U-matic S (1974 – 1990s)

U-matic S (for ‘Small’) was a smaller size of U-matic video tape cassette, introduced in 1974 for use in compact recording decks by television news crews.

Early top-load U-matic decks accept the smaller cassettes only with the aid of an adapter. Later, front-load decks can accept S-format tapes directly, as the tapes have a slot on the underside that rides along a tab. U-matic S tapes generally had recording times of no more than 20 minutes, though 30-minute S tapes were also available using thinner tape.

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