I am trying to connect a GL1 and Laptop computer via 4-pin to 4-pin firewire cable and problems are arising. The "DV in" display text on my camcorder flashes on and off and the computer is not recognising anything. Does this sound familiar to anyone? Works fine with a 4 to 6 pin cable on a PC. Should I just get a 6 pin connection installed on Computer?
As far as the SIGNAL PATH is concerned, there is no difference between a 4-pin and a 6-pin FW connector.
The extra 2 pins on the 6-pin are just to carry DC voltage to operate any portable device that is built to run from the computer's power supply.
Plus, the 6-pin plug is much larger and sturdier, so a lot of pro DV camcorders have a 6-pin FW jack instead of 4-pin just so it will hold up to rugged use better.
To your specific problem...
A. you MIGHT have a "bad" 4-pin cable
B. one of the 4-pin connectors on the camcorder or computer is broken
C. the actual internal FW "board" in either unit is "fried".
Something to try:
Leave the camcorder connected via the FW cable and leave the camcorder in "VCR" mode.
Quit the software on the computer and then open it again.
Sometimes that will "wake-up" and create a proper "handshake" between units.
I don't know if this might help as I ran into a similar problem with a GL2 on a Mac. Do you have any storage on your port? I had a FW400/800 drive on my computer and when I connected my GL2, the system would not recognize the camera. My suggestion would be, if you do have a drive between the computer and the camera, disconect it, then connect the camera directly to the computer. If the camera is recognized you may need to put each on a different FW bus. For mine, I had to purchase a PCMCIA card and this solved the problem. Hope this is helpful.