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Canon XH Series HDV Camcorders
Canon XH G1S / G1 (with SDI), Canon XH A1S / A1 (without SDI).


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Old December 4th, 2007, 04:50 PM   #16
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Mike, if you are able to recapture the footage afterwards what you are experiencing is a capture dropout, and not an actual tape drop out.

An actual tape drop out will occur during normal playback and is permanently on the tape.

A capture drop out can be caused by a number of reasons and is usually fixable. I found that before when capturing to a Firewire drive linked to the same bus that the XH-A1 was it can cause problems, and apparently this is common with Canon Camcorders. However, if you attempt to capture again, as you said, the dropped frame is typically still there.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong as I'm still feeling my way through HDV, but that's been my experience.

I must be honest, I'm a bit relieved by that post about the Sony Tapes because I was dreading having to spend that much on tapes. I know the irony of that statement- $3500 camera and using cheaper tapes- but when you read the specs on the AMQs and the Sony HDVs it doesn't appear that there is much difference between the two. Has anyone tried out what Panasonic refers to as their HDV tapes?

Last edited by Dustin Svehlak; December 4th, 2007 at 04:52 PM. Reason: errors lol
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Old December 4th, 2007, 06:12 PM   #17
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I've been using the Panasonic AMQ 63 minute tapes for some time. I probably shot more than 30 tapes and never had a dropout...

...until recently. I helped shoot a documentary with another guy who also has XH A1. We had serious dropouts on 5 different tapes, shot with both cameras.

Then I had no dropouts, until one day there was another one.

These tapes are about half the price of the Sony Digital Master tapes, but I believe I'm going to try those. I can't live with this level of dropouts. At first I thought they were all from a single batch purchased at the same time, but the last one wasn't. Heads on both cameras were cleaned, shooting in good, clean conditions.

The Canon tapes probably are the Sony DM tapes, since the box looks the same, except for the color. I guess they could be Fuji or Panasonic too, who knows.
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Old December 4th, 2007, 07:25 PM   #18
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in relation this, I know I'm asking the right bunch.
When you run the tape cleaner through the tape for the ten seconds or so
is it with the play button? what about the record button? does that clean a different part of the heads? I rememebr years ago with the old reel to reel there were different heads for different jobs. is that the way these machines work?
apologies for straying a little.
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Old December 4th, 2007, 08:27 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Stivala View Post
Most other brands use some form of wet lubricant which, according to Brian, WILL cause dropouts and clogs.
Actually it's Sony who is all wet. :) reads funny.

Bill
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Old December 4th, 2007, 10:13 PM   #20
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Ger--nononono--absolutely do NOT press the Record button with a head cleaning tape. Only Play it for 10 seconds or less. Follow the directions exactly.
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Old December 4th, 2007, 11:59 PM   #21
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well spotted Bill :D

Bill, Im using a sony head cleaner with panasonic tapes, am i doing damage?
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Old December 5th, 2007, 02:46 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Busby View Post
Actually it's Sony who is all wet. :) reads funny.

Bill
Along with this...All Pani tapes use the same type of lubricant, from the cheapy's to the AMQ's. And the same goes for other brands of tape too. (JVC, Sony, etc.) Sony's are wet lube, JVC dry, but a different dry than the Pani tapes. So pick a brand and stick with it or you're just asking for trouble.
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Old December 5th, 2007, 05:21 PM   #23
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No, the Sony head cleaning tape is fine. As far as I know they're all about the same.
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Old December 6th, 2007, 12:48 PM   #24
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WRT dropouts seeming to come from "a box or batch of tapes". I had an issue with my A1 and I believe it started after a use of the camera when it was warmer than usual. Not hot enough to do any damage (maybe 100 degrees F). I was getting dropouts on play/capture in *different* spots each time. Pointed to a camera issue.

I was worried about over-cleaning doing damage, but after talking to Canon I did 3 15-second cleanings (waiting a few minutes between each) and the issue resolved.

So . . . think back to your usage when you saw the dropouts. Had you been shooting in warmer conditions?
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Old December 6th, 2007, 02:14 PM   #25
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No, mine happened all in air conditioned offices. They all seemed to be in the same batch of tape that was purchased at one time.
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Old December 6th, 2007, 03:49 PM   #26
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I've had two A-1's since february, both have 1-2 drop outs per tape, started with the Panasonic, swithched to Sony after cleaning several times, no different with the Sony HDV tapes, about $9.00 each. until I here that the $14.00 fixes things I'd rather have the $4.50 per drop out instead of $7.00...MY question, is if it's the format, how are the sony cameras doing FX etc. with this problem....Never had one drop out in DV with canon Gl's and sony DSR's in eight years....Gary
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Old December 6th, 2007, 05:51 PM   #27
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I'm going to try the Sony DM tapes; they're closer to 15 bucks each, unfortunately.
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Old December 17th, 2007, 01:01 PM   #28
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Resurrecting AGAIN!!

Again, sorry to resurrect, but things got more interesting. Sent my second XH-A1 to Canon and had it back in about a week. I checked the paper work and they said they replaced the drum. I was a bit surprised because I sent in another for the very same playback problems and drop frames and they didn't claim to replace any parts. At any rate, ever since getting it back, I noticed that when the tape compartment ejects or when I insert a tape it's considerably louder than my other XH-A1. At first it almost seemed like it was grinding or something, but that seemed to stop after about 4-5 times. I'm gonna call the service center today when I get off work to discuss exactly what it was they did and if this is within spec. Any of you guys with two of these things notice if they make different sounds when opening and closing? I've never been around two of the same camera before...
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Old December 18th, 2007, 10:50 AM   #29
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Alternate Captureing for drops

On the drum issue.
This problem seems like a tape manufacturing problem...not a component problem. I wonder if the Cannon techs, in their frustration, are trying to keep a good name by trying to replace parts to keep happy customers.

Here is something I noticed with my first drop out tape, which I'll throw out to see if there is anything to be done to recapture the tape another way.

When I played my tapes (on play >) the drop out occurs for up to 3 secs...a significant clip. But when I played on fast forward it seems the footage is all there. Why, if the problem is a group of pictures (which is 3 frames at 1/60 or 3/60 of a second...does it take 3 seconds for the camera to recover and play again with time. Again...in FF play...the footage seemed smooth and not choppy. If the breaks were 3 seconds long it should have appeared fast and choppy...not fast and smooth.

So, is there any other methods to capture a tape without using a camera that looks for and processing the time code before playing?

What about tape decks?

Are there any work around to by-pass the cameras inability to have to read time code?

Surely there must be a way to get all the good footage off this tape. Any ideas.
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Old December 18th, 2007, 12:26 PM   #30
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I don't know how you can tell anything from FF. First it's all very low rez, & running FF even though it's a long 3 secs (any dropout I've ever encountered was, at the most... 1 sec.) will zip by.

If you have the patience, try to step thorough frame by frame. If you can... then there's always the option of saving 90 (there's your 3 secs) still frames on a SD card for import into your NLE :) Of course then there's the audio issue, but at least you'd have the video portion. Just a thought.

Bill
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