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Thread: Tape Dropouts

  1. #1
    Camera Operator/Producer lake54's Avatar
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    Tape Dropouts

    Anyone got any solutions for tape dropouts? I've got a faulty batch, that every so often has the video dropout, but the audio carry on, and it builds up so that the audio becomes extremely out of sync (by the end of the tape it reaches nearly 5 seconds or so).

    James

  2. #2
    Hi James

    Tape dropouts are considered as losing a frame or two not big chunks of vision and certainly not audio sync problems.

    On all my camera I never had any dropout issues at all!!

    OK, have you played the tapes in camera??? check if they have a problem there
    If that is OK then you might have a capture issue maybe???? If you are talking about your new HD1000 then I wouldn't be using it's HDV to SD downconversion during capture..I haven't heard of anyone that hasn't had problems in that mode...rather capture HDV!!

    Unless you are buying 50c tapes off the street I very much doubt that tapes would cause that much of an issue!!!

    Chris

  3. #3
    Camera Operator/Producer lake54's Avatar
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    Quote: ChrisHarding
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    Tape dropouts are considered as losing a frame or two not big chunks of vision and certainly not audio sync problems.
    Oh dear - this is probably at least half a second - video 'track' goes solid red, audio has a little distortion, then the video carries on.

    Quote
    Quote: ChrisHarding
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    On all my camera I never had any dropout issues at all!!
    You use SSM don't you? I've tried capturing 'live' via firewire to Adobe OnLocation on my laptop, that worked really well during the rehearsal for the production I'm editing right now, until I sort of extended the tripod, with the cable attached, resulting in a slightly bent (but still working) firewire cable. That wasn't the issue, the issue was height of the camera meant it was too long for the cable, so I had to use tapes. I've now got a pair of new 1m and 2m firewire cables (the 1m was free - they sent it out by mistake!) and whenever I'm on a tripod, I'll be recording to my laptop.

    Quote
    Quote: ChrisHarding
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    OK, have you played the tapes in camera??? check if they have a problem there
    If that is OK then you might have a capture issue maybe???? If you are talking about your new HD1000 then I wouldn't be using it's HDV to SD downconversion during capture..I haven't heard of anyone that hasn't had problems in that mode...rather capture HDV!!
    Still appears to be the same when playing back on the camera. Yes, it is the HD1000, and I'm filming/capturing etc all in HD(V).

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    Quote: ChrisHarding
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    Unless you are buying 50c tapes off the street I very much doubt that tapes would cause that much of an issue!!!
    http://www.proav.co.uk/Blank-Media-T...138_sc631.aspx - proper Sony tapes, and when converted to Australian Dollars, comes to $14.20 per tape!

    The thing is, I got a tape with the camera (i.e. I bought 5 of the tapes above in a batch after I got the camera), the same 'model' tape, slightly different 'face', but that works absolutely perfectly - no flaw whatsoever!

    I sent an email to the company above on the 3rd of Feb asking about it, but they didn't reply. Just sent another email now expressing my concern about the time it's taken to reply.

    I erred on the side of caution, and shot my aunt's wedding using the (what I call, although it's not an actual one - the one without any flaws) master tape for the ceremony.

    I've got another two tapes from the company above from (hopefully) another batch, but I haven't tried them yet, so we'll soon see whether it's my camera or the tapes.

    Thanks for your help Chris!

    James

  4. #4
    Hi James

    It certainly sounds like either a camera fault (which you have already ascertained it's not by using the master tape) or very poor quality tape!!
    Almost sounds like the coating process has been faulty somewhere on the main pancake during manufacture which would account for the whole batch being faulty.

    First off I would go out and buy some reasonable retail tapes and shoot some footage to test them...I think you will find that you have a really bum batch!!! I have never had that with tapes but I always used Panasonic PQ tapes...you shouldn't need to pay so much either!!! My PQ's are still AUS$55.00 per box of 10!!

    Buy a few tapes locally and then throw the faulty batch back at the dealer!! Are you sure they are not bogus "Sony" ?????

    Chris

  5. #5
    Camera Operator/Producer lake54's Avatar
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    Hi Chris,

    As far as I know and can tell, they are 'legit' Sony tapes, the company I've used before for certain things.

    I'll try the other batch of tapes I have and see what happens.

    Still no response after nearly 3 hours. I would have thought that they'd reply to the original email by now, or even acknowledged that they were looking into it. Might give them a call actually...

    James

  6. #6
    Camera Operator/Producer lake54's Avatar
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    Finally getting somewhere now - will report back with what they finally say!

  7. #7
    Camera Operator/Producer lake54's Avatar
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    Ugh. They want me to send a/the tape(s) to them so that they can 'test' them.

    Well two problems:

    a) I don't know whether the footage can be released - I've been filming a school play using all of the tapes (different angles) and therefore they have people under 18 on them.

    b) I need the tapes for other events coming up.

    They suggested it could be the camera (dirty heads etc), but as I explained to them, I used a different tape before their batch and after I used their batch, and neither recording had a flaw in them, plus, the camera is barely a month old. They also suggested that it "could be something like Guide Tension incorrectly lined"

    Say what?

    Anyway, I don't think I'm going to get anywhere soon, but I'll try and get a tape cleared and sent off to them so that they can see for themselves. I might even try to do my own type of cleaning - I put the lenscap on and remove the microphone, and record a whole tape, so as to blank it out - and send it to them, but I don't know whether it would show the issue or not.

  8. #8
    Administrator Dave's Avatar
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    I've had some trouble with Sony tapes myself. The problem is that, unlike DV, HDV uses temporal compression so that a single frame of dropout actually affects the whole GOP (group of pictures) which I think is something like 15 frames. And yes, it stuffs up the audio synch for the remainder of the shot.

    I don't know if they've changed their manufacturing process but I do know that Sony HDV tapes used to be very expensive compared to their standard DV tapes. Then suddenly the DV tapes disappeared from shelves (at least around here) and the only ones left were HDV, which had dramatically dropped in price to about the same as the old DV tapes.
    Dave Owen
    MediaCollege.com

  9. #9
    Well done Dave

    I completely forgot that HDV is MPEG and uses GOP That's 100% correct ..if the GOP is 15 frames then any one frame dropout will affect all frames in the group!!
    If I convert AVCHD to HDV I always make sure the GOP is 1!! That way each frame has pic info!!

    I'm sure those must be faulty tapes then!!!

    Chris

  10. #10
    Administrator Dave's Avatar
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    Quote
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    If I convert AVCHD to HDV I always make sure the GOP is 1!! That way each frame has pic info!!
    That's a very good idea
    Dave Owen
    MediaCollege.com

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