Back to the future camcorder - JVC GR-C1


Active Member
Last night saw the classic Back to the Future and as always loved the film.

Saw the JVC GR-C1 camcorder then I looked at my own GRD 770 and realised how small technology had got.

What spec was the JVC GR-C1 and how good was it ?

How much did it cost and how long did the battery last ?


Distinguished Member
It was released in 1985 and used VHS-C tapes which, at that time, ran for 30 minutes. I think it cost something like £1500 when first released.

IIRC standard battery life (from a NICAD) was around 20-25 minutes - less if you used the zoom and auto-focus.

Picture quality was very good (for the time). It used a Saticon tube for the camera - no CCD imagers in those days.

I work for JVC (and have since 1984), and we all got to go to a preview of the film before it was released because of the camcorder connection. I was an engineer at the time and repaired many of them. I remember how amazed we were at the size of the thing and we all thought camcorders couldn't really get any smaller!

There's a bit more about it at:


Active Member
Hi GaryB

I dont know how £1500 of 1984/85 would be worth now but £1500 in those days was very very expensive.

The JVC GRD770 i have is very light but how heavy was the JVC GR-C1 ?


Active Member
JVC must have been happy with how their product was placed in BTTF

Calaforia Raisins were not happy as their logo appeared on a park bench with a drunk :rotfl:

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