For some of us one of Sony’s glory periods was the introduction of Hi8mm, a break from SVHS, now we had a high band recording format that came with a far smaller tape.
I got a phone call today from a chap who simply wants to convert all his 8mm and Hi8mm tapes to DVD but no longer has a player or camcorder in which to do so. I told him to phone round a few of the video boys who might just have a Hi8mm tape deck collecting dust.
It brought out my own demons with Hi8mm, sadly I have some tapes up in my attic with some lovely original footage of my children now imprisoned to a format that went out of fashion when mini DV came along.
None of us thought for one minute that it might be better to keep one of these Hi8mm tape decks or camcorders in case the future wanted to view the past. This chap was in the same boat as myself looking through EBAY for a small ounce of gold dust in the shape of a Hi8mm camcorder…with outputs.
95% of camcorders in those days had YC and analogue video outputs so it was easy to dub footage from one tape format to another.
If anyone out there has a Sony Hi8mm PAL tape deck or a camcorder they fancy getting rid of give me an email and I will give you an offer for your machine. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
I had this very camcorder with twin VU meters, manual everything a good old headphone socket, Sony like most manufacturers have forgotten in recent times that we like to be in control of our camcorders, yet they will insist in not giving us mic inputs or headphone outputs till fairly recently.
The Sony VG10 was a classic example of Sony forgetting the “feature rich” past with no control over the sound nor the ability to switch the gain to 0dB or the ability to mount the camcorder on your shoulder…sometimes the future does not always bring the best from the past !