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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 May 8th, 2007, 07:59 AM   #1
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HDV Head cleaner question

Can a regular head cleaner be used for HDV cameras?
More specific: I have Panasonic AY-DVMCLA head cleaners (3), can I use them with Canon A1? or is there a hdv head cleaner available.

Not that I need it, but to be sure not to do something I shouldn't.

Alexis
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Old May 8th, 2007, 08:06 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexis Vazquez View Post
Can a regular head cleaner be used for HDV cameras?
More specific: I have Panasonic AY-DVMCLA head cleaners (3), can I use them with Canon A1? or is there a hdv head cleaner available.

Not that I need it, but to be sure not to do something I shouldn't.

Alexis
There are no differences in DV and HDV head cleaners, just miniDV cleaners. There are wet and dry types, and just use whatever your camera manual suggests.

Mike
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Old May 8th, 2007, 08:15 AM   #3
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the AY-DVMCLA panasonic cleaner was the one they sold me at the store the A1 was purchased at. I would hope that would be the correct one.

Trish
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Old May 8th, 2007, 08:47 AM   #4
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Trish, Mike's reference to "wet & dry" types is NOT related to the silly wet vs. dry lube processed tape issue.

Using a dry head cleaner just means NOT to use any of those you may see on the market that have a bottle of liquid that's applied to the head cleaning "tape", which usually isn't tape at all... it's usually some kind of cloth base in a cassette shell.

Bill
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Old May 8th, 2007, 08:55 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Bill Busby View Post
Trish, Mike's reference to "wet & dry" types is NOT related to the silly wet vs. dry lube processed tape issue.

Using a dry head cleaner just means NOT to use any of those you may see on the market that have a bottle of liquid that's applied to the head cleaning "tape", which usually isn't tape at all... it's usually some kind of cloth base in a cassette shell.

Bill
Actually not true. There are wet and dry head cleaners as well. I use Sony tapes in my cameras, and I use a Sony cleaner to clean them, which I believe is also a wet cleaner. We are not talking about adding a liquid to it, it is already on the tape just as the recording tape is.

I would add one thing and recommend that if you shoot on dry lube tapes then use a dry cleaner. If you shoot on wet tapes, use a wet cleaner.

Mike
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Old May 8th, 2007, 09:22 AM   #6
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I'm reasonably sure you're mistaken. If only I could find this link I came across elsewhere months ago. Thought I saved it in favs.

But, this has been discussed before on the forums as well & I believe Chris even made a comment about it not making a difference which brand is used.

But, regarding manuals, etc... I really do find it deplorable that manufacturers (tape & cams-decks) don't step up & take responsibility with tape packaging, labeling & more thorough explanation in manuals & explain this "wet/dry" crap, as well as what a "dry" head cleaner is.

Do you have a Sony camera? Surely it doesn't say to use a "wet" head cleaner.

I often wonder if anyone has ever sued & won a small claims case against manufacturers regarding either of these wet/dry whatever scenarios because of ruined gear and/or at least flipping the bill for professional head cleaning.

It just has never made sense to me after all these years, not one manufacturer has done anything about this stupidness. :-\

End of rant :)
Bill

*edit* Mike I forgot (that Alzheimers thing :) to ask you. Since the A1's manual suggests to use a "dry" cleaning tape... & YOU are using Sony tapes & head cleaners... isn't that a tad sacreligious? :D
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Old May 8th, 2007, 09:32 AM   #7
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The manual does ask for dry cleaning tapes - and to avoid wet ones - I was told the panasonic tape was a dry one. That it actually acts like tiny sandpaper.

He also went on to say that regular cleaning is no longer needed with the new generation. You should only clean them if needed. Which I haven't heard anywhere else.

trish
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Old May 8th, 2007, 12:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Busby View Post
I'm reasonably sure you're mistaken. If only I could find this link I came across elsewhere months ago. Thought I saved it in favs.

But, this has been discussed before on the forums as well & I believe Chris even made a comment about it not making a difference which brand is used.

But, regarding manuals, etc... I really do find it deplorable that manufacturers (tape & cams-decks) don't step up & take responsibility with tape packaging, labeling & more thorough explanation in manuals & explain this "wet/dry" crap, as well as what a "dry" head cleaner is.

Do you have a Sony camera? Surely it doesn't say to use a "wet" head cleaner.

I often wonder if anyone has ever sued & won a small claims case against manufacturers regarding either of these wet/dry whatever scenarios because of ruined gear and/or at least flipping the bill for professional head cleaning.

It just has never made sense to me after all these years, not one manufacturer has done anything about this stupidness. :-\

End of rant :)
Bill

*edit* Mike I forgot (that Alzheimers thing :) to ask you. Since the A1's manual suggests to use a "dry" cleaning tape... & YOU are using Sony tapes & head cleaners... isn't that a tad sacreligious? :D
Bill,

Ya, call me a rebel! I use Sony wet tapes in my Canon cameras and Sony wet cleaners too! But, I have never had a dropout, how many can say that?

I totally agree that we need better information on the packaging. You will find nothing on most packages. I believe my Sony cleaner tape actually said wet on the wrapping, but after you open it, there is no mention after that. My XLH1 manual actually says not to use a wet cleaner tape, but since I use wet tapes to begin with, I do.

I just meant, on mixing, that if you use wet tapes you should not use a dry cleaner and vice versa. Just common sense I think.

The manufactures want some way to say the problem is yours so they choose which tape. If Canon ever started to make tape, which will never happen, I would love to see if they used wet or dry.

Mike
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Old May 8th, 2007, 01:23 PM   #9
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I would take the "not required on the new generation" remark with a grain of salt, and a big grain for that matter. I definitely would not wait for the message "clean video heads" to show up on the LCD before I pop in a cleaning cassette.

As a side question to everyone - how often do you use cleaning tape on your A1 (after how many tapes)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trish Kerr View Post
The manual does ask for dry cleaning tapes - and to avoid wet ones - I was told the panasonic tape was a dry one. That it actually acts like tiny sandpaper.

He also went on to say that regular cleaning is no longer needed with the new generation. You should only clean them if needed. Which I haven't heard anywhere else.

trish
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Old May 8th, 2007, 04:33 PM   #10
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I wonder what the "D" stands for in Sony's DVM-12CLD <- :D

Bill
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Old May 11th, 2007, 05:19 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trish Kerr View Post
the AY-DVMCLA panasonic cleaner was the one they sold me at the store the A1 was purchased at. I would hope that would be the correct one.

Trish
Hi Trish,

It took a while to get authenticated on the forum, so apologies if you've already received an answer to your concern above. Printed on the cardboard insert of my AY-DVMCLA tape, it says, "Dry Type", so I'm pretty sure we're ok!
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Old May 12th, 2007, 05:15 PM   #12
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It's good to know on the dry. thanks Julian. : )

I'm also wondering how often people clean the heads. Haven't found a consistent answer on it.

trish
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Old May 12th, 2007, 06:28 PM   #13
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How often should I clean

I bought my first DV camcorder two years ago (Canon Elura 65). Used it for about a year and bought a second camcorder (Canon Elura 100) and have use it for about a year. Now I own a third camcorder (Canon HV20). Maybe I'm lucky, maybe I'm just plain stupid when it comes to camcorders but I have never cleaned heads. I probably shot over 50 tapes on each of the first two and have run them all the tapes through at least once or twice for capturing and editing.

I read about so many people discussing cleaning camcorder tape heads I thought maybe I better go by one. Like a dummy, I didn't look at the manual. I never heard about wet & dri mindv tapes. I've just been purchasing what was convenient from Walmart. I would say about 80% of my tapes are Sony Premium from Walmart. I think the others have been JVC, Maxell, & TDK. Have I ruined my first two cameras do you think. I probably will be shooting 90% of my video now on the HV20 but I was thinking of doing some multiangle shots with my older cameras. Maybe since my plan is to shoot only HD now even if I downgrade some video to SD in post.

My question is first, did I screw up when I paid about $25 at Best Buy for a minidv cleaner manufactured by Dynex? I just got it out of the bag & I don't see anything about wet or dri on the package. I will say that now that I've read several people mention that it is advisable to never switch brands of tape, I'll just stick with purchasing Sony Premium. I'm sure that is all that I've used so for on my HV20. I've only shot an hour an a half so for. I'm holding an unopened Sony Premium tape in my hands and nowhere on the package does it indicate wet or dri. The package says it is a DMV60PRL if that means anything to anyone. So my bottom line is:

1. Should I toss my $25 Dynex tape and get another one.
2. If so what should I purchase since I'm planning on using the Sony Premium tapes mentioned above. I have about 50 of them on the shelf (yes I shoot a lot of music festival). Please don't tell me I should get rid of them.
3. How often should I run the cleaning tape through my camera.

Consider I have worked on computers for over 37 years, and I never blink an eye when I see an occasional glitch. Working with camcorders - Maybe it was a drop out than again maybe it was an occasional glitch. Like the old saying s!#$ happens once in awhile that you can't explain and it's a waste of time chasing after it or trying to explain it. When I take a service call on a computer, the first thing I ask is - "Is your problem repeatable?" Can you show me? If it isn't or they say it might happen once a week or something like that, I tell them they will probably have to live with it unless they want to give me their computer for a day so I can reubild it (back their data up, inventory their apps, format & partition the hard disk that contains the OS, restore the OS, re-install the apps, restore their data, & reconfigure their profile.

That's my take on things. I'll wait for some advice. Oh, one other thing I have learned from many years of doing P.M.s, "if it ain't broke don't fix it, but change your oil in your car often."

Thanks in advance.
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Old May 12th, 2007, 06:41 PM   #14
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Trish, a long time ago in my Betacam SP shooting days a Sony service tech recommended using the head cleaning tape every 50 hours. I've been doing that with DVCAM cameras too and never have dropouts. With the XH A1 I used the head cleaning tape once when I got the camera and will probably use it again after 50 hours, or if needed before then.
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Old May 13th, 2007, 08:39 AM   #15
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Thanks Bill.

I'll go for the 50 hour estimate. Would that calculate in playback time on the head as well - ie, the capture process, reviewing the footage. Or 50 hours of taping only

A possibly dump question I know.

trish
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