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Old May 12th, 2009, 07:53 PM   #1
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Which Betasp deck?

I need to purchase a betasp deck to record to, any suggestions, would like something with firewire.
thoughts?
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Old May 12th, 2009, 09:40 PM   #2
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Betacam decks are analog--no firewire capability. With any Betacam deck, you want to record component-in. The composite signal isn't so great, but the component looks good. Are you planning on transferring tapes from a camera to the Betacam deck? No problem if your camera will give you component out (like the Canon XH A1 and others of that ilk). All you'd have to do is get RCA to BNC adapters for you camera's component cable. If you're going from a computer then you'd need one of those conversion boxes. The UVW1800 was a pretty decent cheap Betacam SP deck and can be found on eBay on occasion. Back when I was making Betacam masters I always had to use a black burst generator too, but they're cheap.

What are you going to do with Betacam tapes?
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Old May 13th, 2009, 12:31 AM   #3
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The PVW 2800 series isn't too bad either. The 1800's were cheap and OK but did have some transport problems, be careful. And Bill's right, both the UVW and PVW series want video sync from the same source they are recording from. Sometimes you can use the composite video out from the source and use it as the 'sync' source. (It has the burst and horiz. sync info a black burst generator supplies, so it can work.)

If you are using a typical prosumer camcorder, you will need female RCA to male BNC adapters to handle the video, cause BetaCam decks only use pro BNC connectors. Also, those decks use XLR for audio inputs, so you'll need adapters there too.

Sorry if I'm getting a bit 'techie' on you, but you should know what you're getting into. And not to sound arrogant, but pro gear like Beta decks was built for people with a fair amount of training/knowledge, i.e. professionals. I'm not trying to scare you off, a deck is still a deck, but yu might have to figure a few things out.
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Old May 13th, 2009, 08:59 AM   #4
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Thanks for the replies guys!
What do you think I should do. I have a xha1 camera. Should I transfer the data back to a minidv and then transfer to betasp deck? Or I how could I do a direct connection from my quad core box to this betasp deck? I am a little lost when it comes to this stuff, but my network requires betasp tape.
Also, since the betasp deck has xlr do i need something for this to have my audio sound correct?
Thanks in advance, really appreciate it.
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Old May 13th, 2009, 09:35 AM   #5
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Probably the easiest and cheapest thing to do is take a master tape to a dub house.
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Old May 13th, 2009, 10:10 AM   #6
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Bill is right unless: you HAVE no dub house close to you; or you do a LOT of these.

For the price of an analog IO solution and a deck, you could do a LOT of transfers. Of course, theoretically, if your system is set up right you can get better transfers directly out of your edit bay to Beta rather than going to DV first but...
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Old May 13th, 2009, 11:20 AM   #7
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yeah, my problem is there is no close studio, closest would be 45mins, just isnt worth it to me. What would I need to connect a betasp deck to my windows based computer, using sony vegas?
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Old May 13th, 2009, 11:26 AM   #8
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I'm a Mac/FCP guy so I'll let someone else chime in here.

Keep in mind though that if you're shooting in HD, you'll have to establish whether you need to provide a centre cut 4:3, letterbox 16:9 or anamorphic 16:9 master to the broadcaster. BetaSP has no "flag" to set playback as it was invented during SD 4:3 exclusive times.
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Old May 13th, 2009, 04:37 PM   #9
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any thoughts anyone?
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Old May 14th, 2009, 08:25 AM   #10
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You just need a dv->analog box. Something like this: Grass Valley | ADVC-110 Bidirectional Media Converter | 602029 There are cheaper and more expensive units with varying features.

You may or may not have audio level issues between the RCA outs of this box and the XLRs of the beta deck. I'm not sure what range of control is available on the various decks. You may need a RCA->XLR box to get the levels correct. (in which case it may make sense to get a converter box with XLR outs).
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Old May 14th, 2009, 10:25 AM   #11
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Thanks for the reply Andy. I also so this box, but very expensive: Grass Valley | ADVC700 Bidirectional Media Converter | 602074

Since I am filming in hdv and shoot in 16:9, will this be able to convert it to that format, but in analog. Can you think of anything else I would need?
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Old May 14th, 2009, 11:24 AM   #12
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Let's step back a moment, you haven't told us what you are outputting with. I'm assuming you are just using a PC with a firewire plug? No add-on boxes? How much money do you want to spend?

I'm not real familiar with your camera but you may be able to use a SD component output direct to the beta deck and just buy this: Samson | S-CONVERT - Stereo Line Level Converter | SASCONV | B&H for the audio side.

Otherwise that inexpensive D->A and one of these will do ya. This is bottom of the barrel but it should work fine. Is it the ulitmate in high fidelity? Hell no. But probably good enough for small market broadcast/cable tv. If they're still using betaSP, I'll be willing to be that the rest of their plant isn't top of the line.

Using the camera as your d->a box might actually do a little better than the cheesy GV box.

As the above poster noted, betaSP is 4:3 only. When you output your video, it has to be 4:3. You have to choose to crop or letterbox and do that in your NLE. HDV is totally irrelevant at this point--you will be outputing old fashioned DV. Do not be tempted by any widescreen DV option.
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Old May 14th, 2009, 07:19 PM   #13
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Thanks again Andy, I will definitely get that audio box. So the other box you suggested for video, I would use my firewire port to go to this box and from this box it will go to my betasp deck. Then all I would need is a svideo cord from this converter box to the beta sp deck? Now I do have svideo on my video card, could I use this to go to my betasp deck?
Just curious.
Thank you so much for your info!!
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Old May 18th, 2009, 11:38 PM   #14
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thoughts anyone?
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Old May 19th, 2009, 09:39 AM   #15
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Most Betacam decks do have an S-video input.
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