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Canon XL H Series HDV Camcorders
Canon XL H1S (with SDI), Canon XL H1A (without SDI). Also XL H1.

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Old May 8th, 2007, 01:15 AM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: The Netherlands (Europe)
Posts: 4
Which Firestore?


I'm wondering which firestore to buy for my XL-H1?
There are two models available, i believe.
The FS4(Pro)HD and the FS-C model.
Why bring these two models on the market, this is very confusing for me. ;-)
I,m always shooting in 25F modus and editing in FCP!

Thank you for your help.
Jiri Bueller is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 8th, 2007, 07:50 AM   #2
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Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Leeds UK
Posts: 94
Hi mate, heres a previous post, have a read and contact shanon to ask him.


Doing more tests with my FS-4 Pro HD, I found that not only HDV, but also the standard DV files do not have timecode embedded in the file clips themselves.

If you record some DV footage to your FS-4 Pro HD in regualr DV mode, then you will see that EXT TIMECODE being read from the camera seems fine. If you play back from the FS4, you will see the counter reading the correct timecode.. This is all wonderful....


If you connect your FS-4 Pro HD to your computer and put it in "HDD MODE" so it can show up on your computer as a hard drive.....and then you copy your files over to your hard drive (desktop or my documents or ANYWHERE), when you open them up in your NLE, you will discover that the files now all of a sudden begin with 00:00:00;00. (this is BAD news)

If this is true, how does the FS-4 Pro HD know what timecode belongs to each file? ..................... EASY----> using the text log file it creates. (log.txt)

You see, each time the FS-4 records a clip of video, it simultaneously appends a log file that gives timecode information and other info for each clip it creates. This file is referenced during playback on the FS-4 and therefore gives you correct timecode when playing the clips back IN the FS-4 only. However, as soon as you copy the video clips to your computer, there is no text log file anymore to refer to. Thus leaving all your clips with zero timecode. This happens in DV and HDV both.

It kinda sucks that I am discovering these timecode problems, but it has to be noted. I speak for the people! *smile*

There is ONE way. It only works in DV mode. HD is completely broken for timecode. However, if you want DV clips with correct timecode, then you can do it by putting the unit in AV/C mode and capturing it using a capture program. This means you will have to capture everything in real time and it defeats the "DIRECT TO EDIT" advertised with these units, but at least you don't have to use your camera or buy a deck for playback. Using this slow method does give you correct timecode, because the files are being played from the FS-4 directly as if it was a camera, and the log.txt file is being read at the same time streaming the timecode down the firewire to be read by your capture program. It sucks but it's better then nothing.

I hate that I spent $1220 bucks on this, but oh well. I think NNOVIA.COM is coming out with a timecode capabale HDV D2D recorder. They have a DV version that takes analog video with a TIMECODE IN option for LTC timecode. I wish it worked simultaneously with DV or HDV. They said their HDV recorder will support timecode. We'll see.

Anybody want a Brand New FS-4 Pro HD (40gig) never used in the field D.T.E. recorder for $1000 bucks? (free shipping)

- ShannonRawls.com

Andy Lunn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 8th, 2007, 08:03 AM   #3
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Port St. Lucie, Florida
Posts: 2,614
This is a very old post and many changes have been made to the Firestore family since then. And, I don't believe that Shannon is a member any longer.

Take the quick and fast approach and contact Focus Enhancements (Firestore)! I believe they are a sponsor here, so just look under sponsors and drop them an email.

Chapter one, line one. The BH.
Mike Teutsch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 8th, 2007, 08:03 AM   #4
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Incline Village, Nevada
Posts: 604
The FS-C was supposedly made for the Canon XLH1 - but I have no first hand experience with this model.

Unfortunately my experience is with the FS4-ProHD model and it has been problematic with HDV & our H1 cams. One of our crew has successfully used it for DV on the H1 and an XL2. But we're pretty much in the same boat as Shannon when it comes to HDV. We have the added problem that we use Edius for our NLE most of the time and there are timecode issues between the two - but a fix is being worked on according to Focus and Grass Valley.
John Richard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 8th, 2007, 10:25 AM   #5
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: santa fe, nm
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I was a devoted fan and supporter of the Focus Enhancements FS4 and FS4HD product line. These units had performed flawlessly for me up until about a month ago. For no apparent reason, the recorder randomly dropped several 2 Gb segments in a 4 hour shoot. This was quite unfortunate because I had come to rely on these recorders and was no longer backing up my shoots with tape. When I discovered the dropouts, I had to reshoot the scenes.

I must say that as a professional, I use only professional quality equipment. For me to experience unpredictable dropouts is unacceptable and this does not rank as a professional piece of hardware, rather more of a toy.

I would recommend avoiding anything in the Focus Enhancement product line as they seem quite unresponsive at customer complaints. They have a rep that is on this website, occasionally, but his suggestions are pretty much fluff.
Bill Ravens is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 8th, 2007, 12:30 PM   #6
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: The Netherlands (Europe)
Posts: 4
So, Unfortunately, nobody knows the exact differences between the two firestore devices??
The documentation on the Focus website isn't very clear about it either.
I'm afraid that i have to contact either Canon or Focus about this question.

Thanx anyway for your reply's,
Jiri Bueller is offline   Reply

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