8mm recording tapes used to refer to video cassette format for the television systems of NTSC and PAL/SECAM. Starting from 1985, 8mm tape recording had seen quite an evolution with its recording format.
And in this post today, we will discuss what types of camcorder uses 8mm tapes, and what was the performance of older 8mm technology. Keep reading-
What camcorder uses 8mm tapes
In 1984, Eastman Kodak was the primer who announced the new technology of 8mm tape recording. In the next year, Sony was the first brand to introduce Handycam with video8 camera technology, which was the first original format of 8mm recording.
After the massive success of the video8 format, the next version of 8mm tape recording was Hi8. Hi8 was a combination of analog video and analog audio recording, but it used to have a provision for digital audio recording.
Eventually, 8mm tapes had been evolved into digital recording format, and they are known as digital8 now.
In 2019, you will find these popular cameras to use 8mm tape Technology-
- Sony Handycam CCD-TR416 Video 8 XR Camcorder
- Sony Handycam CCD-TRV58E Hi8 8mm Tape Camcorder
- Sony CCD-TR516 Handycam Video Hi8 8mm Video Camera
- Sharp Viewcam VL-E660U 8mm Camcorder
- HITACHI HI-FI STEREO 8MM VIDEO CAMERA
- Bell & Howell Two Twenty 8mm 1950s Movie Camera
- BELL AND HOWELL AUTOLOAD 8MM MOVIE CAMERA
- Sanyo Vision 8 Camcorder
Generations of 8mm Tape Technology
Video8 was the first member of 8mm tape technology after of 12mm Betamax format introduced by Sony. Eventually, smarter and similar technologies including U-shaped tape loading started to appear in the market. Those cameras were called VHS-C compact camcorders.
With the evolution of technology, the next member of the 8mm generation was HI8. This is the version with improved video resolution and additional digital stereo sound. By the way, Hi8 was still an analog system.
The most recent 8mm recording format is called digital8. It is still the same cassette shell, But the format of recording is entirely digital DV format.
However, if you want to travel back in the early 80’s and 90’s, you can record Vidoe8 and Hi8 formats with a Digital8 recorder. But the high definition and specification won’t be a match at all.
The Performance of 8mm(Vidoe8) Tape Technology
As we are talking about cameras that contained 8mm technology, we should have a good idea on how the performance was. When it comes to the discussion of performance, it can be split into two points as-
- The performance of video quality.
- The performance of audio quality.
We will be taking you through both of them, and let you know how exactly these cameras were used to perform.
The recording performance that was in 8mm(Digital8) tape technology was quite impressive for that time. In their standard play modes, the performance was rated at approximately 240 horizontal lines. Although, this was quite depended on the quality of the tape, the speed of recording and some other factors.
In terms of audio quality, Vidoe8 camera outperformed its rivals. Standard VHF and beta audio were used to record along with a linear track right on the edge of the tape.
The tape speed was quite slow, and all video8 models were likely to use audio frequency modulation. With audio frequency modulation Technology, they were able to record soundtracks along with the same path of the video signal.
This certainly led to higher sound quality comparing to the older models.