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Old March 30th, 2010, 12:05 PM   #1
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Sony HDV Tape stock question

On a Sony HVR-V1U camera I've used exclusively their PHDVM-63DM Digital Master tapes. I'm thinking about buying more, but have been looking at the DVM-63HDV as a cost-cutting measure. Are they really that much different than the "Digital Master" tapes? Will I experience more dropouts or any quality loss in my recording?

Would a change of tapes from the "Digital Masters" to the DVM-63HDV tapes gum up the camera?

Thanks for any tips!
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Old March 30th, 2010, 02:38 PM   #2
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Back when I was shooting the Z1U for a client on a VERY regular basis, we ONLY used Digital Master tapes on "Once In A Lifetime, If It Gets Screwed Up We Are Sunk" material, like when we travelled to Germany and India. The rest of the time we used DVM60PR tapes with no issues.

If it's in the budget, use "good" tape. If it's TIGHT, use the PR's.
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Old March 30th, 2010, 03:44 PM   #3
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Shaun,
Thanks for the info. You never know how much is sales tactics and how much is really a quality jump.
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Old March 30th, 2010, 03:52 PM   #4
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Arturo, don't get me wrong - I PERSONALLY think it IS better tape but do you NEED better tape in your application? Again, once in a lifetime stuff or long term archival stuff has such intrinsic value that it only makes sense but shoot today, capture today and reshoot tomorrow IF a dropout killed the ONE frame that was absolutely ESSENTIAL? That's DVM60PR to me. Traveling half way around the world after getting Visas and travel documents and... no brainer - even premium tape is CHEAP compared to reshooting.

HDV has increased risk to dropouts due to the long GOP codec compared to DV; at least I have noticed an increase but I have ALWAYS been able to work around tape issues SO FAR, most of which I find are actually MPEG related as opposed to tape dropouts.
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Old March 30th, 2010, 05:46 PM   #5
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I have run probably close to a 1000 of the cheap Sony DV Tapes and never had a single dropout. I have also used a stack of the HDV (expensive ones) and the Premium's also with no probs.
The other day someone gave me some JVC Pro HD tapes, I cleaned the heads, used the JVC Tapes and had a dropout on each tape. Went back to 'el cheapo Sony's' and not a single dropout.

I was under the impression that the JVC's were high end, in my opinion they are very average, in fact I actually threw 10 tapes in the bin as I just don't want to use them.
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Old March 30th, 2010, 06:58 PM   #6
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Jonathan, I've posted a series of comments about my experience mixing JVC tape and Sony gear and vice versa and I PERSONALLY haven't had any luck. I now shoot JVC cameras and swear by the ProHD stock BUT make sure that I never mix formulations. You aren't alone but I do think ProHD is high quality stock, just NOT for use with Sony gear.
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Old March 31st, 2010, 07:09 PM   #7
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Oh well if you lived closer I would give them to you ; )
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Old March 31st, 2010, 08:45 PM   #8
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Send them by Carrier Koala!

No worries.
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Old March 31st, 2010, 10:07 PM   #9
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LOL, funny b'stard!
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Old March 31st, 2010, 11:48 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaun Roemich View Post
The rest of the time we used DVM60PR tapes with no issues.
Same here, I've gone through about 1,800+ DVM60 Premium tapes and never had any issues either. Initially I got them because B&H gives you a better price when you buy in bulk. But then I found, if there's one tape you're gonna find out in the middle of nowhere, it's probably going to be the Sony DVM60s. Done a lot of traveling in out of the way places, and found them in some of weirdest and unexpected places. Sony definitely is hooked into a an insane distribution network. So that's another plus for that particular tape and for Sony.
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Old March 31st, 2010, 11:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Wisniewski View Post
if there's one tape you're gonna find out in the middle of nowhere, it's probably going to be the Sony DVM60s. Done a lot of traveling in out of the way places, and found them in some of weirdest and unexpected places. Sony definitely is hooked into a an insane distribution network. So that's another plus for that tape.
Yup. I couldn't agree more. Found them in Brazil and India in somewhat "out of the way" locations. And unlike Coca Cola, DVM60PR's in Brazil don't contain Guarana! <long story>
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Old April 1st, 2010, 02:49 AM   #12
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Long story? Please do tell!

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Old April 1st, 2010, 10:21 AM   #13
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I keep hearing mentions of Sony DVM63 "Premium" tapes. Which of these 3 does "Premium" refer to?

DVM60PRR
DVM-63HDR
or
PHDVM63DM

I had always assumed the term "Premium" was referring to the "Digital Master" tapes. Thanks for clearing it up.
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Old April 1st, 2010, 02:18 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Arturo Glass View Post
I keep hearing mentions of Sony DVM63 "Premium" tapes. Which of these 3 does "Premium" refer to?

DVM60PR
These were "branded" as Premium during the early days (Red Package) and the PR refers to premium. Bit of nonsense really since they are pretty much the lowest quality tapes Sony makes in the 6mm line but nomenclature is nomenclature...
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Old April 1st, 2010, 02:29 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Shaun Roemich View Post
And unlike Coca Cola, DVM60PR's in Brazil don't contain Guarana! <long story>
Short version:
I was in Recife, Brazil in July of 2001. I get motion sick if I'm not driving. I wasn't driving. In addition, I was in the back seat of a VW Combi van stuck in rush hour traffic in 30+ degree Celsius (90ish degrees fahrenheit) heat. LOTS of 2 cycle motorcycles around and other sources of air pollution. I was GREEN. My local fixer (who saved my life literally on a number of occasions) noticed and decided I needed green coconut milk to settle my stomach and headed off to find some from a street vendor while we were traffic locked. Comes back twenty minutes later with a coconut with a hole in it and a straw.

NOPE, that didn't help. I "contributed" to the pollution on the street that day.

Decided the ONLY thing that was going to help my stomach out (after days of drinking nothing but FAR too sweet fruit juice and amazing coffee (and great beer)) was the most ubiquitous drink in the world, the drink that can be GUARANTEED (funny how close to GUARANA that is...) to taste the same ANY WHERE IN THE WORLD.

Stopped an hour later when we finally got out of the traffic jam and I all but crawled into a grocery store and bought the NECTAR OF THE GODS! My Coke! My Kingdom for this Coke! Took the biggest POSSIBLE swig of it to knock back the awful taste in my stomach and what do I taste?

GUARANA! The caffeine in Coke in Brazil comes from GUARANA. There is something about that taste I JUST CAN'T STAND OR STOMACH...

Don't get me wrong - I loved Brazil and the Brazilians I met were PHENOMENAL people who were very warm to us. How they can drink that vile substance I will never know!

Ok, it wasn't the short version but for full effect, that's as short as I can make it.
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