Quantcast Stereo tape but mono capture: Does it matter? - digitalFAQ Forum
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02-28-2019, 10:18 AM
colony colony is offline
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All of my Hi8 tapes were recorded in stereo. In searching for a replacement camera for playback, I notice that many of the latter Hi8 camcorders only record/play back in Mono. Interestingly, the last ones no longer had S-Video out (just composite).

Given the narrow right/left separation on the stereo camera mics, is there an appreciable difference when capturing from a stereo source tape to mono?
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02-28-2019, 12:58 PM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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Stereo playback units aren't hard to find, stick with them. The CCD-TRV128 and 138 (lacks S-Video) were "end of the line" cheapo units to begin with. The Digital 8 versions based on the same chassis, the DCR-TRV460 and 480, did support stereo analog playback (along with the TBC/DNR).

Just note that the DCR-TRV260 and 280 completely lack analog 8/Hi8 playback, they are Digital 8 only units.
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02-28-2019, 01:43 PM
JPMedia JPMedia is online now
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I use a Sony CCD-TRV66 for analog capture. This particular model has S-Video out, stereo audio out, and built in TBC. As a Hi8 camcorder it can playback tapes recorded on a Video8 or Hi8 camcorder. One advantage to the CCD-TRV66 is that it uses modern NP-F style batteries. I use battery powered LED lights for video production. The same batteries for those lights can be used to power my camcorder.
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02-28-2019, 02:06 PM
NJRoadfan NJRoadfan is offline
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I wouldn't call the first generation InfoLithium "L" batteries modern by any stretch (they were superseded by the smaller InfoLithium "M" batteries in 2000). How the heck they were re-proposed to power lighting and other gear is beyond me as they were much more expensive and harder to source than the "M" batteries until recently. My TRV66 was so old that it predated the "L" branding on the batteries. Back then they were just InfoLithium battery packs.
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02-28-2019, 03:21 PM
dpalomaki dpalomaki is offline
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Quote:
Given the narrow right/left separation on the stereo camera mics, is there an appreciable difference when capturing from a stereo source tape to mono?

Read more: Stereo tape but mono capture: Does it matter?
Considering the quality of camcorder internal mics, the mono-vs-stereo differences may not be remarkable. If a quality external mic was used the differences could be more significant.

Normal Hi8 stereo sound was recorder as a L+R signal plus a L-R signal. Much like FN stareo broadcast. This made it compatible with older mono video8 systems. As a marketing plus, it was possible to read only mono from the same tape at a lower cost then stereo. High end products included the option for time code and PCM audio tracks. The PCM audio allowed a better low frequency response and 16 dB lower noise level.
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02-28-2019, 03:36 PM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJRoadfan View Post
I wouldn't call the first generation InfoLithium "L" batteries modern by any stretch (they were superseded by the smaller InfoLithium "M" batteries in 2000). How the heck they were re-proposed to power lighting and other gear is beyond me as they were much more expensive and harder to source than the "M" batteries until recently. My TRV66 was so old that it predated the "L" branding on the batteries. Back then they were just InfoLithium battery packs.
He probably means the same form factor, not the same chemistry, I own a Canon camcorder from the 90's and I too have a LED video light I bought in 2015 and it uses the same exact battery the canon use, same voltage, Just newer chemistry.
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02-28-2019, 03:59 PM
dpalomaki dpalomaki is offline
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Lights wouldn't care about the chemistry of the battery as long as the voltage and current capacity were correct, and any mandatory handshaking the battery expected was accommodated by the light. Using a common battery for camcorder lights and the camcorders is convenient and reduces the different types of chargers and other accessories one needs to have on hand and manage.

One battery bummer in the Canon XA camcorder line. Many Li-Ion batteries have internal self protection features to prevent overload (and resulting fires). When the XA20 series was released it drew more power than the earlier XA10, so the XA10 batteries (e.g., BP827) self protection was set too low for the XA20. However the newer BP828 could power both).
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02-28-2019, 08:45 PM
latreche34 latreche34 is offline
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Battery packs have BMS in them, Before they overheat they have thermal cut-off switches in the BMS, I exchanged my batteries from the camcorder to the light and vise versa and I never had a problem with them.
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03-01-2019, 06:22 AM
colony colony is offline
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Thank you all for the information. I will go for a stereo Sony model - maybe even a Canon - which is as "young" as possible. As these things go it will still be around, or going on, 20 years old.

Appreciate the help!
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03-01-2019, 08:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dpalomaki View Post
Considering the quality of camcorder internal mics, the mono-vs-stereo differences may not be remarkable. If a quality external mic was used the differences could be more significant.
This is the correct answer.

"Stereo" was mostly used as marketing to shame other brands/models of cameras, really just a sucker ploy by companies trying to get you to buy their model, or their premium model, instead of others.

There are quite a few sucker ploys in not just consumer video, but professional as well. (I'm looking at you Canopus! )

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03-01-2019, 09:26 AM
colony colony is offline
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Thanks lordsmurf and dpalomaki.
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