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Old February 13th, 2008, 02:13 PM   #1
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Head Cleaning: 10 seconds?

Is 10 seconds all you need for a head cleaning (as per the instructions) or should I keep this thing running for longer than that?
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Old February 13th, 2008, 02:52 PM   #2
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Dear Brian,

I recommend that you precisely follow the instructions.
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Old February 13th, 2008, 03:45 PM   #3
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Dear Brian,

PS: to the letter.

Cheers.
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Old February 14th, 2008, 07:37 AM   #4
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head cleaning tapes

Yep! Remember, head cleaning tapes are, by design, VERY abrasive so frequent or extended use of them will wear out your heads faster than about anything else you can do. 10 seconds it is.
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Old February 14th, 2008, 07:43 AM   #5
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Well, 10 seconds it is... but I have to tell you, my HV20's giving me at least 2-3 dropouts per tape. I don't know what it is, but this is completely fubared and from what I can tell, outside the realm of "normal" behavior.

It's made the move I'm making more difficult, that's for sure!

I'm going to see if I have an extended warranty on this thing...
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Old February 14th, 2008, 07:48 AM   #6
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if you're seeing the drops when you capture then it's possible the heads aren't dirty but slightly out of alignment so when (if you're using the same camera to capture with) you capture it shows drops. Try a different camera or deck to capture and see what happens.
I use an ols JVC 1 chip as a deck and while it won't capture tapes from my PD150 it WILL capture tapes from my 170. Go figure!
Do not overclean the heads as you'll pay plenty for that move later on.

Don
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Old February 14th, 2008, 07:53 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Bloom View Post
if you're seeing the drops when you capture then it's possible the heads aren't dirty but slightly out of alignment so when (if you're using the same camera to capture with) you capture it shows drops. Try a different camera or deck to capture and see what happens.
I use an ols JVC 1 chip as a deck and while it won't capture tapes from my PD150 it WILL capture tapes from my 170. Go figure!
Do not overclean the heads as you'll pay plenty for that move later on.

Don
I'm seeing drops when I capture but they're in the exact same places each time I capture. I don't have another HD camera to capture with, but I'm reasonably certain that these drops are occurring during recording, NOT during capture/playback.

Edit: Actually, I stand corrected. It's not in the exact same place. I am getting dropouts during capture, not during recording.

(this is particularly encouraging because this means that there may be a chance some of my "lost" movie footage can be recovered.)

But that still means my camera is messed up.
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Old February 14th, 2008, 08:37 AM   #8
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Brian, the first point to make is that head cleaners do nothing for the guides, rollers, capstan and pinch roller (9 components in a Mini DV deck) some of which revolve at the same relative speed as the passing cleaning tape, and it's these components that deserve your close attention every so often.

Remember that simply recording one hour of DV means that 70 metres of tape pass through the mechanism. It may be time for a tape path clean - especially if you've been mixing tapes in the camera's deck.

tom.
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Old February 14th, 2008, 08:56 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Hardwick View Post
Brian, the first point to make is that head cleaners do nothing for the guides, rollers, capstan and pinch roller (9 components in a Mini DV deck) some of which revolve at the same relative speed as the passing cleaning tape, and it's these components that deserve your close attention every so often.

Remember that simply recording one hour of DV means that 70 metres of tape pass through the mechanism. It may be time for a tape path clean - especially if you've been mixing tapes in the camera's deck.

tom.
Tape path clean?
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Old February 14th, 2008, 10:00 AM   #10
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Yes, I'm thinking that maybe you've mixed tapes in the camera and that gunge buildup is causing the dropouts you're seeing. But you say the dropouts occur during capture - so does this point at your computer, NLE or Firewire cable? Do the DOs show up on your side-screen during replay?

tom.
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Old February 14th, 2008, 02:39 PM   #11
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Brian, stop by the shop and we can check out your tape for you. If the transport pathway is really dirty you will need to send it off for a good cleaning.
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Old February 24th, 2008, 11:33 PM   #12
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I use a Canon XH A1, and I've been getting drop-outs ever since I bought it. At first, Canon said it was a problem with something inside the tape compartment - they replaced the parts and things were fine for a while. When I started getting drop-outs again, Canon said I was probably using fake tapes that were making the head dirty. I was told to clean the heads after every five tapes! I was also told to run the cleaning cassette for 25 seconds! This goes against all the advice you can read anywhere. However, the drop out problem seems to have improved slightly. I only use Panasonic PQ tapes... they may be fake, but they look like pretty top notch tapes to me, and I can't understand why anyone would go to the bother and expense of faking tapes for the minimal amout of cash I bought them for. So, I'm now performing an experiment. I shall follow Canon's instructions and film five hours of footage on my original stock, then I will go somewhere where I can buy "officially not fake" tapes and film another five hours. If there are drop-outs on any of those ten tapes, then Canon is full of it. And my tape head is closer to death than is should be.
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Old February 25th, 2008, 06:55 AM   #13
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Far be it from me to question any manufacturers statements but what the ?%&$#@!!# are they talking about?
What are "fake tapes"?
Use a head cleaning tape every 5 hours and then for 25 seconds?

Excuse me, I know I'm not the sharpest crayon in the box sometimes but if that's the best they can come up with then I think I'd have to doubt their capability to fix my camera WHEN it has to go in for service because sure as I sit here it WILL be going in to replace the heads that have been ground down by using the cleaning tape far too often and far too long.
I have been using genuine Panny PQs for a good number of years and other than the occassional dropout (very occassional) I've never had a problem with my "genuine" Panasonic tapes. I've run them thru Sony and JVC cameras and all I can say is "no problem".
As for real or fake that is without question the most ridiculous thing I have heard in all my years and frankly I think it's time you find someone who knows what they are talking about over there at the service center because it's obvious the person you talked to doesn't have a clue.
If it sounds like I'm aggravated at the stupidity of these people I am because SOME people would take them at their word and wind up spending a lot of hard earned money with them later to repair their camera that they wouldn't of had to spend if they had talked to someone who knew their a** from a hole in the ground.
Personally if it were me, I certainly would not do as they recommend but clean the heads 1 time and follw the direction on the tape and then carry on as you normally would. Perhaps you just got a batch of bad tape stock. it does happen once in a while.

Don
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Old February 25th, 2008, 01:56 PM   #14
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Completely agree with Don... I can't imagine a tech support saying somethings like that, everything about it is wrong...

Fake Tapes... ?
Every 5 hours?
Running it for 25 seconds?

Maybe they just want your camera to break, so they can fix it.
Don't want to make conspiracy theories, I'm making fun, but that person shouldn't be sitting at that desk.
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Old February 25th, 2008, 05:10 PM   #15
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That's what I thought! Luckily, Canon have given me an extension on my warranty - and hopefully, I will be able to prove them wrong about head cleaning with just ten hours of footage.
As for fake tapes - this might be an issue for me as I live in China - so what I might be getting is low grade tape in a high grade container. BUT - everyone I know here uses cheap tapes that they buy from "unofficial" sources, and NO-ONE else has had the same problem with drop-outs as I'm having - and I'm telling you, it's a huge problem.
So - conclusion is: Canon is full of "it".
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