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  1. Member
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    Mar 2015
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    Hello!
    I have a Sony DCR-HC45 miniDV camcorder that started to record on only 3/4 of the magnetic tape width.For a better understanding please see the screenshots.On the left side of each screenshot is the old recording that should have been erased, on the right side is the new recording.Also the sound is from the old recording.The ratio old/new is not consistent during the entire tape, sometimes is almost 1/2 old recording and 1/2 new.I know that the recovery is impossible and the only thing I can do is crop the video. I'm aware that is a problem with the recording head.Is there any way to fix the camcorder?Please advise.Thank you.
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    PS.The screenshots are made after deinterlacing using QTGMC script.
    Last edited by edytibi; 11th Mar 2016 at 12:45.
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  2. Clean the heads and/or use a new tape.
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  3. Member
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    A new tape display the same behavior - only a part of the image contains what I recorded.I'll try with a cleaning tape.
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  4. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    tape transport/head mechanism is dying. it no longer keeps the recording in the proper diagonal track on the tape.
    --
    "a lot of people are better dead" - prisoner KSC2-303
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  5. Member
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    Originally Posted by edytibi View Post
    Is there any way to fix the camcorder?Please advise.Thank you.
    Easy. Just ask a qualified repair tech. The hard part is finding one!
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  6. Member
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    Thank you all for your replys.The qualified repair tech said that the mechanical part of the camcorder is screwed, and there is no available part to fix it.I found some instructions here http://www.allcam.com.au/2011/02/capstan-drive-repair-and-clean-diy-camera-repair/ I'll give it a try.
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  7. Member
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    No luck with the repair.To continue using the camcorder I can record the video stream from the DV (Firewire) port or from the analog video out.
    Can someone please recommend a portable video recorder with analog (RCA) input, to record directly to a SD card from camcorder's analog video out (720x576 25-30 fps H264 codec)?All I could find are DVRs for surveillance systems, and those devices are not portable.A firewire recorder is way too expensive for this old camcorder.
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  8. Originally Posted by edytibi View Post
    Can someone please recommend a portable video recorder with analog (RCA) input, to record directly to a SD card from camcorder's analog video out (720x576 25-30 fps H264 codec)?All I could find are DVRs for surveillance systems, and those devices are not portable.A firewire recorder is way too expensive for this old camcorder.
    Why not just get yourself a new camcorder? Sony and Canon have decent models for <$300 that will make your old recordings seem very fuzzy and outdated. I doubt you can find any kind of recorder at a better price.
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  9. Member
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    Of course I can buy a new camcorder, but I got used to it and the 40x zoom is handy.I also made a custom rig for it and I hacked the remote control.For a new camera I'll have to make another rig and hack another remote control.With a portable DVR I will have no other hassle.
    I guess I have the habit to use a device until it's beyond any repair (damaged lenses or CCD, no video signal output,etc).
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  10. Originally Posted by edytibi View Post
    Of course I can buy a new camcorder, but I got used to it and the 40x zoom is handy.I also made a custom rig for it and I hacked the remote control.For a new camera I'll have to make another rig and hack another remote control.With a portable DVR I will have no other hassle.
    I guess I have the habit to use a device until it's beyond any repair (damaged lenses or CCD, no video signal output,etc).
    It IS beyond repair.

    Most new inexpensive cameras have a ~50x zoom, are in HD, have excellent optical stabilization and come with wireless remotes. (Obviously I don't know how exactly you hacked yours.) Best of luck.
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  11. Member
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    Click image for larger version

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    Something like this.I did this to control the camcorder using magnetic switches in a DIY underwater housing.It's hard to adjust the housing for a new camera, I'll have to make a new one.
    Edit: sorry, this is from a Canon camcorder, I couldn't find the pics from Sony.Both are "modified" the same way.
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    Last edited by edytibi; 14th May 2016 at 09:35.
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  12. So you're looking for an inexpensive external recorder you can take underwater with analog inputs that uses SD cards?
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  13. Member
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    Yes,I think that would be the cheapest way with no more DIY.There is some free space in the housing and if the DVR has its own monitor it can replace the housing's monitor (2.5 inch LCD).I'm aware that the video quality would be lower than DV (I'm happy with the quality of DV material after deinterlacing with QTGMC script).A GoPro with underwater housing and monitor will be more expensive than a chinese DVR.Still nothing portable yet.
    Last edited by edytibi; 14th May 2016 at 09:42.
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