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Old December 10th, 2003, 05:26 AM   #1
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Playing back DV tapes

This is something that started somewhere else, but I would like to know if other members had the problems I had.

In my case I recorded two tapes using a borrowed Canon GL1. As the owner was a video production company, I thought maintenance would be fine. Apparently it was not.

The other likely problem is that I didn't know what DV tapes they had used before on that GL1, and I was not aware of the potential problem when switching tape brands in DV.

So when I played the tapes I recorded (and foolishly didn't review on location) there it was what I called a "puzzle effect" deffect on the image. Image blocks started moving randomly on 95% of the tapes.

The tapes could only be read without that deffect on Sony machines (a PD150 and two deck players, a DSR11 and DSR40). A semi-pro Panasonic deck I tried (AG-DV2500) didn't read them either.

Does anyone know if Sony uses some special recovery circuitry on their units? What do others use? Has anyone had a similar problem?

As I am now considering buying a cheaper camera to perhaps be used eventually as "C" camera on my documentaries and a transfer machine to copy DV tapes onto my PC, one thing that worries me is that this unit will play everything I throw at it.

Will I have to buy a Sony camera in order to do that? I must confess I wasn't willing to.

I don't know if there's some place I can find information about play tests of some kind done on different machines. Is there such a thing?



Carlos
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Old December 10th, 2003, 06:08 AM   #2
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Carlos, you got dirty heads. That's why you saw the "moving puzzle"...Blocks of image started moving up and down.

http://www.dvfreak.com/tape.htm

Why are you using Sony tape? What kind of Sony tape? There's been lots of reported complaints about the cheaper line of Sony tape over the years. The shop I deal with don't even carry them anymore because they had so many complaints.

I've played back tape shot with a number of cams in Pana cams without problems.

Use good tape (and 1 brand/type) and don't contaminate them.
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Old December 10th, 2003, 07:23 AM   #3
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<<<-- Originally posted by Frank Granovski : Carlos, you got dirty heads. That's why you saw the "moving puzzle"...Blocks of image started moving up and down.->>>

Right. So far so good... or so bad. I wasn't really aware DV was such a fragile media. My fault.

<<<--Why are you using Sony tape? What kind of Sony tape? There's been lots of reported complaints about the cheaper line of Sony tape over the years. The shop I deal with don't even carry them anymore because they had so many complaints.->>>

The tape was Sony Premium, blue label, type DVM60PRL. It's the most expensive DV tape I could find around here. Is that the one you mean?

The reason I picked the Sony instead of Maxel and Pana (types unknown) was that I had a report from a friend of mine that Sonys were the ones that gave less problems in the broadcast news work he coordinates. They use several DV cameras, renting sometimes.

Though I believe the problem I had was not due to Sony tape, but from that apparent brand switch trick and from the camera I used. There was another story I read on the Canon forum in DVInfo, where a guy had similar problems with two GL1 cameras during a job, at the same time.

In fact that was one of the reason why I cut the GL2 off my original purchase list.

<<<-- I've played back tape shot with a number of cams in Pana cams without problems.-->>>

But did you play back tapes that had problems and saw what you got? My question is how different brands recover information that is not in pristine condition. Reading a tape that is fine should be easy, and we should all try that our recordings are OK. But what happens when they are not and you need the images?

I played these trouble tapes on different equipment and the only which could read them and recover the information were Sony machines. My friend also told me that on that video company he works they have two DSR11 machines that are used 24h all around. The Pana DV2500 machine is never touched. We could not recover the information playing those tapes on it.

In the end I had a copy made to S-VHS to watch at home, using a Sony DSR40 DV player.

<<<-- Use good tape (and 1 brand/type) and don't contaminate them. -->>>

The lesson is learnt about not mixing tapes. With an unknown machine I should always use a 5 cleaning sec pass before a shooting, I think.

As I said, the tape I was using was supposed to be a good one. But I am open to suggestions on which are the best tapes around.


Carlos
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