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bruce burton Posted on Feb 16, 2007

I have an old 1985 Sony Video -8 AF camcorder...I shot some film and it is VERY grainy on the tape....

Im pretty sure after reading some of the other postings on here that I need to get a head cleaner cassette. Do you know where I could get this? Also, is there any way to salvage the material from the tape? Do you think cleaning the head will allow me to see what was recorded...or is the recording itself bad.

5 Related Answers

Anonymous

  • 2 Answers
  • Posted on Jan 15, 2008

SOURCE: very grainy playback

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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Anonymous

  • 10594 Answers
  • Posted on Nov 24, 2008

SOURCE: Mode for playback of older 8mm tapes using Sony DCR-TRV730 ?

In 1990s Sony camcorder records movie in analog format so playing in digital camcorder like DCR-TRV730 doesn't mean it will be converted in digital format and you can not import file in PC for editing purpose. You will get analog signal while playing back old cassettes.

Regarding SP, LP speed, its decided at time of recording. Camera sens SP or LP automatically in playback and set itself accordingly.

If you want to convert old cassettes into digital format, connect our camcorder to DVD recorder and burn DVD which is digital format, copy DVD files in to PC and do desired editing.

Parshiv Luthra

  • 395 Answers
  • Posted on Dec 07, 2008

SOURCE: camcorder won't play recorded tape

Clean the head and try again

Anonymous

  • 71 Answers
  • Posted on May 02, 2009

SOURCE: Cannot find a head cleaner for Sony Digital 8 (DCR-TRV460)

Yes you can clean the heads. It's a delicate procedure, but, requires no disassembly. But, I'm curious about your mention of "blurry spots." Typically, on a digital camera, the video when the heads are dirty, will either just appear as a white screen, or, will come out blocky and glitchy (like poor satellite reception). "Blurry" would result from a dirty lense or filter. However, to clean your heads, I would run to Radio Shack and buy cleaning fluid refils. Take a Qtip and dampen it with the cleaning fluid. Open the camera, remove the tape and look for the video drum. Lightly rub the Qtip along the drum horizontal to the spin direction (not across the grain). Turn the drum and clean until you have swept the entire circumference.

aneesh ch

Aneesh ch

  • 73 Answers
  • Posted on Jul 09, 2009

SOURCE: Sony Handycam CCD-TRV21 won't play tapes.

no that u must remove ur camera and try to clean all strip that connect with board and mechanisum and all connectors legs solder then it will work .any doubt call u.a.e no 00971503853766

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We have an Sony Video 8 AF. Camcorder is not working. Can and What can we use to transfer the movies we have taped to a more modern format?? Is there a cable or can you recommend a professional who can...

You can take your tapes to a video transfer service and get them to transfer to DVDs. Any large metro area will have these services but if not, you can mail off the tapes to a known service. Look online (google) for a reliable service with BBB rating and customer testimonials. Look locally first.

You may find a working Sony 8mm camcorder on your local Craigslist.com or at a Goodwill store or other second hand outlet or in the newspaper ads or online but that is unlikely since they are so dated. Remember that a Sony Hi8 camcorder can also read 8mm tapes so if you can find one of those for $50 to $80, they would read the tapes.

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This behaviour is relaterd to tape reading / tape detection. You may have a dirty or worn-out head on the video heads drum.
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