Sony DCR PC105E I-link failure; any advice? (Please!)

Discussion in 'Camcorders, Action Cams & Video Making Forum' started by newby_ken, Jun 14, 2005.

  1. newby_ken

    Standard Member

    Jun 14, 2005
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    About 18 months ago I bought my first camcorder, a Sony DCR PC105e. In many respects it is excellent – great movie and still image quality, easy to use, has a few cool FX features. I liked it so much that I splurged and got two lens adaptors (wide-angle and telephoto).

    BUT.. after apx. 10 months of occasional use, I was suddenly unable to export the video to my PC (Windows XP SP1, apx. 2.4 ghz pentium, 1,024 mb RAM, apx 120 GB harddrive) via firewire, or “I-link”, or whatver it’s called.

    Previously I had been able to, using a firewire cable and Ulead Video 7 software. It was very easy. Worked fine for about 7 hours of use scattered over 10 months.

    Then one day the PC just stopped recognizing the Sony.

    I tried many things, including uninstalling and re-installing Ulead and the Sony drivers, using other video software (Arcsoft and Magix, to name but 2) and installing a new firewire card. To no avail. The PC won’t recognize the Sony any more. All software packages report something along the lines of “No video source detected”.

    My PC works fine with other firewire devoices (like a DVD writer, and an external hard-drive), but not with the Sony.

    The same is true of my laptop, so fingers increasingly point to the Sony – especially as a Google search reveals exactly the same problem with exactly the same Sony model.

    Unfortunately these complaints, posted on various forums, are a bit old (2003-4) and crucially don’t say how things turned out in the end.

    It is still possible to transfer video to the PC via UBS and Sony’s ImageTransfer 1.5 software, but the image quality is very poor. Why bother to include a Carl Zeiss lens when the exporting leaves your images looking like crap on the PC or DVD you burn?

    Sony has not been helpful – they have been totally unresponsive to my e-mails.

    This is not a “hate Sony” posting (although they have alienated me). Rather, it’s a request for advice. I see my options – which I’d ask forum members to comment on / add to as they fit --as follows:

    a) try to find a mini DV player with a firewire connection so I can shoot with the Sony and transfer to the PC with the player. Problem is, the few players I’ve heard of cost much more than most camcorders.
    b) Buy the cheapest camcorder with firewire connectivity which I can find, and use this to feed Sony-shot video into the PC.
    c) Try an analogue-to-digital converter like Dazzle – though this raises questions; for example, although the image quality when I plug the Sony (via its analogue outs) straight into the TV is excellent, will it be as excellent once it’s gone through this converter?

    Ultimately I want to load in AVI files so I can edit and apply FX without image degradation.

    I’d be grateful for any suggestions members might offer. I’ve got 10 hours of raw footage (which probably would boil down into about 45 minutes of very cool footage) accumulating, but can’t edit any of it!

    Lastly, please go easy with jargon as I am a newby.

  2. Brian110507


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    I had a similar problem a couple of years back and eventually traced the problem to a bent pin in the connector on the camera - their so tiny and impossible to get at and I was quoted a horrendous price just for someone to look at it.

    Eventually I solved my problem by purchasing very cheaply on e-bay a camera whose focus mechanism had failed and it was therefore no use as a camera although it was perfect in all other respects - it's owner had also been quoted a ridiculous price for repair and was pleased to get rid of it for anything.

    It now sits permanently plugged into my PC (avoiding future bent pins) and provides a very cheap 'Deck' for transferring my videos

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