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Canon XL and GL Series DV Camcorders
Canon XL2 / XL1S / XL1 and GL2 / XM2 / GL1 / XM1.


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Old July 6th, 2005, 03:20 AM   #1
David Perry
 
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Drop outs, drop outs, drop outs!

I looked in the past threads for answer for this, but it wasn't covered specifically. I'm having problems with drop outs on all three of my cameras. It's making me crazy! It's hard enough editing out the photographer, but I also have to edit around these drop outs.

I saw on some forum there was a discussion about the types of tapes you should use with an XL2 and a running debate that never solved anything. Some say Panasonic, some say Sony Excellence. Seems to me I should be able to use just about any quality DV tape and it should work.

The XL2 is brand spanking new. I have cleaned the head several times and it doesn't help. Periodically I get these random pixels on the tape sometimes with and sometimes without sound drop out. Any help or suggests is much appreciated.

David
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Old July 6th, 2005, 03:54 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Perry
I'm having problems with drop outs on all three of my cameras.
May be the problem is neither the tape nor head clogging but your editing system? Do the drop outs show when you connect the camera to a TV and play the tape? How do you capture the footage (some info on your editing computer, firewire card, capture card, hard drive(s) etc. might be helpful).
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Old July 6th, 2005, 08:39 AM   #3
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"Seems to me I should be able to use just about any quality DV tape and it should work."

Well, yes and no. The concensus seems to be to NOT switch brands. Stick with one brand throughout the use of the cam. It's the swapping of brands, and their different lubricants that seems to be the biggest problems reported.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 08:56 AM   #4
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To get a more informative answer, you need to give more informaton yourself.

What tapes are you using, are they all new, or are you reusing them, do you get the problems when played straight back to a monitor, or just in editing?

Could very well be your capturing software. A bad cable? Do you capture from each camera, a deck, or from one camera?

Mike
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Old July 6th, 2005, 09:35 AM   #5
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Well first you should find out where the problem is

Do you see the drop outs when viewing the footage on the camera ?

Do you get the drop outs if you capture the footage recorded on the XL with a different camera / deck

if you dont see the dropouts on camera but you do get them on captured footage chances are there is a problem somewhere between the camera and your computer.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 11:13 AM   #6
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David,

I've never experienced the big red/green pixels while digitizing directly from the camera and I've used cheapo tapes as well as high quality but...

I've experienced 'drop frames' digitizing directly from the camera ONLY when other firewire devices are powered on. I simply switch off all firewire harddrives while digitizing and this solves the issue.

If you're editing with Avid software, I would recommend switching off any/all firewire devices connected to your computer while loading directly from the camera.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 02:01 PM   #7
David Perry
 
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System Setup

Thanks for all the replies. I have tried to hook up my XL2 directly to my computer and transfer the footage via firewire through Vegas, but my computer does not see the camera. I'm using XP Pro. I use Vegas 5 and 6. Currently I am using two JVC DRMV1S decks to transfer the footage over to Vegas via firewire. I have swapped out firewires and tried both decks using two different computers. I do have other devices connected to the computers, via USB and firewire, but I have transferred footage over with them turned off and it did not make any difference.

I would like to try and transfer the footage over to my computer directly from the cameras to see if that would resolve the drop out problems. Is there something I need to do to get XP Pro to see the cameras?

David Perry
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2 XL1s 1 XL2, Vegas 6 & 5, 2 JVC DRMV1S decks, Dell Precision 670, Dual Processors, & two custom built computers.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 02:41 PM   #8
David Perry
 
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Oh yeah, I forgot to mention what tapes I am using. I have been using Sony Premium, but for my last project I switched to Sony Excellence. I read somewhere that the Excellence tapes were better.

David
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Old July 6th, 2005, 03:45 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Perry
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention what tapes I am using. I have been using Sony Premium, but for my last project I switched to Sony Excellence. I read somewhere that the Excellence tapes were better.

David
DCS Video

Hello,

The lower end decks won't give you the results of the better VTRs. I had a JVC camera ($600.00) that I wanted to use as a feeder deck, but it didn't like the Canon tapes very much. The JVC DRMV1S is a very inexpensive unit, so I would start out thinking it suspect.

Excellence are the best and since I started using them and purchased a Sony DSR-11, I haven't had any problems !!

XP should absolutely recognize your camera, so something is wrong there. It could be 100 things, but maybe the port you are plugging into is bad or not connected... this probably isn't true if you are using the same port with Vegas, so if that is the case, it is something else, but it isn't right. Maybe the firewire port on your camera?

When you play the tape back on your Canon Camera, are the dropouts there?

Are the dropouts in the same place every time you playback?

Let us know !
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Old July 6th, 2005, 04:57 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Perry

I would like to try and transfer the footage over to my computer directly from the cameras to see if that would resolve the drop out problems. Is there something I need to do to get XP Pro to see the cameras?
.
Yeah buy a MAC! JK!
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Old July 6th, 2005, 04:58 PM   #11
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I think the fact that you cannot get the computer to recognize any of the three cameras is something to look at. I have three cameras and one deck, and all my computers recognize all of them.

If you hook up your cameras to your computer with a good firewire and XP does not find them, something is really wrong with the computer or the firewires, probably the computer! What happens when you hook up the camera to the firewire, and plug it into your computer? Does it find it and not know what to do with it? Or, does it not even know it is hooked up?

Let us know.

Mike
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Old July 6th, 2005, 08:48 PM   #12
David Perry
 
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Hmmm... since none of you are experiencing the same kind of problem I am and it's happening on all three of my cameras, it must have something to do with my setup here. I guess I am going to have to try and bypass my JVC decks and go straight in. I will do some tests and get back with you guys. I really appreciate your help on this, because it is driving me crazy. I will work on this tonight.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 09:05 PM   #13
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Well, David, I did have the same problem...Attach the camera to the Firewire and computer wouldn't recognize it. (It got really bad when the computer fried the camera a couple times, but that's another story too long for this post.)
I tried everything, including new 1394 cards, new cables, differrent connections, etc. Nothing worked. I then took my camera to a friends computer, and it didn't work there. It turns out the firewire on the camera got toasted, and it wouldn't work anywhere.

I knew this problem started in my computer, took it to a shop, and they found the firewire connection on the MB was fried and sending spikes thru the system. (The MB was a Gigabyte, BTW...)
So, I have replaced the MB, had the camera fixed, and things have been working wonderfully for the last three weeks.
I'd suggest something similar. First off, test your camera on someone else's computer. Hopefully it works, but if it doesn't, chances are pretty good the camera's 1394 is toast.
Secondly, bring your computer in for testing. You might as well find out now if your firewire port is working or not.
Personally, I didn't want my camera to be history a fourth time, and replaced anything having to do with the original computer system.
Good luck,

Bill
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Old July 7th, 2005, 03:11 AM   #14
David Perry
 
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Okay so I finished testing the systems out and I was able to connect the XL2 to one of my computers and capture from it. I thought I had tried all 3, but it's been a while and I forget. I tried on the Dell and it says it cannot find the drivers to install the hardware. Hmmm...

Anyway, I compared captured video from the JVC decks to the video straight from the camera. On the Premium tape, the error was more pronounced on the video from the camera. However, with the Sony Excellence tape it wasn't there at all. I hate it when things aren't definitive. Well, at least I know to use the Excellence tapes from now on.

I would like to thank everybody for their input. I really didn't think it was my JVC decks causing the problems, but now it seems it was a combination of things including the JVC decks.

David
DCS Video
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