Question about Canon ZR60 Mini DV Digital Camcorder

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Grainy Playback I just got a Canon ZR-60. The playback is "grainy". I've tried adjusting the shutter speed and white balance. I've also tried cleaning the heads, but there has not been a noticable change. HELP.

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Re: Grainy Playback

1. Starting at http://www.canondv.com/zr60/ I read it has a digital zoom. You will find that such to be less useful that one expects. 2. Low light levels can result in more graininess. "Recommended illumination: More than 100 lx" Notice that 100 lux is pretty bright. Try 200 lux. 3. I must ask this: Did it ever work? 4. From the specs: "Image sensor: 1/6" CCD (charge coupled device) approx. 680,000 pixels (approx. 340,000 effective pixels-tape)" 340,000 pixels is OK for common video work, but today's consumers might compare a frame to some multimegapixel camera. This is just 0.34 megapixels, so grain may indeed show as you blow it up.

Posted on Sep 04, 2005

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My advice is that you should by a DV cleaning cassette. Put this in the camera and run it for 10 to 20 seconds only. running the cleaning cassette for a long time may damage the head.
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Mine did the same thing. I cleaned the head with a dry tape cleaner then instead of just showing a blue screen it started showing a screen with the video but with gray lines on it. Cleaned it a few more times but it still didn't work. Finally I came up with a solution they say not to do this but if your careful it will be fine. Get a bottle of nail polish remover acetone free and some q-tips. Dampen one of the q-tips make sure its only damp and not wet be sure not to get finger oil on your q-tips. With the camera tape port ejected and open lightly swab the head with the q-tip with nail polish remover do this as long as you like being sure to clean the whole head once complete let it dry for a few minutes when it drys it will be dull looking with a thin white film on it. Take a fresh q-tip ensuring you don't touch the cotton your going to use this to wipe the film off the head once complete the head will look shiny. try your tape and if it works it was a dirty head if it plays the screws up most likely your tape is dirty or messed up.
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Same problem with my Sony CCD-TR416 recently. Know what finally worked? With camera playing a tape, I picked up the camera and tapped it sharply on a solid desktop. Had to do it 3 times. I held the camera with two hands, one on each side of the camera, raised it about 3 to 5 inches off the desktop and then quickly tapped it on the desk holding the camera parallel to the desktop so that it solidly hit with all of the lower surface of the camera body.

I know it sounds crazy. I swear it worked. I had tried cleaning the heads over and over. I examined them with a 20x loupe and they looked fine. I doubt that the problem was oxide and debris build-up on the heads.

I planned to order a new head/drum just to see if I could manage the replacement procedure by myself (I'm a chronic do-it-yourselfer/experimenter). I guess I don't need to do that now.

Why did the slam technique work? My guess: Inside the rotating head, there must be some sort of electronic track like the brushes of a motor or something similar.. Some sort of debris must have been involved in a corruption of the transfer of impulses from the heads. A few taps and it broke free.

If banging it on the desk didn't work, I was next planning to remove the drum to check for bad connections. I'm sorry I didn't have to do that.

Nevertheless, don't listen to everyone when they say that the "heads must be dirty." Nope. With the loupe, I could see mine were sparkling clean. But, I still had those multiple horizontal rows of short white streaks obliterating the video image. Tap. Tap. Tap. Now they're gone.

Try it. Couldn't hurt. Though chances are, you won't see this. I'm posting 6 months after your original post. I just happened upon your post as I researched the problem through Google. Neverthelss, someone might see my response someday and maybe they, too, will get luck with the tap, tap, tap procedure.

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