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The shapes of recorded transitions in a perpendicular recording medium were studied experimentally, using a large-scale model consisting of a single-pole head and a particulate recording layer with an underlayer. Magnetization distributions were obtained from the measured magnetic field distributions at the medium surface. The results show that the shapes of the transitions strongly depend on the write current values and the initial erasifig conditions. The optimum write current for the large-scale medium corresponds to the value that generates a field 2.6 times larger than the coercivity at the center of the medium.