GL2 Review- Comparison with XL1s, PD150 - Page 11 at DVinfo.net

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


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Old May 9th, 2004, 09:04 PM   #151
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Further advice for a newbie please

Thanks to you all for comments and reviews - particularly Barry.
I'm trying to make up my mind between MX2, XL1, P10, P170 and 100E - finding it all a bit hard (maybe I should stick to painting!).

I've had a Panasonic DV-DS15 for a couple of years. It's produced hours of semi-documentary footage mainly art, buildings and interiors across the globe. I don't do the family movie thing, more try to give a taste of where I've been and what I've seen without the touristy "look at me here" thingies. Most folks have been complimentary and asked for copies so I must be doing something right - ummmm?

I'm a seasoned visual artist (painter mainly) and multimedia enthusiast. I want to produce some professional (semi?) work - short film and video based installation sorts of thing. That's the reason for a decent new camera.

Which one? Anyone got more comments and advice?

Sorry if this is a bit long but this is my first "post"
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Old May 15th, 2004, 10:54 AM   #152
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Malc

the question you ask is perhaps too much for anyone to answer...you've got alot of cameras listed, and I doubt that any of us has real experience with all of them. The answer is probably this: which camera has the features that you need the most-- that is the camera you should buy. Do you need a larger chip, interchangeable lenses, better low light ability, smaller package. Is Frame mode or progressive important? Do you have $2000 or $3500 (convert to aus$) to spend? Do you need xlr connections, or can that wait? Do you want a harder, sharper video-like image, or one that is softer, warmer and more filmlike. Do you want a 20x zoom or will a 10x suffice.

These questions are retorical...but no one camera has all of these features, so you need to answer them for yourself...then peruse the various divisions of this site (or others) to narrow your focus. Then get thee to a good camera store and hold the thing in your hand, ask if you can borrow their demo for an hour, and see for yourself if you like how it works for what you want it to do...this is the only way...the way of the light.

Good luck, and welcome to dvinfo.net.

Barry
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Old May 15th, 2004, 07:38 PM   #153
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Barry! I've a nose bleed at the thought of all that!

I've done most of those things and now I'm pondering if it's worth waiting until September when we're promised a batch of HD capable toys. I'm assuming (may I'm too optimistic) that Sony et al will have a 3 chip beast which is better than the current JVC offering. Choice at the moment would be either the MX2 or the DVX100E - cash alone is my choice factor here. I also suppose that prices for these two cameras will drop after the release of the HD models.

Anyhow there's so much post work to do I don't thick I'll be actually filming 'till after Sept anyway.

G'day and thanks again!
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Old May 16th, 2004, 11:45 AM   #154
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It's difficult to determine whether the HDV format will really be much of an upgrade from the current miniDV format. While you are getting more resolution out of the image, this is at the expense of much greater compression, as well as difficulties in working with the mpeg format. To me HDV seems like more of a consumer format than DV...which seems to bridge the consumer and pro world nicely...so I dont know if I'd be counting on much price pressure from hdv right off the bat..

I think you cant go wrong with either the xm2 or the dvx...I have both and they are both excellent cameras...if I had to choose one I couldn't. The DVX definitely has a superior image and I love the wide angle, but you can't beat the compactness, automation, and 20x lens on gl2.

Good luck.

Barry
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Old August 19th, 2004, 02:10 AM   #155
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DVX Happy

I've owned both the GL2 and the DVX100 (first edition)

I much prefer the DVX to the GL2-- and actually, I have another second camera, a compact Sony PC101 which I've used for 2 camera shoots-- where I can tweak the Sony footage to match up good enough with the DVX-- providing the shots are different enough, or effected different so you aren't aware of the difference in camera resolution.

The change to the DVX was a quantum leap for me in regards to quality from the GL2. It's something that doesn't hit you over the head immediately, but at some point you go--
oh my gosh, this doesn't look like cheap video any more-- this looks like a decent film. This is a BIG difference.

The progressive mode, espeicially. I use 24 frame progressive a lot, and it is wonderous in low light- really great.

But beyond that, the accurate color rendition of the DVX is extremely welcome. Not to mention the superior sharpness to just about anything anywhere near this price. Certainly fine for any regular TV work broadcast quality. I've done DVD projects with it that are amazing.

I've got a few inventions you may enjoy trying to make for yourself- including a low cost super wide angle for the DVX- which has work wonders for my work.

However-- if you DO OWN a GL2- I've invented a do-it-yourself wide angle lens for that camera that performs very well- instructions here (I post this link from time to time

http://www.neilslade.com/lens.html For GL2 DIY w/a about $40, for a .5X

and the DVX DIY wide version--
http://www.neilslade.com/Papers/DVXlens.html
about $75 for a .3X
Neil
www.neilslade.com
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Old October 24th, 2004, 08:25 AM   #156
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HI

Thanks for the amazing information in this thread.

I am one of those guys wanting to buy a digital cam (3CCD) and I can't decide what I want. I hear bad and good things.
I have to understand that problems or negative aspects of cams are going to apear more often in forums and that isn't the correct representation of what a cam can do. I have adobe premier, after effects and Cubase sx 2. I been making music with the pc for 9 years now so I don't need a cam with good mics. I have to buy a extra one for less than 150-200 dollars. I don't know about lighing much. I am searching this forum for good canon lights which you can plug on the canon gl2 (xm2).

So I have my doubts.

* points me wanting to go for the gl 2 (xm2 in holland):

- barry's review about the perfect videos taken in light conditions
- the price (2350 euros/dollars in a DUtch shop in Europe)
- it has firewire/USB 2 and NO bluetooth. I don't need bluetooth
- canon's reputation of making good lenses

* point me NOT wanting to go for the gl 2(xm2)

- bleeding of red colours problem ( This is an overall ' Color Fringing' problem of all 3 ccd cams I think, but I just read some post so I don't know)
- Spurious Color problem (yellow/purple color fringing problem with strange edges around a lightened object like a carwindow in the sun)
-
- problems with stuck tapes
- bad quality on low light conditions (whith a cheap 100 dollar canon light I guess you can fix this problem in inside situations, but i fyou film outside (a park in ney york) I don't know. Maybe it is better to go for the sony 950.BUt my first cam was a sony and it didn't last long so I don't trust sony cams really anymore. I also had a sony tv and it had colours problems, so I sony gives me headaches.


So while the xl1/2 and the pd150 are above my budged for now, I don't know. MAybe I should wait for next year and see other 3ccd cams apearing on the market.

I have a dillema.
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Old January 13th, 2005, 11:55 AM   #157
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I bought my GL2 recently based on this review and others I got on the internet and I'm quite happy with it.

It's true it's not a perfect camera, but it has great quality taking into account it's the second cheapest semi-pro 3 CCD camera on the market (DVC30 is cheapest).

The red bleeding is evident but it's not an issue if you're into making indies like myself (just avoid strong red areas). I also don't like the looping focus ring. But hey, my only other option was the DVX100A and that was CDN$1600 more.

I love the frame mode and the fact that is so light as well.

Just hope I don't get struck by the infamous tape deck problem..
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Old May 18th, 2005, 07:29 PM   #158
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I'm new to all of this, when you say that the GL2 has more camera noise in low light situations, what do you mean by that? Would that camera noise be gone if I was using a shotgun mic?
Another thing. Is there a website that explains everything about camcorders for beginners?
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Old May 18th, 2005, 08:34 PM   #159
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Drew,

Welcome aboard, and don't take it the wrong way that I had a nice chuckle at your question. It really is a good one...I had just never looked at it the way you proposed it.

The noise referred to in low light situations is not of the audible sort...in this case, noise is "non- image pixels" that are generated by the increased gain needed in low light situations. Let's call it grain for a photographic comparison. While a shotgun mike is usually a good Idea, it will have little effect on noise of this kind. The best way to deal with the low light noise on the gl2 is to use the camera on manual, thus allowing you to control the gain, turn the sharpness down slightly on the camera, and as always...shoot in adequate light.

Hope this helps.

Barry
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Old May 19th, 2005, 04:41 PM   #160
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Lol, that makes more sense.
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Old May 20th, 2005, 01:10 AM   #161
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After a couple of years Panasonic DVX100 (& other 3CCDs) Sony PC101 HC90, GL2, more..

I've now had my DVX100 for a couple of years. It continues to amaze me.
I am just finishing up a short feature "film" that I will be releasing on DVD, and everyone who sees this footage remarks how mind blowing good the quality is.

Just the other day I went into a local store and tried out the GL2, of which I once owned and sold for my DVX. Although its a bit less money than the DVX, and less quality of some performance can fairly be expected, this difference in quality was very apparent to me after using nothing but the DVX for a couple of years. The first thing I was reminded of was the lack of accuracy in color rendition. Of course the GL2 is good compaired to many cameras, but now its not even as good as the sub$1000 Panasonics 3CCD consumer cameras such as the GS200 and GS150.

The steady shot capabilities of the GL2 are clearly wonderful and is much better than these cheaper Panasonics when zoomed, as are many other features of the camera-- but having looked recently at the panasonic GS400, which comes in at under $1600-- the imaging and color of the of the GL2 just takes a back seat now. I cannot see why anyone would buy this camera in Summer of 2005 if image quality is the greatest concern.

As for the DVX100 versus the DVX100A- not enough difference to warrant an upgrade if you've already got the original.

An absolutely fabulous camera.
Some pages I have devoted to DIY projects for this camera can be found here, including a very affordable .3X super wide angle lens for under $100 that works perfectly with no vignetting:
http://www.neilslade.com/Papers/DVXlens.html

A GL2 Wide angle lens for under $50
http://www.neilslade.com/lens.html (could be adapted for other cameras too!)

As for editing, I am now using Vegas 6 and DVD Architect 3, and couldn't imagine using anything else-- just amazing software. My setup allows me to burn 3 DVDs at 16X SIMULTANEOUSLY on my computer (3 Plextor DVD-RW drives). Instructions on how to do this available soon on my web site www.NeilSlade.com

I have used footage from a Sony PC101 intercut with the DVX previously, which says something amazing about this little camera. Alas, Sony has backpeddled in its model designs for the last couple of years. Recently the firewire- my stupid carelessness- broke on the PC101, and insurance required me to replace the camera with a new model as repair is too expensive (stupid, eh?) After much agonizing over camera selection from all available options, I chose the Sony HC90 as my second sub compact mini-cam. It is the cheapest Sony now made that will offer the same quality (and a little bit better) than the PC101, at the same size and weight. The discontinued PC109 and 105 would offer the same clarity and resolution, alas, Sony- as they love to do- removed some features from the HC90, 109- obviously to save production costs. The 109 imaging is exactly the same as the 101, but this camera lacks headphone and manual focus ring. This is progress??? So stupid. The HC90 also lacks these two things, but makes up for it with a little lighter weight, and better CCD resolution and fully manual light balance adjustment. I will miss my PC101 however, and chances are, I'll pick up another on ebay sometime. I did look at the Sony HC42, bleech....... not even the same class as the PC101, though Sony would want you to believe it from the 690K resolution figures-Totally misleading in regards to this camera's imaging quality.

Last edited by Neil Slade; May 20th, 2005 at 01:36 AM. Reason: update
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Old May 23rd, 2005, 12:23 PM   #162
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I am a noob!

Hey all,

Im like a super noob here you could say, first post. But i will get straight to it.
I purchased a GL2 about, o, say a month and a half ago. I am hooked. I love the quality of the picture, and just everything about the camcorder.

I have a few questions for anyone who can help me.

1) I shoot outdoors, and i shoot Motocross. For those of you who dont know motocross, its where dirtbikes race around on laid out tracks, with jumps, dust, and all that cool stuff. I've been playing with the frame rate, and everytime i adjust it, the picture gets darker, which then i had to choose F8.0 and 0db settings to get the picture where i wanted it.

I really have no clue as to what F means or 0db. ive played with it and noticed that it changes the exposure it seems. just brightens up the picture. but ive also noticed that sometimes the auto focus likes to go crazy in this mode, where it would go in and out of focus sometimes.

I guess my real question is do anyone of you know any good settings that i should use for outdoor days where i have to use a high frame rate to capture the rider as he goes flying by me, without having him blurred.

I appreciate anyone who takes the time to answer my question.

O and here is a sample of what i threw together just yesterday:
http://www.tsrmxvideos.com/videos/portlandmxbuddy.wmv
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Old May 23rd, 2005, 03:53 PM   #163
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The GL2 is a good 3CCD 1.3 megapixel still shot camera!
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Old May 25th, 2005, 10:01 AM   #164
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Ben-

quickly let me try to explain the fstop--shutter speed thing...

Exposure is controlled on the gl2 by these two variables --shutter and fstop (or aperture) and also by a built in ND (neutral Density filter). First off, for bright sunlight on the gl2 you should always have the neutral density turned on.

As you increase the shutter speed on the camera, you will need to decrease the "f-number" or fstop (or vice versa). Each full fstop ---F2, F2.8, F4, F5.6, F8, F11 varies the exposure by half (or double) from the adjacent fstop (f4 lets in 1/2 as much light as f2.8, f8 lets in twice as much as f11). Correspondingly the shutter speed does the same thing (halves the light) when you go from 1/60 to 1/125.

For the gl2, I like to keep the f-stop around f4 or f 5.6...which in full sunlight usually will require more neutral density (add on filter) or a polarizing filter (great to darken skys and control reflections. At f8 the gl2 will start to lose some sharpness(this might be the cause of the focus issue), and also makes your depth of field excessively deep....this shouldn't really be the cause of your focus issues (I think you are just shooting with a long lens accross many layers of action..like the begining of your film...which is challenging for autofocus systems in general). Try a circular polarizer to see if you can get your f stop around 4...I think you will see increased image quality, and perhaps a little less depth of field which will allow you to isolate the riders a little more. Play around with rotating the axis of the polarizer to richen up your colors.

Good luck.

Barry
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Old May 27th, 2005, 04:55 PM   #165
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Thanks a bunch Barry! I'll mess around with that and keep that in mind.
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