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  1. I have a Sony HDR-XR500V that has served me well for several years. Not sure if it's related to an incident a few years ago when my son dropped the camcorder, but it has developed an issue that I assume is bad sectors on the hard disk. If I fill 75% or so of the HDD with recordings, it will sometimes freeze and fail to record any more. It gives a message, but I forget what it was.

    I've lived with it because if I deleted some of the recordings, the issue has been fixed. But most recently, it happened again after I recorded only 50 or so minutes, or maybe about 5% of the total HDD.

    My questions are:

    1. I assume it's not worth sending it to Sony Laredo to get it fixed.

    2. Can I purchase a mini HDD myself and replace it? If so, is the operating s/w out there that I need to put on the HDD so that the camcorder works?

    3. Is there a software fix I can do myself? Can bad sectors (assuming that's the problem) be repaired via software?

    Thanks. I'd rather not send it out to be fixed because I use it all the time. Thanks for any replies out there.
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  2. Member turk690's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    ON, Canada
    Search Comp PM
    HDDs eventually die, whether they get dropped or not. The HDDs inside these sony camcorders are not off the shelf types; they are 1.8" types specifically made for sony, who likes to charge an arm and a leg to replace them. Even if you are successful opening the camcorder up and you have a similar drive, it still has to be prepped before and after connecting so that camcorder firmware correctly recognizes it.
    So, best is to just ignore the wretched HDD. There are slots for inserting memory stick or SD cards with that camcorder. Do so, then in menu, find out the setting for directing movies (video you shoot) to exclusively be recorded to these. The default is, video and still shots goes to HDD, and mostly we don't change that. But with these camcorders it's possible to change which media to use with what function, and you can exclusively just use memory stick/SD to shoot HD video with.
    One little problem you may face is the memory type; I'm not sure if that XR500 accepts SDHC as well as sony's egoistic memory stick format. The latter is expensive (costing >2x that of its SDHC counterpart), and not easy to find. With my ancient HDR-XR12, that is what I have to contend with. But doing this does give the camcorder a new lease. Sony realized its silliness about pushing so hard for its blasted memory stik format when it quietly introduced SD/SDHC for XR/CX550 and onwards.
    For the nth time, with the possible exception of certain Intel processors, I don't have/ever owned anything whose name starts with "i".
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  3. Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Search Comp PM
    first port of call should be to remove ALL content, and use the camera to format the drive, this MAY lockout the damaged sectors
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  4. Thanks for the reply. Before I read Grunta's post, I had figured out for the first time that you can format the drive via the camcorder itself. I formatted it and checked it with Recuva, and it seems like all the bad sectors are fixed now.

    Crossing my fingers. Thanks for all the replies.
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