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Old Jun 15, 2008, 2:25 PM   #1
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Ok so I really like this piece of equipment...the video recording appears to be great and the pictures (as long as the object is VERY still) turn out great. The one problem I'm having is when I try to put the video shots on my computer. When I try to play the videos on any program, it reads them as just audio files. I've tried converting the AVI files to MPEGs. Am I doing something wrong, or is there something I should be doing, to view my videos?
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Old Jun 15, 2008, 2:34 PM   #2
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You are missing the video codec which needs to be installed from the CD. Alternatively you could download and install a codec such as the k-lite codec pack which can be found on the internet.
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Old Jun 15, 2008, 3:27 PM   #3
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as rgv states best toloadem. but some programs will not work with certain file formats and I believe vegas 8 was one of them at home with codecs supplied
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Old Jun 16, 2008, 9:42 AM   #4
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Thank you very much, I totally overlooked the CD with the package and wouldn't have really even considered it very important
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Old Jun 16, 2008, 2:45 PM   #5
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Just out of curiosity, what codec is on the Jazz camera CD?

Does anybody know?

Is it available for download?

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Old Jun 17, 2008, 8:14 PM   #6
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the jazz hdv-178 outputs h.264 Mpeg-4 AVC video with adpcm audio within a AVI container.

the video codec is often referred to as x264 or H264, you can run it fine using the combined community codec pack

a free open source codec pack that will play just about everything/anything.

be aware also that the jazz outputs avi files that are "non standard" in the sense that they will often play incorrectly in most players until there fixed.

the avi container format was never really made to support the large number of codecs that are used now, up untill a while ago support for h264/x264 content was not supported.

if not packed within the avi correctly the data can seem to playback at incorrect rates or the video and audio may seem out of sync; the effect can be seen from the avis made by the jazz 178.

just run them through virtualdubmod using Direct Stream Copy mode or rencode it to another format as needed and the output avi will play and work perfectly.

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Old Aug 20, 2008, 11:01 PM   #7
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The included FFDSHOW works great. SO far fine on all computers. Also once you install this vdub will convert nicely to divx just do not alter the "start" point till after you convert to divx.

Has anyone gotten this to work with vdub yet IE for "Cutting" without recompressing? Someone told me a partial work around. if you do NOT alter the "start" point and ONLY alter the end point it works fine for cutting files.

if I touch the start point it fails (black video)

I have not tried doing a dstream on the whole thing first and THEN trying to cut. I will try that and report back.


Negative. Still fubars the file if I alter the "start" point.

Would really love to find a fix for this.
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Old Oct 6, 2008, 11:57 AM   #8
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Here aremy reviewpoints and comments on the JAZZ HDV178, both the faults, good points, first impressions and some hintsof this device. I somewhat hope that the company itself is reading the (hopefully constructive) criticism.

1- I bought one, and noticed I have a small strap provided with it as well, this wasn't mentioned on the first review of this tread! The strap has an extra plastic item on it to make the strap fit better around your wrist (less chance of losing/dropping the device). That was good!

2- When recording video, I see vertical lines on both the TV, the recorded video as on the LCD screen; and they dissapear when the selected zoom is greater than 50% of the zoom bar.
The lines are more easy to see in darker and inside a house - enviroments.
When zooming in the lines appear to become wider appart from one another (untill you reach the first 50% of (slow) zooming. The second step (other 50%) of zooming appears to not have the lines, and the zoomspeed itself seems to go faster as well.
I checked the lense, but it had no scratches or wasn't dirty...
I do not see those lines on .jpg files from taking pictures.
Anyone else experiencing the same problems?
Could be a smaller defect of this item, or the choice of cheaper engeneering/parts?
Anyways above 50% zoom the image becomes very grainy (something you should expect for a $99 camera, I mean this is not a $500 Sony camera).

3- For a camera-leek (as opposed to geek) it was quite some searching around what the small knob next to the lenze does. It has a small flower and mountains. Although I could kind of guess why it was there, it's still nice to mention that the flower setting is for images and video taken upto a few feet away from the lenze, and the mountains for video from a few feet away to landscape photographing/filming..
A note in the manual would do nice...

4- My device has a white dead pixel on the LCD... Shame I'd say... and when playing back HD video I see several white specs (smaller than a pixel?) on the screen (about 6 of them). THis could be due to interpolation of higher resolution images on the small LCD. I did not notice the white spots on my TV.

***Hint: I don't know if already mentioned, but to see the firmware version, you actually need to be in the main menu ('picture/video/mp3/speech'-screen), then press and hold the 'back' button, and then press the ok/zoom-knob upward. You can't view the firmware using the playback/record button as mentioned before, but use the 'back' button (lowest of all knobs). I prefer the 'back'-button rather than playback button, which can confuse someone with the Record/playback button..Probably why so many couldn't find how to see their firmware...***

5-I really miss the lenze cover. The lenze gets dirty like really fast, and there's no wipe included to clean the lenze.

6- Another thing, when putting your camera in the little pouch, in a dusty environment the lenze will scrape on the edges of the pouch. If some dust is present it can actually damage the lenze leaving scratches on the surface...
I'd suggest either not using it, or using it by putting the device in the pouch with the lenze on the top (not on the bottom).

7- The top metal part looks really cool, but gets dirty very fast as well! I have the impression that some fingerprints left by sweat, might leave permanent stains on the metal due to corrosion. Eventhough the metal is an alloy that just like like stainless steel, chrome, or Tungsten, is not supposed to corrode, but we all know it only takes longer time before it DOES corrode. I still have the feeling that long time exposure to acids and salts like sweaty fingerprintsthat haven't been wiped off, will leave corrosion, and cause the metal to look 'dark black' over time. I had a bassguitar that had a metal bridge made out of seemingly the same material. If so, expect this metal to be corroded (black) within the year.

8- I really miss a Line/mic in. When designing this cam, the developers could have created a secondary jack for line in/mic. I first thought maybe through a software update use a mic with mini-jack connection through the TV/headphones out, but it seems the headphones/TV out hole is made of low quality and might break very easely (there's barely any metal pinns inside, and looks very frail and weak).
Besides, it'd be nice to be able to connect a mic to the device, and at the same time send a signal to the TV.
Upon first use I could see the mini-jack enters very hard into the hole, and it almost seems like it's going to crack the contacts inside.
Also, with the least movement of the jack you can see lots of distortion on an external TV.
I think this device would benefit having a secondary higher quality jack entrance for mic or line signal.

9- I miss the ability of tilting the screen at a 45 degrees angle upward. You can do this, however the screen won't lock in position like it does every 90 degrees tilted.
Let's say the screen gets opens in 0degrees, it can turn 180 degrees(to up position), and away from the filmer -90 degrees. at about 135 degrees there should be another lock, since most users will want to hold the camera slightly lower than their eye level.
On the positive note, I do like the automatic horizontal adjustment of the image when tilting the screen -90 degrees (away from the filmer, in line with the camera)!

10- The viewingangle of the LCD is very small. It's hard to share video with others, because you'd either see negative or just nothing at all if you're not within30 degrees straight in front of the camera.

11- Unlike many people here I find no problem at all with the lettering of the menu on this device. However when selecting D1, or HD the menu does get smaller than usual. This should not be the case. It's ok for the video to become 16/9 on the 4/3 screen, but the menu should remain the same size, and on the same space as itis in VGA and QVGA mode.

12- The screen size is ok for basic use, but I find the zoom out a bit too little. It is hard to film your face when holding the camera in your hand. If you place the camera about 3 feet away you'll have a closeup on your face. I wished this device had the ability to zoom out a little more. Second to that, the 'flower' setting made for filming closeups is aimed for about 1 foot away from the camera, while the mountain setting actually has reached it's full sharp point around and between 3 to 4 feet away from the source in HD (720p).
Either way a person wanting to make a self shot, will want to film exactly in that grey or 'unsupported' area of 2 ft away from the camera.
on 2ft away. You can do that,but at higher resolutions you'll get a slight blur, the same you get from filming a movie in QVGA (320x240) or VGA mode (640x480) and play it back on a HD TV (1280x720).

13- The camera has an intern 'negative' setting, to film negative. However, this negative isn't really negative; it only turns light areas (white) into dark(black), and dark areas into light. The colors used (yellow, red, green, blue,..) remain the same as before with the exception of lighter areas being filmed darker. (so no green people, and purple grass)

14- I definately like the rubber grip, although the design looks kind of less beautifull because of the grey color, and the pattern (I guess leather like pattern) used in the rubber.
A more sporty, plain look would have done it a lot of good (and probably the sales as well)!

The device looks very surdy, although not the type of device you will want to drop from hand height on a concrete floor (the nearly unprotected lenze being the device's weak spot). It would have been nice to move the lenze protective glass more inwards the camera for more robustness.

15- Another reason to get the outter lense protection glass worked more inward would be that I think a lot of space has been wasted not doing so. The outter glass of the lenze is slightly smaller than 0,9" in size, but the inner glass of the lenze is smaller than 0,1" (like the size of a 1,3-3Mpix webcam on a laptop). By putting the protective glass closer to the lenze some of it's size could have been reduced, opening space for more LEDS (see next item).

16- The current LED-light is just in the way and provides too little lighting for filming or photos. (despite some reviews praising it's higher brightness than the HDV-188 ).
I'm having big hands, but the position of the LED is exactly where my fingers are supposed to be. I'd suggest building the LED's above the lenze and preferrably 2 or 3 of them next to eachother with 2 or 3 settings of brightness. I know battery life might suffer a bit (there's hope, there exsist bigger batteries), but at least that way there's something you can do with the light.
At this moment I either am using the camera comfortably without light, or with light, but with trying to figure out where my fingers can fit on the tiny device...

***Hint: To turn on the internal LED, goto the main menu (picture/video/mp3/speech-screen), do almost simultaneous the following knob setting:
press and hold the back button (lowest knob), then press the 'left' arrow (flash-knob), then release both. LED should be on now.
To turn it off just press theback knob.
LED can be turned on before both video recording or taking pictures if light is needed.

***Hint: Okay, I hate to install software on my pc. For those who don't want the soft on their pc's but still be able to connect files to their camera, I've made a small resume:
The camera creates 2 folders on the SD called 'MP3' and 'DCIM'.
DCIM has subfolders: "100PHOTO", "200MOVIE", and "300VOICE".
In the photo folder the logical filenames are: PICT0001.jpg - PICT9999.jpg
In the movie folder the filenames are:CLIP0001.avi - CLIP9999.avi
In the voice folder the filenames are:WAVE0001.wav - WAVE9999.wav.
I'd suggest manually renaming any file to the above filenames if you want to copy files from your PC onto your cam, and want it to read them, starting with the logical numbering of 0001, 0002, 0003,... etc..

MP3 files don't need to be renamed but can be placed directly in the MP3 folder.

For Video & Audiocodecs, I'd suggest CCCP (Combined Community Codec Pack)***

17- The battery is easely mountable, however it is a pain to remove it from the device. Let it be known for the traveler with extention batteries. However, the battery used can be bought online pretty cheap. So far I've found the NP-60 for only $10 + shipping at the batteryshop:
http://www.thebatterystop.com/product_info.php?products_id=624&gclid=CKXQiK_ 0kpYCFQKfnAod9hg0Eg
I just recently found out that there are other batteries than the NP-60 for camera's. Like for instance the NP-120, which can offer 30 minutes longer battery life, for only 15$ more than the original NP-60. However you can not recharge the battery with the camera,and you'll be forced to take off the battery lid, since the battery is too large.
This battery gives about 30 minutes more battery life than the cheaper NP 40 found in many budget camera's (and probably also the cheaper Jazz camera's).

18- The usermanual mentions that the device can't be charged via USB.
I did a research, and found that you CAN recharge the battery.
The AC adaptor provides a current of 5V DC, 1A (=5W). A Computer USB hub can provide about 0,5A per hub, 5V, but most of the time this goes upto 5,2V 0,6A max (3,12W).
The battery @3,7V 1050mAh needs about 3,8Watts to be able to fully be charged.
A usb hub (sometimes has multiple USB ports attached) on average can provide for 2,5 - 3 Watts of power without trouble.
With the camera off, just plug the cam in a USB port.
However there are some issues with it:
1- The battery can't be more empty than two thirds (60%)
2- The computer can't have any other USB devices attached to that USB HUB.
3- To further reduce the powerdrain on USB, make sure your device isn't on (LCD lid is closed), your notebook is on AC, and you could reduce the drain by disabling other devices like CD-ROM, lower screen brightness, and CPU processing power (this could lead you to be able to fully recharge the HDV178 on your pc)..
If you have an external HUB, powered by a power adaptor, would be the device of choice to both work with your camera's data, and get it charged at the same time.

Most desktop PC's come with 2x USB hubs (1 in the back of the device, and one in the front). Usually the back Hub of a computer is stronger than the front one.
Laptops generally come with only 1 HUB connected, meaning if you use a USB mouse with your laptop, or printeryou will not be able to do much of charging at all.
This all to reduce the power drain on the USB hub.
You will find that the red light of the camera's playback button will start to flash in red, untill it stays red (I tested it and it works!!).
That's a sign the battery can be recharged. If the battery is too empty, and the powerdraw is too big, chances are that your computer will reset itself. You'll need to unplug the computer from the wall, and do a restart; also make sure the Jazz drive is disconnected from your PC before reboot.

19- I've happened to buy this JAZZ HD178 camera since it was in the store, but originally had another camera in mind. After reviewing I find that the Jazz camera is about on par with some of the SVP cameras from Silicon Valley Products. Both have no firmware to upgrade(yet), use the same sleek design factor, and have similar characteristics and use the same battery. If this brand dissapoints you you might wanna check out that brand which price/performance wise is about the same as this brand, but may offer slightly better quality.

20- The buttons on this device are rather small indeed, with the exception of the 'record' button, which I find the only button to be 'perfect' in size on this device.
However, seeing that the HDV188 has a screen that blocks my hand a bit, I'd probably prefer the HDV178 over the 188 just for the 188's screen rotation.

21- Another sad thing I saw was that the camera wastes quite an amount of diskspace I believe in recording the audio of videofiles... It would have been better if the camera directly could convert the audio from the internal mic to 32kbits monoor the 48kbits WMA codec. This codec is more then sufficient to encode the audio from the internal mic, and is very optimized for sound!

22 - An additional fault I found in this device (only after playing with it for about a day or so) is that you can't save all settings.
Imagine you want to record certain parts of a meeting with this device,and want to shut down the sound,that is possible. However, whenever the device starts again, it starts in audio mode,and makes a sound. You can't seem to be able to shut down the boot sound. You then need to reset the sound to 'off' again,and that will work for about how long your camera stays on.

Despite the many points I mentioned, I actually am very happy with this camera!
It easely serves as backup camera, or for on journeys where theft, loss or damage are possible, yet it still maintains an overall nice image, and is extremely compact.
If I had to buy another camera in the near future, I'd probably look for a slightly larger camera, with a bit bigger keys; since I'm having large hands.

Lots of minor points, but the plus points: Lots of feats, tiny, lightwheight, battery life, and pricetag bump up the rating making the 'Overall score' I'd give this device to a : 79% Buy!

You need to know if you want a similar size camera from Sony that you'll be paying close to $500 or $800. So for the price, you can't really complain.
Many of the things I mentioned can be improved with only minor addition in production cost, but creating an overall WAY better camera!
If all of them are implied in the second (perhaps slightly larger) version of this camera, I'd be happy to pay 50%more for it (it'd probably make a better cam than the 188 does)!

For $150 such a camera today would be a steal, and probably an overall customer satisfaction grade of over 90%!
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Old Dec 20, 2008, 12:33 AM   #9
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HELP! I bought a Jazz HD178, and when I try to install the drivers, or open the programs on the included disk, it asks me if I want to format blank disk. Does this mean they gave me a blank disk instead of one with the programs they claim are on it? If so, what do I do? Thanks!
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Old Dec 20, 2008, 6:49 AM   #10
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Welcoe aboard Temp.......

cannot contact company, but you can go back and exchange that is one option.

loaded the Cd in right click and explore disk. if nothing pops up then you answered your question.

Anything is possable.

if you got thecam off Ebay, or other what does the fce of the disk look like? does it have a lazer label. or os it totally a blank disk?

Tempest wrote:
HELP! I bought a Jazz HD178, and when I try to install the drivers, or open the programs on the included disk, it asks me if I want to format blank disk. Does this mean they gave me a blank disk instead of one with the programs they claim are on it? If so, what do I do? Thanks!
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