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VIRB Elite fails to record any video

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  • VIRB Elite fails to record any video

    My VIRB Elite was working like a champ for about a year, and then I noticed that something had suddenly gone terribly wrong. I have it mounted on my road bike.And basically, it no longer records videos.

    When I look at the VIRB display after the ride, it's frozen on one image of the road. When I connect it to USB, I see one video file being created, but it's empty, and I cannot open it. No FIT activity file is recorded, either.

    The peculiar thing is that if I test it at home, it seems OK. I left it to record with a fresh battery for several hours, and it did so, and saved several big video files to my 64 GB SD card.

    I tried tinkering with the settings. I have tried manual record using the slider, and recording being controlled from my Edge. Both seem to work at home. But once I head out on the ride, it stops working as it should. Of course, it's rather hard to diagnose exactly what it's doing during the ride, as it's mounted beneath my Garmin, and obviously my attention is elsewhere than peering at a tiny screen.

    I have this suspicion that the vibration from the road bike is perhaps moving the battery against the SD card, or something like that, and causing it to fail. But I can't prove it.

  • #2
    My guess is the SD card is vibrating loose and backing out of it's correct position. You could try moving it slightly forward (to the front of the camera) and then using some blue painters tape over it, to prevent it from moving back or forth....

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    • #3
      It's a good idea. I have taped over it, and we shall see what transpires. I have been banging against the back of it and have been unable to reproduce it, so I'll have to wait till the next ride.

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      • #4
        ...also, make sure that SD card hold-down metal flap is down all the way and locked. (I'm sure you're already aware of that, just had to mention it) I know there is a small piece of foam on the outside of that 'hold down flap', probably to create downward pressure on the SD card in order to ensure a good connection with the contacts underneath. Hopefully the 'blue tape' will work, then we'll know if it's SD card movement causing the problem.

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        • #5
          Foam on the metal flap that holds the SD card? I don't have it. I did tape down the entire flap, however. I'm glad you mentioned foam, however. While nosing inside, I noticed that the foam that was on the side of the internal bay, that pressed against the side of the battery, had shifted nearly out of the compartment. So I put that foam piece back inside. Perhaps the vibration was causing the battery, not the SD card, to lose contact. That might explain the freeze up. Next, I noticed that the cradle wasn't holding the camera very snugly. I could rattle the camera slightly while mounted inside the cradle, with my fingers. So I applied some tape against the cradle to make a more snug fit. Now the whole thing doesn't move at all. Fingers crossed that this'll solve it.

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          • #6
            Yep, there's a long strip of black foam on the inside of the battery door, a small piece of black foam right next to the battery contacts and then there's a very small piece of thin black rubber/foam that is on the SD lockdown flap...I believe it's there so the battery pushes down on it, giving the SD card a solid connection with the contacts underneath it, and to keep it locked in place, so it won't vibrate open...all three of my Garmin Virb Elites have these same foam pieces, all in the same places...
            Last edited by TEAM360; 09-04-2018, 01:43 PM.

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            • #7
              Thanks for the photo. I discovered that even if I removed the battery (and powered the unit through the USB cable), the camera would still freeze when given a hard knock by my hand against the side of the lens. So it wasn't the battery that was causing the problem, nor the card housing itself, I think. It appears that something got damaged deeper inside the unit. I eventually exchanged the unit with another one from Garmin support, and the new one works fine so far. It cost me an exchange fee.

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              • #8
                Thanks for the update.

                Bad day on the soldering line in China, probably...

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