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Hitachi VM-E230A Instruction Manual

8mm video camcorder
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Instruction Manual
8mm Video Camcorder
3890 Steve Reynolds Blvd., Norcross, GA 30093
Tel. 770-279-5600
3219 Koapaka Street, Honolulu, Hawaii 96819
Tel. 808-836-3621
Thank you for buying a Hitachi product. Please take time to become familiar with the
manual and how it is set up. Keep it handy for feature reference.
QR16731 © Hitachi, Ltd. 1997
6740 Campobello Road
Mississauga, Ontario L5N 2L8
Tel. 905-821-4545
Printed in Japan KN-H(N)



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  Summary of Contents for Hitachi VM-E230A

  • Page 1 3219 Koapaka Street, Honolulu, Hawaii 96819 Tel. 808-836-3621 Thank you for buying a Hitachi product. Please take time to become familiar with the manual and how it is set up. Keep it handy for feature reference. QR16731 © Hitachi, Ltd. 1997 HITACHI (HSC) CANADA INC.
  • Page 2: Table Of Contents

    Adjustment the Hand Strap... 20 Loading Batteries... 20 Clock Battery ... 21 Remote Control Batteries... 21 Camcorder Batteries Using Battery Pack ... 22 Removing the Battery Pack ... 23 Checking the Battery's Charge... 24 Using Alkaline Dry-Cell Batteries ... 24 Using Alternative Power Sources ...
  • Page 3 Remove the lens cap..58 Slide the CAM/OFF/VIDEO switch to CAM... 58 The camcorder cannot go into the recording mode, even when the start/stop button is pressed..58 Check the record protect tab on the cassette..58 Push the cassette holder embossed PUSH LOCK to close it...
  • Page 4 ... 58 Picture bends at the top of the TV screen..58 TV receiver is of older type. It needs to be modified to work properly with camcorder... 58 Tape is damaged. Try another cassette..59 Color of your TV screen is too bright, too faint or change.
  • Page 5 Table of Contents Video Recorder Specifications ... 60 Camera Specifications... 60 Accessories Add Excitement... 62 Available Accessories... 62 To Order in the United States... 62 By Phone ... 62 By Mail... 62 FOR AUTHORIZED HITACHE SERVICE IN CANADA ... 62...
  • Page 6 Table of Contents...
  • Page 7: For Your Safety

    For Your Safety For Your Safety The CAM/OFF/VIDEO switch turns the camcorder on and off, leaving the date/time feature unaffected. If the unit is to be left unattended for a long period of time, turn the camcorder off and attach the lens cap.
  • Page 8 Avoid operating your camcorder immediately after moving it from a cold place to a warm, humid place. Give the camcorder 2 to 3 hours to stabilize in the ambient conditions of the surroundings before inserting a cassette. When moved from a cold place to a warm, humid place, moisture may condense on the head drum inside the machine.
  • Page 9: Important Safeguards

    This page lists important information that will help to assure your enjoyment and proper use of a Video camcorder and accessory equipment. Please read it carefully before operating your video product and keep it in a handy place for future reference.
  • Page 10 Important Safeguards 7 Power-Cord Protection -- Power-supply cords should be routed so that they are not likely to be walked on or pinched by items placed upon or against them, paying particular attention to cords at plugs, convenience receptacles, and the point where they exit from the appliance.
  • Page 11 Important Safeguards respect to proper grounding of the mast and supporting structure, grounding of the lead- in wire to an antenna discharge unit, size of grounding conductors, location of antenna- discharge unit, connection to grounding electrodes, and requirements for the grounding electrode.
  • Page 12 Important Safeguards e. If the video product has been dropped or the cabinet has been damaged. f. When the video product exhibits a distinct change in performance - this indicates a need for service. 19 Replacement Parts -- When replacement parts are required, have the service technician verify that the replacements he uses have the same safety characteristics as the original parts.
  • Page 13: Important Safety Instructions For Ac Adapter/Charger

    IMPORTANT SAFETY INSTRUCTIONS FOR AC ADAPTER/CHARGER IMPORTANT SAFETY INSTRUCTIONS FOR AC ADAPTER/CHARGER 1. Save these Instructions -- This page contains important safety and operating instructions for AC Adapter/Charger Model VM-AC 85A. 2. Before using AC Adapter/Charger, read all instructions and cautionary markings on (1) AC Adapter/Charger, (2) battery and (3) product using battery.
  • Page 14: Read This First

    • "Advanced Techniques" to help you with some of the exciting, sophisticated features of the Hitachi VM-E230A. We hope you will take the time to learn about these functions since they have been designed for you. You can use the video camcorder without reading this section.
  • Page 15: Before You Begin

    Try to avoid shooting an excessive bright object directly. Be sure not to leave the camcorder in a place where the temperature exceeds 140°F (60°C), or the pickup device may be damaged. Dangerous includes: •...
  • Page 16: Optional Rf Adapter

    Before You Begin Optional RF Adapter If you wish to connect this camcorder to a television that does not have audio/video input jacks you will need to use the optional RF adapter model VM-RF86A (R). The RF adapter can be purchased by calling the telephone number below. For your convenience Visa, Master Card, and American Express credit cards are accepted.
  • Page 17 Before You Begin During shooting attach the lens cap as shown in the figure to prevent it from being lost.
  • Page 18: Getting Started

    Set aside some time, relax, and familiarize yourself with this quality instrument. Enjoy getting to know all about your Hitachi 8mm camcorder. The more comfortable and familiar you are with the machine and its features, the more you can make it do for you.
  • Page 19: Additional Information

    Getting Started Additional Information To use a battery in optimum condition: • Use the battery until the low charge light ( and then recharging it may shorten the operation time. • It is recommended to refresh a battery before recharging it when it has not been used for long time;...
  • Page 20: Eyepiece Adjustment

    Getting Started before storing the camcorder in its case or carrying the camera recorder around to avoid damaging the viewfinder or camcorder. CAUTION: Do not hold the unit by the electronic viewfinder when carrying as this could cause a malfunction.
  • Page 21: Clock Battery

    1. Pull out the battery holder. 2. Insert the battery with the "+" terminal facing up. 3. Fully insert the battery holder into the camcorder. WARNING: KEEP THE BATTERIES AWAY FROM CHILDREN AND PETS. IF SWALLOWED CONSULT A PHYSICIAN IMMEDIATELY FOR EMERGENCY TREATMENT.
  • Page 22: Camcorder Batteries Using Battery Pack

    • Do not short, take apart or dispose of batteries by throwing them into a fire. • When liquid leaks, wipe it off completely and then insert new batteries. Camcorder Batteries Using Battery Pack Before you install the battery for the first time it must be fully charged. Refer to "Charging the Battery"...
  • Page 23: Removing The Battery Pack

    Note: If the OPEN lever is flat, the cover will not close. Note: Always remove the battery from the camcorder after use. Note: We cannot guarantee against malfunctions of the camcorder which occur when you use battery packs other than those specified.
  • Page 24: Checking The Battery's Charge

    Using Alkaline Dry-Cell Batteries The camcorder can be powered by six alkaline dry-cell batteries inserted into the power supply attachment holder. The continuous operation time of the camcorder depends on the type of alkaline batteries used.
  • Page 25 Note: If the liquid leaks, remove the batteries immediately and ask your nearest dealer to inspect the camcorder (this will be at your own expense). Note: Do not let the batteries or the terminals of the camcorder get dirty. If they are dirty, use a dry cloth to wipe off the dirt completely.
  • Page 26: Using Alternative Power Sources

    Note: The AC adapter/charger can be used around the world. An AC plug adapter is required in some foreign countries. If you need one purchase it at your Hitachi distributor. Note: The battery level indicator sometimes displays the partial charge symbol when using the AC adaptor/charger.
  • Page 27: Inserting And Removing Cassettes

    1. Plug the car battery cord into the car's cigarette lighter socket. 2. Connect one end of the DC cord (provided) to the DC IN jack of the camcorder. Connect to other end of the DC cord to the DC OUTPUT of the car battery cord.
  • Page 28: Removing A Cassette

    Turn the camcorder on to display the linear time counter. The linear time counter keeps track from when you load a cassette into the camcorder and clears to 0:00:00 when the cassette is ejected. Remaining Tape The tape remaining display shows the remaining tape that can be used for recording and playback, using seven dashes.
  • Page 29: Setting The Date And Time

    Make sure that the current time is displayed correctly before you start filming. 1. Load the battery ("Loading the Batteries: Camcorder batteries" p.15). Press the red button on the CAM/OFF/VIDEO switch as you slide it to CAM.
  • Page 30: Correcting The Date And Time

    4. After setting the AM/PM, press the DATE/TITLE button. The display changes and the internal clock starts. Note: After the date and time are set, " AUTO" appears and the camcorder enters the automatic date recording mode. See "Date Recording" on page 32.
  • Page 31: Getting Started, Identifying Controls

    CAUTION: Be sure to press this button to close the cassette holder. Otherwise, the tape may become slack and may be damaged. 4. Cassette Holder A power source must be connected to the camcorder before a cassette can be inserted or removed. 5. Microphone 6.
  • Page 32 16. Camera Light Shoe Attach the DC camera light here. 17. OPEN Lever Use this to open or close the cover of the power supply attachment holder ("Camcorder Batteries", p15). 18. Power Supply Attachment Section (Behind the cover) Attach a battery or alkaline batteries here ("Camcorder Batteries", P.15, 16).
  • Page 33 Getting Started, Identifying Controls 23. AUDIO/VIDEO OUT Jacks (Behind the jack cover) Use this jack to connect the camcorder to a VCR or television ("Playing Back Your Recording", p.26, 27, "Dubbing from the Camcorder to a VCR", p.38). 24. Shoulder Strap Slots Attach a shoulder strap here.
  • Page 34: Basic Techniques

    Let's get started! Making a Basic Recording The Hitachi VM-E230A uses PROGRAM AE auto exposure that automatically selects the optimum shutter speed (either 1/60, 1/120, 1/180, 1/250, 1/350, 1/500, 1/750, 1/1000, 1/1500, 1/2000, or 1/4000 of a second). The iris adjusts automatically in response to shutter speed.
  • Page 35: Playing Back Your Recording

    Note: TAPE END flashes in the viewfinder when about 3 minutes or less remain of the tape cassette. Note: If the camcorder is left in record/pause mode for more than 5 minutes, the camcorder turns off automatically. To restart it press the Start/Stop button and the camera returns to record/pause mode.
  • Page 36: Connecting To A Television Without Audio In And Video In Jacks

    3. Insert a recorded cassette into the camcorder. 4. Turn on your television and set to the camcorder input mode (consult your television manual for details). 5. Hold down the red button on the CAM/OFF/VIDEO switch while sliding the switch to VIDEO.
  • Page 37: Using Still

    To view a still picture during playback press the Start/Stop. Press the Start/Stop button again to resume playback. If you leave the camcorder in play/pause mode for more than 5 minutes the camcorder automatically stops the cassette to prevent damage to the tape.
  • Page 38 To restore normal playback, press the PLAY button on either the remote control or the camcorder. Note: The indication showing double speed playback does not appear. Note: When double speed playback is activated, both the picture and sound are played back at twice the normal speed.
  • Page 39: Advanced Techniques

    Advanced Techniques Advanced Techniques The Hitachi VM-E230A offers a diverse group of features that add interest and excitement to your video. As you learn and practice with these features think of situations that they might fit in and add a special touch.
  • Page 40: Using The Power Zoom

    No Display - No Date Recording The camcorder does not record the date. Date and Time - Date and Time Recording The camcorder records the date and time with the picture all the time. 3. Press the start/stop button. Recording will start.
  • Page 41: Using The Digital Zoom

    1.5 times. Note: To return to the original zoom position, press the INST. ZOOM button so that I. ZOOM disappears from the viewfinder. Note: This instant zoom has certain limitations and may degradate at extreme magnification and amplify camcorder's movement.
  • Page 42: Using Auto Focus

    Advanced Techniques Using Auto Focus The camcorder focuses the subject in the center of the viewfinder automatically unless the manual focus is engaged. If FOCUS appears in the viewfinder, manual focus is engaged. Press the FOCUS control buttons simultaneously to return to auto focus.
  • Page 43: Using Manual Focus

    Use this feature to view the last few seconds of the tape you shot. 1. Set the camcorder to record/pause mode and tap the REW button. The last few seconds of tape play back in reverse and then in normal playback mode.
  • Page 44: Using Quick Edit

    While the camera is in record/pause mode hold down the F.F, REW, or PLAY button and visually search the tape. Release the button and the camcorder stops the tape at the exact position you selected.
  • Page 45: Dubbing From The Camcorder To A Vcr

    3. Hold down the red button of the CAM/OFF/VIDEO switch while you slide the switch to VIDEO. 4. Insert the recorded tape in the camcorder and a blank tape into the VCR. Set the VCR to record. 5. Play the tape from the camcorder while recording on the VCR.
  • Page 46: Using Memory

    Note: The remote control code of this camcorder is Hitachi code VCR2. If you have a VCR with the same code your Hitachi VCR may malfunction when you use the camcorder's wireless remote control.
  • Page 47: Using The Display Button

    Create titles easily and personalize your recordings while keeping a permanent visual record of what is contained on a tape. The camcorder can store a title in its memory. A title stored in memory can be displayed and recorded at any time. A title contains two lines of up to 16 characters per line.
  • Page 48: Creating A Title

    1. Press the TITLE ON/OFF button on the remote control. 2. Use the STOP button to select the character to be corrected. 3. Use the F.FWD or the F.F (on the camcorder) and REW buttons to correct the character. 4. Press the TITLE ON/OFF button on the remote control to store the corrected title in memory.
  • Page 49: Recording A Created Title While Transferring A Tape

    5. Press the TITLE ON/OFF button on the remote control to stop recording the title. The title graphics disappear from the viewfinder and the camcorder can record normally. Note: Create and store your title before an event you plan to record. Just press the TITLE ON/OFF button on the remote control to superimpose the title over the scene as you record it.
  • Page 50: Using Audio/Video Dubbing

    0:00:00M the camcorder stops automatically, recording only the portion of the tape that you selected. Note: If the camcorder is in AV DUB pause or STILL mode for more than 5 minutes, the camcorder stops automatically to protect the tape.
  • Page 51 VCR. Refer to the VCR's instruction manual. If the channel still does not change after you have changed the VCR's remote control code, the edit remote control cannot operate your VCR. VCR Brands Press VCR SET and This Button Hitachi Sony Panasonic Toshiba Mitsubishi...
  • Page 52: Operation

    Especially, be careful of this during dubbing. Note: When the edit remote control is connected to the camcorder, the buttons marked * in the figure above perform the same operations as those of the other remote control provided.
  • Page 53: To End Programmable Simple Edit

    VCR to set it to the stop mode. Note: If the CAM/OFF/VIDEO switch of the camcorder is set to OFF or CAM when the recording VCR is in the record pause mode, the VCR enters the record mode.
  • Page 54: Attaching The Optional Wide Or Tele Converter Lens

    1. To remove the lens hood, turn it counterclockwise. 2. Remove both caps of the converter lens. 3. Screw the lens into the threads on the camcorder lens assembly. Attaching the Optional DC Camera Light You can use the DC camera light to light subjects in darkened areas or correct unflattering shadows.
  • Page 55: Removing The Dc Camera Light

    Watch the battery charge indicator especially when using a battery as the power source. • When the DC camera light is used, the operation time of the camcorder when a fully- charged battery pack is attached is halved. Removing the DC Camera Light Depress the light to release the tab from the hook and then move the light in the direction of the arrow as shown in the figure.
  • Page 56: Viewfinder Bright, Color And Tint Control

    Advanced Techniques Note: Only replace the camera light bulb with VM-CP4L (optional) to reduce the risk of fire. Viewfinder Bright, Color and Tint Control This small "BRIGHT", "COLOR" and "TINT" controls are set at the factory and should require no adjustment. If they ever require adjustment, use a plastic screwdriver. Make the adjustments with caution to prevent damaging the miniature controls.
  • Page 57: General Maintenance

    3. Align the reference marks and rotate the eye cup in the direction of the arrow. Periodic Maintenance A precision electromechanical device, the Hitachi VM-E230A requires maintenance after a period of normal use. We expect that no other maintenance other than head cleaning will be required during the period of warranty unless the camcorder is used either heavily or seldom.
  • Page 58: Troubleshooting

    Troubleshooting Quality is very important at Hitachi. We inspect and check every camcorder carefully at the factory under the most rigid quality control and inspection systems. If problems develop please check the following possible solutions before inquiring about professional service.
  • Page 59: Tape Is Damaged. Try Another Cassette

    Do not remove the clock battery after recording. Do not eject the recorded cassette. Leave it in the camcorder. The camcorder is set to the double speed playback mode. Pressing the playback button to restore the normal playback mode. The sound also returns to the normal speed.
  • Page 60: Specifications

    Lens diameter For U.S.A. only HITACHI Service Hotline To locate an authorized HITACHI service facility in the continental U.S.A. DIAL TOLL FREE Check Point & Correction Have you moved the camcorder or cassette from a cold place to a warm place...
  • Page 61 1-800-448-2244 Hitachi Home Electronics (America), Inc. Hitachi has made every effort to assure you hours of trouble free operation from your unit. However, should you require service, a network of Hitachi Authorized Service Facilities has been established in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Each facility will provide you with convenient and expedient assistance.
  • Page 62: Accessories Add Excitement

    Accessories Add Excitement Accessories Add Excitement We know that once you discover how much your Hitachi VM-E230A can add to your life you will want to use these accessories for even more excitement. Converter lenses, adapters for synchro editing, and car cords are just a few of the exciting accessories available to you from Hitachi.