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  1. Member
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    Hello all!

    I have a bunch of old HDV tapes that I would like to transfer over to my my iMac including movies of when me and my wife got married but I cannot get iMovie to recognize the camcorder... I can get this to work for DV tapes using an even older Panasonic DV camcorder but not the Sony HDV one. From that I assume that theFirewire port on the iMac as well as the cable and Firewire to Lightning dongle is working properly.

    On the Sony camcorder you can run a guide to set up the camera for the transfer, I hit Guide, CNNECT GUIDE (yes that is how it is spelled , to computer, choose i.Link (Firewire), select HDV, says "no" when it asks if it should convert HDV to DV, disconnects the cable from the camcorder (it states that this is necessary for the camera to set these new settings), reconnects the cable when the camera prompts me to and presses END.

    Then it should, like the Panasonic DV camera, appear in the import section of iMovie right next to the built-in iSight camera but the camcorder does not appear there...

    It seems that the camera thinks there is a connection setup as it says "HDV in/out" on the camera screen as soon as the cable is connected to the iMac, if I disconnect the cable that text disappears...

    This works perfectly with the older Panasonic DV camera but not with this HDV Sony... I have tried this on a total of four different Macs of varying age and OS, I have tried using both iMovie as Final Cut Pro including iMovie on an older MacBook Pro that I know could communicate with this camera a few years ago. I have spent a few evenings now searching the Internet for a solution but has failed so I thought I would ask here as it seems to be a lot of skilled people here!

    Any ideas on how to get this to work with the Sony HDR-HC5?

    All I can think of is that the Firewire port on the camera is somehow "broken"... Or that there is some magic setting in the menus of the camcorder that I have missed?

    Thanks a million in advance!
    /Rikard, up by the Arctic Circle
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  2. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    to test the camera's firewire port change the camera's output setting to DV. plug it into the mac and see if it will transfer DV. report back.
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    "a lot of people are better dead" - prisoner KSC2-303
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  3. Member
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    It could also be bad mating of your particular cable with this particular camera. FireWire can be flaky that way. Also, have you tried setting VCR HDV/DV to "Auto"? Make sure the cable is disconnected when you change this setting.

    Here is a post which details all the scary bad things that can happen to your FireWire port.
    https://forums.tomshardware.com/threads/here-is-how-firewire-ports-fail.62802/
    Last edited by JVRaines; 15th Feb 2019 at 22:03.
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  4. Member
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    Hello aedipuss & JVRaines!

    I have tried with a DV tape as well but that does not work either... I have tried the VCR setting on both manual (DV or HDV with correct tapes) as well as Auto... I always disconnect the cable when changing these settings and I have also tried with more than one Firewire cable (although all cables work with the older DV camcorder).

    Besides the VCR settings I cannot find anything in the HDV camcorder menus that should affect this... And since the cables work and I have tried with iMovie on at least three different Macs as well as with Final Cut Pro on a fourth Mac it seems that either this camcorder is not compatible with Macs any more (I have used this camcorder with Mac's before though, including one that does not work now) or that the Firewire port on the camcorder is broken

    I have a modern Windows 10 machine with a Firewire port as well, but I have no clue on what software to use to on that machine... Any ideas of a free, at least to try, easy to use software in order to transfer these HDV tapes?

    Thanks!!
    /Rikard
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  5. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    on a pc you can use windv for DV and HDVsplit for HDV. on a win10 machine i'd make a folder that's not in the either of the windows "program files" folders to run them from and set them to always run as administrator.
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  6. Member
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    Originally Posted by rikard454 View Post
    And since the cables work and I have tried with iMovie on at least three different Macs as well as with Final Cut Pro on a fourth Mac it seems that either this camcorder is not compatible with Macs any more (I have used this camcorder with Mac's before though, including one that does not work now) or that the Firewire port on the camcorder is broken
    Do these four Macs have built-in FireWire or are you using an adapter? Did the Mac you successfully used this camera with have built-in FireWire or an adapter?
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  7. If you have access to a windows machine with firewire you are better off going that way. HDVSplit, mentioned earlier is probably the simplest capture software.

    Here's why. Apple has essentially killed firewire. The last known "good" configuration to capture from a camera was camera->firewire 400->Firewire 800->Thunderbolt. (That's two adapter cables.)

    Also, Apple has killed off quicktime and replaced it with QuicktimeX which does not support DV or HDV. That means newer macs (last 5-7 years) force iMovie or FCP to transcode immediately on capture. If your machine can still use QT7 you've got a shot.
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  8. Member
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    Hello again!

    The three older Macs all had built-in Firewire but my present/modern iMac uses a Firewire --> Lightning "dongle". Neither works with the camcorder now... But my old MacBook Pro used to work perfectly with this Sony HDV camera via the built-in Firewire port.

    I have downloaded HDVSplit and installed that and is running it from "outside" the applications folder and as administrator. But it says that the camcorder is not recognized or not connected... I have read the instructions for HDVSplit and failed to follow those instructions, one of the s/w it states one should install is not available any more (the camcorder drivers) and the "ffdshow" does not contain any "video decoder configuration"... (I am not familiar with Windows machines

    What happens when I hook up the older DV camcorder via Firewire on the Windows machine is that AMCap launches and that finds that older Panasonic DV camera, but not the "newer" (at least less old Sony camcorder So at least the Firewire port is working on the Windows machine.

    /Rikard
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  9. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    i don't recall HDVsplit requiring anything. test the DV output of the hc5 with winDV. put winDV in the same type of folder as HDVsplit and run it as admin. put the cam into DV output mode and connect it to the pc. if the firewire port is working on the hc5 windv should find it. or Amcap should.
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  10. Member
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    All signs point to a broken FireWire port on the Sony camera.
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  11. Member
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    Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    i don't recall HDVsplit requiring anything. test the DV output of the hc5 with winDV. put winDV in the same type of folder as HDVsplit and run it as admin. put the cam into DV output mode and connect it to the pc. if the firewire port is working on the hc5 windv should find it. or Amcap should.
    I tried setting the HDV camcorder to convert HDV to DV and tried capturing using AMCap but it just says that there is no camera connected...

    /Rikard
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    Originally Posted by JVRaines View Post
    All signs point to a broken FireWire port on the Sony camera.
    Agreed... Now there are other ports on the camcorder, there is a USB port but that is only for copying still images from the memory card in the camcorder. There is also an HDMI port as well as one labeled "Component Out" and one labeled "A/V out" but there is nothing mentioned in the manual on how to use these for capturing video and audio on a computer so I guess they cannot be used for that... Or?

    Cheers!
    /Rikard
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  13. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    depending on how many tapes you need to capture either sending them out or buying a used HDV cam on ebay are probably your best bets. canon hv20s start at like $50. when you are done with it you can always resell it.
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    Originally Posted by rikard454 View Post
    There is also an HDMI port as well as one labeled "Component Out" and one labeled "A/V out" but there is nothing mentioned in the manual on how to use these for capturing video and audio on a computer so I guess they cannot be used for that... Or?
    Yes, they can be used with an additional expansion card or peripheral device to perform the capture, and, for component and composite, the analog-to-digital conversion. However, this adds extra processing and probable image degradation compared to capturing the original DV stream.
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    Well, seems I will have to start looking at another camcorder in order to capture these old tapes. But thanks a lot for all your help and suggestions, I really appreciate it!
    /Rikard
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