DigitalMaster tape is designed for any mini-DV or DVCAM
camcorders or VTRs. Its the only professional videotape
with not one but two 100% active magnetic layers for 90%
fewer errors than consumer DV tape. Because video error
correction is so good , errors are sneaky. Even as the
errors accumulate, youll think youre fine.
Your first sign of trouble can be a dropout that can break
up the image on a one-on-one of a kind of take. So why
risk it all? When it comes to your creative vision, demand
DUAL LAYER OF 100% ACTIVE MAGNETIC MATERIAL: Improves
Carrier-to-Noise ratio by 2 dB, 20% increase in the distance
between the noise floor and the signal
90% FEWER ERRORS: With 20% increase in C/N more
signal comes off the tape during playback reducing the
occurrence of errors. When recording in 16:9, more information
is recorded versus 4:3 and there is greater possibility
for errors. DigitalMaster reduces that risk by 90%.
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Although both DVCAM
and DV use DLC technology, the DLC layer for DVCAM is optimized for maximum
durability. It offers a 25% higher level of strength for the type of still frame,
multi pass editing used by professionals.
Still Frame Evaluation - The recorded signal level of DV showed noticeable
loss after 20 minutes in pause. DVCAM held signal level even after 60 minutes.
Editing Simulation - Editing tests have shown that DV media begins to
show picture disturbances after 150 passes. DVCAM shows no noticeable disturbances
or loss in picture quality after 150 passes.
Improved Physical Stability
Magnetic tape is susceptible to expansion and contraction due to temperature
and humidity variations over time. Excessive shrinkage disrupts the position
of the recorded tracks and often results in "Off-Tracking". This simply
means the recorded tracks have shifted and the play heads cannot accurately
read the information. This type of shrinkage is usually associated with long-term
To minimize the potential of tape shrinkage and recording/playback problems,
media exclusively uses a base material with 50% less shrinkage. The benefit
is added reliability and confidence that the recorded material is there and
will play back even after years of storage under reasonable storage conditions.
Tighter Width Specifications DVCAM
and DV have a width of 6.35 mm (1/4"). The more uniform the tape width,
the better the record/playback stability and compatibility between recorders.
DVCAM width is held to a tighter tolerance to offer a higher level of reliability
and compatibility. DVCAM uses an ultra-accurate slitting machine to assure correct
Maximum Picture & Sound Stability
Friction increases between tape and recorder heads after repeated passes on
the tape. DVCAM
media has a significantly lower friction coefficient than DV. For the professional,
this means greater recorded signal longevity, higher reliability, increased
durability and overall improved performance.
There is a difference when you use DVCAM media. As a professional, you and your
customers deserve to have the best and most reliable end result the format can
provide. When quality videography is at stake, use the media that was designed
for professionals - DVCAM.
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DVCAM VERSUS DV FORMATS - SONY
DVCAM and DV tape compared
If you're reading this, you probably understand that DV and DVCAM tapes and
VTRs are broadly compatible. For example, it is possible to record professional
DVCAM signals onto consumer DV tape. It is also possible to play back a consumer
DV recording on a professional DVCAM VTR. In a pinch, it is possible to use
consumer media in professional DVCAM hardware. But we don't recommend making
a habit of it. Here's why:
Cassette memory - IC-equipped pro models offer four times the memory
of consumer models.
Durability - Pro media has an optimized DLC layer and surface treatment.
This improves performance for editing and long-term archiving.
Dropouts - Controlled surface finishing helps cut DVCAM tape dropouts
in half, compared to consumer DV.
Interchange - Tighter slitting tolerances mean DVCAM tape works
almost flawlessly when recorded on one VTR and played back on another.
Shrinkage - DVCAM tape cuts dimensional shrinkage in half, an important
benefit for archival stability.
Running time difference - DVCAM machines use a transport speed
faster than DV machines. So you'll experience differences between the
marked and actual recording times. For example, a 60-minute DV cassette
holds only 40 minutes of DVCAM footage.
When to Use Which?
From this analysis, we can develop a clear direction on choosing tape:
Consumer hardware - For general shooting, use Sony consumer DV
tape. For critical shoots, archival recording, news stringers or wedding
videography, choose DVCAM tape with or without cassette memory.
Entry-level DVCAM equipment - Users of the DSR-200 and DSR-30 should
choose Sony DVCAM tape with or without memory.
High-end DVCAM equipment - If you use ClipLink operation, you
should choose only Sony DVCAM tape with Cassette Memory.
By following these recommendations, you'll be able to enjoy the full
operational power of your DV and DVCAM hardware. And you'll be making
the most intelligent use of the technology we build into DV and DVCAM
DVCAM - Advanced Metal Evaporated (AME).
Unlike Metal Particle (MP) tape, AME uses pure cobalt, undiluted by nickel.
Unlike MP, AME uses an ultra-fine grain of metal that's vapor-deposited
in a vacuum chamber! And unlike previous Metal Evaporated tape, AME protects
the magnetic grain with Sony's super-hard Diamond-Like Carbon (DLC) layer.
The result is a breakthrough in recording density, retentivity and carrier-to-noise
AME is a key enabling technology behind the DVCAM system. And it's a
key factor in the DVCAM success story We're pleased to see that demand
for DVCAM media is booming. So we're aggressively adding capacity to our
AME production lines. In the same way, we're adding new DVCAM tape models.
And that's the subject of this TechPort.
With Sony's latest DVCAM tape product introductions
You'll have more options than ever before. You'll be able to record on
DVCAM tape with and without cassette memory. That's in addition to exchanging
tapes between consumer DV and professional DVCAM equipment. And you have
an entire range of Cassette Memory functions in consumer entry-level professional
and high-end pro equipment.
While choice is an undeniably good thing, it can get confusing if you're
not paying close attention. That's why we'll review your DVCAM media options.
We'll cover when to use which media What to expect in compatibility. And
what Cassette Memory functions work on which pieces of Sony hardware.
DVCAM - An expanded line
Sony is responding to customer demand for a more affordable alternative
that does not sacrifice picture quality. We're also accommodating the
latest DVCAM hardware, models which do not include the cassette-memory-dependent
ClipLink feature. So starting in November 97, Sony will be offering DVCAM
tape that does not include Cassette Memory. The result is an extended
line of 14 DVCAM models.
DVCAM - Cassette Memory and Its Uses
The proliferation of DV and DVCAM models means a growing range of applications
for Cassette Memory. Consumer-grade machines can store date and photo
data, which do not make intensive use of Cassette Memory. That's consistent
with the 4 kbit memory Sony builds into IC-equipped consumer tape. Entry-level
professional machines also make moderate demands on the memory chip. However,
a key feature of Sony's top DVCAM models is ClipLink operation, which
makes full use of the 16 kbit memory of Sony's IC-equipped DVCAM tapes.
Mini DV, DV
are a consumer format that a number of manufacturers agreed on to become the next
consumer standard. It has been so good a format that many professionals, and semi-professionals
have begun using it. The format uses ME tape. Standard lengths are 30, 60 and
80min for the miniDV and 120, 180 (and some 270min) for the DV. There are also
two speeds in DV and miniDV, so a 80min mini can provide 120min of recording.(Low
At the same time, Sony & Panasonic brought out their professional
versions, named DVCAM
Sony's professional DVCAM format, although similar to miniDV, runs
50% faster. So, its longest tape in the mini size is 40min. There
is a 184min DVCAM tape, which will run 270 minutes in a DV machine!
Recognition holes in the tape tell the machine what tape you have
loaded. In addition the professional format of DVCPRO and DVCAM
have locked audio.
Panasonic's DVCPRO runs at a faster speed than the Sony DVCAM, but its main
difference is the use of MP tape as opposed to ME. Panasonic, inventors of miniDV
and the ME tape, did not think the tape robust enough for professional use and
chose to go with MP tape. The physical cassette size for DVCPRO is also larger
than miniDV for the shorter lengths... a kind of a 'medium' size. Long lengths
use the same size as DV. MiniDV can be used in a DVCPRO deck, but only with
an adapter, and only for playback. (SB)
CAN I USE THE DVCAM TAPES IN THE
CONSUMER miniDV CAMCORDER?
There should be no issues as the only difference is the quality of the
tape. The cassette shape is exactly the same. Panasonic has brought out
a MQ Master
tape to rival the DVCAM, and it is a miniDV tape. Also, because DVCAM
cameras run faster than miniDV cameras, the PDVM-32N actually records 48
minutes and the PDVM-40N records 60 minutes in a miniDV Camera.
Note that most miniDV cameras only fit smaller shell DVCAM tapes (the
smaller shell PDVM-32N