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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 March 25th, 2008, 01:13 PM   #1
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xha1 firewire problems with macbook

My Canon XH-A1 camcorder has a problem when I try to use it with my mid 2007 macbook. The system profiler will not recognize the camera as a firewire device. It will recognize a Canon flatbed scanner as a firewire device, however. It's the only other firewire device I own at this point.

This seems to be a new problem, because I used to be able to capture video from this camera into the macbook using either I-movie or videocue pro.

But now neither works, nor Final Cut Express HD 3.5.

Before either work, the system profiler has to see the firewire device. But now it doesn't.

The XH-A1 does work with my PC and Sony Vegas, which will run the camera and capture video.

I sent the macbook to apple and they fixed a different problem, created a new one and didn't fix the firewire problem.

The firewire cable works with the xp box and Sony Vegas and the XH-A1.

Ideas?
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Old March 25th, 2008, 01:49 PM   #2
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So your camera DOES currently work on your PC set up via firewire, but NOT on your Mac?

If it is working on the PC and NOT on your Mac then it is a Mac problem. Take it to the Apple Store WITH your camera to trouble shoot. I had to have my firewire logic board replaced twice on my old MacBook. They will do it for free if you have Apple Care.

If it is working on neither it is obviously a problem with the firewire out on your camera.

I hope this helps. Good luck!
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Old March 25th, 2008, 02:20 PM   #3
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xp yes macbook no

Right, it works with xp on another machine but not on the macbook. I can use a firewire scanner on the macbook, at least the computer sees the scanner via the firewire port, and there is only one.

I may have to go to the Apple store, but it's quite a drive for me. So far, sending the macbook in has not helped.
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Old March 25th, 2008, 04:50 PM   #4
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You have to have the camera in the right mode and turned on before opening your capture window. And if your set to capture HDV, the camera has to be outputting HDV, and vice versa for SD. Sounds like it's not a hardware problem, but a configuration.
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Old March 25th, 2008, 05:19 PM   #5
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Canon XH and XLH1 cameras can be finicky about how the computer recognizes them. All settings on the camera have to be done before firewire is attached. Check out Page 109 of the Manual. Try using an HV20. I used my friends on a project and it was recognized by the computer much more easily than my XLH1
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Old March 25th, 2008, 06:30 PM   #6
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Are other things working with the firewire right now? I've had a heck of a time with my firewire ports on my macbook pro from around the same time.
I finally had to buy a card for the side of it with firewire ports
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Old March 25th, 2008, 09:54 PM   #7
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worked fine before

One thing worth considering is that this worked fine the last time I used it. Right now, the Apple system profiler does not see the XH-A1 at all.

I have fooled around with the settings, but this doesn't seem to be an application compatability or camera settings issue. Rather, it seems to be a camera / firewire port recognition issue.

If the system profiler doesn't see the camera, no program will either. I have 3 video programs on the MacBook and none see the camera. Neither does the system profiler.
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Old March 25th, 2008, 10:11 PM   #8
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Apple mobile chipset issues

There is an interesting comment about some various firewire chipsets here:
http://www.bj-brown.com/blog/?p=15 which explain some issues with midi.

It doesn't explain my, and many other's problems regarding firewire, but it's interesting reading anyways.

I do have a Lucent chipset.

Last edited by Larry Vaughn; March 25th, 2008 at 10:50 PM.
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Old March 26th, 2008, 10:40 AM   #9
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If it worked before but doesn't now, have you double checked your camera's settings? Something could have changed. As pointed out above, you have to set them up before connecting the firewire cable.
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Old March 26th, 2008, 02:07 PM   #10
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settings

I did check the settings. I took the XH-A1 to Best Buy and connected it to 2 different new MacBook Pros that were on display.

One of them, when looking under the firewire tab of system profiler, showed the XH-A1 as a firewire device.

The other, which looked the same but must have had a different speed processor, did not show my XH-A1 under the firewire tab on the system profiler.

However, on the same laptop, I-Movie did recognize the camera and listed it as an XH-A1. I then checked system profiler, which still did not show the camera.

So, things are strange in Mac/Canon land. I'll try it again on my personal MacBook before sending it back to the Mac mechanics.
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Old March 28th, 2008, 11:23 AM   #11
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problem apparently fixed

I sent the MacBook in again and got it back this am. I can now see my XH-A1 in the firewire tab of system profiler and don't expect any more problems.

I see they replaced pcba mlb 2.0ghz white energyst 669-4482. Main logic board?

Might be worth it to get the Apple Care so I can have some peace of mind for a couple more years.
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Old March 30th, 2008, 09:07 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Vaughn View Post
Might be worth it to get the Apple Care so I can have some peace of mind for a couple more years.

Applecare is well worth the money. Not only for repairs, but also for the 3 full years of tech support and Techtool discs. Our department has over 40 macs right now and Applecare was purchased on all of them. That repair you had done probably would have been over $500, over twice the price of Applecare.
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Old April 1st, 2008, 08:02 AM   #13
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Dear Larry,

What cables are you using to hook up the XH-A1 to the laptops? 4 pin or 6 pin?
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Old April 1st, 2008, 10:10 AM   #14
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Recently I installed Flip4Mac, the $179 HD version, because I have to do some WMV exports. Suddenly I had a problem. Any time I hooked up the XH A1 via firewire, I would get a pulsing in the picture while capturing, and it stayed there in the captured footage.

Because of the nature of the pulsing I was thinking maybe it was an interference problem, something electromagnetic going on, whatever. But after checking out everything I decided it had to be some sort of software issue, not hardware. Somebody on LAFCPUG suggested trashing the preferences and I had an "Aha!" moment. I should have thought of that myself because I often had to do that back in my old Avid Media Composer days.

I went to the Ken Stone site to refresh my memory about how to trash the preferences--there are 2 relevant folders and 5 icons to trash. I did it, restarted, and all is well now. Apparently installing Flip4Mac did something strange The computer is a new MacBook Pro.

Since Apple replaced something in your computer, that probably was the problem; however, trashing preferences might be a good thing to check first when something is OK but then for no apparent reason it becomes not OK.
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Old May 12th, 2008, 03:36 PM   #15
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firewire

I see the processor is a 2.16 ghz unit. My MacBook box says it came with a 2.0 ghz processor.

Since the processor is soldered to the motherboard, apparently both were replaced.
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