iMovie import firewire problem

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by stevol, May 16, 2008.

  1. stevol macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2008
    #1
    Help! New iMac 24", 2.8. Firewire 800 has two drives attached, daisy-chained to another -- one is for video capturing / scratch disk, other is for time machine drive. The Firewire 400 port is used for my Canon camcorder. My plan seemed to me a good one. However, when I first connected my camcorder, my time machine drive seemed to unexpectedly "eject" itself, and a warning message appeared basically saying I did not eject it properly. Furthermore, and most disturbing, is that iMovie 08 gave me a "communication error" message and I could not import video no matter what I did. It did detect my camcorder and did seem to communicate enough to make the camcorder play video on its own lcd, but no video actually transferred to the Mac. I tried iMovie 06 and with some luck it seemed to work. That firewire port (400) has worked recently with a different hard drive. Interestingly, when I disconnected both of my 800 drives, the import actually worked in iMovie 08! Yet I need one of those drives as my scratch disk! What gives! Help! If it makes a difference, my time machine drive is actually a 400 speed drive daisy-chained to the back of an 800 drive which in turn is connected to my 800 port. Thanks in advance. Frustrated to say the least.
     
  2. -DH macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2006
    Location:
    Nashville Tennessee
    #2
    You have a couple of things working against you; first, Canon devices don't play nice with other Firewire devices sharing the same Firewire bus. It's due to Canon's rather loose adherence to the Firewire standard. The second thing is that ALL Macs only have one Firewire bus, regardless of the number of Firewire ports ... and an iMac isn't expandable so you can't add an additional Firewire bus like you can on a tower system or on a laptop with an express card slot.

    So, without going out and buying a new computer or a new video playback/capture device, you have two options: Capture to your internal drive, then connect the external drives and transfer the footage before editing ... or try connecting the Canon to one of the drives, then connect the drive to your iMac. That sometimes works.

    Either way, in FCP, make sure you have device control set for Firewire Basic ... because you're using a Canon.

    -DH
     
  3. vinpages macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2008
    Location:
    France
    #3
    Same problem on Macbook pro, but not on powerbook!!!

    I have the exact same problem on my new Mac book Pro (MBP 4.1 - 2.5GHz - Leopard). If I plug my Canon camera and any FW 400 or 800 hard drive, the importation fails with iMovie HD 6.
    I read the same explanation before, that it due to the Canon camcorder which needs ALL the bandwidth of the firewire ports.
    But I have a hard time believing this explanation since the exact same configuration (same camcorder and same FW400 hard drive daisy chained) on my old powerbook G4 (1Ghz - Tiger) worked PERFECTLY!!!
    Any other explanation?
    Is this a Leopard issue, or a MBP issue?
    It's sad to say, but I'll have to re-use my old powerbook to be able to import my movies on an external hard drive!!!
     
  4. vinpages macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2008
    Location:
    France
    #4
    Same problem on Macbook pro, but not on powerbook!!!

    I have the exact same problem on my new Mac book Pro (MBP 4.1 - 2.5GHz - Leopard). If I plug my Canon camera and any FW 400 or 800 hard drive, the importation fails with iMovie HD 6.
    I read the same explanation before, that it due to the Canon camcorder which needs ALL the bandwidth of the firewire ports.
    But I have a hard time believing this explanation since the exact same configuration (same camcorder and same FW400 hard drive daisy chained) on my old powerbook G4 (1Ghz - Tiger) worked PERFECTLY!!!
    Any other explanation?
    Is this a Leopard issue, or a MBP issue?
    It's sad to say, but I'll have to re-use my old powerbook to be able to import my movies on an external hard drive!!!
     
  5. Drewbee macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    #5
    Same Problem

    Using Firewire 400 on brand new iMac (just bought in June 08) and same exact problem. IMovie gives "Communication Error" though it's communicating well enough to get the Canon ZR500 camcorder to play.

    Also puts up error message as if my camera was unplugged without proper dismounting. At same time, the Western Digital External Drive (on a firewire 800) unmounts unexpectedly! WTF? :mad:

    I've got all new equipment, and this is why I bought my iMac -- to do video and it does not work!!!! Any advice would be greatlyt appreciated...
     

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