Sony HDR-HC3 COnnection Problems

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by Ironwill, Mar 10, 2007.

  1. Ironwill macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2007
    #1
    Ok. So I bought a Sony HDR-HC3 Camcorder to record various nonsense so that I could play around with i-movie. I have recorded some footage but am now faced with the following problem: I cannot get my i-mac to recognize the HDR-HC3. Once I connect the firewire cable and turn the camcorder on shouldn't finder automatically locate the camera? I get zip, nada, nothing. I have also run i-dvd and i-movie and get nothing. Any thoughts? The manual that came with the camcorder is somewhat cryptic. Is it possible that I am doing something basic wrong? How can I determine if the firewire jack in the camera is functional?

    Any thoughts or suggestions would be helpful.

    Oh yeah.. I am using an Intel I-Mac , I-Movie HD (6.0.3), and OS X 10.4.8.
     
  2. nick9871 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    #2
    Join the Sony vs. Mac club!!!

    My brothers DCR-HC96 refused to connect to any of the 4 generations of Mac's we tested it on. Different cables, power supplies etc. Works fine with PC over USB, however it also does not work with PC over ieee. So we sent it back to sony.

    Does the HDR-HC3 have a "dock" that has all the connections on it? I think that is where the problem lies with our camera.
     
  3. Ironwill thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 10, 2007
    #3
    Connection issue

    Yes, it has a panel with all of the various connections. I think the firewire chip in teh camcorder might be the issue. I don't know. It seems I am not the first to have these issues though.
     
  4. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #4
    The camera isn't going to show up in Finder like an external HDD or anything like that. First off, make sure you have the camera in "playback" or "vcr" mode.

    Secondly, Go to the Apple Menu, select "about this Mac", then "more info" to open the system profiler. Check the Firewire bus under "hardware" to see if the computer can see the camera. If the computer can see the camera then it's just a matter of getting iMovie to see the camera. If the computer can't see the camera that could mean a much bigger problem (possibly a blown FW port somewhere).

    Sometimes the order in which devices are powered on/connected and software opened can make a difference. Try shutting everything down, turning on the camera, turning on the Mac, then opening iMovie. If that doesn't work trying shutting everything down, turning on the Mac, then turning on the camera, then opening iMovie. Etc.,.


    Lethal
     
  5. ppc_michael Guest

    ppc_michael

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    Apr 26, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #5
    Make sure you have i.Link -> DV conversion turned off if iMovie is set to HD. (Conversely, make sure the DV conversion is on if iMovie is working in DV. That is, just make sure your streams are matching formats.)
     
  6. Ironwill thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 10, 2007
    #6
    I checked the system info and under the firewire bus it just gives me the maximum speed of the bus and there is no indication that the camera is attached. I have also tried various sequences of turning the camcorder on/computer on. I also tried hooking the camcorder up to to different PC laptops and they couldn't find the camcorder either. Looks like I am going to have to send the camcorder back. This is frustrating to say the least.
     
  7. Multimedia macrumors 603

    Multimedia

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    Jul 27, 2001
    Location:
    Santa Cruz CA, Silicon Beach
    #7
    Step By Step Directions To Achieve Communication Between Macs & Camcordeers

    Given he does what you recommend first Michael, I think he may not understand:

    1. Must have iMovie 6 OPEN
    2. Plus the camera must be ON
    3. Plus camera must be in VCR mode.
    4. Then Plug In The FireWire
    5. In iMovie preferences AND the HC3 make sure the settings are coordinated with the settings Michael lists above. Nothing will work if they are not.
    6. Make sure your iMovie MODE is switched to the camera position. That's the little slider that has a camera icon on the left and a pair of scissors icon on the right. Without that toggle switched to the left next to the camera icon communication is impossible (as the Japanese like to say).
    7. In that mode you will see a blue screen with the words "Camera Attached" in white in the middle of it. Your time code will appear in the upper right corner. (If not you will see the words "No Camera Attached" with a button for "Connection Help" that will launch Apple's own help file including links to other pages that can help as well.)
    7. Press play in iMovie and you will see the stream playing from the camera.
    8. Press the "Import" button and it will begin to copy the stream to your Movie Folder.

    I think the above stories of communication failure were related to not understanding these steps due to not reading the documentation Apple includes in the extensive help files you can choose from the menu in iMovie. There are also numerous iMovie books out there. You should definitely buy one of those to fully grasp the power of iMovie. It may appear to be simple and limited when in fact it is quite complex and powerful.

    iMovie 6 & iDVD: The Missing Manual is 512 pages long.

    iMovie HD 6 and iDVD 6 for Mac OS X: Visual QuickStart Guide is 312 pages.

    You aren't going to figure out how to use all the Power of iMovie without one of these books.

    The notion that it's Sony's fault their DV or HDV camera's won't work in iMovie is fundamentally false. It is operator error or obsolete versions of iMovie that don't support HDV which are the crux of the problems described above not Sony and not Apple.

    BTW FYI: Have you visited our HDR-HC7 thread yet? Lot of information is there that can be applied to any HDV camera.
     

    Attached Files:

  8. Multimedia macrumors 603

    Multimedia

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    Jul 27, 2001
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    #8
    HC96 Has FW On Dock. HC3 Has FW On Camcorder

    No but you connect the HC96 from its dock in VCR mode to achieve communication with iMovie.

    HC3 Communication is directly out of the camera.

    HC-96 FW Port On Dock Left. HC3 FW Port On Camera Right.
     

    Attached Files:

  9. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #9
    If the Mac itself is not seeing the camera that does lean more towards a hardware problem than a software problem. Do you have any other firewire devices you could connect to confirm the FW ports on your Mac are working okay? Do you have another FW cable you could use w/the camera to see if that's the culprit?

    Isn't trouble shooting fun. :D


    Lethal
     
  10. Ironwill thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 10, 2007
    #10
    OK. I did everything that you suggested and still nothing. I also followed I-Movies helpful suggestion re: connection woes and still zip. The only camera I-Movie shows is my built-in i-sight. By VCR mode, I assume (which is always dangerous) that you mean play/edit mode.

    Lethal, I hooked an external hard-drive up to the I-Mac via firewire and it was recognized and works flawlessly so the firewire port is good.

    I also tried hooking the camcorder up to my two pc laptops again and they couldn't find the camcorder (I even checked under device manager). Unless you can think of anything else I am missing, I don't think this a user error problem.

    Thanks for all your help and suggestions by the way. If this truly is a hardware problem, I am not looking forward to dealing with the warranty process. Argh!
     
  11. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #11
    You didn't mention if you tried using different FW cables, so I'd give that a shot if you haven't yet. Another thing to help narrow it down is if you can borrow a MiniDV or HDV camera from a friend and see if your Mac will work w/a different camera. At the very least that will be another thing you can mark off the check list when you call Sony and they inevitable ask if you have tried doing X, Y, and Z to isolate the problem.


    Lethal
     
  12. Multimedia macrumors 603

    Multimedia

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    Jul 27, 2001
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    Santa Cruz CA, Silicon Beach
    #12
    Looks Like A Bad FW Connector On Or Connection Inside The Camera

    This would point to a defective FW port on the camera. Guess you'll have to send it to Sony Texas for repair. :( Bummer.
     
  13. nick9871 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    #13
    Does anyone know if Sony has recently changed their FireWire control chips inside the cameras? Not sure if these work like USB transceivers or if they are a function of the actual microcontroller, but it seems like there are quite a few people experiencing problems with the firewire ports on the newer sony camera's.

    I am not upset about it, but sort of curious. As the OP mentioned, my camera ALSO would not communicate with any PC's over FireWire, but Sony seems to think USB 2.0 is good enough for most...
     
  14. Ironwill thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 10, 2007
    #14
    I have no answer for you. I am taking the camcorder back to where I bought it to start the whole fix my problem journey.
     
  15. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    Los Angeles
    #15
    It could just be a random manufacturing defect. A bad run from the factory. A similar thing happened to a JVC deck that I bought a few years ago. The batch that hit stores a few months after I purchased mine had a bunch of units w/a faulty chip somewhere that resulted in a scrambled video single when you had it hooked up via firewire.


    Lethal
     
  16. Argonaut macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2007
    Location:
    Wollongong
    #16
    Sony HDR-HC3 woes

    Like Ironwill I have had the same problem with the Sony HDR-HC3. It was a "factory second" so I saved $600 (fortunately it has a one year warrenty) but the computer cannot see it. I have done everything recommended in the forum. My old Sony Digital 8 shows up in "firewire" in the system profiler but the new one doesn't. I am going to test it on Monday at my old school (I'm retired) with a different computer and a different cable but I am not optimistic. I'm also going to investigate the Sony Website and its help department.
     
  17. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

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    London
    #17
    Mine works fine, just so you know that this HDV model can work fine with an Intel Mac.
     
  18. Argonaut macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2007
    Location:
    Wollongong
    #18
    sony HDR-HC3 success!

    After testing my camera at the Apple store in Wollongong with no success I rang the store in Sydney (Bing Lee) where I had bought the camera. They suggested I bring it back with my laptop and my firewire cable to try another camera. First of all I tried a different cable but with no success. Then I tried a different camera and it worked! My laptop only has iMovie 3 and it did not say a camera was connected but I went to :apple: , then "about this mac", then "more info", then "hardware" and then "firewire". It told me that the sony camera was connected. I was so relieved because I didn't know what I would do if the second camera didn't work. Bing Lee changed the cameras over without any problem. Whether this would have been a problem if it hadn't been a "second" changed for another "second" I don't know. As soon as I got home I tried it on iMovie HD on my Intel iMac and it worked perfectly.:D
     
  19. txcheffy macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2007
    #19
    Blue screen

    I have my hdr-hc5 hooked up with firewire and i know its reading it because I am able to use the play controls and see the time stamp on the play on top right hand of screen. However there is no picture in the screen. Ive tried several different settings, but just cant figure it out. Any help? I feel like im close but no cigar.
     
  20. Multimedia macrumors 603

    Multimedia

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    Jul 27, 2001
    Location:
    Santa Cruz CA, Silicon Beach
    #20
    In iMovie 6?

    You must begin a new project with the HDV 1080i Video Setting. If you are in a project that was not started this way, you cannot change it. You must begin a new project set for HDV 1080i.
     
  21. txcheffy macrumors newbie

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    Mar 28, 2007
    #21
    Thank you Multi- but

    im a total newb to mac, recently in last 6 months switched everthing over, 5 lts one imac. I tried that and am still getting blue screen but still have controls on the recorder. What settings should i be using on the camera to match the imac. once again a total newb but dont want to give up and plug it into my last pc.
     
  22. Ironwill thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 10, 2007
    #22
    Still waiting

    I am still waiting to hear back on what the problem is with the camcorder. I am told I will have it back in two weeks or so. The waiting is the hardest part.
     
  23. bagleyb macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2005
    #23
    I had exactly the same thing happening. I read and read, and kept hearing about this iLink conversion option. I couldn't find it anywhere on my camera. I finally found it in the menu setup options. It wasn't shown by default, you had to tell the menu to show it. P-Menu>P-menu setup>add>Standard Set>i.Link Conv

    Once I added that button, I was able to turn the HD>DV setting off.
     
  24. Ironwill thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 10, 2007
    #24
    Good News!

    I got the camera back yesterday and just tried it out. It works like a charm. So it was a bad camera and not user error! Sweet! I would like to thank everyone who responded to my forum post trying to help me out.
     

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