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Canon GL Series DV Camcorders
Canon GL2, GL1 and PAL versions XM2, XM1.


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Old June 27th, 2008, 04:36 AM   #1
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Bad audio on GL-1

A shooter of mine turned in a video tape with bad audio, he uses a GL-1. The sound is slightly of sync, and has pops and hisses.

Is this a typical issue with GL-1s? Or could it be a bad or reused tape? I am not in communication with him since we fell out over this and other issues, so I can't get more information.

Any thoughts? All I know for sure is that he used a deck to download the footage, but the audio came out fine for the other cam, my Sony PD150.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 06:23 AM   #2
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First thing I would check is the original footage shot on the actual camera. Use the GL-1 to play back the tape into a TV and see if it was recorded bad. Next, if the footage is OK, recapture the footage into another computer.

If the camera is the problem, run a head cleaning tape through it, and try shooting some test footage. If this doesn't help, then it's off to Canon for repair :(
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Old June 27th, 2008, 08:21 AM   #3
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Thanks David for your assistance...unfortunately I am not in touch with the individual, so I cannot take your suggestions of using the cam to re-download.

I do have the tapes, but I am reluctant to put them in my deck. There really isn't much I can do...clearly.

Just wondered if the audio issues are common in older GL cams.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 11:28 AM   #4
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I recently did a project that consisted of footage shot on the client's GL1 and my GL2s. He did a lot of the capturing himself, but I did capture a bit from his camera with my equipment.

The audio from his GL1 does have occasional popping, whether captured on his equipment or mine. However, I have not experienced any issues with sync or general hiss. (Although the pops do have a hiss-like quality.)

He uses his camera rather cavalierly and it has seen a lot of action. I have no idea how often he cleans it (if at all!) I baby my cameras and actively work to keep them in top working condition.

Like you, I have no hard and scientific way to discern the root cause, but I have (at least in my own mind) attributed it to dirty/poorly maintained equipment, since it manifested itself only in footage shot on his camera.

Hope this helps a little.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 11:48 AM   #5
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Thanks Frank. You describe something similar to my issues, and I vaguely remember something about out-of-sync audio issue with the GL1, but as your guy does, mine doesn't maintain his equipment very well. He has also twice now taken a handheld mic on jobs that he knows has a bad cord, ruining well wishes from guests, when he could replace it for next to nothing.

When he did it this last time I was so angry it basically was the end of our friendship. What do I tell a bride? In the end it all comes back to me....the video will be salvageable, and his camera work was excellent, but I don't need that crap. It's hard enough when things go well!

Jeff
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Old June 27th, 2008, 06:02 PM   #6
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Insulating the bride from techno-babble information is both difficult and essential. Just because we can identify the source of a technical glitch doesn't necessarily mean that we need to educate our clients on those specifics.

Often if you simply explain that "there was a technical problem with the audio" this is sufficient. She won't feel any better about it if she knows the source of the technical problem. She won't even care if the problem was preventable.

Sadly you are in the position of having to take the hit. Brides don't care about subcontractors, they only care about the final product, and they're going to take their complaints to the person they hired.

Cartainly you'll never use this (former) friend again, and lesson learned. It is sad when a friendship ends in this way, but I've learned this hard lesson in many ways. When it boils down to my caring about what the customer gets and my "friend" not caring, that has become an impasse to continuing the friendship.

Best of luck!
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Old July 6th, 2008, 07:23 AM   #7
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Quote:
they're going to take their complaints to the person they hired.
And share their experience with their friends, relatives, co-workers, FaceBook, and almost anyone else who will listen.

Slightly out of sync sound - a steady amount of is the amount depend on low long you are into the captured clip? Is it in sync until it hits a pop/click/gap?

Sound sync can be fixed in post, although it takes a bit more time.

Occasional pops, clicks and very short gaps in captured sound can be a tape read error problem, and some times can be overcome by doing an analog capture rather than digital capture, allowing the error correction in the playback camcorder or deck "fix" the tap read errors.

The GL1 is a bit long in the tooth, and maybe in need of servicing.
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Old July 22nd, 2008, 11:07 PM   #8
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GL1 Audio Problem

Recently I learned that tapes made on my GL1 won't play back audio properly on other cameras. My theory is that the audio track must have a slightly different pitch as the video works OK. The audio drops out to total silence and then comes back on with no particular rhythm or indication. However, using the GL1 as a VCR the audio plays without a dropout. Now this is a very big problem because if the camera goes in for repair and the heads and tape path are aligned it is likely it will also refuse to recognize the audio tracks. So I have started copying all my tapes on a Pan DVX100A. I am seeing that these 2nd generation tapes will play on anything. Oddly, tapes left over from my old XL1 will play back OK, just not the GL1. I feel lucky to have bought the 100A and learned of the problem before the GL1 died and left me stranded. So my procedure has been to firewire the two cameras and copy the tape, check the copy for goodness, and move on to another. I set the two completed tapes next to each other to keep track. A tedious project to say the least. Tonight as I was gearing up for this report I read on another website "GL1 tapes won't play back on other decks or cameras." Now that is something worth knowing.
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Old July 24th, 2008, 09:11 PM   #9
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Same heads write the video and audio, alignment will be the same. But video may have more robust error correction and the audio will start to have noticeable glitches in it first.

Head/tape alignment is in large part a mechanical thing, and over time it can drift as components wear - thus the reason for periodic servicing, especially on units that see a lot of use..
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