I've spent the last five years as a volunteer project digitizing the Space Camp
tape archive. Lots of footage from whenever Space Camp made the news, advertisements put together over the years, or stock footage shot for advertisement purposes, for example.
I've digitized all manner of tape for this project: VHS, S-VHS, Betacam/SP, Digital Betacam, Hi8, Digital8, MiniDV, DV Pro, and U-Matic. Ahh, U-Matic.
And now I'm nearly done! All that remains are the rest of the U-Matic tapes. But I just pulled the three(!) really dodgy U-Matic players I had out of storage and none of them are up to the task! They barely did the job a few years ago the last time I was working through UM tapes. My "best" player's front panel just up and died last night! :-(
After these are done, I'm going to start in on the museum
's archive, which is mostly U-Matic tape.
So I badly need a U-Matic SP player in really good shape! Does anyone have one they would want to part with at a fair price? eBay
is such a garbage fire of players at costs that are nuts. "Powers On, sold as-is, no returns: $1200." It's insane.
I'm happy to buy it. On the off chance it would work out better for your specific tax situation to donate it, I could get you a proper receipt/letter of donation.
I would certainly prefer a BVU-800, BVU-850, BVU-900, or BVU-950. But if it has a DUB-Out port and can load and play both sizes of UM tape without issue, I would love it!
I'm out of my depth a bit when I say this, but although I do have an external TBC to attach it to, I might also 'need' one with internal TBC hardware. I'm not 100% certain. When I attached my VO-9850 (just before it died) last night to my DPS-295, the frames were still very jumpy, to my surprise.
Alternatively, does anyone know any place within a reasonable vicinity of Huntsville, AL that can service and repair U-Matic?