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Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
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Old January 7th, 2006, 05:29 PM   #1
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Recording heads question- PD150

So I'm still doing my research, and I plan to buy a PD150 next week or so. My question is about the recording heads, and tapes. I've always used panasonic DVC tapes. Can I continue to use these? How well do those cleaning tapes actually work? What are the kind of hour numbers that would call for replacing the heads? And I had to do that (I really don't want to buy a camera that I have to replace the heads on unknowingly) How much would that cost, and where could I have that done?
Thanks in advance.
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Old January 8th, 2006, 10:54 PM   #2
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Anyone? I would really like get an idea about the maitenance you all do on a regular basis on PD150's. I am going to buy a cleaning tape, and run it through right away once I recieve the camera. What else should I look out for?
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Old January 8th, 2006, 11:25 PM   #3
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Hello, I have a pd170 for a year with 100 hrs of use. It is still a baby. I use panasonic 83 min minidv tapes. I never used a cleaning tape and never had a drop out. I only use these tapes and never use anything else. I have a cleaning tape but will only use it when the camera dictates which has not happened. I feel cleaning tapes are abrasive and would only use them if I had a problem. I know some use a tape cleaner when they 1st receive a camera but I would not.

I do not use the camera as a deck to lessen use on the heads. I use the camera every 2 weeks and If I dont' have an event I take it out for a little use so as to give it some exercise. >:-)

If I needed the heads replaced or serviced I would call Sony 1st and then ask about authorized service centers.
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Old January 9th, 2006, 06:55 AM   #4
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Rob,
Sorry-I missed your original post.
First-the tape doesn't matter as long as you srick with one mfg, and type of tape. I prefer Pannys PQ-I use both 63 and 83 in both my 150s and my JVC5000-never had a problem. As for hours on the 150-mine both have over 1000 hours of tape time and run fine. The heads on the 150/170 are good for about 1200 to 1400 hours of record time generally but that doesn't mean they'll go that long nor does it mean they won't go longer. As for where to do it an the cost-I prefer Sony and I believe they now charge that under the FLAT FEE rate of $575.00. I could be wrong.
BTW, between those 2 150s they have had a cleaning tape thru them a total of 2 times. Once per camera and these cams are over 4 years old. Unless you MUST run a cleaner thru it my suggestion is don't. However since the 150 you're buying is used you might run a cleaner thru it before you start using it just to make sure the heads are clean and ready just follow the directions on the cleaning tape. DO NOT OVERUSE IT!
Don
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Old January 9th, 2006, 10:55 AM   #5
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Because Sony has hidden their tape cleaner instruction document, I'll paraphrase it here:

1. Run no longer than 5 seconds.
2. Allow the heads to cool for 1 minute between applications. If you don't they say it is possible to melt the 'dirt' onto the heads, requiring a head replacement.
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Old January 9th, 2006, 11:43 AM   #6
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Thanks for the responses. I will run the cleaning tape through once every few minutes, just to be safe. I've been reading threads about dropouts and such and bad luck with the audio, and it has me really worried. I'm buying one on ebay tommorow (probably) that only has about 60 hours recording.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 02:34 AM   #7
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"I will run the cleaning tape through once every few minutes, just to be safe."

NO! Stop right there. That's not what he meant. I don't know if you meant that you would use the cleaning tape after every few minutes of use, but that is not advisable. I hope that is not what you meant and if it is that you re-read the posts. Don't run it through frequently. Only do it when necessary. If one pass for a few seconds doesn't unclog the heads, THEN you wait a few minutes and do another short pass. The reason for this is that friction of the cleaning tape causes heat that can burn the filth onto the heads. If a second pass is necessary, you must wait for the heads to cool down from the first pass.
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Old January 11th, 2006, 10:26 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus Marchesseault
"I will run the cleaning tape through once every few minutes, just to be safe."

NO! Stop right there. That's not what he meant. I don't know if you meant that you would use the cleaning tape after every few minutes of use, but that is not advisable. I hope that is not what you meant and if it is that you re-read the posts. Don't run it through frequently. Only do it when necessary. If one pass for a few seconds doesn't unclog the heads, THEN you wait a few minutes and do another short pass. The reason for this is that friction of the cleaning tape causes heat that can burn the filth onto the heads. If a second pass is necessary, you must wait for the heads to cool down from the first pass.
That isn't what I meant. I was going to run the tape through once when I got it, but I what I meant to say was that when I run the cleaning tape, I will only run it through the machine once, and then wait a few minutes.
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