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Old July 3rd, 2003, 10:05 AM   #1
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Electrical contacts on MiniDV tapes.

Hi all.

Did a search but didn't find an answer.
Can anyone tell what is the purpose of the 4 metal contacts that we can see on MiniDv tapes?

Regards
Arnaldo
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Old July 3rd, 2003, 10:22 AM   #2
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I think it is because some tapes have a chip in them, for timecode or something. Not really sure, so this would be a guess.
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Old July 3rd, 2003, 10:38 AM   #3
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Hi Keith.

Thanks anyway.

Regards
Arnaldo
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Old July 3rd, 2003, 10:49 AM   #4
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Here is something I found in another thread-

"The unit I shoot for accidently bought DVCAM tapes for their portable miniDV recorder instead of miniDV tapes. They were stored away in a file cabinet for quite some time.

One very busy day, I ran out of tape. Someone gave me the DVCAM tape and explained the "bought-in-error" story. I had never seen a DVCAM tape before - it looked just like a miniDV tape - except it had what looked like small, embedded, rectangular metal contacts. I put it in my XL-1 and did some test shots and playback; seemed to work fine."

You can find the thread here-

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...light=dv+tapes
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Old July 3rd, 2003, 11:03 AM   #5
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Hi Keith.

You'r a pall!

So, from what I could understand, the MiniDV tapes with contacts are DVCAM tapes in a Mini format. Is that it? Regarding the XL-1s any pros and cons in using tapes with or without contacts?
If someone knows the answers or can point them, it would be much appreciated.

Thanks again Keith.

Regards
Arnaldo
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Old July 3rd, 2003, 11:06 AM   #6
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Thanks Arnaldo, but being in the U.S., I think I would be NTSC? <Grin>
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Old July 3rd, 2003, 11:31 AM   #7
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Keith is right, those tapes have a small embedded IC inside. A few cameras have contacts that can record information about exposure, start/stop times and other stuff to these chips. The tapes will function just fine in any MiniDV camera but are a waste of money if your camera doesn't have the ability to use the chip.
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Old July 3rd, 2003, 11:49 AM   #8
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Are you all sure that you are on the right track with this?

I went and looked at my tapes to check it out, and found that all of my 60min tapes have metal contacts, and none of my 80 min tapes have them. I use Sony DVM60ME (has contacts) and Sony DVM80 ME.

Hold the phone. I just went and checked again and found that it doesn't matter between my 60's and 80's. There seems to be an equal number of each that have the metal contacts, some don't.

So now where are we?
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Old July 3rd, 2003, 11:56 AM   #9
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Not all tapes have the chip.
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Old July 3rd, 2003, 12:15 PM   #10
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Just got this brief description from Pro-Tapes web site

CASSETTE MEMORY AND ITS USES

The proliferation of DV and DVCAM models means a growing range of applications for Cassette Memory. Consumer-grade machines can store date and photo data, which do not make intensive use of Cassette Memory. That's consistent with the 4 kbit memory Sony builds into IC-equipped consumer tape. Entry-level professional machines also make moderate demands on the memory chip. However, a key feature of Sony's top DVCAM models is ClipLink operation, which makes full use of the 16 kbit memory of Sony's IC-equipped DVCAM tapes.

Short version, some cameras can use the chips, some don't. There is no set standard for those that do. Bottom line, if your camera doesn't you don't need the chip and the less expensive tapes without chip are the way to go.
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Old July 4th, 2003, 03:21 AM   #11
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Hi all.

I use Panasonic Linear Plus MiniDV tapes wich don't have the contacts, and Panasonic Professional MiniDV tapes wich have contacts.

So, a tape with contacts means that it has an IC chip inside.

One question remains:
Can the Canon XL-1s make use of that? In what way?

(I'v noticed one thing: If you put a tape with contacts in a XL-1s and rewind or fastforward, it will start in slow speed and then after a couple of seconds it will go into fast speed. With tapes that don't have contacts that does not hapen. I'll double check this to be 100% shure and let you know).

Regards
Arnaldo
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Old July 4th, 2003, 07:23 AM   #12
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If I remember correctly, no, the XL1 does not have the features.
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Old July 4th, 2003, 03:19 PM   #13
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<<<-- Originally posted by Arnaldo
I use Panasonic Linear Plus MiniDV tapes wich don't have the contacts, and Panasonic Professional MiniDV tapes wich have contacts.
-->>>

Somehow my Panasonic Linear Plus does have contacts. Probably there are different versions of the same tape.
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Old July 7th, 2003, 03:49 AM   #14
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"(I'v noticed one thing: If you put a tape with contacts in a XL-1s and rewind or fastforward, it will start in slow speed and then after a couple of seconds it will go into fast speed. With tapes that don't have contacts that does not hapen. I'll double check this to be 100% shure and let you know)" --> No, in fact the metal contacts have nothing to do with rewinding speed.

I'v checked inside the XL-1s and it has 4 metal pins wich are for the metal contacts of the tapes.

How the XL-1s uses this? Don't know. Hope somebody can tell us.

Regards
Arnaldo
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