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Sony HVR-HD1000
Sony's single-CMOS shoulder mount HDV camcorder.


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Old January 1st, 2011, 01:21 PM   #1
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Head Problems?

I've got a fairly new HD1000U. It's only a few months old. I'm getting skips and pauses in my footage with brand new tapes (I only use Sony Mini DV). I recall having a "dirty heads" error flash after only having the camera a week or so. I've tried a head cleaning tape (Dynex™ - MiniDV Head Cleaner from Best Buy) but it didn't help. Suggestions? Thanks!
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Old January 1st, 2011, 03:36 PM   #2
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The general consensus is to run a DV cleaning tape on a brand new camera before the first recording. This removes any gunk left on the heads and tape guides .. by the factory.

Always use the same brand DV cleaning tape as the DV recording tape you're using .. in this case Sony. I'd buy 2 because it's hard to see in the little window, when one is going to run out.

Follow the cleaning instructions and use it once right through then discard it, even though some brands will say you can rewind a DV cleaning tape and use it twice through.

That's marketing hype for ppl who baulk at buying a tape you can only use once. HTH

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Old January 1st, 2011, 04:56 PM   #3
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Thank you so much for that reply. I've never heard of cleaning the heads before the first recording. I guess that would have prevended this. So do you think that using the Sony cleaner will fix it? And did I do a harmful thing by using that other brand cleaner? I've cleaned it twice with the off brand.
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Old January 1st, 2011, 05:54 PM   #4
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No, the other stuff shouldn't have done any damage. Make sure you follow the directions on the tape and only use it for 10 seconds or so at a time. "Use it once right through" might be interpreted to mean run the entire length of the cleaning tape continuously all at once, which would be very bad. I think he means to discard the tape once it has reached its end, which is a good idea, but not that you should use the entire tape in a single cleaning session.

The dropouts you are experiencing should go away after about ten hours of tapes or so.

When you say your camera is new, do you mean new from the factory or new to you but used by someone else?
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Old January 1st, 2011, 07:25 PM   #5
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Yes, I followed the directions on the head cleaner tape: no more that 10 secs per attempt. I'll order some Sony brand head cleaners online...can't find a store that carries them in town.

Adam, I bought the camera new from J&R Electronics about 3 months ago. I actually got a 'dirty heads' error about 3 weeks in but it went away, so I disregarded it (mistake). I think I should have done that initial head clean like Allan suggested.

But, I'm trusting that this will be resolved when I get the Sony brand head cleaners...I just shot a New Year's Eve concert and there are a lot of skips in the footage. Thanks.
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Old January 1st, 2011, 11:20 PM   #6
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If your warranty is still in place, it might be worthwhile submitting the camera for service with a Sony Professional dealership. There are lots of small high-precision mass-produced parts in the tape transport.

It might be that the original assembly was closer to an alignment limit than most but within spec.

Now everything has likely bedded down to a permanent working condition, the alignment might have drifted to a point where an adjustment is needed. These things are what warranties are for.

I am not condemning Sony or their product. I see it as a miracle that any of this micro-miniature engineering by any manufacturer ever works at all.
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Old January 1st, 2011, 11:26 PM   #7
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Bob, that's a possibility as well. Have any of you ever had to send a Sony camera in for service? I'm just wondering how long it may take. This is our only camera and it's used about 3 days per week.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 12:50 PM   #8
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From new i had a problem the same as yours, in the end i found that from new the tape deck system was faulty. this all resulted in green and red video in my adobe prem 8.. i have a brand new one from sony and still have the same problem,but not as bad, so i ran a cleaner through twice and its now good, thank god.....
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