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Old October 28th, 2006, 05:37 PM   #1
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Bad Mini DV tapes

I recently recorded some footage on my Sony-VX2000. When I watch the playback, it was brutally obvious that is was recorded badly. Dirty heads? I don't know. Digital distortion. Pixelated video and audio breaks. So I'm asking all you fine people if you know of anything I can do or anywhere I can bring my tapes for help. If you think they are unsalvagable, please let me know also.
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Chris
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Old October 28th, 2006, 09:13 PM   #2
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Were they recorded in LP mode?

Can your camera play other tapes fine?

2- If you use a high-high-end DV deck like a DSR-1500 or 1700 or 2000, they are slightly better at reading back miniDV tapes.
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Old October 28th, 2006, 10:27 PM   #3
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Glenn,
Thanks for your time.

1) The tapes were recorded in SP mode
2) Yes, my camera plays other tapes fine
3) I will try to find one of those highend decks


I've been told that my heads are bad and need to be fix also that the tapes are ruined.

Last edited by Chris De Pierro; October 28th, 2006 at 11:12 PM.
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Old October 29th, 2006, 01:13 AM   #4
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What I was saying that if you record a new tape on your VX2000, can you play that tape back fine? If so, then perhaps you had a bad batch of miniDV tape or something like that. Or perhaps there was some other factor happening (condensation??? tape stretching???).
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Old October 29th, 2006, 02:05 PM   #5
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"What I was saying that if you record a new tape on your VX2000, can you play that tape back fine?"

Sometimes. 25% of the time I get this problem. The tapes don't playback well from any decks including from the camera it was shot on.

"other factor happening (condensation??? tape stretching???)"

Are these factors fixable?

Thanks again Glenn
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Old October 29th, 2006, 02:51 PM   #6
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Quote:
"other factor happening (condensation??? tape stretching???)"

Are these factors fixable?
I'm not sure actually- just speculating.

Quote:
Sometimes. 25% of the time I get this problem. The tapes don't playback well from any decks including from the camera it was shot on.
Perhaps something is wrong with your camera? (On the recording or playback side.)
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Old October 29th, 2006, 03:14 PM   #7
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Yes...Camera problem is what I feared.

So you think playing the tapes on a hi-end deck might help...
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Old October 30th, 2006, 05:30 AM   #8
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If the tapes will play in the camera that recorded them that's not a good sign.
It's still worth trying a high end deck however usually they're only of help if the recording device has an issue such as guides out of alignment, typically the tapes might have played OK in the device that recorded them but not much else apart form a VCR with wider tolerance servos, the DSR 2000 is about as good as it gets but that's a very pricey deck. If it will not play them then you're really out of luck.

However one thing before total dispair. Try checking the anaolgue outputs of the camera, does that look any better than capture via firewire. I've had some measure of success playing back dodgy DV tapes and capturing from the analogue outputs of a VCR, the S-Video output is the best, feed that into say a ADVC 100 and capture from that. Feed the audio outputs into a decent sound card and capture that as well and sync the whole thing back together again. A bit tedious but if you've got something you just have to get back from the dead it can be a lifesaver.

But above all else, get the camera checked out.
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Old October 30th, 2006, 08:26 PM   #9
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Chris.

Servicing is probably the only option especially if you have been mixing brands of tape stocks between Sony's own and others.

Another test you might like to try is to start the camcorder recording handheld, then slowly and gently tilt the camera forward through a full rotation, then do the same thing backwards, then slowly roll the camera sideways through a full rotation, then back again.

If you observe any changes in the recording on playback, servicing is very definitely needed as there likely will be a tensioning or loading problem too subtle to set off the camera's fault reporting system and shut it down.
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Old October 31st, 2006, 11:23 AM   #10
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Forgive me if this sounds obvious, but have you tried simply cleaning the heads?
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Old November 9th, 2006, 11:16 AM   #11
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Thank you everyone. I will try all suggestions and get back to you.
Great site, great members!

Truly,
Chris
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