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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 June 7th, 2008, 09:36 PM   #1
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Import HD miniDV with SD camera?

Weird question. I'm concerned about putting hrs on the read/wriet heads of the XH-A1, so, is it possible with recording HD onto miniDV, to import it to my computer using an SD camera?

Kinda a dumb question.

And, does anyone know if there is a way to check the hours on the heads? or do i just have to keep track of them myself...
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Old June 7th, 2008, 11:19 PM   #2
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No you can't for either.
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Old June 7th, 2008, 11:35 PM   #3
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Hi Ed........

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Mohar View Post
I'm concerned about putting hrs on the read/wriet heads of the XH-A1

Why?

In normal amateur (even serious amateur) use, you will expire before they will.

In the hands of the average amateur, the camera itself will be a museum piece before they need any attention.

Stop counting head hours, count sheep, at least you'll sleep better!


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Old June 8th, 2008, 12:13 PM   #4
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In capture mode you're putting play hours on the heads, but not record hours. My main concern is wear and tear on the mechanism. However, if you're shooting HDV and using a system like FCP, you can simply capture all your clips at once, rather than going back and forth to log each one individually. FCP will show you every stop and start break, ie., you'll see individual clips in your bin, even though the whole tape is captured on a single pass. This eliminates a huge amount of stopping, starting, parking, playing, stopping and cueing--which would happen for every shot if you had to log them individually.

Generally I capture in 20 minute segments, roughly. That way I can drag the capture files to DVD after I complete a production. I like to have the project files, stills, sound, and capture files all on a stack of DVDs to file away in case I need to rebuild the show. That seems easier than recapturing from tapes, and I don't have to use the camera again.
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Old June 8th, 2008, 12:55 PM   #5
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ok, so i won't really worry then.
thx : )
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Old June 13th, 2008, 05:42 AM   #6
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Quote:
In capture mode you're putting play hours on the heads, but not record hours.
In terms of hear wear, there is no significant difference between record, play/capture, and pause. In all three modes the heads are spinning in contact with the tape.

In the days of VHS, head life for optimal performance was said to be on the order of 1000 hours, that amounts to about an hour a day every day for three years. Not sure what the nominal head life is for MiniDV format heads.
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Old June 13th, 2008, 06:44 AM   #7
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I wore the heads out on my DVX100 but it took 4 years and a lot of shooting (est. 2500 hrs)
I had them replaced last fall for $800. The drive mechanism is still fine. I Also wore out the play head on a small Canon single chip cam I used as a deck during the same time frame. Since I only paid $300 for it I just threw it away and bought another one (a panasonic PVGS120)

I use a Canon HV20 as a deck for my A1 now.
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Old June 13th, 2008, 06:58 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Miller View Post

I use a Canon HV20 as a deck for my A1 now.
me too....
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Old June 13th, 2008, 08:34 PM   #9
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HV10 for me.
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Old January 25th, 2009, 05:08 PM   #10
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My XL2 heads wore down once a year, like clockwork. I would get digital glitches and audio drop-out and have to send it to the Canon factory for "professional cleaning." Cost me $300 every time. After doing this for four years I finally complained enough to the people at Canon that they replaced the heads free of charge.

Maybe it was a bad camera to start with, but I still wouldn't belittle someone for worrying about head hours.
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Old February 12th, 2011, 02:39 PM   #11
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So it seems that a fair amount of people are using the HV series as capture decks, how are you setting FCP to import HD footage shoot with a XH-A1s? Are there any special items that we need to be aware of?
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Old February 13th, 2011, 03:52 PM   #12
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Hi, I was wondering this myself, I have a XL2 and XM2 which as you all know are SD,I capture my footage to my computers via a sony GV-D1000 recorder/player.As I'm wanting to buy a XH-A1,can I capture the HD footage recorded on hd miniDV tapes through the sony GV-D1000 to my computers???
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Old February 14th, 2011, 11:23 AM   #13
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I have 3 of the Sony VX-2000 cameras, about 10 years old, with very heavy usage for shooting and playback (for capture), and they are just finally starting to act up on original heads. I wouldn't worry about wear too much if playing the tape straight through for one-shot capture. It is the constant jog-shuttling that will wear out a transport, not just playing through smoothly.

As for HDV capture from a DV camera, not possible. I had wondered the same thing when I first got into HDV - could the DV camera just pull the data from the tape and send it out over Firewire, but absolutely not, technically impossible. Even among HDV cameras, some won't play tapes from others. For instance, if you have a 24p HDV tape and put it in a camera that only records 1080i HDV, it may not play.

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Old February 14th, 2011, 03:35 PM   #14
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HV20 as a deck for A1 footage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Turner View Post
So it seems that a fair amount of people are using the HV series as capture decks, how are you setting FCP to import HD footage shoot with a XH-A1s? Are there any special items that we need to be aware of?
I'm also using HV20 for FCP capture from my A1. FCP settings from the menu: Easy Set Up, Format: HD, Use: HDV 1080p25 (UK).

When capturing HDV, always make sure you play the tape on a little on the HV20, so that it displays the words "HDV" on the LCD screen, otherwise FCP won't be able to "find" the HV20 as a deck. My HV20 always seems to revert back to the words "SD" after I've switched it off.

Other than that, it works a treat.
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Old February 14th, 2011, 04:37 PM   #15
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I use my HV20s to capture HDV shot on Canon A1/s and Sony cams .. to my Vegas NLE, no problems whatsoever.

Another tip when using the HV20 for capturing .. use its remote to shuttle and cue up the tape 5 secs out from the spot you want to capture from, saves punching the buttons on its LCD.

Unless you're driving the tape transport from your NLE that is.

Cheers.
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