Skip to main content

Digital Betacam or Betacam SP. They are not the same.

A client wants to convert her betacam tape to DVD. We gladly accepted the job.

When the tape arrived we found it was not a betacam but a DIGITAL betacam tape. The price for conversion will be 3 times more!

All we can explain in layman terms is that Digital betacam is a very high end broadcast format and the players cost five figures and more.

Anyway here is how wikipedia explains:

What is Betacam SP

The original Betacam format launched in 1982. It is an analog component format. Provides a crisp, true broadcast quality product with 300 lines of horizontal resolution. In 1986 Betacam SP was developed, which increased horizontal resolution to 340 lines. While the quality improvement of the format itself was minor, the improvement to the VTRs was enormous, in quality, features, and particularly, the new larger cassette with 90 minutes of recording time. Beta SP (for "Superior Performance") became the industry standard for most TV stations and high-end production houses until the late 1990s.

What is Digital Betacam

Digital Betacam (commonly abbreviated to Digibeta or d-beta or dbc) was launched in 1993. It supersedes both Betacam and Betacam SP. Digital Betacam is considered to be the gold standard of formats for standard-definition digital video, is capable of outperforming cheaper digital formats such as DVCAM and DVCPRO, and associated equipment is comparatively expensive.

Adrian Lee


  1. Anonymous1:25 am

    Thanks for clearing this up for so many people. I run into this all the time. I think your post passed over a very important distinction between BetaSp and DigiBeta...

    Digibeta is actually DIGITAL and so it can be output via SDI as 1s' and 0's! That's why it's the "gold standard" because you can make 1000 generations of dubs from it and the 1000th tape will look exactly the same as the first one. It also comes standard with 4 channels of audio which is great for having split tracks of a film.

    Again, thanks for your helpful post!



Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

How to Connect an External Video Camera to MacBook Pro for Live Streaming

ATEM Television Studio HD Setup with OBS Live Streaming - Updated June 6, 2018  In this video, I walk through my multi-camera live streaming setup using the Blackmagic Design ATEM Television Studio HD via MacBook Pro and OBS.
2-Camera Live Video Switching with BlackMagic and OBS - Updated May 4, 2018 In this video, I walk through my 2-camera live streaming setup using Blackmagic Design Ultrastudio Mini Recorders on a MacBook Pro via OBS.
Feel free to leave comments and questions.
The original "idea" journal posted on Aril 28, 2015. I have a request to shoot a corporate internal talk and stream it to a live audience in seven different countries.

First 3 things that came to mind is...

1. Video conferencing system.
2. Google+ Hangouts On Air with YouTube Live.
3. Other Streaming services like Ustream.

Video conferencing system is out as that would require a whole set of dedicated equipment.

All I have at this point is.


MacBook Pro Built-in Internal Microphone Location

Where is the built-in internal microphone on the MacBook Pro Retina 15?
There's two of them and both are situated inside the left speaker vent.

The dual built-in microphones are designed tor educe background noise from behind the notebook. The also create an adaptive audio beam that intelligently adjusts to detect your voice — instead of the noise around you.
Adrian Lee

How to Clear Cache Memory in Premiere Pro CC

After editing several projects in Adobe Premiere Pro CC, the available memory space on your computer will seem to reduce very quickly.  One way to solve this is to remove temporary files created by Premiere Pro.
Go to Preferences.Select Media.Click on Clean under Media Cache Database.

Adrian Lee