BASIC MATERIAL IDENTIFICATION OF LEGACY TAPES IN AN ARCHIVE
For preservation and inventory purposes it is essential to accurately and uniformly identify the materials in your collection. While different organizations use a wide variety of terms, the following is the essential information you need to describe your tapes.
BASIC INSPECTION TECHNIQUES TO SAMPLE THE CONDITION OF MAGNETIC TAPE
To prevent damage during use and premature loss during storage, it is necessary to inspect magnetic tapes on a periodic basis. Basic warning signs of tape instability can often be identified using the following guidelines.
DANGERS OF INADEQUATE RESTORATION
Magnetic tape ages over time and is very subject to a variety of factors in the environment. If these factors are not properly addressed before attempting to play a tape to digitize it, content recorded on the tape can be compromised and serious damage can occur to the tape.
THE BENEFITS OF TAPE CLEANING
Failure to clean tapes before digitization can result in inferior copies due to unnecessary defects and signal loss during the transfer. In the worst cases, failure to test and clean tapes can seriously damage the originals during the transfer attempts, making the transfers fail and potentially losing the content on the tapes in the areas of damage permanently.
COMMON SIGNS OF PROBLEM 3/4" AND BETA VIDEOCASSETTES
Organizations are frequently encountering difficulties trying to play old 3/4" and Beta-oxide videocassettes. The following are ways to identify those cassettes most likely to exhibit problems.