HDCAM Format

Sony acquisition and mastering format.

HDCAM is Sony’s high definition extension of Digital Betacam (SD) format. Due to variety of frame rates supported HDCAM camcorders may be used for cinema or video style shooting. HDCAM is a member of the CineAlta family.

Robust studio VTRs allow mastering in HDCAM format.

HDCAM works only in 1080 size in either interlaced or progressive mode. It provides the following frame rates: 23.98p, 24p, 25p, 30p as well as interlaced frame rates: 50i and 59.94i.

The format uses 3:1:1 color sampling and records 7:1 compressed 8 bit signal to tape at 135Mb/second. While these specifications are not the best on paper the image produced and recorded by HDCAM is quite good.