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-   -   Why won't my Sony or JVC Play my Canon XL1 and XL2 Tapes ?!? (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/canon-xl-gl-series-dv-camcorders/39089-why-wont-my-sony-jvc-play-my-canon-xl1-xl2-tapes.html)

Anthony Marotti February 8th, 2005 01:02 PM

Why won't my Sony or JVC Play my Canon XL1 and XL2 Tapes ?!?
Hello Everyone :-)

I hope that persons here might have some Canon XL1 and XL2 experience and
can give me their opinion as to what might be going on.

I have the 2 above mentioned cameras and in order to conserve their useful
life between repairs, I purchased 2 MiniDV camcorders for capturing. One is
a Sony DCR-TRV8, which wasn't cheap when I purchased it and has always
performed well and has been properly maintained. The other is a JVC
GR-DVL210U, which was around $550.00 when I purchased it.

The problem is that I get video drop outs and horrible audio noise when
playing the tapes recorded on the Canon cameras.

Has anyone experienced this?

I hope that it is a problem with the playback cameras rather than a
potential problem with my Canons, as I have an important job coming up and I
doubt that I could get the Canons turned around by a repair shop in time

Thanks in advance for any guidance or feedback, it is much appreciated !

A. J. deLange February 8th, 2005 02:34 PM

You can quickly verify that the Canon cameras are OK or not by playing back a tape in the camera that recorded it.

While it is supposed in principal to be the case that any DV recording should play back properly in any DV device this is not, as you have experienced, the actual case. Good "crossplay" capability is sort of the holy grail of the recording industry - a thing to be devoutly wished but difficult to acheive. A tape will always play back best on the machine on which it was recorded. The reason for this is that in the same machine the individual peculiarities of the tape path and the heads are identical in both record and play. In cross play if the alignment is slightly different the signal from the heads will be somewhat degraded. Digital is usually an all-or-nothing medium. Either the reproduced signal is above the threshold that the error detection and correction algorithms can deal with in which case you are not likely to notice anything or if you do it is occasional, or they are not in which case the output is garbage. What you are experiencing, while disappointing, is not atypical.

Anthony Marotti February 8th, 2005 02:41 PM

Hello AJ, and than you for the response!

I agree totally.

I get the best playback using the XL2. The Xl1 gives me near perfect playback with maybe 4 instances of video dropout and 6 instances of audio irregularities. The consumer cameras give me outrageous noise and video dropouts.

Problem is that I don't like using a camera for capturing.

I am considering a Sony DS-11 or a Panasonic AG-DV2500 as a feeder, do you think I might have better luck with those?

If so, which one do you think might be the best option??

Thanks again for the reply and thanks to all for any additional feedback !!

PS I'll be running some additional tests and will post my results!

Bruce S. Yarock February 8th, 2005 03:26 PM

I've used a cheap panasonic for capturing and tv playback in order to conserver my xl2. Now problems to date. i'm also glad I didn't sell my canon GL1...I keep a battery in it and use it for rewinding, tv playback and exporting the time line from Premiere.
Bruce Yarock

Geoffrey Engelbrecht February 8th, 2005 03:40 PM

I'm using a Sony DCR-PC9E for capture into Premiere of footage from an XL2 with no problems to date.



A. J. deLange February 8th, 2005 04:08 PM

Lots of people do use a cheaper camera for capture (e.g. the two gents who posted right after yours) and I'd take their advice as to what works and doesn't. I do use the XL2 for capture but I don't use it as a deck - just play the tape from end to end using capture software which blocks the video into 2 GB hunks onto the hard disk. I then do all viewing and editing from those files. Thus the tape goes through the camera a total of 4 times: once forward for record, once forward for playback and twice backwards for rewind. I suppose the heads would last 4 times longer if I captured from another machine but I never wear these toys out as the maker always has another, hotter machine in the queue and I'm a real sucker for these things.

Chris Hurd February 8th, 2005 04:18 PM

I'm with A.J.

I see nothing wrong with using the XL2 as a capture device. It was built with a VCR function for a purpose -- why not use it. Unless you're playing tapes ten hours a day, seven days a week, you're not going to hurt it.

I can understand why some folks want to use cheaper camcorder as a deck, but for ocassional use such as playback during video capture, all camcorders are made for that sort of thing.

Donald Pittelli February 8th, 2005 06:09 PM

i am confused by this using another device [camera] to play, copy ,transfer or whatever .is it that you fear wearing out your xl2 . i do not know alot about cameras but i know machines . something wears fix it .your tranny goes in your car you repair it .i think Mr Hurd is right the xl2 looks pretty heavy duty . i don't think you can wear it out with normal use . how many here have had to overhall there xl1 .dp

Bruce S. Yarock February 8th, 2005 07:49 PM

My reason for using the other cams for capture, playback etc. is-
Why put extra wear on the xl2, when I can use the cheaper cams for that mechanical stuff? Maybe I'm paranoid, but I'd rather put the hours on the cheaper cams and use the xl2 for shooting.
Bruce yarock

Donald Pittelli February 8th, 2005 08:16 PM

Hi Mr Yarock
i have an xl2 ,pan dvc30 and a sony dsp9 . i always try to play only the tapes made on any cam in that cam .now again i dont have alot of knowlage in this area . i am learning as i go along this board has been very helpful .a tec told me that sometimes the heads in a cam can be just ever so out of aline that the tap it shot will play perfect in that cam but not in another . i personaly have not had that problem . but as i said i try never to mix tapes and cams . my xl2 only has about 7 tapes on it now . my pan about 40 and my sony about 200 plus .buy the way my sony has rewound and played many many times .it still records and plays fine . i loned it to a freind on vacation the pictures were good .well nice to hear from you sir . thanks dp

Ignacio Rodriguez February 8th, 2005 09:20 PM

Hmm. I have seen that kind of problem with LP. But never with SP. I believe even the manual that came with a little Handycam I used to have said that it was to be expected that LP could only be played back on the same camera. Of course I assume you were not recording in LP --I assume the XL2 does not even have LP-- so something is very wrong. Most likely some of your cameras are out of alignment.

Greg Boston February 8th, 2005 11:26 PM

Actually Ignacio, the XL-2 does offer LP but I think what has already been put forward is reasonable. There can be just enough difference in head alignment, actual drum speed, capstan speed, etc to cause this to happen.

I once had 2 computers that refused to communicate over a serial link. I would do a loopback at each end of the cable and both computers would test ok. But they would not talk to one another. Turns out I had a bad serial port card (think XT 8088 days). Its baud rate generator was off and so it would talk to itself just fine but not another system. Weird but true. That's the only time I've ever seen that happen. But magnetic media is notorious about this.



Jack Smith February 8th, 2005 11:53 PM

I've been using a small panasonic camcorder to play back XL1 footage with no problems.All shot in SP.Reason for doing this is the XL1 is in my mind a camera not a vtr.Why add the hours on it.
I also think if you shot in SP and all equipment is adjusted properly they should play the tapes.Just out of curiousity ,what make of tape?

Donald Pittelli February 9th, 2005 05:48 AM

Hi Guys
Panasonic DVM63PQ mostly and sometimes DVM63MQ .please forgive me .i was not knocking anyone for using a lesser cam for play back or rewind . i was just asking why . it will take me about three years to run 200 tapes .my xl2 will just be breaking in . by than i will be looking for the xl3 or something like that . thanks dp

Anthony Marotti February 9th, 2005 07:44 AM

Hello Guys :-)

I would like to give you a couple of responses, then my test results and interim hypothesis, and finally I would like to ask a couple of followup questions at the very end... so please bear with me :-)

First and foremost, thank you one and all for the feedback !!!

"Jack Smith
Just out of curiosity ,what make of tape?"

Hello Jack,

Maxell (cheap), I originally thought this was the problem, and it may be a contributing factor, but if you read my progress, which follows, you may see it differently.

"Donald Pittelli
it will take me about three years to run 200 tapes"

Hello Donald,

My next job will consume at least 80 tapes :-o


As I drill down into my problem I have come to a conclusion or two as to my future gear acquisitions, and I am discovering that my problem may be entirely environmental !

I didn't even run my Hi Quality Tape Tests yet because I am finding that "time-of-day" is a factor... or at least I am trying to prove that out at this time.

* First of all, the problem spans various equipment.

* The Problems do not seem to be on the actual tape (it may be, but intermittently reacting), that is, the problems do not always occur at the same place upon playback.

* It appears that at 4:00 AM my cameras all work correctly, but at 6:30 AM, I get problems where the audio just stops while the video plays without dropout (the canons actually playback fine at 6:30 AM).

* I have four 50,000 Watt transmission antennas about 150' from my location :-o

I am betting that mid-day when I run these tests, the audio noise will be present with video dropout. I hope this is the case as it will mean that my gear is not malfunctioning, but that the high concentration of radio energy may be interfering with my gears error correction capabilities.

Hey, I can always capture in the early morning hours until I relocate :-)

Follow-up Question:

I know that everyone has their favorite VTR, and you have given me some great info here, but between the Sony DS-11 and the Panasonic AG-DV2500, has anyone had problems with either of them?

I am still trying to make a decision as to which one to buy.

Thanks Again Guys :-)

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