Restoring old David “Kid” Jensen DJ interview

Restoring and digitally archiving a 1978 Sony Half-inch EIAJ High Density videotape interview with the former BBC Radio One DJ.

Image of Sony AV3670 EIAJ Videotape recorder with image of David Kid Jensen on monitor

Restoring a 1978 Kid Jensen interview

The Sony half-inch EIAJ black & white format videotape reel contains an interview I did with BBC Radio One DJ David “Kid” Jensen at what was the British Rail Social Club, Bletchley, on 25th April 1978.

It was conducted just after what was a brief personal appearance by the then Radio 1 DJ. It was shot using a Sony 2nd-generation “Portapak” camera and portable recorder kit and later edited for transmission on the Milton Keynes local community cable TV channel called Channel 40. The 9-minute interview, conducted by yours truly when a producer at the station, contains Jensen’s insights into the changing role of the “DJ” at the time and also looks at how UK radio might develop in the coming decade.

The master file of the interview will join many others that have been digitised from analogue videotapes whose contents help to reflect the development of the new city and will be filed with the The Living Archive at Milton Keynes Museum, for whom SimplyDV has been archiving a large collection of videotape recordings.

The one big problem with virtually all videotapes of this format is that they suffer from the condition known as Sticky Shed Syndrome in which the tape becomes hydrolised due to age. This has the effect of sticking to the guides and replay heads of the videotape recorder as it attempts to wind the tape between the two spools. This can only be cured by heating the tape spool in a special oven at a constant temperature of 60 degrees celsius for many hours. This particular reel took over three days to cure – and then only temporarily.

Thankfully, it is now playable and has been converted to an Apple ProRes422 master video file in preparation for archiving.

Do you have 1/2″ EIAJ Helical Reel-to-Reel videotapes dating from the late 1960s and 1970s whose contents require saving? If so, don’t delay! Contact us for more information!

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