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Old March 23rd, 2011, 09:15 PM   #1
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Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

. . . or go tapeless?

After a marathon deposition depleted my supply of Panasonic PQ series tapes, I stopped by a retail store here in Atlanta to pick up some tapes in case I needed them before my order from B&H comes in. (I'm too cheap to spring for overnight shipping.) They were completely out of Panasonic tapes and several other brands. The clerk told me that the earthquake and/or tsunami damaged some of the plants involved in the manufacture of tapes and that mini-DV tapes will be in short supply.

Any truth to this? Or am I simply repeating rumors and contributing to a panic-buying mentality?

Ironically, the store still had Sony tapes, which I understand is the company most directly affected by this tragedy.
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Old March 23rd, 2011, 09:26 PM   #2
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

Check Amazon. My Sony tapes say hecho en Mexico.
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Old March 23rd, 2011, 10:56 PM   #3
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

Hi Tom... yes its true.... Many plants sustained damages in the Japan disaster, but Sony's was hit the hardest (where magnetic media is manufactured) ...

I put in an order last week from my supplier and got the last of the DVCAM tapes they had...
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Old March 24th, 2011, 01:40 AM   #4
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

And the situation won't be much better for Flash memory cards - the factories have been impacted. Even where the factories themselves are undamaged, the rolling blackouts and aftershocks are preventing them from re-opening - to say nothing of how their employees (at least their SURVIVING employees) will get to work, as gasoline etc are also in short supply.

The fuel issue is so bad that mortuaries have run out of kerosene to cremate the victims so they're being burred in mass graves temporarily.

Highways are closed to normal traffic so they can prioritize relief efforts. My clients have a factory about 60 miles from the hardest hit area and they are limited to one truck a day - period. So where before we'd bring stuff into our distribution centers by the pallet based on our production plan, we're now only moving stuff for which we have firm orders in hand.
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Old March 24th, 2011, 07:01 PM   #5
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

It's becoming a problem on network shows.

TVB | Supplies of Sony Videotape Are Running Low
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Old March 25th, 2011, 03:37 PM   #6
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

Sorry for hijack, but did you notice this <Broadcast Tower Repairmanís Free Climb Captured on Video> in the 'Most Popular Stories' sidebar in the link above? Aaargh!

Back on topic: I was finding the now discontinued JVC tapes hard enough to source as it was, but suddenly it's getting harder to find stocks of other brands due to the Sony situation I would think.
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Old March 25th, 2011, 04:31 PM   #7
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

re JVC tape (unrelated to the earthquake)

As I understand it from my friends in the tape business in Japan, JVC spun all their tape and media operations off into a company known as Victor Advanced Media (JVC is Japan Victor Corporation as in RCA Victor) which was then bought by Taiyo Yuden. So it isn't immediately clear to me at this point what is called what or made or sold by whom - I had understood that the tape would still be marketed as JVC under the JVC name, but that's where I run out of information.
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Old March 25th, 2011, 05:33 PM   #8
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

That's interesting, Jim. Most suppliers here are just listing JVC tapes as "out of stock, now discontinued" or words to that effect.
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Old March 25th, 2011, 09:12 PM   #9
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

UPDATE 1-Taiyo Yuden to acquire JVC's recording media unit | Reuters

This link points to an article that's a couple of years old. I don't really have much more info. I'm in the LTO drive business, not the media end of things so I haven't tracked this story lately.
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Old March 27th, 2011, 08:22 AM   #10
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

Thanks, Jim.

I found the Taiyo Yuden product catalogue Catalog Download?TAIYO YUDEN Co.,Ltd. and it has optical recording media but no magnetic tape.

So it looks like RIP to the JVC miniDVD. (There's a rap in their somewhere!)
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Old March 27th, 2011, 10:52 AM   #11
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

I looked on Maxell's website and it seems the Red Maxell minidv tapes I use are gone. I have to switch tapes and not at a good time. I need to pick up at least 200 tapes somewhere for this year.

I just bough 150 Sony tapes, now to clean the ole' heads before I switch. I used to get my red Maxell's from Samsclub.com but they quit carrying them, and I think Maxell quit making them. Hmm, I''ll be forced to hard disk recording next year no doubt.
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Old March 27th, 2011, 12:50 PM   #12
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

I just bought a couple of hundred Sony DV tapes from Amazon. There seems to be plenty of stock there and on ebay.

Can they be reused if stocks really run low?
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Old March 27th, 2011, 01:29 PM   #13
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin McDonald View Post
That's interesting, Jim. Most suppliers here are just listing JVC tapes as "out of stock, now discontinued" or words to that effect.
Lots of JVC tapes are still for sale on Amazon.
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Old March 27th, 2011, 01:53 PM   #14
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

Quote:
Lots of JVC tapes are still for sale on Amazon.
Not that I can find on the UK site. There are lots of promises, but when you actually go in to this in detail, many of the hits are for other products. Have a look at this typical result below - there's only one single 3 pack available here. Some websites are still listing JVC tapes but when you try to order them, they don't actually have them. Are you saying you have actually managed to get JVC tapes from Amazon in the last couple of weeks?
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Old March 27th, 2011, 02:18 PM   #15
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Re: Time to hoard mini-DV tapes?

Re re-use.

Lots of people don't want to re-use tape because of dropout concerns, but I don't see any reason you couldn't re-use them. Seems to be a personal decision re using them over again or not. As I said, I work in LTO development/marketing and we re-use the tapes as many as twenty thousand times each in our drive test line even though they're "only" rated for five thousand cycles. Of course, LTO and DV are radically different so it's not fair to make a direct comparison.

I sort of wish I had a camera that would record directly to LTO;<)

Considering that we're now working on getting 3 - 4 TB per cartridge I could leave one cartridge in the camera for a couple of years. By which time we'd be getting 7 - 10 TB per cartridge.
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