Problem with LANC, firewire, and headphones... at
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Canon XH Series HDV Camcorders
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Old November 9th, 2009, 02:01 PM   #1
Major Player
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Dayton, TN (USA)
Posts: 219
Problem with LANC, firewire, and headphones...

Ok, so I've read a number of stories on here of the LANC port dying, of the headphones jack breaking, and a couple stories of the firewire port not working right. I've got a problem with all three.

About a week ago the LANC port (using a Varizoom StealthZoom) started working intermittently. If I unplugged and re-plugged the cable it would work again for a while, or if I pushed ever so slightly down on the cable so that the pin would go up inside the jack, it would connect and work. As of today, it doesn't work at all.

For the past two-three months I often have had to wiggle the firewire cable around in the jack for it to connect to the computer (tried multiple cables, so I know that's not the problem) and for about the past week, firewire capture has resulted in my audio being 17 frames out of sync with (coming in before) my video. I've tried capturing several different tapes, to two different computers, with the same problem. Playback on the camera itself is fine--the sync is perfect.

Finally, for a couple months the audio in the headphones has been staticy unless the jack is just right. It's still the same, no change, but I figured it might be germaine to the situation.

So, that's what I'm having problems with: all three ports next to each other giving me issues. I can't point to any rough treatment (I treat this thing really carefully) or any drops or jerks on cables or anything that might explain it. Any suggestions or possible fixes? I can live without the LANC if I absolutely have to, though I do lots of sports shooting so having it for my shoulder mount is really nice, and I can deal with the headphones being staticy, but the firewire issue is really a pain because right now I've gotta go in and adjust the audio 17 frames with my video on everything.

Any help or advice is appreciated!
David Beisner
Media Specialist, Bryan College, Dayton, TN --
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Old November 9th, 2009, 04:15 PM   #2
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Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Fairfield, Dunedin, New Zealand
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Hi David............

Well, I can hazard a guess at what causes most of your ailments, tho' there's one that I can't even begin to figure out.

If you examine the connector board carefully, it appears to be capable of being removed from the body of the camera as a single unit, which implies some form of ribbon connector plugable at either the board or elsewhere internal to the camera.

My guess is that the connector has worked it's way loose, hence why all 3 sockets are out of commission.

If you are a brave soul and have access to a jewellers screwdriver set, you could attempt to remove the board yourself and try re - seating said connector.

If you are more sensible it would be better to get it to a Canon service facility and let them do it.

As for your 17 frame sync issue, no amount of connection problems lead me anywhere near such a (reproduceable) outcome, so I'm stymied.


PS: There are 3 small Phillips screws on the connector plate itself and another hiding discreetely round the corner under the rubber co - ax socket cover thingy. There are others not too far away which may or may not be involved.
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Old November 9th, 2009, 08:23 PM   #3
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: North Conway, NH
Posts: 1,745
Have you been shooting in dusty locations or in a lot of dampness or humidity? If the former, try lightly blowing some compressed air into the sockets. It might have a film built up on the contacts. It seems less likely with the LANC and headphone jacks because they are so big (relatively), but although mini phono plugs seem large, the contact points really aren't.

If that doesn't solve it, and it's been humid or wet when you've been shooting you could have some galvanic corrosion building up on either the plug or the socket. If you are brave you might try to lightly spray some contact cleaner in the sockets. I'm sure Canon would say that it would void the warranty. If you do this, hold the camera so that the excess can run out of the sockets. You don't want it pooling up on a circuit board somewhere. Also make sure that there's no power connected and the batteries are out. Then make sure that you let it dry thoroughly before adding power. This procedure is risky and you should know that before you try it. It might be a smarter move to send it back to Canon and pay the money. If your cam is still in warranty, forget this paragraph completely and just send it to them.
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