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Old January 31st, 2002, 07:00 PM   #16
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Edward....

Are your results independent of tape brand?

Thanks
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Old January 31st, 2002, 10:00 PM   #17
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I own both XL-1 for 4 years, GL-1 for 2 years, and now an XL1S. In wedding and event business doing about 30 jobs/year. I have about 50 Panasonic 60 min tapes, and 10 80-min tapes, which I constantly re-use, probably 5-10 times each. Never had a problem. They are designed to be re-used. You do not buy a new diskett every time for a new file, do you? I think that because it is so difficult to point a finger at the source of the digital glitches, people tend to blame the tape as the most obvious and easy to replace culprit. But I hear of other users re using tons of DV tapes without any problems, and I hear of users having the problems since day one using a brand new camera and fresh tapes. My gut feeling is there are some deviations from the nominal head/tape mechanism specs. Some cameras have it outside the best envelope, and as result are more likely to have the glitches, and less forgiving to little dust particle etc.
Alex

Last edited by Alex Dolgin; February 1st, 2002 at 07:48 AM.
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Old February 1st, 2002, 10:45 AM   #18
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We have always stayed strictly with the Panasonic tapes. We started with the PQ series but changed to the Master series when it was introduced. I have not noticed any problems using either the Pro or Master series. These are also the only tapes we have ever used in our cameras.

Currently, we use both the 63 and 83 minute varieties of the Master series. I cannot tell any difference in the use of either length. If necessary, I will even put the final product in LP on an 83 minute tape to reach up to 2 hours. LP is ONLY used if the final product exceeds 83-84 minutes. And, yes, I will overwrite an SP tape with LP footage or an LP tape with SP footage. Since recording COMPLETELY overwrites a tape, it makes no difference. (I even have a few tapes with mixed LP and SP with one continuous timecode!)

I'm not convinced the problems discussed above are as closely related to the tapes as everyone seems to think.

Edward
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Old February 1st, 2002, 11:02 AM   #19
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So then...the question is...what would cause pixelation, bad audio, and interlacing of old and new footage on a tape on its second or third runs, but never on the first? And wait, there's more...I have an even hairier mind-bender...what would cause the frazzled picture to suddenly clear up at the precise moment you reach the end of the original footage and have made your way to virgin tape on the same cassette?

Hmmm...let me see.....this is a tough one...

Seriously though, I'm jealous of you guys that aren't having troubles with this. But some of us obviously are. Actually, I should say "were" instead of "are"...I haven't had it happen again now that I'm using fresh tape.
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Old February 1st, 2002, 12:32 PM   #20
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I think that Edward is pretty much on track. I (and a few others) apparently own "lemons". I'm sure it's camera related -- I've tried several tape brands, all with the same results.

If I didn't like the camera as much as I do I'd probably go for something else. It's a shame, though; I would have guessed that Canon would have a better handle on their QC.

Grumble......
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Old February 1st, 2002, 03:28 PM   #21
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I agree that it is likely a camera problem. I've had all the problems mentioned here on new tapes, including the interlaced video problem. It wasn't interlaced with previously recorded video, but current data just offset to one side in every other band.

My camera was returned to Canon for repair and I will let you all know what they find. They should have received it today.
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Old February 2nd, 2002, 10:32 AM   #22
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here is something more to add and I'd really appreciate everyone's thoughts....

My camera was giving me that pixelations, banding and even leak thru of previous footage. I sent it for it's yearly cleaning (under warranty) and also let them know I was having those problems.

They said they'd clean it and test it. If there was a problem, they said they'd send it on to Canon for repairs. If not, I'd get it back.

I got it back ... all was working fine (with new tapes) ... then I used it to stripe a previously used tape .... recorded the entire tape with lens cap on/ mic unplugged. Did some filming and DARN the problem was there again!!

I used a head cleaning tape and then recorded on a new (but stripped) tape and didn't have the problem. ....

I am only use panasonic tapes ... I also a panasonic head cleaner.

QUESTIONS:

Do you think it's really my camera ( bought September 2000). If I sent it for servicing and they didn't see the problem, how would I know?? (I'm not a camera repair shop and they are).

Should I use a canon tape cleaner instead of Panasonic?

Has anyone read the article in last month's DV magazine re: using different tape brands?? It basically said it's NOT a good idea. So could different tape brands cause the bad results some are experiencing?? I used Sony tapes when I first got my camera -- mixed with panasonic at random because I didn't think there'd be a difference so I bought what was "on sale"

How often do people clean their heads?

Thanks!!

deb
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Old February 2nd, 2002, 11:46 AM   #23
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I have no doubt that it's the camera. I've tried a variety of tapes, with the same result. It is good advice to ultimately stick with one brand, though. I also use the Panasonics -- they use a dry lube. Find one you like and stay with it.

It shouldn't be necessary to clean the heads excessively -- the cleaning tapes are abrasive. I don't think it matters what brand you use, although I use a Canon cleaner. Dirty heads will usually cause problems different than the banding problems that have been described a great length.

I believe that these problems are caused by head misalignment, etc. In my cases, it's always puzzling why it only occurs at the start of a tape (with the bad footage varying in length) and quite frequently does not occur on the 2nd tape used during the same production (after an intermission).

Some will disagree, but I think that prestriping the entire tape is a waste of time, and creates additional wear on the heads. The XL-1 puts new time code down each time. Recording a minute or so, then backing up into it to prevent a time code break is OK, but anything more is a waste of time. However, if it feels good, do it!
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Old February 2nd, 2002, 12:03 PM   #24
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hmmm ...

Not sure if this is the place to continue posting on this, but NOW WHAT??

I have had the exact same problem that was described -- pixles, banding and even a few seconds of the previous tape bleeding thru -- it REALLY screwed up my most recent shoot.

After reading the first posts here and looking anywhere and everywhere else I could find, I thought it was because I re-used the tape. .....

But many who have been doing this for a while are saying here that it probably isn't.

BUT I JUST sent my camera in for cleaning and a "check up" in November!! I have a 4 year warranty with Mack Camera.

I have this not totally unreasonable fear that if I send it back to them it will disappear for weeks and weeks ... not something I can afford to do ... but if it's the heads misaligned, well ... that is even more of something I can't afford!

I have the bad tape .... with examples of the previous footage and then pixels and banding, etc on it .... Maybe I will send it, along with the camera.

Meanwhile, I am looking for more advise from the experienced... Have people sent their cameras to Mack under the warranty?? Mack says they send them directly to Canon if they need repair. Any thoughts on turn around time?? Any horror stories to add to my camera loss fear???

thanks,
deb
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Old February 4th, 2002, 09:32 AM   #25
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The one camera we had that exhibited this problem was fixed after they REPLACED the heads. The wording of their note basically indicated they were doing this "out of the goodness of their heart" but the fact remains that the camera WAS under warranty so we were not charged for this replacement. If you have heads repeatedly going out of alignment, this may be the only solution.
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Old February 6th, 2002, 01:48 AM   #26
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I once did a wedding and went into the brides house for 1 hour and everything showed it was taping fine. When I went back to my car I played some back and nothing was there even though my time code showed it was taping! I had a brand new tape as well. I put in my head cleaner and then it work fine after that. I had to go back and get more footage. My point is to always use the + or - review button to make sure and keep the heads clean especially if you use the camera as an editing deck like me. I never seem to have problems with reusing a tape unless the heads have a speck or dirt on them. But I won't reuse a tape for a wedding, ever. (just in case...tapes are tax right off anyway!)

I did have an earlier problem when I first bought my camera and when I sent it in, Canon replaced my head drum! They said that was causing my tape glitches! If you do a head cleaning and use a fresh tape and there is still problems then mabey the head has a problem.
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Old February 6th, 2002, 07:05 AM   #27
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Camera Back from Canon

My XL1S arrived from Canon Repair yesterday. One thing I can say is they are certainly fast. They (Irvine) received it Friday AM and I had it in hand the following Tuesday AM. And that was even after Canon put the wrong address on it and FedEx had to call to find out where it should be delivered!

Here is a quote from the repair document:

"Repaired unit. Replaced drum ass'y. Perf. cam., rec. and tapepath adj. Chkd. all fns. to fact. specs. (9449)"

The repair was covered under warranty and my only cost was shipping/insurance to Irvine. I have only been able to do a quick test so don't know if the problem has been resolved. Initial indications are good and will consider it fixed unless more thorough tests prove otherwise.
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Old February 6th, 2002, 07:59 AM   #28
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Yes, that was what they replaced on mine as I recall now!
(Replaced drum ass'y)
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Old February 6th, 2002, 08:03 AM   #29
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Ed,

when you (or otehrs) mention warranty, are you talking about the extended warranty from another vendor??

I bought my canon in September, 2000 -- I bought an addition 4 year warranty from Mack Camera --(cost another $400 I think).

I sent my camera to them with this problem and they cleaned it and said it was fine. But I had the same problem when I got it back -- only once, mind you, but it was a BIG PROBLEM!!!!

I have the bad tape ... maybe I should send that in with the camera???

Did you call Canon direct???

thanks,
deb
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Old February 6th, 2002, 08:29 AM   #30
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Hi Deb,

I did not purchase an extended warranty, this repair was covered under the factory warranty since the camera is only three months old. I called the 800 number on my XL1 Owner's Club membership card and they gave me the mailing address of the repair facility.

I did not send a tape but did send a couple of frame grabs as examples the problem I was having.

Good Luck
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