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Christoph G.
Tuesday 14th April 2020
10:07 am U.K.


how can I check which Umatic VTR model has a TBC?

Is the BVU 950P the only machine which has a TBC?



Steve Hartwell
Saturday 11th April 2020
8:03 pm U.K.

[email protected]

Roderick, everything I've read do NOT mention Sony KCS-20 tapes as having sticky shed syndrome problem. Do you know if those tapes can have the problem too ?

Steve Hartwell
Saturday 11th April 2020
4:32 am U.K.

[email protected]

How to Bake a Video Tape


Steve Hartwell
Saturday 11th April 2020
12:28 am U.K.

[email protected]

Thank you Roderick. So, how do I go about safely baking the KCS tapes ?

Friday 10th April 2020
11:05 pm U.K.

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Steve, KCS tapes are known for their 'sticky tape syndrome', start baking them probably for a few days as they appear to be really bad.

Steve Hartwell
Friday 10th April 2020
9:48 pm U.K.

[email protected]

My Sony U-matic V0 9800 SP is NTSC, sorry, but, still hoping for help.

I have a box of quite a few KCS-20 Umatic S video tapes. I have played a couple of others in my machine a year ago or so, but having troubles with this 'new' bunch. 1st one I tried my machine tried to load, pulled the tape out of the cassette about an inch, or 2.54 cm, then it stops, and after a few seconds the machine goes into Error 20 mode. Then it won't eject the tape. I finally opened the machine, lifted the tape off the pullout spindle, pulled the tape carriage up and got the tape out that way.

So, I put in my testing tape, a 60BRS full size tape, and it loaded, played, and ejected no problems.

I have not tried any of the other KCS-20 tapes yet.

I've been told the KCS-20 tapes have been sitting in their big cardboard box since about 1980. They look ok to me, just looking at them.

Any thoughts ?

Could I try baking the video tapes ?

George Smith
Thursday 31st October 2019
9:41 pm U.K.

[email protected]

Hi can someone please tell me if the VO-5630 is hi band or lo band. Thanks in advance

Chris Margrave-Gregory
Wednesday 16th October 2019
2:19 pm U.K.

[email protected]

For Sale For Sale For Sale For Sale For Sale.........

Hi I currently have 4 x VO 9800P U-matic machines for sale - brand New and in there original box.

Each machine is still within its original Sony Wrap. We have also just had them fully serviced by a Sony engineer to make sure the greece etc has not dried out as this can happen when stored for a long period of time.

The hours are 0 on the machines so they are literally brand new.

Please let me know if you are interested in these machines - ideal for archive

you can contact me at [email protected] or call 0044 (0)1932 240305.

Kindest Regards


Wednesday 4th September 2019
3:07 am U.K.

[email protected]

Hello Dogapult, In USA the system is NTSC and in others countries PAL this page is for PAL but welcome

I have a U-matic Sony VO-2630 (PAL low band) and I want tapes but exist 3 types in small and big:

low band, hi band and SP

Of what type are your tapes?

The vcrs play the more old formats but not the more new and I am not sure if a tape hi band and SP tapes damage the low band vcrs and if the SP tapes damage the hi band vcrs

Do you know or somebody knows?

Monday 2nd September 2019
6:40 am U.K.

[email protected]

I apologize, I accidentally put my first post of this on the Betamax chat page.

Hey Everyone. Fancy finding this sort of thing. I recently got ahold of a small pile of U-matic tapes and a player in a warehouse clearance. I'd love to find out what's on the tapes. However, The player I acquired is the BVU-150, and all the tapes are the "large size" format, (such as the 3M UCA-10) that the BVU-150 can't deal with. I haven't tested said device, as I have nothing to test it with, although I do have the carrying bag and strap for it. I will admit, I don't know if the BVU-150 works. But it does open and close. There is no battery in it.

I am in Detroit, USA.

If someone would be interested in perhaps trading that BVU-150 for a player that can handle those tapes (and is of similar performance, preferably) , I'd be interested.

Thank you!

PS: In the same set I ended up with a pile of Betacam SP tapes and bought a UVW-1600 off Ebay to play them, and it worked a treat. Really interesting stuff. I'll probably rip them and put them on Youtube at some point.

Thursday 8th August 2019
10:15 pm U.K.

[email protected]

Did anyone find a PDF manual for the VP1210 UK?

If so, could you let me know where to obtain it or could you email it to me? Cheers, H

Monday 1st July 2019
5:44 pm U.K.

[email protected]

(this is posted on 01 June 2019)

Hello U-Matic Friends,

I have 22 NOS of Sony U-Matic KCA-60's, of which 12 are in an unopened case from Sony (still has staples in it, never been opened) as well as another case with 10 unopened/unused KCA-60's in it. These are the ones which have the colorful case graphic sleeve (red, green, yellow, blue stripes) and black case. Each case has the original contents inside and never been opened.

If you are interested (USA Only) please email me at my address below and i can send you pictures and discuss cost.

Thank you very much,


[email protected]


Wednesday 19th June 2019
7:09 am U.K.

[email protected]

Hello everyone!

Wondering if anyone has a Sony Umatic DMR-4000 service manual for sale?

I'm also interested in Umatic 3/4" test/ alignment tape.

Looking forward!


Carl Baker
Saturday 27th April 2019
10:55 pm U.K.

[email protected]


I will buy your VO-9850, VO-9800, VO-9600, VP-9000, BVU-950, BVU-920, BVU-900, and BVU-850. Email Carl at [email protected]

Pep Vives
Saturday 29th December 2018
1:38 am U.K.

[email protected]

Dear friends, I'm from Spain, sorry for my English. I have a problem with my SONY VO-8800P portable u-matic so player, because I play a tape and apears in black&white and without sound.

I don't know if there are a incompatibility problem between player/tape.

I hope your answer.

Best regards

Alex Z
Wednesday 5th December 2018
3:18 pm U.K.

[email protected]

Hi fellow U-matic users.

I am after around a dozen 7 pin Y/C Dub Cables that were used by most of the Broadcast U-matic machines back in the day.

If anyone knows where I can obtain these then please let me know

Alex Z

Chis Margrave-Gregory
Monday 26th November 2018
12:32 pm U.K.

[email protected]

Hi - I currently have a couple of refurbished U-Matic VTR's available for sale.

All are in full operational condition and very good physical condition.

Please let me know if you are currently looking for any.

My email is [email protected]

Many thanks


Mike Shtamoff
Wednesday 15th August 2018
11:57 pm U.K.

[email protected]

Hello, I will introduce myself. I have been working in professional video for more 40 years, I live in Argentina. I arrive to this site looking for a Sony manual, and I found this interesting U-matic user chat. I will try to help some questions. Regarding U-matic cassette cleaning machines, they were not manufactured many years ago, so in order to reproduce a tape 30 years old, it is essential to clean it before play. At the moment I am digitizing about 800 tapes from an international production company, for which I had to manufacture synthetic suede pads to clean with isopropyl alcohol and also dry as the cleaning proceeds on both sides of the tape. Also, over time some tape marks often get stuck inside the case, for which it is necessary to copy the tape with the cassette disarmed and without the front loader of the VCR. In the event that the tape has lost the degree of softness necessary to avoid sticking to the drum heads, I give less tension to the tape brake guide using a micro servo with manual adjustment, so that the tape is released from the Brake. It is important to clean the audio heads and track control, to achieve clean audio. In my case, the audio enters an equalizer to eliminate the typical blowing of the tapes. When in some cases the heads are dirty and the gap is covered, clean them with a printer paper imbibed in isopropyl alcohol, supporting their very soft over the drum in clockwise.

Any doubt I will try to answer it if I know the answer.

Best Rgds.


paul smith
Saturday 4th August 2018
6:13 pm U.K.

[email protected]

Dubbing off to digital Umatics, U-matics. Sony TBC,ForA TBCs Y/C etc. if anyone is interested.. In the 80s I was working with a Snell and Wilcox engineer who modified the machine I had to Y/C output/input instead of the PAL inputs/outputs in my now very "old fashioned" Umatic tape decks, we shot commercials and lots of stuff in India on umatic high band tapes. This actually improved picture quality, increased available bandwidth and gave less noise. We modified the cameras to take Y/C down two spare wires, and detect a Y/C machine or PAL only accordingly. So many years later and with a cupboard full of valuable archive tapes - In my recording studio - I knocked up a Y/C to digital dub bay to finally digitise the tapes (and yes people can pay me for a digitisation service if they wish and I think its worthwhile) Results are quite good. I don't have this on you tube (yet, but I may put it on /ebaystars my old channel,) but it's on my facebook site and here it is public...

https://www.facebook.com/paul.wynter1/videos/vb.100000377078935/684772721545291/?type=3 (hit like so I know I am getting views or I'll remove it)

Y/C does have different frequencies between low band high band and Sp etc and you have to work out how to get it off the tape deck and match it into your TBC, in the first place which usually means reading the manual. I would say, that the greatest problem you ALL face is pinch roller hardening so don't run a precious master until you have checked this out because the pinch roller is at the tape exit point, what I had was a effing crinkled tape unrecoverable which I did not know had happened until I played it back again!!! And 2) the fact you cannot buy drum heads unless you are really lucky on ebay. Also engineers who understand servos and tapes heads on drum scanners, and can read a circuit diagram, are probably all dead by now or retired, get those Umatics dubbed BEFORE IT'S TOO LATE. I worked in audio for many years and saw tapes destroyed by moisture, shedding themselves, reel to reel tapes are a whole different ball game. Don't email me for any technical details I cannot reply, sorry, I do reply to anyone wanting a box of tapes dubbed in our studio as my daughter runs that operation. Thanks

John Hunter
Thursday 2nd August 2018
10:01 pm U.K.

[email protected]

Hi all,

I am trying to track down a Service Manual for the following Time base Corrector , a FOR.A FA310P, to purchase, or have the relevant pages ie Circuit Diagram and Block Diagram etc , copied.

Also does anyone have any details regarding the High Band Mod Kits for the Sony VO-58XX Series Machines?


John [email protected]

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