Editing on a UVW-1800 Betacam Deck

Posted on by Larry

[ This article was first published in the January, 2008, issue of
Larry’s Final Cut Pro Newsletter. Click here to subscribe. ]

Bob Flood writes:

I have to call you on a recent statement you made in your latest newsletter:

“What you need to do is find a deck that supports inserting. For instance, in DV, the Sony DSR-1500 does, but the DSR-25 does not. In Betacam, the UVW series does not, but the PVW series does.”

The UVW 1800 Betacam SP VTR DOES support insert editing, just not from a front panel control like the BVW and PVW series.


We own a UVW 1800, and that’s usually how I edit to tape.


Originally the UVW was developed for computer animators and such, and to keep the cost down Sony did not install an internal editor. Any computer or external edit controller that uses the full Sony 9 pin RS422 protocol, such as FCP, can initiate insert edits of any flavor: A1, A2, or Video.


Of course the usual rules apply: the tape has to be “blacked” [or pre-recorded] with timecode and video of some kind i.e. black or system bars, and if you are like me, who has an AFM Audio Modification on my UVW, you wont be able to insert AFM Audio separately of Video, as the two are multiplexed together. the deck also supports full assemble editing as well.


BTW, I think there is even a hack to enable Time Code track editing, if you ever need to re stripe time code onto a tape. It has been a while since I used it, and it may not be “controller agnostic”, but if you Google it i think you can still find it.

Larry replies: Bob, thanks for this update. I owned a UVW-1800 for years and never could figure out how to get it to insert edit. I’m glad to know this trick exists.

Bob replied:

I hope it helps someone. judging by all the UVW and PVW machines on ebay, it seems mastering on SP is becoming an anachronism


I wish Sony and Panasonic would get their heads [ um, together ] and make some machines like the UVW for HDCAM and DVCPROHD.


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