Canon HV20 camcoder misery. Can’t get a Firewire connection.

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    • #39744

      I purchased a Canon HV20 HDV camcorder a short time ago, and in all areas it performs great, except for one VERY frustrating part; I cannot seem to connect to my PC/video editing software using the Firewire connection.

      When I connect the camera to my PC and turn it on, I get the familiar Window XP "bong" connection alert, and also the disconnection alert when I turn off the camcorder, so I am assume there is *some* kind of connection/recognition there. However all the software I have tried so far isn’t interested in talking to the camera.

      Software I’ve tried:

      Windows Movie make (when trying to capture I get the message "A video capture device was not detected")
      Adobe Premier Elements 3 (error, "Can’t activate recorder, try resetting camera)
      Adobe Premier CS3 (error, "Can’t activate recorder, try resetting camera)

      The camcorder LCD display is showing the DV connection as active the moment I switch on the connection.

      I’ve sent a message to Canon tech support, but I won’t hold my breath waiting for the reply!

      I would really appreciate some pointers as to what to do to try to diagnose the problem.



      Computer specs:

      Intel Quad core 2.66Ghz
      2 Gig RAM
      Soundblaster X-Fi soundcard
      Intel D975XBX2 motherboard
      Nvidia GeForce 8600GTS video card
      Windowx XP Pro (SP2)

    • #171509

      Does the camera show up in the device manager?

    • #171510

      Thanks for the reply.

      In "Sound, Video & Game Controllers" in device manager is listed ‘AV/C Tape Device" so I’m assuming that is it.

      When I first plugged in the camera, the Windows "new device" balloon appeared, and displayed the following:

      CANON HV20


      After a few seconds:



    • #171511

      Do you have any other computers or camcorders with FireWire to test with? If you have another camcorder, I’d test it too and see if the HV20 is the problem. Or try the HV20 with a different computer to see if it’s your computer that’s the problem.

      I’ve never heard of this problem such as it is. It looks to be working properly, but obviously it isn’t. Rare. I think you might have to wait until Canon gets back to you.

      I’ve had some problems with connecting over FireWire when my project settings (including capture settings) are not the same as the camcorder’s source footage. Once, I thought I was going to capture HDV footage, but the original footage was actually typical SD footage (anamorphic, however, so I thought it was HDV). The software wouldn’t capture, obviously, and it took me much longer than I’d like to admit to figure out what the heck was wrong. Double check what the footage is, SD DV or HDV, double check your capture/project settings that they match and see if you can’t get them to communicate.


    • #171512

      Just in case it might help, here’s a screen capture of the important bits in my Device Manager list:

    • #171513

      I must apologise to the group profusely for my stupidity!

      I just discovered that I had the DV output on my camera set to HDV thus is wouldn’t work as XP DirectShow is unaware of HDV (it’s down to the editing program to import HDV footage). I set my Canon to standard DV out and now it works perfectly. I can also capture HDV footage so long as I tell Premier to expect it!

      My apologies for wasting your time, but hopefully someone with a similar problem (and bad memory!) will find this thread and it will help them out.

    • #171514

      That’s what we’re here for. πŸ™‚

    • #171515

      I was wondering about that just before I read your comment. Glad you got it fixed.

    • #171516

      Yep, I ran into the same problem! The thread was definitely helpful. I got the same familiar Window XP "bong" connection alert, and also the disconnection alert when I turn off the camcorder. I had even read that some applications would not import HDV but I kept the camera in HDV mode anyway because I didn’t think it would have any effect on whether XP saw it. Silly me.

      Let’s face it, the manual isn’t all that helpful. When I first connected the camera, I had it in HDV mode and I did not see the drivers install. When I finally got wise to what was going on and switched to DV mode I could see the camera show up in the category "Scanners and Cameras" under My Computer and got a pop-up dialog asking me which application I wanted to use to import video or capture direct to DVD.

      Now that I have gotten this far I’m confused about HDV editing applications. If the XP driver doesn’t "see" the camera in HD mode does this mean each HD capture and editing application has it’s own driver used to recognize the video?

      Are there any free or reasonably inexpensive applications I can use for editing HDV? I don’t really need anything much more complicated than windows movie maker.

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