HELP! How do i get video off my HD camera? (tapes)

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    • #47881


      I bought a Sony Handycam HDV over a year ago and havent ever
      been able to get the footage from these minidv (annoying tapes) only my
      computer 😡

      I tried going to a Sony store and they had no
      clue, told me to get an i-link cable. I got one off the internet and it
      doesn’t fit in any of the ports :confused:

      pic of camera

      of ports

      anyone help advice me on how i can finally convert all my tapes to an
      .AVI or similar?


    • #197021


      Question 1 – Is your computer a PC or Mac?

      Question 2 – Does your computer have firewire capability either built-in to the motherboard or as an added PCI card?

      Check your original documentation on your computer to see if it has a 1394 input (firewire), if it does the inputs come in two sizes; 4-pin or 6-pin. A 4-pin is small and fits the ‘i-link’ sized port most consumer Sony gear comes with. A 6-pin will be larger and will look like a flattened ‘D’ shape. Your camera may have a 4-pin input but your computer may have a 6-pin input.

      Hold it. I just looked at your ports and you’ve got some weird Sony proprietary A/V out port. Do you still have that cable? Also, look on the side of the camera underneath the flipscreen and see if you have a firewire or USB port there. If not, you’re going to need that cable that came with the camera and if it’s an analog A/V cable, you’ll also need to get an analog to DV converter. But before you pull the pin on the ‘Sweat Grenade’, take a deep breath and look under the flipscreen. Let me know what you find.

    • #197022

      1. pc (windows 7)

      2. the pc has 2 ports labelled “1394” on the back, both are different sizes

      a cable fitting that wierd a/v port didnt come with the camera 🙁

      btw the exact model is sony hdr-hc3



      under the flipscreen theres a standard digi-cam to usb port, that only lets me access the sd card stuff (pics) on the pc

    • #197023
    • #197024


      I bet you’re one of those guys who ‘doesn’t read the manual when you get new gear’ huh? All right, all kidding aside, your i-Link and HDMI inputs are on the front left side of the camera. Flip open the rubber dust guard and you’ll see them there. The i-Link is the square looking one on top. If you’ve got your manual, go to pg 43 and the diagram is at the top of the page. If not here’s a link to the online version:

      You said you bought a firewire (i-Link) cable. More than likely that’s a 4 to 4-pin cable (two small input plugs.) If your computer has a larger 1394 (firewire) plug socket then it’s a 6-pin and you’ll need a 4 to 6-pin plug. Also in the manual it says your computer needs to be ‘i-link compatible’. Horse hockey. Long as your computer is capable of handling firewire data, you’re fine. You just need the proper connection cables.

      Now make sure you read through your manual to properly set your menu settings to playback DV and HDV footage. You can’t mix and match them on your camera. As the sheep would say about a wolf in the pen, ‘Thaaat would be baaaaad!’ If you’ve lost your manual, download the one from the link and print it out. You should be able to get going now.

    • #197025

      wow thanks, feel like to total gimp that ive never found those ports before! got video capture working with sony vegas. you know ive bought 3 cameras since due to this not working – now i can sell them all LOL

      i bought the camera in a rush before holiday and couldnt find the manual when i returned

    • #197026

      “… Feel like to total gimp that I’ve never found those ports before!”


      99% of the time the problem is OPERATOR ERROR. I tell my students all the time “the manual is your friend, really.” Like I said, your main mistake was talking to someone at Best Buy. Their job isn’t to help fix the problem. They’re there to sell you something whether you actually need it or not. Actually, you may want to keep the other cam’s in case you want to do a multi-camera shoot. Just a thought.

    • #197027

      Composite is right regarding extra cams lying around. You’ll NEVER get what you spent, or what they could be worth to you out of them in resell. With rare exception once-owned equipment will always have a better value for whatever you can apply them to, than what you can sell them for. Keep ’em and use ’em. You WILL need them more often than you think right now.

    • #197028

      Rather than start a new thread, I’d like to add a question to this one. Do I have to use the same camera I filmed with to dump the footage into my computer? For example can I use my Canon HV30 to dump footage shot with my XHa1? Even better can I use my little JVC digital camcorder to playback the footage for dumping into my computer? The JVC is not HD though. But could I use it if I shot in SD with the other cams? The reason I ask is I’m thinking that I can save hours of use on my best equipment in the long run,helping me to maintain it, save the heads, and so forth.

    • #197029

      “Do I have to use the same camera I filmed with to dump the footage into
      my computer?”


      The answer to that is; ‘not necessarily’. Used to be that tapes shot on any particular format would work with any brand of camera using the same format. Now, that isn’t always the case. Since you’ve got two Canon rigs, that might be doable. Since it’s just data you’re capturing via firewire the issue of ‘quality’ or ‘generation loss’ isn’t an issue.

      When you start crossing up brands like Canon, JVC, Sony and so on that’s when you run into problems. Concerning SD shot from other cam’s playing in your JVC, you’ll just have to test it. Years ago I had a guy shoot a doc for me in SD DV. He used a Sony HDV cam for the shoot. I couldn’t play the tapes in the little Canon DV rig we were using as a deck so I thought he shot it in HDV.

      Years later, I get a Sony Clamshell to play the tapes on, lo and behold the guy did exactly what I told him to but due to Sony’s proprietary BS, the tapes wouldn’t play on the canon. Weird thing is, a year later after that job I shot a film using a JVC pro cam at DV and the tapes played just fine in that same little canon rig.

      So you’ll ultimately have to test your cam’s to see which one’s will ‘play nice together.’

    • #197030

      Ok, so its trial and error. I’ll know if it doesn’t capture huh…but theres no need to even try capturing HD on an SD cam right? The software won’t pick up the recording format ? I can wish can’t I…

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