【Hitachi】 H-8455 Open Reel Magnetic Tape Unit

The H-8455 was an open reel magnetic tape unit, shipped in November 1971, which used the first Japanese made auto threading mechanism. With conventional magnetic tape units, the operator had to first mount the magnetic tape, and then connect the tape with a tape connector, or wind it by hand onto the take-up reel. With this unit, the operator just mounted the magnetic tape, placed the tape end at the specified position, and pressed a button. The tape was automatically wound onto the left side reel, and set to a state enabling writing and reading by the unit. This dramatically reduced the work load of the operator. Information processing speed was also 240,000 byte/s—the highest performance of any Japanese made equipment at the time.
Notable features of this unit were:

1) High-speed start/stop and high-speed rewind were achieved with a single capstan system employing an optic tachometer for detecting rotation speed with light in the capstan control system.
2) It employed a flat head, different from the conventional type, for the magnetic head.
3) Standalone maintainability was improved by building the power supply into the unit.
Main Specifications of H-8455 Magnetic Tape Unit
Model name H-8455
Magnetic tape used Width 1/2inch,Length 2400feet
Number of tracks 9
Recording density(BPI) 1600
Tape speed(inch/s) 150
Data transfer speed(KB/s) 240
Tape drive system Single capstan,vacuum column system
Rewind time 1min

H-8455 Open Reel Magnetic Tape Unit