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  1. Member
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    I have been going through alot of old DV tapes and most of them are working fine. But there are a handfull of them that have a bizzar distortion. I'm not super familure with DV trouble shooting so i dont know what this specific type of error or distortion is called. Can anyone help?


    Sample Video capture of problem starts at 00:10
    https://youtu.be/BMVdSgvN6Sk


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    [Attachment 52350 - Click to enlarge]
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  2. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    the cam used was dying and should have been binned.
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    it cant be that because some of these are edited master tapes, and other are interviews. Any other thoughts? Meaning that they were made from different machines.
    Last edited by neeel; 14th Mar 2020 at 19:53.
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  4. Member dellsam34's Avatar
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    This looks like a capture program/computer problem, As always in these forums asking half a question and expecting a full answer, You need to post all the information about your capture setup, computer spec, capture software, camcorder model, the more info you putout the less guessing is involved.
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    Hey sure thing, i wasnt sure if this was a simple issue to identify visually. thats why i posted a still and a sample.

    the tapes that i'm viewing are from 2008, they are mini-DV tapes, a mix of panasonic, sony, maxell, radio shack.

    i am viewing the tapes with a cannon XL1 in VCR mode with the signal being out putted via the onboard composite cable hookup. The composite cable is being run into a usb elgato dongle into OBS. The visual and audio distortion is identical when viewed from both the viewfinder on the camera and the computer. The tapes that are distorted look like they all came from the same production house. the distorted tapes are radio shack, sony and maxell. there's no indication of them being a foreign video signal like "pal" the tapes are all of an event from newyork.

    Could this specific production house have recorded the tapes in a signal that the cannon cannot read? i have other devices that can run DV tapes but they are in another location and packed up. i was hoping to quickly go through these tape with the one piece of equipment i had on hand.
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  6. Is the distortion continuous or intermittent? Does the tape appear to be playing at normal speed or is it sped up or slowed down? Are you certain these were recorded as DV and not DVCam or other similar flavor?

    (And your capture method is a nightmare. You should always use firewire for DV. Though it appears that is not the source of your problem.)
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    the distortion is continuous, and it looks like the normal speed. the video link will show you what i see. All the tapes have MiniDV printed on them. Could a DVCAM format be put on a MINIDV by a DVCAM camera or VCR?
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  8. Could it be a PAL vs. NTSC problem?
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    Originally Posted by jagabo View Post
    Could it be a PAL vs. NTSC problem?
    There is no indication of it being PAL in the material or written any where on the tape. As for a NTSC problem, i dont know what that means.
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  10. aBigMeanie aedipuss's Avatar
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    why would anyone output composite from a dv cam? it's digital video that needs to be output from the dv out of the cam to a firewire port on the computer. the file recorded to the hard drive will be identical to the file on the tape.

    it cant be that because some of these are edited master tapes, and other are interviews. Any other thoughts? Meaning that they were made from different machines.
    or the cam used to play the tape has problems.
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    Originally Posted by aedipuss View Post
    why would anyone output composite from a dv cam? it's digital video that needs to be output from the dv out of the cam to a firewire port on the computer. the file recorded to the hard drive will be identical to the file on the tape.
    I'm just going through the tapes to figure out what are on them and if they need to be saved. i'm not capturing anything. I'm trying to find out what the problem is with the tapes that are distorted.

    most of the tapes are playing fine and i'm able to review the contents. some of them have a this distortion. i'm trying to figure out what the distortion is.

    i can see and hear the distortion on the tapes in question on the viewfinder on the digital camera. so i know its not the composite-usb-computer set up. i'm using composite because its the quickest way for me to review without hunching over a small viewfinder on the Digital camera.
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  12. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by neeel View Post
    the distortion is continuous, and it looks like the normal speed. the video link will show you what i see. All the tapes have MiniDV printed on them. Could a DVCAM format be put on a MINIDV by a DVCAM camera or VCR?
    The answer is yes, miniDV is the consumer format, but kind of really the shell size. The smallest size usable with DVCAM and DVCPro is equal to the the consumer format's size, so it could be that they were used inappropriately.
    However, it shouldn't have been able to be put on a consumer tape - (if memory serves) there are little flagdoors that help determine compatibility.

    But even if dvcam or dvcpro is put on one of the standard minidv tapes, a regular consumer minidv deck CANNOT play back dvcam nor dvcpro, unless they specifically, explicitly advertise as such. Both formats have a completely different track pitch and tape speed.

    Scott
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  13. Didn't notice your YouTube link before.

    Looks like the camera is trying valiantly to lock onto the sync and fill in the gaps. There's very little pixel breakup or static which is promising. You need to dig deeper into the speed issues already suggested -- PAL/NTSC, SP/LP, DV/DVCam. You're in L.A., you can surely find another camera or deck to try.

    Based on your YouTube I'm leaning more towards LP/SP right now. LP requires finer tolerances for proper playback.
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    Originally Posted by smrpix View Post
    Didn't notice your YouTube link before.

    Looks like the camera is trying valiantly to lock onto the sync and fill in the gaps. There's very little pixel breakup or static which is promising. You need to dig deeper into the speed issues already suggested -- PAL/NTSC, SP/LP, DV/DVCam. You're in L.A., you can surely find another camera or deck to try.

    Based on your YouTube I'm leaning more towards LP/SP right now. LP requires finer tolerances for proper playback.
    thanks for the feedback! i will look into what you mentioned.
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  15. Member dellsam34's Avatar
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    If you just want to preview the tapes why don't you just use the camera viewfinder to displays the video? that way if it displays the video with no problems then the tapes and the camcorder are fine. If that's the case then remove the elgato capture device and put it in the trash can where it belongs and all your problems will go away, you will even be able to sleep good that night, Get a firewire card if you have a desktop (again you didn't describe your hardware otherwise this thread would have been a lot shorter), or one of those Pinnacle capture devices that have both firewire and USB if your laptop doesn't have firewire, The workflow will be cam>firewire cable>Pinnacle device>USB cable>PC. Then use WinDV or similar to capture or view the footage. I can't help if you have a MAC, never owned one.

    Canon XL1? It's a shame to hook it up via composite to elcrapo, that's an insult to that camcorder.
    Last edited by dellsam34; 18th Mar 2020 at 00:15.
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  16. I've had a similar issues in the past that had to do with what camcorder filmed it and/or LP vs SP(I think) My JVC tapes all had split lines in them when I tried to play them on a Sony Camcorder through the whole tape, but mine where blue line video line I'd say 6 lines 3 blue 3 video and it stayed for the whole tape.
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    So, just an update. The tape formats are "digital beta"

    thanks for your help everybody!
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  18. Member dellsam34's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by neeel View Post
    So, just an update. The tape formats are "digital beta"

    thanks for your help everybody!
    So you've been trolling us all along by saying you have DV tapes, but now all of a sudden the tapes grow bigger into Digibeta after they played fine in a DV camcorder the Canon XL1? What a waste of our time.
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    no, i found a label on one of the tapes ( i have a stack of them) its marked as digital beta. thats the first and only clue ive found as to what they are. not trolling.
    Last edited by neeel; 3rd Apr 2020 at 19:13.
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  20. Formerly 'vaporeon800' Brad's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by neeel View Post
    All the tapes have MiniDV printed on them.
    Originally Posted by neeel View Post
    i found a label on one of the tapes ... marked as digital beta. thats the first and only clue ive found as to what they are.
    If the tape has the MiniDV logo on it, it's MiniDV. That little printout is probably just noting the source format that your copy was dubbed from (Digital Betacam aka Digibeta).
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