Hard drives

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    • #48088

      I’m hoping someone here can help me. I can’t afford it right now, but I saw in a video someone shooting with a XL-2 camera and a hard drive mounted to the back of it. Can someone point me in the direction of this type of hard drive? Who makes it, and where can I read about them?

      Has anyone ever used one? I took the camera to church this morning ready to tape a Christmas play the children were doing. Set the camera up and did the whitebalancing, only to find I forgot a tape. Luckily somone else was taping it as well.

    • #197719

      I found what I was looking for. It appears that Focus Enhancements no longer makes it. You can buy them new on Amazon for $1,300.00 or used for as little as $599.00 What do you all think of used equipment. Is it worth the savings, or should I just get a new one and pay double the price. That is when I can afford to do so.


    • #197720

      Buy a new camera that is tapeless?

    • #197721

      Tapeless camcorder is good but if you already have a tape camcorder, there was an article in the most recent edition of Videomaker magazine with two new DTE hard drives.

      Maxell iVDR VC102

      Nexto NVS2500


    • #197722

      Plus you can get either (or both) a dedicated portable hard drive or a flash media recorder to augment your tape-based camera. I’ve been working tapeless lately and I do prefer it, but still like to have tape available as an option. Both images look the same except one you can download directly and the other you must digitize. Really, if you’re working with an AVCHD based cam’ you’re spending about the same time for digitizing to convert your footage to uncompressed or a more manageable format for editing anyway. Focus Enhancement makes a fine and inexpensive flash media recorder to mount on your camera.

    • #197723

      I know this is 3 months old… but anyways…
      I use both the XL2 and FS-4 (with the HD PRO upgrade,
      even though i can’t use the HD mode on the XL2 ..bleh)

      Few things you have to be careful of, when using a Harddrive recorder attached to a camera..

      -Remember to set your FS-4 to Tapeless or Syncro mode.. (Tapeless will
      allow you to record without a tape in the camera, while Syncro will
      record only when the tape is recording, sort of a backup option)
      When I first started using this, I had problems with it, like it wouldn’t start recording when I pressed the REC button…
      I always tell my camera guys to “Always check to make sure it’s recording”.
      It’s not so bad when it’s on a tripod and and external monitor near the back…
      but when you have it over-the-shoulder, I always tell them to check it.

      The Vibration of the harddrive disk spinning will be heard on the on-board microphone..
      A low hum will be heard by the camera’s mic, unless you have an external audio source..
      like an XLR to the camera off of the Mixer… or a Boom mic operator..
      or a separate audio recording source…

      It’s not 100% reliable though, I’d say it’s about 97% reliable.
      sometimes the framerate get’s weird, or a clip get’s all jumbled up.
      or the sound sampling gets recorded wrong..
      the FS-4, however, does have a utilities menus that include Repair Disk and Repair Clip.

    • #197724

      B & H has the Datavideo compact flash card recorder that you can add to a camcorder and it is only $539 brand new with free shipping. My only concern is I think the CF cards are a little expensive. I wish they would make it using SD cards.

    • #197725


      CF cards are more robust than SD cards (and are less likely to blow out of your hands on a windy shoot). They also seem to have longer data lives than SD cards. I’ve got a couple from when they first came out (128 MB and 1GB) and I used them in a camera most of those years though now just for archival stuff.

    • #197726


      Thanks for your take on the CF cards. I’ve thought about adding these units to my tape cameras to get a tape free workflow. Just need more billings to do that.

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