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Old July 15th, 2004, 04:39 PM   #1
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What do you think the XL2 means for the GL3?

XL2 technology with a fixed lens sounds interesting.

What do you think?
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Old July 15th, 2004, 05:41 PM   #2
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The GL/XL product cycles and relationship has been interesting to watch. Most recently the GL2 actually features more current imaging technology and processing than the XL1S. The XL2 will now leapfrog the GL2. So I strongly suspect that the "GL3" may be far more akin in its design and features to the current DVX100A. The XL2 will likely surpass the DVX100A as the new low/no budget filmmaking king.

But I think that Canon may wait and see how the XL2's imaging feature set really sells in the marketplace before they make a hard commitment to incorporating 24P and various image tweaks into the GL3.
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Old July 15th, 2004, 07:25 PM   #3
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Ken, that's a good point about how the models have been 'leap frogging' eachother.

Also, I can't help but point out this gem that was posted on the boards earlier this week:

Mike Zorich of Canon:
"While a great camera, it [the XL2] will be the last SD camera from Canon"



Now, are we to believe that the GL3 will be an HDV camera?
What about the ZR line? Are we going to start seeing HD ZR80s?

Who knows.
I just couldn't help but start the rumor mill.

-Luis
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Old July 15th, 2004, 09:46 PM   #4
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I've moved this thread to Area 51 not to penalize it but rather to free it. With the XL2 now a reality, let the "GL3" gum-bashing begin!
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Old July 16th, 2004, 01:35 AM   #5
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I think that Mike Zorich's statement about the XL2 being the last SD camcorder from Canon, might be interpreted as referring to the semipro line that includes the XL and GL series. Does anyone think they would be imposing the expense of having HDV-compatible CCDs, lenses and recorders on their low-end and mid-priced consumer lines, in the next couple of years at least? However, my thinking on this is evolving as I write.
In fact, it would be possible to produce a low-budget, HDV/SD, dual-format camcorder, using a 2-MegaPixel, single-CCD video imaging system, similar to those that now exist. These CCDs would need to have their number of horizontal scanning lines raised from the NTSC level of 480, to the HDV level of 720. A 16:9 HD camera mode could be engineered in somewhat the same way as the 16:9 SD mode is being done on 4:3 CCDs with the new XL2.

The 4:3 SD sensing sector on a 2-MegaPixel, 720 scanning line CCD could be made smaller, to fit into the vertical space that had 480 scanning lines. This 4:3 sector would be in the center of the CCD and have blanked zones on all 4 sides.

For the 16:9 HD image, the sensing sector would expand vertically and horizontally and use more of the CCD. If the CCD had 4:3 proportions, there would be blanked areas along the top and bottom and scanning lines above the 720 number would fill them, although, as with the XL2 CCDs, they'd never be actively used. If a 16:9-shaped CCD was used, the HD mode would use the whole CCD. A CCD with a 16:9 physical shape would be a lot better and simpler to use.

Probably, a CCD at least 1/3-inch in size would be needed for this dual-format function. The 4:3 SD zone would be only about 1/6-inch in size, but since CCDs this small are now being successfuly used, it should be adequate. An optically-stabilized image system would be best, so the sensing sectors wouldn't have to be made even smaller for an EIS system.

PAL cameras that needed 580 SD scanning lines would have their 4:3 sector expanded vertically and horizontally. The lens magnification effect would be less for PAL than NTSC and even less for HD, due to having larger sensing areas on the CCD. How well the optical quality of the lower-cost SD lenses that now exist, would fit the requirements of HD imaging is doubtful. But perhaps some improvements in their glass could be made and still keep the overall selling price around the U.S. $1,500. range.

Turning an SD DV recorder into one that could do HDV, wouldn't have to be too expensive, since the tape speed and mbps rate, with the M-PEG2 compression of HDV, is the same as that of SD.

The more I think about it, the more easy it would seem that they could make relatively low-cost HDV/SD cameras and recorders, with existing hardware and a few new programming chips. The question is, do they want to do this right away, or in a year, or in two years? There are still not many HDTV monitors in use even though they are getting less expensive. Would enough camcorder customers want to buy one that was HDV-capable, even if they didn't have an HD monitor yet? Could the availability of lower-cost home HDV camcorders give a boost to the sales of HDTV monitors? This might be a good reason, in itself, to make such camcorders widely available and affordable. Most of the DV camcorder makers are also in the HDTV monitor business.

Is what I've just described, the way that existing HDV/SD camcorders actually utilize their CCDs for dual function? I haven't studied how they work in this regard, so I don't know, but have I just re-invented the wheel?

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Old July 16th, 2004, 07:22 AM   #6
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"These CCDs would need to have their number of horizontal scanning lines raised from the NTSC level of 480, to the HDV level of 720"


Steve, sounds like a great idea.
Now take a look at the specs on the CCD block of the XL2.
Looks like Canon is heading exactly in the direction you want.

The chips are actually 960x720.


Interesting.

-Luis
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Old July 16th, 2004, 08:34 AM   #7
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Luis, if the XL2 CCDs were 16:9 in their basic shape, the 720 scanning lines would be just right for an upshift to the greater number of HDV horizontal pixels needed. If they used the full height, to activate all the 720 scanning lines on the current 4:3-shaped CCDs, the picture would also be 4:3 and not widescreen.

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Old July 21st, 2004, 07:43 PM   #8
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A guy at the Canon booth at DV EXPO East said there were no current plans regarding the engineering of a GL3, but Canon obviously doesn't leak much to the public before a release. I couldn't see a GL3 being HDV unless the model comes out in a couple years, like if they released an XL2S, and the GL3 at the same time, and both were HDV. They are going to want people that might have bought a GL3, to suck it up and spend the extra dough on XL2's for as long as possible.
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Old July 24th, 2004, 11:39 AM   #9
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It might be a harddisk-camera

I have been reviewing DVD-camcorders lately, and I believe that they are a better choice for comsumers than DV-cameras, due to the fact that computers and NLE-programs are considered to be too high tech by consumers. Now you just take your DVD-"tape" and stuff it into your DVD-player. Voila - instant hollydays video and no wires. In short I am very positive about the DVD-concept, and have been writing so.
Now what has this to do with GL3? Well - I've spoken to Sony, Panasonic and Hitachi about their DVD-camcorders. And of course I phoned Canon and asked: "when do you DVD?" They ansvered: "We have been looking at DVD-technology, and we do not believe that the quality is good enough". But at the same time they stated that they "were looking into alternatives..." But they would not say any more.
Later I spoke to Canon Europe product development for camcorders. And they where very much interested in my views on harddisk based videorecording. I told them that I would love a modular approch on prosumer cams, så you could have either a harddisk or a tape transport. Alternativly a flashram based unit with a hardisk in a mobile docking station. Now the Canon reps looked very sheepish, and said something like: "Geee - a hardisk based prosumer camcorder? Modular? Funny you said that .... But no no no we have not talked to Samsung, and would you like som more coffe?"
My guess is that gl3 is gonna be harddiskbased, as this is a good idea productionwise, as tapetransports are complex mechanisms, and it should rationalize the workings of the camera. And 20- 30 gigs could carry you a long way. Especially if Canon puts the harddisk in a cartridge, so you could change them.
And the Canon reps had some interesting views upon durability of harddisks, especially since they never talked to Samsung. Oh no!
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Old July 24th, 2004, 12:28 PM   #10
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The new GL3/XM3

Hi,

it will be a speculating question what will the new cam from canon have or have not? Isn't it a little bit possible to compare with innovations of the XL2 and transfer it to a new model in the next following class?

Could it be a better 16:9 mode, no cropping verticaly, a close up to low light capabilities like the vx2100, bigger chips or another connection to microphones - would that be too much a close up to XL2?

<out of speculation>I've to say sorry, because it could be some mistake in my technical description. Since some month I'm searching for the right cam and the conclusion meanwhile is to wait till the end of this year and at first buy a cheaper one, hopefully a b-cam for use together with something like the gl2 in future</out>

I'm not a specialist, but hope very much it will not be a downgrade like sony does it with the more cheaper models. Otherwise, the GL2 would be my favorite at the moment, like that cam very much.

What could make sense about it? After reading the first impression of hc1000 (?) at caminfo.com (?) it has not to be logical to produce a better product - but canon is not sony *g*

Does anyone has any idea?

m.
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Old July 25th, 2004, 01:30 PM   #11
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I've thought that one of the greatest advangtages of Hard Disk recording was you could store at the frame rate you are shooting. 24p could be stored as 24p instead of being converted to 60i. Same rational for PAL. That alone would be a great time saver and lessen any problems when converting back and forth. Of course we need progressive monitors that could do the same thing.
It would also open up the possibility of unusual frame rates like 96p or what ever the camera could output.
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Old July 26th, 2004, 02:12 PM   #12
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Canon said they will not be releasing any more SD camcorders.
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Old July 26th, 2004, 02:17 PM   #13
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It's the mass market that will drive hdv camcorders. Companies are waiting for a critical mass of consumers who have hdtv's.

Filmmakers who want increased reslution in order to blow their film up for festivals are a very small part of the market. It seems only Panasonic is listening to those people.
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Old July 26th, 2004, 08:38 PM   #14
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Joe, if you had a harddrive recorder in a camcorder and it recorded at 24p or 30p, the output in playback would be compatible only with other recorders and monitors that could accept a progressive signal. So, it seems likely that progressive recording, either with harddrives or other types of media, will be seen only with high-definition camcorders. There would be too little demand for SD progressive recordings, to produce camcorders that would record it.

It's much more likely that if SD progressive output signals were provided, that they would come from down-conversions of HDTV recordings. Regarding variable scan-rate recordings, I doubt if anything but a few expensive pro models would have this. It would be a very specialized feature and not many video monitors would be able to display it.

However, if high-capacity harddrive recorders were used in camcorders, there might be so much storage capacity, that separate recordings would be made on a disk, in several modes, for each program. This way, no conversions between different encoding systems, that might induce loss of image quality, would be needed to provide playback in SD or HDTV or in interlaced or progressive.

Several years ago, IBM announced a new harddrive technology called "Pixie-dust",
that they said would quadruple capacity.
They were suggesting that a 600 to 800Gb
harddrive would be common. I haven't heard any more about Pixie-dust, but if an advancement such as this in harddrives
was made, especially if they were interchangeable, they could replace optical disks as the next major camcorder acquisition medium. If harddrive modules could be easily taken from a camcorder and placed in a separate player or into a computer drive, such camcorders wouldn't have to be used for playback. They would also avoid harddrive camcorder recording-capacity limits with this system.

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Old August 29th, 2004, 11:06 PM   #15
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Can I see a link

Can someone get me a link to that statement/press release. Im assuming its for prosumer to pro level camcorders.


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