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Canon XL H Series HDV Camcorders
Canon XL H1S (with SDI), Canon XL H1A (without SDI). Also XL H1.


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Old August 8th, 2006, 04:25 PM   #31
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Thanks Dan:
Tried all your helpful suggestions including trying to connect to another edit computer and the H1 just is not seen by anything.

Called Canon Support today and learned that the flashing "HDV/DV In" indicates that the "DV Section has gone bad". This "section" is what is involved with the HDV-DV firewire port.

The fact that the DV section worked fine prior to the first attempt to use the Firestore4-ProHD and did not work immediately thereafter would seem a good indicator of the source of the problem.

But to be fair to the Firestore, when support was asked if they were seeing similar failures due to the Firestore the answer was no - no repetitive Firestore caused failures.

As I am now behind the eight-ball I intend on hand-delivering the H1 and hopefully will be able to talk the service center into trying the Firestore to see if they can either get it to work or replicate what may have caused the problem.

The one thing that the support tech at Canon did say was that they H1 should always be turned off when connecting or disconnecting from the firewire to/from the firewire port as there is live power and that can cause electrical circuit damage. I tend to disagree as I was always under the impression that a 4-pin IEEE1394 connection (that is what is on the H1) does not carry electric power. Only 6-pin firewire connectors are capable of power - that is what the extra 2 pins on the 6-pin connector are for. But for what it's worth - that is the cautionary advice of the Canon support tech - always turn off the H1 prior to making any connection or disconnection from the firewire port.

And thank you all for your help with this trying mess - especially Dan Keaton.
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Old August 8th, 2006, 04:30 PM   #32
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Dear John,

Thanks for the kind words.

Good luck on getting you XL H1 fixed.

I too feel that the requirement to turn it off is overkill for the 4-pin to 4-pin cable. However, I always do this anyway as a precaution.

When you connected your XL H1 to the Firestore, you did use a 6-pin to 4-pin cable. I do not know if the FS-4 provides power over the cable or not. It seems to me that there is no valid reason to provide power from the FS-4, but this is only speculation.
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Old August 8th, 2006, 05:57 PM   #33
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Yes - I used the 6-pin to 4-pin that came with the Firestore.

And since the 4-pin is at the Camera end, I don't think there is any live power at the camera as there is no power circuit at the 4 pin end.
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Old August 9th, 2006, 07:09 PM   #34
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UPDATE: Dead Firewire Circuitry
Flew to So Cal-USA - Canon Irvine Service Center to expedite H1 repair as I am 2 projects backed up and an upcoming 1 week shoot hanging in the balance.

Must say that the Canon Irvine Express Service Center folks are top notch - very customer oriented and caring.

The customer service rep, after hearing the problem, used a pin light and found one of the firewire pins on the H1 was broken and missing. The estimated fix was $240. She also confirmed that there was no rash of Firestore created failures.

When I returned to my car, finding the coincidence of after the the first time I used the Firestore the H1 could no longer connect via firewire too much to accept, I got the 6-pin to 4-pin cable that came with the Firestore and sure enough, the 4-pin end had a buggered up internal connector that probably broke the H1 firewire pin. I tend to think that was the way the cable came as I unpacked the cable from it's original box just prior to connection to the H1.
But I think trying to prove it will be more trouble than the $240 repair not to mention the many hours lost on this mystery.

Anyway - thought I'd report back for those I've caused worry that they Firestore may have caused problems - it was a funky cable connector that came with the Firestore - not the Firestore unit itself.

Thanks again to all who offered help especially Dan Keaton.

P.S. The service rep repeated that power to the camcorder should be shut off BEFORE connecting or disconnecting the 4-pin firewire (something I don't understand as there are no power pins - but I will take their advice.)
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Old August 9th, 2006, 10:35 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Richard
P.S. The service rep repeated that power to the camcorder should be shut off BEFORE connecting or disconnecting the 4-pin firewire (something I don't understand as there are no power pins - but I will take their advice.)
I will follow their advice, but I suspect this is overly cautious. It is my understanding that both USB and Firewire were designed to plug and unplug while powered, including both the 4 pin and 6 pin versions of Firewire.

Best,
Christopher
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Old August 10th, 2006, 07:56 AM   #36
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Dear John,

Thank you for the update. It is nice to know what caused the problem.

Yesterday, I installed Canon's Console Software.

In their written instructions, they repeatedly state that you should power on the camera first, then connect the Firewire cable.

Also, they state that you do not have to power down the compter to remove the firewire cable from the computer.

They do caution you not to remove the firewire cable while to connection is active. This is to prevent data corruption and not physical damage.
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Old August 11th, 2006, 08:26 AM   #37
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WOW! The Canon Factory Service Center in Irvine, CA was fantastic.
Service Rep (Cynthia) was very professional, sharp, and totally customer oriented. They repaired my H1 in 1 single day.

After picking up the unit which required their replacing the HDV/DV pcb jack (the firewire port), the H1 is detected by my laptop and captures fine.

Problem solved.

I will try the Firestore again (WITH A DIFFERENT CABLE) and report back.

Thanks Canon Irvine Service Center - could not ask for better service - they are big reason for me to lean toward Canon products in the future!
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Old October 31st, 2006, 09:32 AM   #38
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Well - at long last!

With the recent upgraded 4s.bin patch from Focus Enhancement (announced on this forum's Focus Enhancement section) installed, I was able to record 60i HDV to the Firestore and download it to an edit computer.

The test files worked well in Edius 3.62. I converted the m2t files to the CanopusHQ intermediary for editing and all worked fine.

So much quicker than capturing from tape.

Now if we only could capture HDV 24f to the Firestore. Any ideas?

If the Firestore continues to work without hitches, it will be a great timesaver and will find regular use for my workflow.
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Old October 31st, 2006, 09:37 AM   #39
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You can actually capture 24f, you just have to do it in M2T mode. I've successfully captured 24f in M2T mode, then using MpegStreamclip to convert it to 24p HDV Quicktime for use in FCP. A bit circuitous, but doable until another update from Focus.
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Old October 31st, 2006, 10:33 AM   #40
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John - I'm curious where you converted the .m2t's to Canopus HQ?

Do you copy the .m2t files from the Firestore onto your computer, then use procoder to convert to HQ, then import to Edius?

I had Edius 3.61 and have upgraded to 4.03 (SP card). I have the newest Focus firmware and the Canon's firmware is updated as well. Although the interaction between the firestore and the Canon is the best I've seen so far (various updates), I still have trouble when placing 'raw' FS4 .m2t's on an Edius timeline. Some are fine, and some are just corrupt (or appear corrupt in Edius - sometimes locks up the app). I think it's a problem that Focus has acknowledged - a matter of how Edius reads the timecode or something(?).

Big fan of Edius and the FS4's have been bulletproof in SD mode. It's been upsetting, since Edius works with just about anything.

I'd like to know if your transcoding/converting routine somehow seams up the issues. It's an extra step, but it's better than nothing. I can't use the FS4's for HD, unless it's for an absolute long-shot backup - can't trust the files so far.

Any details you have - especially if it can be a batch process are most appreciated. I'd also like to get a sense of the times involved (2x realtime, realtime, time-consuming, etc).

Thanks very much,
Shawn
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Old October 31st, 2006, 10:44 AM   #41
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Colin: Be it known that I am not a computer person, so excuse me if I seem dense.. I'm an old-school filmmaker who was still editing on a Moviola 12 years ago and didn't even own a computer...

I am working with an agency on a series of commercials and they have specifically requested a 24p look (they wanted film originally, but the client wouldn't spring for the extra budget).

I want to shoot 24f, record to an FS-C, and edit in FCP... I don't even know what "MT2 mode" is when it's home, or how to use Streamclip effectively (I just looked at their website, but am reluctant to download it unless I really need it).. what advice can you offer, and what additional software do I need?

Sorry if this is redundant and has been discussed elsewhere, but this forum is getting so dense that it's difficult to find specific useful info... One of you should write a book, although it would probably be obsolete before the ink dries... Steve Rosen

Last edited by Steve Rosen; October 31st, 2006 at 11:34 AM.
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Old October 31st, 2006, 03:38 PM   #42
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First let me say that I have only recorded 2 each 20 sec. test files using the Synchro-Slave mode in 60i HDV.

(Steve - all HDV files have the file extension .m2t just like quicktime files have an .mov file extension - .m2t is the raw HDV file - it stands for Mpeg2 transport stream for the HDV standard).

I set the Firestore to record HDV (m2t) and then set the Firestore to HDD>DD mode, connected to computer, pressed Enable and the computer saw the Firestore as another drive. I dragged the files from the Firestore to a drive on the computer. I opened up and Edius 1080/60i project and brought the 2 HDV/m2t files into the Edius bin and then to the timeline. Due to the 15 GroupOfPictures (GOP) of the m2t files, they are not the easiest to edit with in their native form but can be done - I don't recommend it though.

I then opened up Procoder 2 (a transcoding program from Canopus/Grass Valley). The latest patch version allows Procoder to transcode the HDV/m2t file in CanopusHQ. HQ takes the raw HDV file with it's clunky GOP structure and makes them into single intraframe files which edit easily (complete with filters and compositing, etc) with beautiful results.

Procoder can be set up to make a "Watch Folder" that can be used to automatically convert any HDV/m2t files that are sent to it.

As I said earlier, I will have to do a lot more recording to the Firestore before I can report it's stability and freedom from problems. I've only just now begun. But the results are very promising as far as being a huge time saver.

Now if they would just come out with a portable HD-SDI solution ;>}
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Old November 1st, 2006, 09:27 AM   #43
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John,

Thanks for the workflow. I'll be very interested to hear what you run into will more files, longer files, etc. The files recorded as synchro-slave seem to be the most stable, but I still don't put them at 100%.

Additionally, in SD mode I like to put the firestore in a local/free-run mode - so it just does a global recording around an event (like a long tape recorder) - then I punch record in/out whenever something critical is happening, recording those sections to tape, P2, etc. Works very well in SD - however, it's very problematic in the FS4 HD mode. Edius really balks at some of the files, hangs up, etc. Even in version 4 (I have Edius 4.03 with the SP card)

Would like to see what your experiences are overall as you continue to test.

I think I'm going to experiment a bit, and put the raw .m2t files on the computer (as always), and then try to transcode them to HQ using procoder - bypassing Edius/timeline, etc. If that works, hopefully there is a stable HQ copy of each file that I can load up into an Edius timline, and whiz away at it like everything else. I'd be interested to see if that works for you as well.

Last I heard, Focus was working on things - but no timeframe, etc. Still hard to trust the HD mode, although the interaction with H1 is much better with firmware updates on both DTE & the camera. FS4 SD has been very reliable. Seems like the FS100 has been quite good as well - so I think this is all a GOP/timecode issue.
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