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  1. #1

    TheCustomer99's Avatar
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    Just bought a Canon ZR850.
    I just bought a new camcorder today because my old one is outdated and the battery life is next to nothing and instead of getting a new battery, I figured I'd join the Digital revolution. I got the Canon ZR850 LINK. I bought it since it was recommended by Apple on their site. If anyone has had any experience with this camcorder (particularly importing video to iMovie) I'd greatly appreciate it.
    "Anecdotal thinking comes naturally, science requires training." - Michael Shermer

  2. #2


    Member Since
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    Huh... I should have looked there before I got my camcorder... With the exchange rate from USD to CDN, it's only about $60 more than my ZR500... But meh, too late now.

    Anyways, if it operates the same, there should be no problems. My ZR500 works wonderfully with both iMovie and Final Cut Express. I just rewind the tape to where I want, switch iMovie to capture mode, and set it starting. It works just perfectly as it goes along.
    PC: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.66 GHz, 2 GM RAM, Total 750 GB HDD, Windows Vista Business (For gaming), Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron (64-bit), Slackware 12 (For GTK# coding)
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  3. #3

    TheCustomer99's Avatar
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    That's good to know, thanks a lot.
    "Anecdotal thinking comes naturally, science requires training." - Michael Shermer

  4. #4

    suntoryjim's Avatar
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    May 15, 2007
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    Hi.

    I just bought a ZR850 and I'm wondering if this camera is defective. When I plug it into the USB port on either of my 2 Macs (or my PC,for that matter) the camera fails to be detected. iMovie doesn't switch to capture mode (perhaps because it doesn't detect a camera). Dmesg and system.log show no events when I plug this camera in. The software that comes with the camera is only for pulling still images off the SD card, but even so, it shows "no camera detected".

    ZR850 owners out there: can you please confirm with me what I should be seeing on the Mac when I plug this camera in?

    Thanks!
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  5. #5

    xstep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by suntoryjim View Post
    When I plug it into the USB port on either of my 2 Macs (or my PC,for that matter) the camera fails to be detected.
    Use a firewire cable. Put the camera in playback mode. Learn a little about iMovie.

    Canon and Apple messed up. The package doesn't come with a firewire cable. Brilliant. NOT!

  6. #6

    suntoryjim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by xstep View Post
    Use the firewire cable. Put the camera in playback mode. Learn a little about iMovie.
    Can you tell I'm a switcher and this is my first post? I Just realized that the smaller port to the right of the USB port on the camera is firewire.

    Thanks!
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  7. #7

    xstep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by suntoryjim View Post
    Can you tell I'm a switcher
    I just thought you are new to DV cameras.

    The information you want is on pages 68 & 69 of the (PDF) user manual. An important thing to note is that both the USB and Firewire cable can NOT be connected at the same time, at least when doing video imports.

  8. #8

    suntoryjim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by xstep View Post
    I just thought you are new to DV cameras.

    The information you want is on pages 68 & 69 of the (PDF) user manual. An important thing to note is that both the USB and Firewire cable can NOT be connected at the same time, at least when doing video imports.
    Thanks for the info. What threw me off was that this camera didn't come with a firewire cable (at least mine didn't). After seeing how much a 4-6pin firewire cable costs (BestBuy wants $25 for the 4' model), I can see why Canon chose not to include one!
    1.66 Mac Mini 2G RAM
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  9. #9

    xstep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheCustomer99 View Post
    I bought it since it was recommended by Apple on their site.
    I highly doubt Apple has a recommendation for any camera. They do list cameras they have tested, but I'm sure I've read the fine print that says that the listing is not a recommendation.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheCustomer99 View Post
    (particularly importing video to iMovie) I'd greatly appreciate it.
    Like any DV camera, you hook it up via a firewire cable, set the camera to playback mode, start a new iMovie project, select the camera as the source, flip the switch that looks like a camera to the lower left of the playback window (you should see the message "Camera Connected"), hit the import button that appears over the playback window. (Tape should be at that start.) During import, iMovie is smart enough to split the scenes based on where your started & stopped during your actual recording.

    Buttons will appear to the right of the scissor icon that allows you to control the camera playback/rewind/forward/pause/stop features.

    This type of DV takes about 13GB of disk space for each hour of recording. So create your project on a drive with the required space for the amount of time you are importing.

    iMovie is very easy. Just play around and you'll fine most of the features.

  10. #10

    xstep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by suntoryjim View Post
    4-6pin firewire cable costs (BestBuy wants $25 for the 4' model), I can see why Canon chose not to include one!
    If this local hole in the wall store can sell a similar and longer cable for $5, i don't know why Canon can't put one in the package since it is a requirement for use with a computer.

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