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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old May 30th, 2008, 08:49 AM   #1
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DV Tapes ?

I have been using the Sony Mini DV MEDVM 63 that I can only get from B&H cant find them locally. I have no complaints or issues but they are pricy. For most events I have no problem, its the cost of doing business.

But do you ever use anything else for less critical work of if you are in a pinch.

I never re use them, and practice with tapes I get a walmart, and to be honest never had an issue with those either but dont trust them for the major jobs.

I sometimes have to put in a tape at the very end of a job, like end of a reception, do I use up another good tape, or at this time use a cheaper one.

Would appreciate your thoughts and experience.

Denny
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Old May 30th, 2008, 08:58 AM   #2
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I've been using Sony DVM60PRR tapes for three years and never had one problem. These are the same ones they sell at Wal-Mart, but I don't buy them there (too expensive), I instead get them online for about $2 each.

I don't reuse them unless I've been stupid and ran out (It has happened a couple times.) When I'm done with them I give them to the kids to resuse in their camcorder.

But now you've got me worrying that I've just been lucky!
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Old May 30th, 2008, 09:04 AM   #3
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I am partial to TDK DVM-60MEEA MiniDV Tapes...never had any problems with them at all. I buy them online on Ebay for about $3 ea
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Old May 30th, 2008, 09:22 AM   #4
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I now only use the Sony Premium ($3), never use them twice, always record color bar for 1 minute at the beginning and stop few minutes before the end of the tape.
No problem, big savings.
I was using the HDV sony tapes before ($9).
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Old May 30th, 2008, 12:11 PM   #5
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Tapes...

I have been using the Maxell DVs for years without issues. I have used TDKs when I couldn't get the Maxell's in a pinch and they are good too.

I have read somewhere in the forums though that its not a good idea to switch brands because mixing the different tape compounds is not good for the video heads.

Last edited by Ken Gilford; May 30th, 2008 at 12:28 PM. Reason: more stuff
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Old May 30th, 2008, 02:10 PM   #6
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regardless of what tapes you use first, NEVER switch brands from one to another - this can cause problems with the heads andtransport with gunk from different types of lube on the tapes. Pick one brand and stay with it.
Second, tapes ARE a cost of doing business unless it a corporate account and depending on the type of work I might do a per tape charge. Of course with weddings you can't do that but the what I look at it is this. Tape is probably the least expensive thing we buy and use. At that, they are cheap. I remember back when DV tapes were $10 or more a piece no matter what. Now I buy in quanities of 100 and pay less than $3.50 per. I use Panny PQ63s only and sometimes I get them for even less. BTW, I have never reused tapes. One time use only. Cost of business.
Also remember it not just the heads but the transport mechanism also and head clening tapes don't clean that.
Pick one and stick with it
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Old May 31st, 2008, 01:44 AM   #7
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reuse

Quote:
Originally Posted by Denny Kyser View Post
I sometimes have to put in a tape at the very end of a job, like end of a reception, do I use up another good tape, or at this time use a cheaper one.
I shoot with panasonic tapes from B&H. I just shot a graduation ceremony where two tapes had at most 10 minutes on them. After logging the footage, I'm probably going to use those tapes for prep / b-roll tomorrow for my wedding client. No sense in tossing out the other 50 minutes of usable footage, right?

But for the most part, I bundle my tapes together based on project, so fr almost that reason and that reason alone, I never record multiple events on the same tape.

But I also never reuse them. I figure it just isn't work the potential to have screwed up footage. Nothing is worth blowing a days footage from a wedding because I was cheap and wanted to save $4/tape.
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Old May 31st, 2008, 01:47 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Bloom View Post
Also remember it not just the heads but the transport mechanism also and head clening tapes don't clean that.
Pick one and stick with it
The transport mechanism is what was gummed up on my GL2 that I just got back from Canon Factory Service. Hopefully that won't happen again, but who knows. I've got a good relationship with a local ad agency where I can rent their XL1/XL1s in a pinch (like tomorrow when I will need a 2nd cam).
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