The SV-3900 is a good machine, although it lacks the shuttle wheel
that the 3700 and later 3800 have (because it is made to be used
with an external control unit).
Yours has problems with the transport that will require service to
prevent the problem you are describing (tape not retracting fully
into the DAT on eject). This will cost (at our shop) about what you
already have paid for the unit in the first place. If the store you
bought it from claimed it was in working order and provided a
warrantee, you should return it to them and ask for your money back.
You don't need to take apart the DAT cartridge to get the tape back
inside. On the underside, there are two tabs that need to be pushed
in together to release the lock. While holding them down, slide the
bottom cover until the window in front opens and the reels are
visible. This will also release the brake, so that you can wind the
tape back inside.
Note that if the tape that is hanging out is creased or bent, you
run the risk of distroying the heads on the DAT machine. Since the
heads are spinning at high speed, the damaged tape can catch on them
and break them off. I have never had that happen, but it is
possible. Therefore, any DAT that has damaged tape should be copied
to another DAT or onto a CD.
Your portable DAT is probably putting the date and time in the user
bits area. I don't remember how to display this on the 3900, but it
may be possible to see this information by changing the display to
view the user bits portion of the A-time.
--- In Mark Oberle <>
> I wanted a backup DAT player for times when my field unit might
be out of
> service. A second machine also makes computer importing a little
> since I just turn the DAT studio recorder on instead of fiddling
> hooking my field unit to the computer. Finally, I wanted to be
sure that I
> could play my DAT tapes when the technology is phased out.
> I checked around at my local audio equipment store and found a
> studio DAT player for about $250 that has filled the bill:
> sv-3900. THis has worked well and has faster search and rewind
> than my field unit and a more readable display.
> Two problems:
> ---The display only shows the absolute tape location of a cut, not
> and time of the recording.
> ---Several times, I have not waited a fraction of a second after
> door opens and have pulled the tape out of the cassette as I
> cassette from the tray too quickly. I then have to unscrew and
> cassette to reinsert the DAT tape into the cassette.
> Mark Oberle
> 2006 23 Ave. East
> Seattle, WA 98112-2936
> Tel: 206-324-3844