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(Click the pictures for reviews & links) 


Yi 2 - Best Budget 4K 

Gitup Git2 (My Pick)

Xiaomi Yi


DR02 D - Best Budget Dual Cam

Yi Ultra 2.7K
Mobius (also works as a Dashcam)
Polaroid Cube+
Drift Ghost X

My favourite USB battery power Pack

This is the excellent USB power pack I use when I travel.

2 x 2.1amp outputs. 8400mAh capacity.

Two digit Led display shows battery level


What SD CARD should I buy?

If you want an SD Card for your camera - these are the ones I use and recommend. 

I'd strongly recommend not to buy any SD cards off ebay - I've heard about too many issues with counterfeit cards - often sold on by unwitting resellers. My inbox regularly gets messages from people who bought a £150 camera then cheaped out and bought a £3 memory card on ebay - Then when it doesn't worth they blame the camera! It doesn't make any sense. Good memory is cheaper than it's ever been - see the links above.

A lot of HD cameras will not work properly with cards larger than 32GB (cards over 32GB are usually SDXC rather than the SDHC standard used by 32GB cards. SDXC cards use the ex-FAT system rather than FAT32 - in short they are a different standard). - so don't just buy the biggest card you can afford - read the specs in the manual to see what it accepts.


RECOMMENDED CARDS (for action cams - see dashcams below)

CLASS 10 UHS-1 CARDS (For HD Cameras)


U3 CARD (For 4K cameras)




The SD card in a dashcam is re-written over, more frequently than in other types of cameras. Some manufacturers void their guarantee if an SD card was used in a dashcam. So, no surprise, there are special High Endurance SD cards made just for's some.


VERY IMPORTANT. These links take you to the product, however Amazon have three different ways of selling. There's Amazon Direct - This means that you are only dealing with Amazon themselves, then there's other sellers that use Amazon's facilities - these show as Fulfilled By Amazon and finally there's Market Place sellers that advertise on Amazon, but operate independently.  I strongly recommend that you only use the first...the Amazon Direct - Sold By Amazon option. Even if it appears that you are paying a couple of £/$ more it is more than likely you are comparing the price of a real item against the price of a fake.

To give you an idea of the extent of the fake goods problem. In a 2016 survey by Apple - 90% of the 'Apple' chargers sold through Amazon - using the other the two methods..which includes the "Fulfilled by Amazon" option -  were found to be counterfeit....90%! 

« Design Classics - Grundig Ocean Boy 210 Radio | Main | Adding a bit of ATMOSphere »

This is about DAT

Following a collaboration between Sony and Philips, the Compact Disc is launched in Japan in 1982. This new digital music playback format was a big hit, so work then starts on introducing a new digital recording format for the home. This time Sony & Philips go their separate ways.

Philips preferred the idea of a S-DAT based system which would use a Stationary play head as this could be compatible with existing compact cassettes. However significant development would be required to get this idea to work, due to data limitations of the existing tape and head techniology. It eventually emerged in 1992 as DCC, largely owing it’s existence to innovative audio compression techniques that were not possible on a consumer device in the 1980s.

Sony however took a simpler route, eschewing the idea of backward compatibility, and using existing video recorder technology by 1986 they were able to demonstrate prototypes of their new R-DAT based system which used a Rotating head to pack more data onto slow moving tape.  This system didn’t employ any compression…and therein lay the rub.

The Sony DAT system could make perfect copies from Compact Discs…and for the recording industry, that was just not cricket. Watch the video below to learn more about Digital Audio Tape and see some DAT machines in action. 


Long Play Mode is 32kHz (added as an annotation before the video went live)

This video may contain the occasional redundant turn of phrase...e.g. "DAT Tape" if this is of concern, please do not press play. 

Q) Are you going to do a video about Minidisc?
A) Yes
Q) When
A) I don't know

I bought my DAT Recorders from EBAY - here's a link 

This video does not go into detail about tape data backup solutions, these were known as DDS. This is a deliberate omission…it’s a video about audio. 

Here's a nice 1986 article about S-DAT and R-DAT.

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Reader Comments (12)

It's strange to think about digital copyright these days when almost anything can be copied this included photos.
I remember when I used to sell old topographical photographs of London which involved sending away the large format negatives to a company in the Wirral who had large format photographic equipment that could make silver emulsion paper photos. That is conventional Developing and printing but with much larger formats. I was asked if I could supply one of each prints because the person intended selling the photos in the same way I was with no regard to the 18 years I had been going to auctions to buy up the originals. These days all you need is phone to copy a photograph and the same goes for audio formats.
I had a SACD player and can now make digital copies onto a PCM recorder and play them back through my Hi Fi system without any problems of quality loss although I do have to make the first copy in real time.
Yes copyright laws are easily open to abuse and I remember when I was in the Hi Fi trade how we would run off tapes from LP records for demonstration purposes. Thank you for the in depth and informative video Mat

January 8, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Travis

Hello Mat,

Thank you for your series of videos about older music formats and equipment, I enjoy them a lot. What strikes me is that you speak a lot in the videos, but you really have something to say, you always do lots of research. Also you don't sound scripted, like so many voice-overs in videos, and there is a nice dosis of humour.

Let me try to give you something back for the joy your videos give to me. In this video about DAT-recorders you mention that it seems that only very few albums were commercially released on DAT. On Discogs I have found a list of just 19 pre-recorded albums, mostly pop music from around 1990, but also "Various - Action Movie Themes" and three albums by Sun Ra (avantgarde jazz). Usually the number of people who want an album is 3 to 4 times higher than the number of people who have it. And there is nothing on offer at the moment....
Hope this helps, but maybe you know that page already?

Best wishes,

January 8, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterGregor

Original Star Trek Master DATs?? I am speechless (and of course a bit jealous, even though I can't even play DATs).

I always loved the scene in Neon Genesis Evangelion (a Japanese anime) where there is an SDAT walkman, the S being styled like the S in SVHS.

January 9, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterMatthias

Gregor - I hadn't thought to look on discogs (for some reason that now escapes me). Unfortunately the chance of finding any of these recordings is slim to nil...but it's nice to look.

Matthias - and as you now know, S-DAT was a real thing (albeit with compression and renamed DCC). I suppose the anime is based on a 1980s manga that featured the SDAT when the technology was futuristic. Just a guess...and probably inaccurate, I'm not familiar with the anime.

January 9, 2017 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

I never thought of DCC as SDAT, but you are of course right!

In the mid-90s I thought "What's the point of DCC, digital, but combining the disadvantages or tape (can't jump to a song instantly) and MiniDisc (compression = worse audio)".
Only after watching your DCC video more than 20 years later did I realise that DCC was actually great.

Thanks for all the effort you put into your videos.

January 10, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterMatthias

Hi Mat,

I love your hi-fi reviews of older technology, but I can't seem to find anything you've done on quadraphonic audio! There's tons here to talk about, and I'm sure you could do a great job of helping folks sort out all the squirrelly details of QS and SQ and so on. Please tell us about quadraphonic and perhaps even other old multichannel technologies.


January 15, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterB

I loved this. On the topic of pre recorded dats - they're like hens teeth, but Factory Records put a few out. I think a couple of new order albums made it at least

If I recall Tony Wilson was one record industry voice that saw the future and was a total proponent of dat.

January 15, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAndy

On the topic of "minidisc video", I'd like to suggest to make 2 or 3 videos instead of just one. Minidisc story is pretty complicated and there was a lot of evolution during the brief story of the format, just think of "regular MD", "MDLP", "NetMD" and "Hi-MD", with improvements reflecting on players (the first were pretty bulky and unreliable, then they got smaller, more refined and premium-looking, and the last ones were quite plasticky and cheap) and storage capacity. I guess it could be easier for you to split the work...

January 18, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterEfisio Piantacarote

I've been struggling with how to cover it all in one video. I've thought about splitting it up..but still can't decide how best to approach it. It won't be for a few months yet...these format videos take a long time to assemble and I always need a long break in between so that I can forget how complicated and time consuming they are.

January 18, 2017 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

This is one of my favorite features that you have made so far! Not only have you covered another of my favorite formats but you have given me a fantastic insight into the recording industries reaction to it's launch and how much their reaction stunted the establishment of the format. Thanks yet again for a great video!

March 29, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterSebastian Sekinger

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