions on their 3-4th time being recorded over without issue. I think if you start out with quality tapes (I use the Panasonic MQ [now AMQ]) and cleans heads at the first sign of trouble you're fine reusing tapes 2-3 or more times.
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Old July 19th, 2007, 06:27 PM   #5
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hundreds of times -- based on how much dust you get on them

1) Remember VHS tapes?
how many rental tapes are played hundreds of times and work fine? A lot.
Tapes are pretty sturdy stuff, so don't worry.

2) Dust.
Remember what dust does if you press hard and push it across glass or any shiny surface? Streaks and scratches!
Dust is the primary factor in dropouts, so keeping everything dust free is the key to being able to use a tape a long time.

3) Pausing heads during playback or stop.
Tapes do not like it when you pause playback in one spot forever, or park the unit with the tape partially wound. Simply don't do these two and tapes will last a lot longer.

---

That said, I can easily cycle Panasonic HDV DV tapes dozens of times w/o any problems at all, with no dropouts. They simply go and go for me =)
(either buy the pro Panasonic tapes online/camcorder shop, or the consumer DV marked for HDV use on them - same thing, light gray casing - these are the best tapes out there, IMO, and are the ones to go for)
That said, consumer grade Panasonic DV tapes have also worked well for me in the past, and haven't caused me grief on reuses.
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