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MVZProductions
bad mini dvs?
on Feb 1, 2007 at 3:42:58 am

I was recently taping a live event, and when I went to edit, half way through, a glitch happened. The audio and video were off after the glitch. My question is are certain inexpensive tapes not good enough quality to use for business purposes. Do you have any advice on the best mini dvs out there? And can this possibly be fixed? I really need some experienced advice, because I don't want to ruin a live event that someone has paid me for. And when this glitch happened, I didn't notice until I went to edit, or else I would have switched to another tape. Please help, Kristie Van Zee

KMVZ


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carol winter
Re: bad mini dvs?
on Feb 1, 2007 at 3:56:01 pm

You might try recaptureing it with another playback unit. we have had that happen and it was a tape that glitched in one player but not another.
CW:)


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zrb123
Re: bad mini dvs?
on Feb 1, 2007 at 4:22:58 pm

Cheep Mini DV tapes can can be more problematic, however the most important thing about using tapes is to ALWAYS use the same type of tape in your camera. Different tapes will use different types of tape lubricant (dry lubricant, oil based lubricant) If you are switching different types of tapes in and out of your camera then the mixing of the different types of lubricants will cause the heads in the camera to get dirty.

I always surprises me how so many people don't know this and just grab any old tape they see in the store.



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Jeff Carpenter
Re: bad mini dvs?
on Feb 2, 2007 at 3:52:36 pm

Both previous answers are good. The difference between the lubricants really isn't as big a problem as it used to be, but sticking with one brand is still a good idea anyway.

If you're looking for our real-world experiences with particular brands, I've always been happy with Panasonic's "Pro" line of mini-DV.

They make something called "Mini DV Professional Quality Video" that's a dark grey cassette. 60-minutes will cost you $4 on B&H. I use those and have been very happy with them.


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Mark Suszko
Re: bad mini dvs?
on Feb 2, 2007 at 4:42:39 pm

In addition to what's been said, sounds like a head clog happened. If the clog happened prior to the recorded part of the tape, nothing much will be recoverable, because it never got recorded properly in the first place. If the clog is something that happened on playback, you should get picture and sound back after a deep cleaning of the deck's heads and tape path. I have found the best chance of recovering a shakey mini-Dv tape is to play it back in a Panasonic DVC Pro deck, because it has a slightly wider head that may get just that little bit more amount of signal to make a difference in playability. But that's still a long shot.

Most DV type camcorders have or should have a error light that warns you of a clog during recording. The cheaper units may not. For those once in a lifetime events like weddings and the like, this is a good argument for having a redundant camera or at the least, an external hard drive capturing the same video direct off the camera. If you'd have had a Firestore or Citidisk or something like that hanging off the camera, you'd have your backup there. Stopping the camera in mid-event just to do a "tech check" playback is not often practical due to the nature of what you're covering, and in any event, while it may let you discover you have a clog and bad recording in time to do something about it right there, almost as often, you could also CREATE a clog where there wasn't one by shuttling tape back and forth in the camcorder in the first place, not to mention disrupting the control and time code track, and possibly accidentally over-recording over precious shots because you didn't re-cue the tape to the end properly for some reason.

Worrying over stuff like this is one of the reasons I got out of the event biz, just made me too nervous, not having enough backups for everything to suit my paranoia.:-)





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Steve Eisen
Re: bad mini dvs?
on Feb 4, 2007 at 4:40:45 am

If you don't want digital dropouts, use small DVCAM tape. It may cost a few dollars more. But it might save you hundreds, if not thousands of dollars one day.

In the long run DVCAM tape will prove to be more profitable. You can reuse DVCAM tape well over 200 times without any dropouts. MiniDV will give you dropouts after only two passes.

Steve Eisen
Eisen Video Productions
Director-At-Large
Chicago Final Cut Pro Users Group


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Matte
Re: bad mini dvs?
on Feb 5, 2007 at 2:53:02 pm

[Steve Eisen] "You can reuse DVCAM tape well over 200 times without any dropouts. MiniDV will give you dropouts after only two passes."

OK, I'll bite.

What kind of research gives you the information that:

A. 2 passes equals dropouts on DV?

B. well over 200 passes before dropouts on DVCAM

C. there is any significant DIFFERENCE between DV and DVCAM tapes?




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Steve Eisen
Re: bad mini dvs?
on Feb 6, 2007 at 5:19:06 am

Many years of broadcast experience and a technological guru. The information is out there. Do your research.

Steve Eisen
Eisen Video Productions
Director-At-Large
Chicago Final Cut Pro Users Group


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