【Hitachi】 H-8468-1 Open Reel Magnetic Tape Unit

Shipped in April 1974, the H-8468-1 was an open reel magnetic tape unit which enabled one-touch automatic threading using a power window, auto hub, and auto threading mechanism.
This unit improved further on the auto threading technology used in the previous H-8455 magnetic tape unit by employing an auto hub feature. When magnetic tape was mounted to a unit with this feature, the operator only needed to bring the tape to the hub position and press a button on the operation panel. The power window on the front side would then close automatically, and the tape reel would be fastened to the hub by the auto hub mechanism. Next, the auto threading feature would automatically pay out tape from the tape reel, wind it onto the take-up reel on the left side, and set the tape so it could be written to or read. When removing the tape, the system automatically wound the tape, loosened the hub and opened the power window, and the user could quickly remove the tape.
Notable features of this unit were as follows:

1) Data transfer speed
Tape feed speed was 200 inch/s and data transfer speed was 320KB/s. This was world class performance at the time.
2) Short rewind time
The system could rewind 2400 feet (732m) of tape in approx. 45 seconds (60 seconds was the previous record for Japanese made equipment). This corresponds to an average speed of 60km/h.
3) Detectors completely converted to LEDs
Magnetic tape units have a few points where light is used in detectors, but lamps were previously used as the lighting source. This unit replaced all lamps with light emitting diodes (LEDs), thereby greatly reducing problems due to lamp service life.
Main Specifications of H-8468 Magnetic Tape Unit
Model name H-8468-1
Magnetic tape used Width 1/2inch,Length 2400feet
Number of tracks 9
Recording density(BPI)
(Recording system)
Tape speed (inch/s) 200
Data transfer speed(KB/s) 320/160
Tape drive system Single capstan,vacuum column system
Rewind time 45s

H-8468-1 Open Reel Magnetic Tape Unit