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Cf To Ide Drive ?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by 72633, Jan 2, 2006.

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  1. 72633

    72633 Thread Starter

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    Guys,
    I am wishing someone with good computer and electronics knowledge can direct and/ or assist me.
    I have just brought a JVC GZ-MC500AA Camcorder. It reqords directly to a 4gb Microdrive or Compact Flash II Card. These cards are still very pricy considering you get an hours record time. I am going to Summer Nats on the weekend for 3 days and would love to record most of my time there. How to do it ?
    I started thinking and came up with the idea of making up some sort of adapter to plug in to the CF II Slot and run to a 2.5" Laptop IDE Drive in my pocket. This would allow me to record hours of continuos video footage and still keep the unit small and portable which is why i brought the item. I am wishing to have the camcorder record directly to the 2.5" Drive rather keep pulling the card out every hour and dumping the files and reformatting, which would take say ten minutes each time.

    Q1 Can this be done ?
    Q2. Is it a matter of pin to pin with possible extra power to the IDE Drive ?
    Q3. Can anyone assist with the pin to pin arrangment ?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Reagrds

    Stephen
     
  2. gotrootdude

    gotrootdude

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  3. gotrootdude

    gotrootdude

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  4. JohnWill

    JohnWill Retired Moderator

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    I've seen the 4gig CF microdrives for $69 after rebate. Is it really worth all the effort of screwing around to try to do this? I'd take my notebook with a CF reader and dump the data regularly.
     
  5. 72633

    72633 Thread Starter

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    Guys,
    Well thanks for the swift replies.
    I have contacted Advantech regarding the CF-HDD-ADPT and they have replied saying it should work, pend confirmation from JVC that the camcorder would accept a 40-100gb IDE drive capacity.
    I am going to see if someone from JVC could confrim this ? Not sure how much luck i will have.

    As for the larger capacity cards ? Well this is why i am here looking at this path.
    At present i am using a 4gb card and i fill it in 1hr, i have seen cards as big as 8gb though they would fill in 2 hours. These cards are very very pricey !
    I go every year to Bathurst and Summer Nats in Australia and they are 3-4 day stints each.
    Last year i took my digital camera and laptop and keep down loading the camera to computer and starting again. You really don't wish to be carrying the laptop around nor returning back to the car to do so. Being that the card fills every hour and last year i took around 1500 photos over 2+ days ? No thanks. You can buy storage tanks which transfer the data to a hard drive and then reformat the card, they take about ten minutes each time.
    I figure if i am to look at this path, i might as well go the whole hog and record directly to a box in my pocket carrying a hard drive and additional power.
    I expect it to be a little larger than a storage tank with the addition of a cable from the camcorder to my pocket. Though the option to be able to record say 20hrs straight if i wanted without reverting to a car/ laptop or storage tank. I would choose the hard drive in my pocket hands down. Still very portable, don't miss a thing and most likely the cheapest option.

    Guys,
    I hope this makes things clear as for my reason and exactly what i am trying to do.
    If any of you can assist any further, i would be most greatfull.
    Being that the Advantech adapter would still have to be modified to be used in my application, makes me think i will make my own from scratch.
    I am thinking along the lines of buying a second hand microdrive, unscrewing it and ripping the guts out. Cutting a hole in the back and resoldering ribbon cable. It seems i can't get hold of femal compact flash connector, though the rewirred micro drive is a better option as it gives me something to hold when connecting and disconnecting the adapter.
    Thinking about this further made me question if the first gen compact flash cards would work in the camera ? I think the first gen compact flash cards are solid state ? If so then this opens other options and other questions.

    Q1. What is the largest solid state drive i can get and who small is it ?
    Q2. What type of drives do all these portable multi media drives use ( eg: 60gb Ipods )

    If these Ipods and the likes are using solid state drives and a first gen compact flash card woks, maybe a better option would be to use one of the drives from an Ipod etc
    It might get rid of the additional power required to power the 2.5" IDE Drive, it woild also be more robust, less heat and likely smaller.

    Well, I am open to suggestion and advise.
    If anyone could confirm any of my thoughts or has any input please add to the thread.


    Regards

    Stephen
     
  6. JohnWill

    JohnWill Retired Moderator

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    Whatever floats your boat. :) Personally, I'd want the camera to be compact while I was handling it, and I'd have two of the 4gig cards and one of the storage tank devices with as big a drive as I could find. Perhaps that's just me...

    I've seen 2gig Compact FLASH cards, and I'm sure the bigger ones are coming. Here's a 2.2gig CF card for $90... http://www.buyxg.com/store/item.asp?key=RM-123-101
     
  7. gotrootdude

    gotrootdude

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    A1. 2 gig


    There are CF cards up to 8 Gb, but they are the microdrive variant, not true solid state.
    IMO, microdrives are preferable, flash drives have limited writes, the downside to microdrives is the slightly slower seek and transfer time.

    I don't think so, I'm running a CF drive in a car PC, it still needs 5V off the power supply to run.


    It's smaller, less heat, and more shock tolerant. Not really more robust due to limited write cycles.
     
  8. 72633

    72633 Thread Starter

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    Gotrootdude,
    I thought my last reply was alot of text though made it very clear.
    the unit come factory with the 4gb microdrive and the microdrive is what is specified for the unit. JVC is yet to get back to me and confirm if the type one cards will work in the camcorder, though i am sure you are right that the type one cards max capacity at 2gb.
    I simply called the solid state cards more robust due to there lack of sensitivity to shock.
    I am not sure of the power required to run these microdrives, i was only commenting on information that was past from someone else. Everyone seems to think this wont work, i am yet to hear a reason why not.
    Advantech seem to think it would pending the camcorder would accept a large capacity size drive. Just got to hope the person who wrote the schematic new what they were doing ?

    Regards

    Stephen
     
  9. 72633

    72633 Thread Starter

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    John,
    Sorry dude. Went straight to the bottom and missed your reply.
    Well i suppose your right, what ever floats your boat.
    I appreciate the attached thread directing me to the 2.2gb microdrives, they are very cheap. I have been advised to stay clear of no name brands as they tend to fail though thats said with no personal experience.
    The 2.2gb card would give about 30mins time @ $90.
    This times two equals $180 plus a storage tank, i had a 60gb storage tank priced @ $400.
    I am already up to $580 with out extra power.
    The JVC batteries are $140 each and i am sure you can get after market units. Say i can get after market units for $50 each, it's now $680.
    I have to change the cards every 30 mins and a battery every hour, i also have to load the storage tank and recharge one of the batteries.
    To some this may seem petty, though trust me, when your at an event like this you really just wish to be in the middle of everything and not playing with storage tanks or batteries etc.

    I couldn't see buying all the parts required to do what i am wishing, to cost about $400.
    I figure i don't need anything more than a 40gb hard drive as it would give 10hrs record time. I would use rechargeable AA 1,2v @ 2400mah batteries, six at a time to make 7.2v and expect it to give 3hrs power. Have 6 others charged for the change.

    To me, this would seem the cheapest and less hassel option. keeping in mind, thats using your very cheap 2.2gb microdrives. Any other option would push the price up very quickly !


    Regards

    Stephen
     
  10. JohnWill

    JohnWill Retired Moderator

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    Well, I guess I'm a "neat freak", I can't imagine the kludge of the drive, extra batteries, homemade interface, etc., as a "better" solution. :) There's also the issue of getting it to work relabily, what if when you're done spending the money, it's flaky or worse it doesn't work at all? Buying off the shelf parts makes more sense to me.
     
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