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  1. I've been reading in here for a few hours and can't quite find what I am looking for.

    I have a Canon ZR20 MiniDV camcorder that I used to capture videos of my kids from 12-5 years ago. I have about 20 miniDV tapes with recorded video and It has been all sitting in the closet for a while. Pulled it out today and watched one tape with my family. It played all the way through perfectly. Video of my son's first birthday and my dad (who has since passed away) playing with him.

    When it was done I rewound the tape, and the camcorder stopped abruptly and had me eject the tape, the tape was caught inside the camcorder. I managed to remove it, and although it was damaged, I was able to wind it back in. I then tried to rewind it again and it rewound for a little while and then the same thing happened again. I was finally able to rewind it completely.

    I took another tape and rewound and had the same issue again. I am afraid to use it again for fear of screwing up more tapes.

    Does anyone have any advice on a new camcorder to get for these tapes? I would also like to capture this video to my PC and eventually move to DVD so I don't have to worry about problems with these tapes again.

    Anyone with experience on transfering these tapes to digital please let me know what you recommend. I've done some googling (some have recommended the Pinnacle Movie Box), and read some of this forum. From what I read, you still need to use the camcorder to move the video (I'll need a new one now). I could really use some recommendations. I'm really worried I'm going to lose this video now.

    Thanks
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  2. You're MiniDV tapes are already digital. You'll need access to another MiniDV Camcorder to play them and a firewire cable to connect to a PC. If your PC doesn't have a firewire port (and most don't) you'll need a firewire card -- about US$20. There is free software you can use for the capture (really just a digital transfer), WinDV or DVIO.
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  3. Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    You're MiniDV tapes are already digital. You'll need access to another MiniDV Camcorder to play them and a firewire cable to connect to a PC. If your PC doesn't have a firewire port (and most don't) you'll need a firewire card -- about US$20. There is free software you can use for the capture (really just a digital transfer), WinDV or DVIO.
    Thanks for your response, sorry for my ignorance!!

    Any idea what card would work with my laptop? I have an acer aspire 5742z-4685.
    Last edited by rick6668; 29th Mar 2014 at 18:12.
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  4. Member turk690's Avatar
    Join Date: Jul 2003
    Location: ON, Canada
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    Originally Posted by rick6668 View Post
    Any idea what card would work with my laptop? I have an acer aspire 5742z-4685.
    It's not easy & it may be expensive trying to put a firewire interface into a laughtop with none. Using a laughtop to capture DV, with very few exceptions, all in the hands of hardware-savvy people at that, is hit and miss, much more miss. You will get to the point where you are ready to pull your teeth out and/or bash the poor laughtop on the wall, but before then at least you have read this. Go get a desktop instead.
    Stop feeling suicidal just because he unfriended you on fezbuk.
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  5. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
    Join Date: Oct 2005
    Location: 666th portal
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    probably no way to add ieee1394 firewire to that laptop. it doesn't have any sort of expansion port. and don't even ask about usb to firewire converters, they DON'T work for cams.
    --
    "a lot of people are better dead" - prisoner KSC2-303
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  6. Member
    Join Date: Sep 2004
    Location: australia
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    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    You're MiniDV tapes are already digital. You'll need access to another MiniDV Camcorder to play them and a firewire cable to connect to a PC. If your PC doesn't have a firewire port (and most don't) you'll need a firewire card -- about US$20. There is free software you can use for the capture (really just a digital transfer), WinDV or DVIO.
    spot on, exactly the way it has to be done, then convert the DV-Avi file from the tape to dvd compliant mpeg2 format and away he goes.

    unfortunately his laptop has no express card slot that would allow him to buy a cheap expansion card with a firewire port on it, and you cant use USB to transfer the video from the tape to a pc or laptop, that can only be used for photos.

    he needs to find a laptop or pc with firewire, and possibly needs to find another DV camera to transfer the tapes with.
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