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Old 20th Sep 2021, 10:40 am   #5
andrewferguson's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland, UK.
Posts: 225
Default Re: Sanyo Betacord Video Cassette Recorder (VTC 9540)

Your machine is a Betamax, and can play / record Betamax tapes. If interested parties are asking about Betacam, I would tell them that it would not work. (I've outlined the single exception below, but if a buyer is trying to use Betacam tapes in a Betamax, and doesn't already know about this exception, I would be hesitant to sell to them to avoid disappointment).

More details, if you are interested:

Betacam is a broadcast-quality format used by TV stations, while Betamax (your machine) is a poorer-quality format sold to consumers, like VHS.

Betacam tapes came in two sizes, since TV stations needed portable cameras for news gathering (small tapes), and longer tape lengths for broadcasting full programmes (larger tapes). The small tapes look very similar to the consumer Betamax format, but are *not* interchangeable - you cannot play a Betacam tape in a Betamax machine, and vice-versa.

The single exception to this, as mentioned by cheerfulcharlie, is that the early Betacam tapes (yes, there were several different variants of Betacam: Betacam, then Betacam SP, then Digital Betacam) can be used in a Betamax to play / record Betamax video. The later Betacam variants used a different tape type that will cause serious damage to the Betamax if used.
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