Betacam tape without a case

About Betacam

Betacam tapes and camcorders were launched in the early eighties and challenged VHS-C tapes in the compact videocassette market. Although Betacam was widely used in television for a short period, they were swiftly replaced by more efficient formats and never influenced the consumer home video market to any great effect. We can certainly vouch for the fact that, despite their relative obsolescence, many people still have piles of Betacam tapes occupying dark corners of the attic and collecting dust in cupboards and cabinets.

How can I preserve my Betacam memories?

Your tapes could be holding priceless memories that you quite rightly want to protect, so there is no better time than now to convert your Betacam tapes to digital and DVD. Like VHS-C and Mini DV tapes, Betacam uses magnetic tape to store footage – this footage on average degrades by 20% over as little as every 10 years. Subsequently, your old Betacam tapes containing your cherished memories could eventually lose much of their quality or even degrade entirely. The sooner you transfer your Betacam tapes to DVD and digital the better.

A selection of Betacam tapesConverting your Betacam to digital and DVD will convert any old memories that are buried in the footage of your decaying tapes. If you were to transfer Betacam tapes to digital, not only would it provide plenty of additional space in your cupboards and on your shelves, you can also safely protect your memories for many more years to come. Transferring Betacam tapes to DVD and digital allows you to re-watch and relive your Betacam footage on your computer, laptop or mobile, so you can take your cherished memories with you wherever you go!

The best way to convert Betacam tapes to Digital and DVD

Individually digitising your Betacam tapes to digital, DVD and USB yourself is laborious – trust us, but converting your Betacam tapes or old photos with EachMoment will remove all the aggro out of this process. Preventing time taking its toll and degrading your footage by transferring Betacam to digital and DVD is too straightforward to let pass. If you have any Betacam tapes – or any other old formats – that you’d like preserved on DVD and digital which are accessible on your smartphone, TV and computer, we will collect your old photos and tapes from your doorstep, convert them to digital and return them to you in one of our Memory Boxes.

Cleaning the tapes

Before converting the tape to digital, it is essential to deep clean Betacam tapes using a two pass wet/dry method. Cleaning cassettes, a common consumer-grade method of tape restoration, are available for Betacam tapes, but are renownedly unreliable and can often damage tapes even further. At EachMoment, every single tape is assessed and cleaned manually on a case by case basis using bespoke tape cleaning methods and machinery.

Equipment

Our customers often recall becoming frustrated when trying to convert Betacam to digital themselves using domestic standard digital capture, often waiting tediously long for an ultimately poor quality conversion. You may have experienced a similar issue if you have ever tried to copy a tape from one consumer-grade VCR to another, which may result in a marked drop in picture quality. This is known as ‘flagging’, with the top 10% – 20% of the image being most affected. This is mainly due to the incompatibility of outdated Betacam hardware with the latest software of modern laptops.

EachMoment corrects synchronisation issues by only using broadcast standard Betacam VCR’s with adjustable alignment. We only use players with exceedingly high specifications that can play any codec, adjust alignment if necessary and offer unparalleled mitigation of distortion and corruption. This amends the tape’s signal and image quality by inputting the video into a buffer, correcting the image before it is subsequently output again and formatted digitally. 

Editing and Post-Processing

Once digitised, the digital file can now be edited to bring the digitised Betacam tape to modern standards. Colour correction is applied where necessary and contrast and saturation are adjusted accordingly.
Audio levels are very low with Betacam compared to modern recording equipment. To improve audio levels, we use enhancement and loudness improvement to get sound clearer and up to modern standards.

Why wait? Convert your tapes to digital now!

Once these steps are complete, your Betacam tape is fully converted to digital and DVD, giving your footage a new lease of life. It’s now time to relive your newly restored footage. Preserving your precious memories and gifting an EachMoment Memory Box to a friend or family member is an especially touching way to remind those closest to you how much you care about them. Whether it be a birthday, Valentine’s Day or Mother’s or Father’s Day, the memories enclosed in an EachMoment Memory Box always make the most thoughtful gift.

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