Question about Canon XL1S Mini DV Digital Camcorder

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No tape icon when the tape is installed

I tried to use my brother's Canon XL-1 today and it woould not play back a tape we had recorded a few weeks ago and the "no tape" icon is flashing. It won't let me watch pre-recorded tapes or recordon a blank tape. Any suggestions>?

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Re: no tape icon when the tape is installed

Have you push down the cassette tray before closing the lid?

Posted on Nov 30, 2007

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Re: no tape icon when the tape is installed

Alot of times dirty tape heads can cause this issue. Try loading a Digital Head Cleaning Cassette into the unit, and let it clean the heads. Many times this will solve the problem. Also, make sure it's not the 'wet-type' cleaners, as this will cause damage.

For the record issue, make sure the tapes do not have the prevent erasure tabs set - this is on the bottom of the tape, and is looks like a tab that says ERASE OFF or SAVE.

Not much else that can cause this issue. Never force the tape into the unit, and never hit the unit to get it to work. If nothing works, then I would suggest taking into a service center for diagnosis.

Hope this helps some.


Posted on Nov 09, 2007

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Canon support was of no help. They ****! To fix the problem this is what I figured out.

  1. Before you start filming what you want record or just advance the tape 10 secs or so.
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  4. Simply rewind the tape to the beginning and record briefly in the blank portion at the beginning (careful not to tape too long as to tape over your intended recording).
  5. Rewind and play the thick grey lines should now be gone.
How did I figure this out just a fluke. No cleaning, no spray pretty simple. At first did not understand it but it works EVERYTIME for me. I'll deal with it until I get around to buying a new HD video camera and it won't be a Canon. Hope this helps.

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Either that or go to the professional service that does conversion from minidv tapes. That usually costs around 15$ per hour, so if you have 10 or more hours of video, the less expensive way is buying an entry model of panasonic camcorder.

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I then decided to try to record with a new tape around the room to see what would happen. After recording I played the tape back and it worked perfectly. I then went back the old tape that would not play properly and it worked fine! Seems like when I used the record button after cleaning it a few times everything worked fine, wierd.

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1. Open the exterior tape door with the "Eject" button.
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3. To properly put the tape in, insert tape, push the little metal door that sais "Push this first".
4. Then push the exterior door closed.

Voila! Thats all there is to it!

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