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Erik Whitlock

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  1. I apologize for the significant delay in response. Things happened and I got derailed from this endeavor. Prior to your responses, Mr. Hart, I had taken the tapes to a professional service to see what they could do, and ultimately I was told that the footage was recorded with the defects (in other words, they were recorded with the errors I was seeing due to some unknown debris present in the camera as per their explanation). This is, of course contrary to my family member telling me that the tapes used to playback fine. I am going on a leap of faith based on his memory and how long ago the videos were filmed, of course, but I don't doubt him. Mr. Rhodes, sorry I didn't see the last part of your question when I responded initially. As best I can tell, the same parts of the tape are the ones that fail (have the horizontal lines going across the screen in the same place). HOWEVER, I could have sworn that on one playback with the worst problem tape, one of the sections that had been previously just an intermittent blue screen, actually had video during some of those previously blue screen parts, albeit with the horizontal lines. I haven't been able to replicate that yet though. Mr. Purcell, there are no bent edges that I could find on any of the tapes. The film appears flat. While I didn't check the entire length of film, I checked enough portions on the tape that had the most problems throughout the entire tape, that I feel I would have come across a bend if it was there. I will look at the other tapes once I get them and see if they are in tact as well. Mr. Hart, I am going to get the tapes back and try the thermal cycles method and the "tape door upwards" playback. I have digitized them in their current state so if something dire happens, the memories are not lost entirely, so it is worth the risk. I did have a few questions though. 1) Once I have done several thermal cycles and the tape is still at its end, is there any specific method on rewinding the tape back to the beginning (slow rewind vs fast rewind?) prior to playing them to see if the method worked? 2) Would room temperature (around 76F or 24C) be considered a warm enough environment after taking the tape out of the freezer? Thank you all again. I will report back what happens once I get the tapes and give this a go.
  2. I have not opened the door to check and see if there is physical damage to the film. I will find a video on that and do it tonight. All but one of the tapes have the issue in part. The video I posted is the only tape that has the issue throughout the whole tape. The ones where the issue is only in part have segments of a recording (for instance one entire sequence or scene) that is fine and then the entire sequence of another scene is messed up throughout the whole scene but still on the same tape.
  3. Thank you for the reply. I have the original camera (Sony NTSC) still which was used to record the tapes and is also what I am using to play them back. I was told that the tapes did not have this issue when they were watched many years ago.
  4. I got a 4th camera to try and the same problem exists. In addition, my family found 4 more Hi8 Tapes (TDK MP 120s) that have the same issue so it is now up to 6 tapes and two different brands in total that have this same problem. I haven't found an Evo 9500 yet that I can afford, but I wanted to post a clip of the problem I am describing so that maybe that will help you all diagnose what the actual problem is and any potential solutions. This clip that I have linked is one of the worst as it cuts off and on to the blue screen, but it is representative of the other clips that play without any blue screen yet still have the horizontal lines and the sound that is off. If you need more clips or more information please let me know. Thanks again for all of the help. https://youtu.be/Z6JYEyEgzPE
  5. Thank you all for all of the information. The camcorder that was originally used to record the tapes was a Sony Video Hi8 CCD-TRV68. The second Hi8 Camera that I tried with the same effect was the Sony Video Hi8 CCD-TRV65. The Hi8 tapes are Panasonic SP120s. I am not sure if this helps determine whether it is the long play/single play issue or not. So essentially I need to buy a device that will eventually (hopefully) play the tapes properly? I will start with the EVO-9500 or something similar and if that doesn't work, keep getting something until I either run out of funds or find a working deck. Is this the best course of action if I want to get these tapes working properly? There are only two Hi8 tapes out of about 30 that have this static line issue (and again, the two tapes that have the issue also have video on the same tape that works just fine). Thank you again for the help with this.
  6. Thank you much for the information. I will seek a 3rd and 4th camcorder to try, but the 1st and 2nd one played the tapes exactly the same with the same segments exhibiting the errors. They are definitely Hi8 tapes as the VHS-C tapes were ones I had to put into an adapter and then put those into a VCR whereas the Hi8s I digitized straight from the camcorder to the digitizer. I used the ClearClick to digitize both the Hi8 and VHS-Cs. I am going to have my family member also tell me what brand the tapes are in case that would shed some light on the tape formulation you mentioned. These Hi8 tapes that are dysfunctional are definitely from the early 90s. I really appreciate the help with this. I will get the camera/tape info and post it here as well as doing some research to see what I can find out.
  7. I am awaiting the make/model of the camcorder from my family member (I gave it back to them once I had digitized all of their tapes). I do not know whether it was recorded on LP, SLP, or SP and I am not sure which modes the camcorder supports. I know for sure though that the camcorder I had was the one that was used to record the video in the first palce and that some of the clips on the same tape work fine and other clips exhibit the problem. I sadly do not have a digital still camera aside from my Pixel 3 phone which was creating images that were well over 1mb when I took pictures of the image on the computer screen. I shrunk the picture down, screen shot it, and used a website to compress it further, so it is attached. I hope it captures what I am talking about. Thank you for the quick replies.
  8. Apologies if this is not the appropriate sub-category. The others did not seem to fit exactly what I am seeking help with other than maybe "editing." I have taken on the task of archiving (digitizing) a significant amount of family video from 8mm stemming from the 50s to VHS-Cs filmed in the 80s and 90s. Everything has gone smooth for the most part after about a year of doing this, however, I came across some Hi8 camcorder tapes that have a weird effect. I apologize for any lack of technical terms as I have no background in any of this stuff. The problem that has appeared regarding a few Hi8 tapes is that three horizontal fuzzy lines (they look just like the typical tracking lines seen on VHS tapes occasionally) that stay stay in place (they don't move up or down for the most part other than maybe by a very small amount) appear on the screen. When I watch the video using the camcorder as well as the digitized version, the movements of people is possibly slightly faster (maybe 1.2x) than what I believe it should be as well and the audio is long and drawn out as if it is in slow motion to the point where I am unable to make out the majority of what is being said. I used the original camcorder that the tapes were recorded on as well as another camcorder to ensure that it is not the camcorder. Within the same Hi8 tape, there are sections that work fine (for instance a recording that took place on one date) but then the next recording on the same tape that took place on a different date is dysfunctional. I attempted to Google the problem, and thought I found a solution in that the tape could be fast forwarded while in the camcorder and it would appear normal on the screen and thus while I was digitizing it, however, this was not the case. Fast forwarding it on the camcorder simply made everything fast forward as it was supposed to. I hope this all is somewhat clear. I tried to upload a screenshot of the problem but it is more than .29mb and I can't seem to compress it smaller. If anyone has any suggestions on how I might be able to fix this issue with the tapes, it would be greatly appreciated.
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