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Canon Optura Junior Watchdog
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Old September 6th, 2005, 10:05 PM   #16
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Congrats! I'd advise using it. It's kinda like holding onto an old VCR or TV hoping it's value will go up. With electronics newer is alway better.

Of course the Antique Roadshow has proven me wrong before!
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Old September 6th, 2005, 10:39 PM   #17
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Great camcorder --- I actually own two! :-)

Newer isn't always better. The newer Opturas lack progressive... and the Pi definitely has great color --- better color than the Opturas that used CMY (100mc and 200mc) rather than RGB. The 3.5" LCD is nice as is the size of the camcorder. It lacks real 16x9 but you'll get a picture competetive with most 1ccd camcorders, as long as shooting 4x3. You also have a LANC port if you decide to use it. I don't care about digital photos --- it's a camcorder.

It will still be fine for a long time to come.

Have fun!
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Old September 7th, 2005, 11:15 AM   #18
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You're right John, that's one point for the Antique roadshow.
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Old September 7th, 2005, 04:24 PM   #19
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Thanks for the feedback. I have been using it for a few days and have some questions. 1) Is it normal at times to pick up zoom noise.
2) Is there a way to turn off the auto shutoff.(it's really annoying)
3) When the optura pi is on but not recording do you get a high pitched buzz coming from the motor.
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Old September 7th, 2005, 04:57 PM   #20
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1. No, you shouldn't be recording the sound of the zoom... at least I've never noticed it.

2. No. From the Canon site: "The auto shut-off feature is designed to prevent unintentional depletion of the battery pack and possible damage to the unit. The automatic shut-off should not activate until after approximately 5 minutes in the record pause mode. This feature cannot be overridden. If the camcorder is shutting itself off at a significantly shorter interval than this, have the unit checked by a qualified technician."

3. No. You should not be getting a high pitched buzz coming from the motor. Is this getting picked up on audio or are you blessed with dog-like hearing? :-)
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Old September 8th, 2005, 12:25 PM   #21
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John,
Funny thing you mentioned the dog reference. I take my dog out to the parks and forest preserves almost every day and work with a rescue group handling dogs on weekends at adoption shows. I also feel a bit strange when there's a full moon. :) I do pick up the zoom and if i record in a room with no sound i do pick up the motor buzz. I was told the camera was new when i purchased it so is it possible it needs to be cleaned and oiled from not being used. Found this on canon website. Question: In quiet situations, I can hear the noise of the motor being recorded. What can I do about this? Their answer: Automatic audio gain will set the volume to capture any available noise. In a very quiet setting, this may be the sound of the camcorder motor, which could sound like a hum. To correct for this, provide some 'white' background noise, such as a radio or television. I guess if i scream into the mic when i zoom i won't pick up the zoom noise either. I better quit now i'm starting to talk to myself :).

Last edited by Ray Hartman; September 8th, 2005 at 01:24 PM. Reason: want to add info
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Old September 8th, 2005, 06:18 PM   #22
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Can you turn the AGC off ? I've always found it to "drop" transients when recording in a quiet environment. That is, the first word spoken by your subject is dropped.
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Old September 8th, 2005, 10:26 PM   #23
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I checked the manual and didn't see anything about turning the agc off. I'll try using the windscreen function and see if that lowers the sensitivity of the mic. I pick up motor noise only if its completely quiet so I guess I can live with that. When I zoom I pick up gear noise so I'll have that checked.
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Old October 2nd, 2005, 10:31 AM   #24
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Received my camera back from Canon within 2 weeks. They replaced some parts under warranty and the gear noise seems to be less noticeable. Good Work Canon!
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Old March 15th, 2006, 09:53 AM   #25
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Optura Pi: Fix or Replace?

Hi, I have been very happy with my Optura Pi for five years now, but it recently developed problems, to the tune of $600 in repairs needed. I'd like to get opinions from the forum: should I spend the $600 to get it repaired, or start looking at new models? Thanks in advance.
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Old March 15th, 2006, 10:54 AM   #26
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I hate to say this (because I love the Optura Pi --- I had two, but just sold one to fund a new camera and keeping the second one) but if the repairs are truly $600 (for what?!) then you should put the money toward a new camcorder (unless you require the progressive scan --- but you could get a fully functioning used Optura Pi for much less than $600 if you look around). Just my opinion...

Canon Optura 50 - $444.95 at B&H
Canon Optura S1 - $549.95 at B&H
Canon Optura 600 - $899.95 at B&H
Panasonic PV-GS300 3 CCD - $649.95 at B&H
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Old March 15th, 2006, 11:50 AM   #27
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I agree. The Pi is not worth a $600 repair. I love that camera, I own one and am very fond of it -- however you are much better off spending that $600 on a newer Optura. All you're giving up is progressive scan and the large flip-out LCD. The newer EIS is almost as good as OIS was on the Pi. All newer Opturas have an RGB color filter like the Pi. Image quality on the newer Opturas will be significantly better than the Pi, primarily due to the Digic DSP and improved CCD technology. Hope this helps,
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Old March 15th, 2006, 05:02 PM   #28
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Thanks, I appreciate the input. The $600 estimate I got was from an independent technician (not Canon) for replacing the following: (1) the capstan motor, (2) the reel drive mechanism, and (3) the flexible circuit board connecting the LCD screen and eyepiece. For the record, I did not abuse this camera, so I have to wonder if these parts are failing due to age. I might get a second opinion on the actual repairs. BTW, Canon offered to take it as a trade in (plus $300) for a refurbished Elura 60.
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Old March 15th, 2006, 05:14 PM   #29
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You might want to consider the Optura 50. Or, you can get a NEW Canon ELURA 80 for $334.95 at B&H. But, I don't know what your budget is; check out each camera's features and one will probably appeal to you.
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Old March 17th, 2006, 05:30 PM   #30
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Optura Pi

Donna, it seems strange the repair center wants to replace the Captain unit(part of the deck unit), and the reel drive unit(slide mech), plus a flex board for the LCD.

It sure doesn't seem that they don't know what the problem is, and are throwing part into the unit to solve the problem. The deck unit and reel drive unit are the complete tape unit. I don't know what the original problem was, but this is a lot of very expensive parts going into a camera you said was'nt abussed.

As for the torn LCD flex. On the Optura Pi, if you didn't have a problem with your LCD or control buttons, I feel there's something not quite right about this part being needed. The Pi is a very tricky camera to disassemble correctly.

Jim
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