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Canon GL Series DV Camcorders
Canon GL2, GL1 and PAL versions XM2, XM1.


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Old December 21st, 2003, 01:44 PM   #1
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GL2 Vs XM2

First of all, Hi, i'm fairly new to the forum, been browsing on and off for a little while though, always found the forum very helpfull:D

Sorry if this has been covered before, i thought i better post it as a new topic, as to not lead another thread off topic.

I was just wondering, is there much difference in "cinema-like" quality between the xm2( the PAL GL2) and the US GL2 NSTC version?

As he PAL GL2 records at 25FPS (the same as the PAL version of the dvx100) and the US-GL2 records at 30 FPS as far as i know? Also wouldnt the cinema look of the PAL GL2(XM2), be very simular to the cinema look of the DVX100-PAL? as they shoot at the same FPS? (although i do understand that there are other aspects)

The GL2 seems perfect, the only thing putting me off is that the moive-mode cuts the image quality? i assume this can't be by too much, as movies such as 28days later shot in frame mode...

In the end i can't really afford the DVX100, but am looking for a high, film like quality, my main fear is, that using the GL2 in frame mode for 70% of shooting, would result in largely inferior quality video, that would waste the power of the camera? (i intend to use the frame mode for a lot of my shooting, to give it that movie feel) - but don't want to lose the high-end quality of the camera.


Thanks for any help.:)
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Old December 21st, 2003, 02:20 PM   #2
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Richard, would you really consider a GL2, seeing as you're in PAL land anyway. I would think the headaches converting from NTSC to PAL would be a pain in the arse.

I would think that if you can't afford a DVX100 then you have no choice but the XM2 and even at ~25% resolution loss on frame mode, you've only got about 10% lower res than a non-frame NTSC model would have.


I have not shot a lot in frame mode, but there are people here who do - a lot - like Rob Lohman who will probably atest to it's quality more than me.

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Old December 21st, 2003, 02:34 PM   #3
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Thanks for reply Aaron, sorry my post was unclear, i plan to go with the XM2, was just wondering if the XM2 PAL movie-mode would be closer to the dvx100-pal, than the GL2-NSTC movie mode, although i asume theres not a massive gap between the two.

In thoery, with some extra saving i could afford the DVX100... but still the GL2 looks like a very handy camera thats capable of a lot.
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Old December 21st, 2003, 02:42 PM   #4
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The XM2's frame mode would be similar with the DVX's. Don't even consider the (NTSC) GL2.
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Old December 21st, 2003, 03:22 PM   #5
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Ok thanks:D

Would the quality loss on the pal version be the same as on the US version (for example 10% res los)? (in frame mode)
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Old December 21st, 2003, 03:36 PM   #6
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Percentage wise, don't know. However, PAL has more resolution to begin with, plus PAL is your broadcast system.
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Old December 21st, 2003, 05:23 PM   #7
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If you canīt afford a DVX-100 go for the XM2.
I have one.. and itīs a great cam... besides whatever you save can go into accesories or other stuff that is almost as important as the camera, like a better tripod, more batteries or whatever suit your needs.

The difference in resolution from the DVX-100 at 24p and XM2 at Frame mode is not that obvious when watched on normal TV sets (which is ultimately where my stuff is seen)... and of course there are many other things to consider besides resolution...
Saying "loss of 10% resolution" is just some numbers...

I can tell you, that Iīve shot a Music Video with another guy who has a DVX-100, and under the exact same conditions.. I using frame mode.. and him using 24p... My footage looked better.

Why? because I know my cam... and he didnīt... I know how to expose and white balance... he didnīt... I know my theory... he doesnīt... Iīve more experience than him, etc...

At the end the editor ended up trying to match the DVX-100 footage to my XM2 footage... (I still havenīt seen the final result though).
So a bit less resolution is not concern for me...

If I had the extra cash.. maybe I would have gone for the DVX-100... But I didnīt so the XM2 is my tool.. and it perfomrs very well... In fact even If I had the extra cash... (IN MY OPINION) the 10% extra resolution.. and the other extra features that the DVX has over my cam... are not worth the extra €2000 Iīd have to pay.

If I ever need more than what my XM2 can give me.. Iīll go and borrow, beg, or rent DigiBetacam or HD or whatever.

Of course.... This is under my Opinion and my actual needs.
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Old December 21st, 2003, 05:59 PM   #8
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Thanks Federico,

I have been leaning towards the XM2 from the start, seems to have the quality and many of the features of the XL1S, but in a more portable package.

I hired the DVX100-pal before, and found out first hand that a good camera, with bad lighting, won't get you the film look:)
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Old December 21st, 2003, 09:10 PM   #9
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Something else i was wondering, i just read, while browsing the forum for more info, that the GL2(and i assume the XM2 does the same) lowers image quality in 16:9 format,
i'll be playing/screening a lot of my work in widescreen format (widescreens projection tvs, cinema-style setups, and so on)
I assume that the amount of cameras that do true 16:9 are low, or do the XL1/DVX/VX2000 models offer true 16:9?

edit: I just noticed that the XM2 has 16:9 guidelines for cropping listed on the canon.co.uk website, is this the best mode to shoot in while using the 25FPS XM2 mode , (for playback on a widescreen TV?)

If anyone could let me know what the most widley used(& best) method of getting 16:9 footage on the XM2 is, i would appreciate it.

Sorry for so many questions, i'm still doing a lot of research, just a few things i couldnt verify by searching the forums:D

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Old December 23rd, 2003, 10:58 AM   #10
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The XM2/GL2 both lose 25% of the vertical resolution when switched into the 16:9 mode Richard. Worse than this, (and unlike the Sony camcorders) the viewfinder images are horizontally compressed in this mode, making panning shots and even general shots much more tricky to set up aesthetically.

The VX/PD Sonys and the DVX suffer the same resolution loss, but at least the v/finders show you the correct aspect ratio. The PDX10 (for all its faults) at least has a big side screen and can suffer ther screen resolution loss in the 16:9 mode.

The best method of getting 16:9 on the XM2? Use the 1.33:1 anamorphic made by Optex. But bite the bullet on zoom loss and viewfinder distortion.

tom.
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Old December 23rd, 2003, 12:01 PM   #11
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Thanks Tom,

I will look into the optex anamorphic,
I supose a cheaper way of doing it would be to use the 16:9 guides that come with the camera, and cropping in post.

But you can't have it all i guess:D
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