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History of the MicroMV

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By Katy Sommerfeld

Everyone knows the VHS tape. It was a revolutionary invention in the late 1970s that completely changed the way people watch movies and television. It spiked interest in film entertainment and got us hooked on celebrities like never before. It allowed us to be our own movie stars with the invention of the camcorder, and we could record any of our favorite television programs while we were out of the house for later viewing. The VHS was our gateway to having access to any entertainment we want in our own homes.


You’ve definitely heard of VHS - but what about the MicroMV?

What is the MicroMV?


The MicroMV is another videotape format, similar to VHS, produced by Sony. It came onto the market in 2001 and is actually the tiniest videotape ever invented. It is about the same size as two U.S. quarters laid side-by-side! MicroMV cassettes can hold an hour of footage despite their minuscule size, which made them a great choice for recording home videos or short television programs. If you wanted to record onto a MicroMV cassette, you would need a MicroMV camcorder, which was the also the smallest camcorder produced at the time. The lightweight design of both MicroMV tapes and the camcorder was attractive to many, as the trend in tape technology was to create products that were smaller than the most recent product released.


Sadly, the MicroMV tape format was not very successful. This is likely due to the fact that footage recorded on the tapes could not be edited in more common video editing software such as Adobe Premiere or Apple Final Cut Pro. Sony released an exclusive editing software for the MicroMV format to Windows only, which kept many consumers from purchasing the tape format and camcorders. Other small tape formats like DV and MiniDV could be easily edited on many types of editing software, making them much more popular than MicroMV. In fact, Sony stopped created new MicroMV recorders in 2006, and only ten years later the tape format was discontinued entirely.


What if I Have MicroMV Tapes Today?


Many folks still have all kinds of tapes left over from decades ago. It is common for people to hold onto their favorite home movies, whether they have access to a tape player or not. These tapes may seem indestructible, but they are actually susceptible to various forms of damage over time. If you still have MicroMV tapes or tapes of any other format, the best thing you can do to preserve them is to get them digitized. Digitization prevents damage to your sweet home movies by converting them to an easily accessible digital format that you can save on your computer or in the cloud. At Legacybox, our professionals handle all your digital media with safety and care, creating a digital copy that you will be able to enjoy forever without fear of damage, loss, or destruction. It’s so important to digitize all your analog media. Our photos and videos are often the only records we have of the past - the only way to preserve these records is to get them digitized.

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