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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 January 21st, 2008, 04:26 PM   #1
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Log & Capture issues (FCS)

Posted this on 3 different message boards - apologies if you've already read it, but i'm having ZERO luck figuring this one (these three) out...

I'm asking this mostly to see if it's a "that's the way it works" problem, or if something can actually be done about it. I've done a few forum searches (here and elsewhere) but haven' t found any posts that specifically address this...I'm working with FCS2 on an Intel iMac

I have all my settings correct - I'm able to view, log & capture, control the camera, etc. The problem that i keep running into is that once I let the computer do its thing for a batch capture, I always have a few clips that the computer can't find the timecode and shuts the whole thing down. It'll fast forward & rewind a few times, then it likes to fast forward to the very end of the tape, and when that happens, I have abort capture, eject the tape, turn the camera off then back on and reinsert the tape, and do a batch capture again, otherwise it keeps trying to fast forward (it needs that "reset" to stop). This has happened with a few different tapes (brand new), not just one.
The workaround I've been using is to make note of the clip that caused the problems, exclude it till the end of the rest of the batch (in case there are other trouble-making clips, which there usually are) and then change the in point on the rogue clip(s) and do another batch capture (this has yet to not work, knock on wood). Trouble is, this defeats the timesaving/automated aspect of a batch capture, as i have to keep a constant eye on it - I realize that I need to keep an eye on it anyhow, but this issue occurs so regularly that I'm hesitant to even go make a sandwich - something that i rarely had to worry about with SD footage shot and captured with a DVX100A. I've tried making all my in-points at second increments (ie/ 1:25:10;00) but that doesn't seem to make any difference. On an hour-long tape with 40-50 different clips, this happens with 4-8 of them.

The footage is HDV, 1080i60, shot with the Canon XH-A1, captured using the same camera. It doesn't seem to be a TC break issue (I never eject, rewind, etc when shooting, and I have my capture setting to ignore TC breaks on capture), just a random thing. So back to the top paragraph here - is this just an issue when working with HDV and/or capturing with the camera (can't afford a separate deck yet, but it's high on the list) or does anyone know what might be done to remedy this situation?

**OTHER NEW PROBLEMS**
Every time I try to capture, it's a new issue...during logging, final cut unexpectedly quits, approx 6-8 times per tape, most of the time while simply shuttling through footage. A THIRD ISSUE is that now with my most recent tape, i've logged the entire thing, and now while trying to capture, the camera cannot locate the timecode for 98% of the clips. i've tried resetting in and out points to no avail. i've tried adding handles to my capturing - no luck. i've trashed my prefs - nada. At this point, I am seriously wishing that i had plopped down the extra $2k for an HVX two months ago, and i've also learned the hard way what most people had already told me - Canon makes great still cameras, but s*#tty, awful, pain in the a$$ video cameras and i'm close to saying that i'll never purchase one again (though i'm sure it's also partially the result of working with HDV footage - oh the joys!).

Apologies for the very long post, the short rant, and the three different (but related) issues that it contains.

thanks for your time and any help!

-gardy
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Old January 21st, 2008, 08:51 PM   #2
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I have the same issues and have been told that's the way it goes with HD. SD is fine. Hope I'm wrong

Clay
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Old January 21st, 2008, 10:17 PM   #3
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Hi guys..................

I think you need to establish a few definates with this problem.

1. Does this happen with the same camera in SD mode?

2. Does this happen with another camera in HDV mode?

3. Does it happen with another camera in SD mode?

If the answers are (boolean)

000 = It's restricted to this camera in HDV mode, could be a camera fault.

010 = It's a HDV issue, probably the system/ software

100 = It's either a Canon issue or a driver issue.


etc etc 0 = No 1 = Yes btw

I do not know how robust FC is in dealing with dropouts (I've seen other software that goes completely beresk when it encounters one) but we all know HDV in particular, and A1 HDV possibly more, has dropout issues.

You really need another HDV/ SD cam (HV20?) to prove what's going on.

There could be a problem with your install of FC (wouldn't hurt to do a clean install just in case).

You could also try downloading a free trial of anything else that will run on a Mac and see what happens with that. If it works fine it's a FC problem.

Your latter problems sound suspiciously like a system problem getting worse, or the tape heads need a jolly good clean (or both).

Lots of stuff there to keep you burning the midnight oil.


Good luck.


CS


PS. Replace the FireWire cable too, just in case!

Last edited by Chris Soucy; January 21st, 2008 at 10:25 PM. Reason: Addition
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 01:31 AM   #4
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Chris put it much more clearly than I will be able to,
but I would definately look to a system issue...
It sounds like you have the set-up right and, unless there is
a camera defect somewhere, I don't think the camera would
produce that kind of problem.

Interested in hearing what turns out to be the culprit.

Best of luck,

David
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 02:13 AM   #5
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What brand of tape are you using?

Bw
Sven
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 08:50 AM   #6
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thanks for the replies. i had to just go home last night and take a break.
i was able to eventually get it all captured, mostly by changing the media start times in my logging bin, but there were still a bunch of errors.
i'll definitely get the heads cleaned, but i'm surprised that they'd be this bad after only around 25 hours of use. if that's the case, perhaps i should try switching media brands - I'm using Sony DVM63HD tapes, and have not switched brands since purchasing the camera.
unfortunately, i can't compare this camera to another hdv cam because i don't have immediate access to one. i will, however, see if i can get it to happen recording in SD. i'll also hook it up to another system here and see what happens.

thanks again, and i'll let you know how it works out.
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 05:15 PM   #7
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just a little preliminary finding...
doing some tests today, i'm still encountering the timecode error when i capture HDV footage (it does that little stutter search back and forth twice around where it should start playing, then it stops altogether) but i shot some test footage on the same tape, regular ol' DV and it captured like a dream. gonna try some more stuff tomorrow, see if i can't wrangle up another HDV camera.


one more thought - though i still had the issue with a new tape shooting indoors today, the tape that i was having the most trouble with was shot outside in approx 8 degreeF temperatures. think the extreme cold may have gummed up the inner workings/the oils in the tape? i didn't have this issue (nearly this bad) prior to the other day...

-gardy
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 05:22 PM   #8
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I got similar error issues after switching from Canon HDV tapes to Sony DVM63HD tapes. (That was why I asked.) Now I am testing Panasonic tapes, (AY-DVM63AMQ), and to me, they seem way more stable than the Sonys.

Bw
Sven
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 06:35 PM   #9
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I am having a similar problem. I don't use batch capture, I just press play on the camera and hit capture. Here is a thread from the NLE on a Mac forum:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=84652

and here is one from this forum:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=93133

BTW, neither have any resolutions. I have also posted in other forums without any luck. If you find anything out let me know.
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 07:02 PM   #10
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Hi Dave...........

I re - read those links you posted about (I remember seeing them as they happened).

There was one issue signalled quite early on in the first thread concerning FireWire problems with two ports in use at the same time.

I also noticed you have a FW800 raid system for your captured footage.

Just for the sake of completeness, have you ever thought to power that unit down and disconnecting it, then capturing to the internal hard drive from the A1?

I'm not suggesting it as a final solution, but just a test to see if it changes your systems behaviour any.

In the unlikely event that trying this does actually solve your problem, you may want to think about getting an esata interface for the raid instead.

Let us know what happens.


CS
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Old January 22nd, 2008, 07:21 PM   #11
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I have also had the issue when capturing to a USB2 drive. I have a capture to do on Friday so I will send the footage to an internal drive and see. Thanks for your help and I will let you know what happens.
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Old January 23rd, 2008, 12:04 AM   #12
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Dave.............

I have spent a quite entertaining (not) afternoon trawling through the Apple FCP discussion forum researching this problem.

Apart for the quite noticeable degree of venom displayed to Canon cameras, there were a couple of things that stood out as common factors as far as interfacing Apple - Canon go (and it was noticeable just how many Canon owners were having problems with this issue).

There seems to be fairly broad agreement/ acceptance of the fact that Canon's implementation of Firewire does not map well with Apples original intent and standard.

Whether in reality this is so or not, I really have no idea, but it seems to be common currency with many on the Apple site.

SO.....having mulled this over trying to figure out just where to go from here, I have come up with another test that I would like you to try.

Assuming, just for a moment, there is any credence to this interface difference theory, the best I could come up with as a test was this (if anyone else has a better workaround please feel free to jump on in - the waters lovely!).

There are a number of reports of two FireWire devices connected simultaneously to a Mac interfering with each others operation, specifically if one of them is a Canon camera.

The test I asked you to perform earlier was to prove or disprove that claim (in your instance anyway).

The new test I have come up with is based on the rather far fetched assumption that if I/ you/ somebody feeds a Canon camera into a third party device which then itself passes on the data to the Mac without any Canon interface foibles, it might just solve the problem.

So, having done the first test I suggested, try this.

Re - connect you FW800 Raid system.

Hope to God there is a FW "daisy chain" port on the back of it, like there is on my Maxtor.

Connect the camera to that port and see what happens.

With absolutely bugger all knowledge about what electronics are involved in the "daisy chain" situation (anybody know?) I can only predict it will do either:

1. No change whatsoever (No score draw then)

2. Make it worse (1 - 0 Home loss).

3. Fix it (5 - 0 Home win).

If you don't have a FW "daisy chain" port, then I guess this challenge will have to be handed on to anybody else with the appropriate system and connection capability.

I know it's not much, but as a non Mac user, the best I can come up with.


CS
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Old January 23rd, 2008, 12:40 AM   #13
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Apologies if this is way off the mark but I have skim read the previous posts and I believe I had the same problem where FCP shuts down when the timecode is lost:
Go to user preferences:General tab: then check that on timecode break it says warn after capture not abort. Also make sure that the all the abort tabs are unchecked for example on dropped frames.

***Update: Please ignore.. read thread properly... sorry***

Jon
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Old January 23rd, 2008, 12:47 AM   #14
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Hi Jonathan.............

Hey, all input gratefully received here, this ain't no private club, and I'm wandering around in a complete fog as I'm not a Mac user, so thanks for the input.

Who knows, you may well have solved the problem! (bloody well hope so, this is getting tedious in the extreme!).

Thanks again, and feel free to join in at any time, the more the merrier!.


CS

PS.

Update: Posting without reading has it's pitfalls. No great loss. Shan't be sending the "hit squad" for you on this occasion. The comments above still stand.

Last edited by Chris Soucy; January 23rd, 2008 at 12:50 AM. Reason: Addition
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Old January 23rd, 2008, 08:58 AM   #15
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chris,
gonna give that a try tomorrow. my drive here has only 1 FW400 port (but two 800's) and, well, you know the iMac...
but i have one at home i can use, so give me 24 hours and i'll let you know if that does the trick. usually, it's not recommended to plug your camera into anything other than your computer when capturing, but if it fixes it, i'll be doing it every time.

-gardy


*wait, you don't know the iMac - you told us you're a PC user. well, it doesn't have FW800 ports. what was that you said about posting without reading?*

Last edited by Gardy Raymond; January 23rd, 2008 at 09:39 AM. Reason: not paying attention
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