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Old July 5th, 2007, 03:34 PM   #1
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HDCAM storage amount

How much data do HDCAM and HDCAMSR tapes hold?
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Old July 5th, 2007, 04:23 PM   #2
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There are two sizes of HDCAM cassette shells -- small and large -- the small size is for camcorders only while a VTR accepts both sizes. They range in recording length anywhere from six minutes (Sony BCT-06HD, a small shell cassette) to 124 minutes (Sony BCT-124HDL, a large shell cassette). You can get a little more recording time out of these cassettes when shooting in 24P mode. The highest capacity small shell HDCAM cassette, the BCT-40HD, will hold fifty minutes of 24P video. The BCT-124HDL will hold 155 minutes of 24P video.

BCT-xxHD (small) in 6,12, 22, 32, 40 minute lengths
BCT-xxHDL (large) in 34, 64, 94, 124 minute lengths

HDCAM SR is pretty much same as above but not as many choices of recording length:

BCT-xxSR (small) in 6, 32, 40 minute lengths
BCT-xxSRL (large) in 64, 94, 124 minute lengths

For more info see http://bssc.sel.sony.com/Broadcastan...DCAM_Card8.pdf

Hope this helps,
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Old July 5th, 2007, 07:23 PM   #3
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It kinda helps, a little. I was actually looking for how much data it holds. In gigs not length. whats the most amount of data (in gigs) a HDCAM SR tape can hold?
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Old July 5th, 2007, 09:46 PM   #4
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Well Alan actually HDCAM SR can't record data; at least, not common data formats such as DPX files etc. -- it can only record video. Are you asking this question from a perspective of capture, as in, how many gigabytes of hard disk storage space does HDCAM SR require? The answer to that depends on a number of variables such as choice of frame rate and choice of color sampling (it's capable of either a standard SQ mode using 4:2:2 color at 440 Mb/s, or a 2x HQ mode using 4:4:4 color at 880 Mb/s). So the answer to your question is "it all depends."

If you're trying to calculate disk space, a good "absolute maximum" estimate is the HQ mode, which at its longest recording time is limited to 62 minutes because it eats through the biggest BCT-124HDL tapes (those are $300 apiece by the way) at twice the normal speed, so that's roughly what... 400 gigabytes?

It'll be the same for SQ mode recording, which gets 124 minutes on that same tape.

Can somebody else confirm or deny that it's about 400 gigabytes?
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Old July 6th, 2007, 10:36 AM   #5
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A handful of systems can ingest HDCAM native... Xpri, and something else. But chances are you aren't using them.

So basically you have to go HD-SDI into your system. You can find data rates for single-link and dual-link HD-SDI on the web... you can also capture with compression (e.g. cineform, DNxHD, prores, etc. etc.) to lower that data rate.

HDCAM you normally ingest via single-link HD-SDI, whereas HDCAM SR you would ingest through dual-link.

2- Wikipedia has some figures on the data rate of the compressed video on tape.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betacam#HDCAM_.2F_HDCAM_SR

The 440 and 880mbps figures may not include audio bitrate.
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Old July 6th, 2007, 01:52 PM   #6
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Thanx. 400 gigs was the answer I was looking for. I'm comparing different formats. From DV25 all the way up to 4K. I havnt seen any charts that outline the different formats perfectly with easily understandable data rates, storage rates per hour, per minute, and so on. Thanx again.
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Old July 9th, 2007, 01:34 AM   #7
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I'm pretty surprised about how HDCAM tape stock works. In other words (It acts like film) If you record at 30fps you only got 40 minutes of recording time but if you record at 24fps you get 50 minutes. That can only mean that unlike minidv. The tape speed changes unlike minidv that on HD can only get 30fps and when you record at 24fps it plays back 30fps because compared to HDCAM when you record at 24fps it plays back 24fps.

Even though sony developed both tape formats, they have come a long ways since their betamax was defeated by VHS.
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Old July 9th, 2007, 12:36 PM   #8
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If you are on a Mac you can download this widget from Digital Heaven that is a storage space calculator. http://www.digital-heaven.co.uk/videospace/index.php

If you are on a PC I'm sure there is similar software, I just don't know where to find it.


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