The factory where Sony’s HDCam SR tape is manufactured is expected to resume operations in May, with magnetic tape manufacturing expected to restart at the end of July.

The east Japan factory, which suffered significant earthquakedamage in March, is the last of Sony’s earthquake-damaged factories to be brought back online.

Geoff Dance, managing director of PMD Magnetics, one of three authorised UK distributors of Sony professional media, said it would be “a close call” as to whether or not supply would satisfy demand.

“We are managing to cope with demand at present, but July is still a long way off,” he said.

“There have been some desperate emails from customers, but so far, none has suffered.”

Meanwhile, broadcast equipment rental company HotCam said it has added extra Panasonic HDX900 camera packages to its inventory after experiencing a surge in demand for alternative cameras and formats in the wake SR tape shortage.

“Producers are worried about missing deadlines due to a shortage of tape stock and are now looking at alternatives,” HotCam managing director Trevor Hotz said.

“To a certain extent it’s directing the market and the upshot is that it is revtalising older stock which hasn’t been as popular of late, like the HDX900s.”

Optical disk manufacturing operations at the same factory in Japan are expected to resume around the end of May.