I recently bought a Sony DCR-TRV310 Digital 8 handycam camcorder off of craigslist. When I was trying it out in front of the seller, the video had vertical and horizontal lines all over it and the sound was completely off. Thinking it was just a dirty head, I bought the camera after bargaining for around $50. I went home and used a head cleaner, but it didn't change a thing. It was only after reading through a forum post where other people had the same issue that I was introduced to smacking the camcorder lightly.
After smacking the camcorder a few times, the video and audio suddenly became perfect. I slowly set the camcorder down and started to transfer files over the firewire connection. For the past few days, the routine has been to smack the camcorder everytime I move it and the video blurs out. I now know that the issue has to do with the head and have contacted a repair place. They want around $150, which is a no-go since I can just buy one relatively good off ebay for less. What really concerns me is if the video and audio are not "optimal" since I had to smack the camcorder. Since the head has something wrong with it already, is it fair to say that my video and audio playback are not as good as if the camcorder didnt have issues to begin with? For reference the video and audio seem completely fine to me but I was just curious if I can do better by spending some more money for a working machine. Thank you!
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This reminds me of the old Gilligan's Island episode where Gilligan is konked on the head and loses his memory, so the (assumed) cure is to konk him on the head again.
In reality, that's just a lot of accumulative head trauma. Same with your camera. If it's acting badly, get it fixed or replaced. 2 wrongs don't make a right here.