Re: VIDEOTAPE CLEANING MACHINE

Philip Fryer (PDF@mailgate.loyola.edu)
Thu, 09 Apr 1998 14:56:45 -0400

This is interesting in context. In case you were not aware, RTI was a
FILM inspection company before they were a VIDEO
inspection company. They saw the writing on the wall and shifted
their product line in the 80s away from film to video "cleaning" and
inspection. They also kept their same high-end pricing.

Video and film are fundamentally different physical mediums. What was
necessary and appropriate for film is not necessarily
appropriate for video. But given the large investments that
libraries have made in video collections it is natural that they
should wish to protect their investments. This does not, however,
demonstrate the value of this equipment.

Magnetic tape is an inherently unstable medium. "Cleaning"
(removing loose oxide residue) and inspecting the videos
can help identify problem tapes, but the problems of an
aging tape collection will not go away. As readers will recall
from an earlier list topic regarding U-Matic tape, tapes that
were acquired a decade or mores ago are rapidly becoming
unusable. Older VHS tape will suffer the same fate.

May DVD come quickly.

Philip Fryer