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Sony HVR-Z5 / HDR-FX1000
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CMOS HDV camcorder.


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Old January 19th, 2009, 06:53 PM   #1
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Mixing Sony Tapes with other brands

Ok here is one for everyone.

Mixing Sony tapes with other brands can create head clog in your video camera - yes or no?

My experience is that it is a no no, yet some of my video mates are saying just use new Sony tapes with other brands and you will not have a problem.

I have had the dreaded head clog many years ago & it often happened when I mixed tapes.

This led me to believe that it mixing Sony tapes with all other bands was a no no.

I now run Panasonic and JVC only tapes. If I see anything that resembles a dirty camera head I pop a head cleaning tape through a camera for 10 seconds. I usually do this twice.

I also give my cameras a real good clean with head cleaning spray twice a year. Any suspect tapes or tapes that I think have passed over dirty heads get thrown out.

I know many out there would say "just use new tapes" but the nature and $$$'s I get paid for what I do sometimes do not allow for new tapes.

I believe following the above will mean a life without head clog.

Oh yes and don't mix in Sony tapes!
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Old January 19th, 2009, 09:09 PM   #2
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whatever tapes you choose to use a good rule of thumb is "never mix tapes" even within the same mfgr. formulation of lubricant can be very different and can cause head clogs when you least expect or want them. Head cleaning tapes can be damaging and they clean the heads and do little if anything to clean the transport rollers.
Pick one brand and stick to it. Tape is the least expensive commodity we have.

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Old January 22nd, 2009, 02:27 PM   #3
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Dry vs. Wet

About a year ago, I took my camera to get a new tape deck (don't think they replaced the head, just the tape take up/supply mechanism). Anyways, I was talking to the guy about tapes and he mentioned that the red-door Sony tapes use a wet tape lubricant whereas most of the other manufacturers use a dry lubricant.

The guy said Sony did this because the dry lubricants were destroying the heads on their prosumer-end cameras. So as long as you stick to one kind of tape, you should be fine. I don't know for sure whether or not this is a problem with any other brands, but I'd take Don's advice and just stick with one product line from one manufacturer to be sure.
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Old January 28th, 2009, 03:37 AM   #4
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Heard that now no firm is manufacturing wet tapes any more. Not even Sony. But it remains a fact, that it is always wise to keep using the same brand and type of tape.
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Old January 29th, 2009, 01:10 PM   #5
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It is funny that Panasonic says that due to their dry lubricant that they have less head wear and that wet lubricants are more likely to clog heads. I have a friend who has used tons of Sony Premium (cheap) tapes and he is absolutly convinced that they are the best tapes in the world. I have always liked the Panasonics and I have never experienced a single problem. While still another friend uses anything he can get his hands on at the time. Pansonic, TDK, Maxell, Fuji, etc. But he steadfastly refuses to use any Sony tapes and he says it is the only tape that he has ever had any problems using in his camcorders.
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Old January 31st, 2009, 09:17 AM   #6
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HD Tapes

While we are talking on tapes. Must you use a HD tape in an HD camcorder?? Or can you record HD on any of the Mini HV tapes. Thanks
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Old January 31st, 2009, 09:46 AM   #7
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You can use normal mini DV tapes, but the chance on drop outs is somewhat higher. Not that I found that, but it is stated . . .
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Old January 31st, 2009, 10:40 AM   #8
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Old January 31st, 2009, 11:57 AM   #9
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Interestingly the only really bad tape I've ever bought, was a Sony HDV tape. Use regular mini-DV and you'll be fine. With the money saved, treat yourself to a night at McDonalds. :)
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Old February 1st, 2009, 03:03 AM   #10
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Hi @ All!

I have been reading here since a while as I probably will purchase a FX1000. I would be interested to know what you semi pro's use as the tape of your choice? For my quality is rather the focus then price ;)
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Old February 1st, 2009, 04:11 AM   #11
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Sony Premium, like most others. Main reasons:
1) Never had any problems with them,
2) Available at nearly every street corner.
3) Price (no real issue, as the others are not much more expensive).
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