Betamax is officially dead

Electric Grave

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Back in Colombia Betamax was the common tape and VHS wasn't...I still have my Sepultura Arise tour on Betamax...and Live After Death of course. I'm surprised to know they still make blanks, I wonder if they still make audio tapes as well, haven't recorded anything in years and I still have some blank tapes.
 

caldwert

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My buddy got someone he knew at MTV to make a copy of some footage they had years and years ago. He claimed they used to use Betamax b/c it was better video quality. No clue if that's true or not.
 

LoneSage

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my only experience with betamax is the Betamax Barn in the simpsons episode where homer rents the violent football video
 

Yodd

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My buddy got someone he knew at MTV to make a copy of some footage they had years and years ago. He claimed they used to use Betamax b/c it was better video quality. No clue if that's true or not.

Betamax was pretty much the standard in studio usage up until digital media took over because of it's superior video quality. I remember back in high school in the early 90's my brother doing video editing with Amiga 4000's with Toaster setups and using all Betamax video recorders.
 

celeritas

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Betamax was pretty much the standard in studio usage up until digital media took over because of it's superior video quality. I remember back in high school in the early 90's my brother doing video editing with Amiga 4000's with Toaster setups and using all Betamax video recorders.

its true. one of the other interesting interpretations of how betamax lost to VHS was that sony didn't allow porn on that medium. i'm still not sure how true this was and how much of a difference this made to the dominance of VHS, but its an interesting story.
 

Jibbajaba

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Jibba Trivia: The first porno movie I ever watched was on Betamax. It was called "The Adventures of Johnny Wadd" and starred John Holmes. This was around 1986 and I was 9.
 

Xavier

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One time in the early 90's I got a rap video demo from Tommy Boy records.
I'm pretty sure it was some kind of betamax or betacam type tape.
Guess there's a producer with my name and they mailed it to me by accident.
I had it in the trunk of my car and was going to mail it back but a auto detailer took it.
They called me up the next day and admitted they stole it.
I was like I don't care, but it's messed up your a thief.
8mm video (another failed Sony format) was also popular for editing.

If the above statement is true that's sad because most porn was recorded in betacam.
 
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famicommander

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Never even seen a Betamax player or tape in real life.
 

wyo

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Wow, the end is nigh, finally.

Betamax was better than VHS, just like HD-DVD was better than Blu-Ray.

RIP.
 

celeritas

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If the above statement is true that's sad because most porn was recorded in betacam.

No idea if it is true but its a story that I've seen floating around the internet, briefly flaring up as a topic of discussion during HD-DVD vs. Blu-Ray, and then going quiet again. I think also that a lot of TV industry people and news stations required that their material be on betamax format too.

Never even seen a Betamax player or tape in real life.

Well, you can see one in Anime form in an episode of Cowboy Bebop.
 

smokehouse

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Its interesting they were still making tapes for those machines. I know the CCTV world drove VHS tape makers for decades...but I had not idea they were still making Beta.

I had a long history with Beta. My buddy's mom would dub thousands of films on her Son Beta machine. Every time we'd rent a movie on VHS, she'd make sure we copied it over to Beta. She even had a book with a guide to what movie was on which tape...she had that many.

I had a beta player that my grandparents game to me. They had bought one in the mid 80's being sold on beta's superior PQ...once VHS won out, they bought a VCR and called it a day. They gave me their player around 1992 or so. I used it for years to record TV shows and dub movies I rented.
 

ratson

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I always watched movies on betamax at a friends place in the early 80's. Saw a lot of the Bud Spencer/Terence Hill movies. Also the x-rated version of a snowwhite cartoon and Fritz the Cat. Still love Fritz the Cat. Great flick.
 

xelement5x

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its true. one of the other interesting interpretations of how betamax lost to VHS was that sony didn't allow porn on that medium. i'm still not sure how true this was and how much of a difference this made to the dominance of VHS, but its an interesting story.

Weird, that's kind of similar but not the same to what I had learned.

I was told that beta, despite being a technically superior format, didn't have a way to prevent copying of cassettes like what was introduced into VHS (macrovision I think it was called). Because of this, porn companies refused to released their movies in the format because people could just easily copy them from rental stores and that would destroy their profits pretty badly.

No beta format porn reduced the incentive for people to buy that type of player when you could buy a VCR and watch regular movies AND rent porn all with the same machine.
 

smokehouse

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I may be wrong…but I thought it came down to one simple thing. Sony controlled Beta and wanted a fee per device from other makers, JVC had VHS and was willing to let a company pay a one time fee to make devices.

JVC/VHS won.

EDIT

It seems it was a little from column A, a little from column B:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Videotape_format_war#End_of_Beta

In the end, Sony were stubborn dicks and it cost them big time.
 
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Xian Xi

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I think the last Betamax movie I bought was either Cobra(turned out it wasn't the stallone one) or Fists of Fury.
 

cat

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Over here in the uk back in the very late 70's to early 80's, VHS and betamax were pretty much neck and neck, video rental stores would have a wall each dedicated to either format.
People said back then that beta was the better quality format, but slowly and surely the wall of betamax films got barer and barer and was completely bare by the mid 80's.
Shame, i personally liked the betamax format, the tape's were smaller than VHS not so big and bulky.
I can also remember a third type of format done by (I think) phillips, where you could flip the cassette round and double the length of play time, a mate's family had one and we'd take the piss out of him because it was seen as the poor man's version with a limited and shit choice of movies to watch, looking back it was probably the most innovative.
 
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wyo

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Over here in the uk back in the very late 70's to early 80's, VHS and betamax were pretty much neck and neck, video rental stores would have a wall each dedicated to either format.
People said back then that beta was the better quality format, but slowly and surely the wall of betamax films got barer and barer and was completely bare by the mid 80's.
Shame, i personally liked the betamax format, the tape's were smaller than VHS not so big and bulky.
I can also remember a third type of format done by (I think) phillips, where you could flip the cassette round and double the length of play time, a mate's family had one and we'd take the piss out of him because it was seen as the poor man's version with a limited and shit choice of movies to watch, looking back it was probably the most innovative.

That would be V2000 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Video_2000
 

Maury V.

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It is true. TV stations still use them and the quality is top notched.
 

DragonmasterDan

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Betamax was pretty much the standard in studio usage up until digital media took over because of it's superior video quality. I remember back in high school in the early 90's my brother doing video editing with Amiga 4000's with Toaster setups and using all Betamax video recorders.


Ehh, I used to do cable access shows in a admittedly not super professional studio. We mostly used S-VHS and 3 and a quarter/U-Matic tapes for recording stuff. This was in the mid 90s, Betamax and regular VHS were long since no longer used there.
 
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