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When is it time to replace workhouse DVcam camcoders


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#1 Ted Hoppe

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Posted 15 October 2007 - 01:03 PM

I am posing the question for those out there in similar situations... How many hours do you run a camera before retirement or resell?

In my case, I have a Sony DSR-300. I have nearly 5000 hours on the heads and nearly 6000 in operation... So does running this camera until it cost too much to repair / adjust / or even fail OR does one buy a new new workhorse camera at a mythical 4000 hour mark and eat the cost to benifit/revenue differential.

I am of two schools of thought/business on this subject. As I see it, if a camera is really a prosumer product then you get what you pay for. If you bet on a more professional package you need to recieve the perceived value and related durability. I hate being cheap but on the otherhand I make my return on investment much longer.
I did this when I purchased my BetaSP package which lasted me for over 8 years. I have been living with this DSR 300 and DVCpro pack for nearly six while only renting with smaller footprints when needed.

Look forward to your insight and input.

Thanks!
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#2 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 15 October 2007 - 01:34 PM

Is a dollar an hour in maintenance costs acceptable to you? If so, then it would seem you are way ahead of the game.
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#3 Walter Graff

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Posted 19 October 2007 - 06:37 AM

You could certainly have the heads replaced at a cost that is easier to swallow than a new purchase. Roger Macie is the best place ot send your camera to for maintenance /repair. macievideo.com.

While heads on cameras do have life expectancies, that dos not mean one always reaches those plateaus the same way. MY betacam camera went 12 years without needing a head replacement, and that was after thousands of tapes and well past the supposed life expectancy. And for some they find the life expectancy is less. I attribute the answer to that to the tape you use. I used a tape formulation and only one tape formulation, one that had a very good lubricant. I could give you the story about how perhaps it's time to upgrade to HD but then again do you need it. I'd guess that 96% of folks who use HD these days don't need it or have any use for HD as a final product. What I am saying is if what you are using is working for you, why not stay with it? It's always tough to discard a camera that you've built an emotional connection to. Call Roger's place and find out the cost of head replacement and see if that sounds like your best course.
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