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Sony HVR-Z1 / HDR-FX1
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CCD HDV camcorder.


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Old August 31st, 2008, 10:10 AM   #1
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Z1 maintenance

Hey all,

A recent thread on drum life brought up the issue of maintenance for my Z1.

Do any of you bring in your camera for regular cleanings of some sort? If yes, what would you recommend, and how long between cleanings? Or is a head cleaning tape good enough?

Thanks!
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Old August 31st, 2008, 06:28 PM   #2
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Don't know whether this is good or bad, but I haven't done any maintenance on my Z1 and have not used any cleaning tapes since I bought it over 3 years ago. My motto is "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" :-)
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Old August 31st, 2008, 08:54 PM   #3
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I used to never clean the heads on my cameras. I like the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" but recently I had one of my Z1s start doing some strange stuff. It would only get through half a tape recording and the second half would be all garbled. I finally took it in, since I knew I could only get about 30 min worth of footage. Apparently some sand or something got in there and scratched the record head and while it would work, the tape would start slipping when there wasn't enough tension as it got to the end of the tape. Anyway, this happened after I started traveling with my cams doing shoots, cruises, mexico, etc. So, what the guy at the tech place suggested; get a cleaning for your cams after any time you're out in conditions where you might get stuff on the heads, sandy places, etc. The cleaning costs me about $70. I've only done it once since that whole bad tape head, but $70 preventive care is better than the $500 it cost me to replace the head.
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Old August 31st, 2008, 09:02 PM   #4
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Boyd, usually I follow the same maintenance program as you, but a few times I've gotten the "use cleaning tape" error while filming. Puts the fear of God into you, cause the camera stops working, and you pray while running the cleaner, and putting a tape back in.

And once, not too long ago, it seemed a tape jammed, which I have never seen before. I popped in a fresh tape and all was well.

So these incidents got me thinking that maybe a cleaning of some sort was warranted. But, like the drum life question, there seems to be no official guidelines for this kind of thing.

Anyone have any solid info on whether on not Sony recommends anything?
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Old August 31st, 2008, 09:04 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben Hogan View Post
I used to never clean the heads on my cameras.
Thanks for that info, Ben. I must have been posting exactly when you were, so I didn't see your reply.

Cheers, and welcome to Dvinfo.net, the best forum spot in the world!
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Old August 31st, 2008, 10:47 PM   #6
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Service...

I sent both of my Z1us in for a cleaning and one of them needed a repair done (focus assembly issue) anyway I sent my camera to Sony Camcorder Repair | Canon Camcorder Repair They were great and they even offer a 6 month guarantee. I highly reccomend them.


But like everyone else I only send them in when a problem starts to pop up...
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Old September 1st, 2008, 08:33 AM   #7
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FWIW, here's where you'll find info on Sony's official pro repair centers: Sony | Services and Programs

Note that this is only for the Z1 however. The FX1 is serviced by Sony's consumer division.
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