Video Tape Usage in Time Lapse Recorders

It is important to understand how time-lapse recorders operate. In an industrial-grade time-lapse tape recorder the video heads continuously spin at a rate of approximately 1800 rpm. The tape moves slowly through the recorder, causing stress on the emulsion surface. the slower the recording speed the more wear and tear to the tape. Therefore, video tapes have a life expectancy that depends on the number of passes and the speed used for record or playback. Another important factor is the grade of the tape. The emulsion in consumer video tape is thinner and softer than the industrial grade and will not last as long. More important, the soft emulsion will transfer to the heads and cause poor quality picture. This will result in frequent service or replacement of the video heads. We recommend using only pro-industrial tapes in time lapse recorders.

                Video Tape Usage

Recording Speed

Recommended Passes

2 Hours


12-72 Hours
120 Hours
168-240 Hours
360 - 960 Hours
Pause/One Shot


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