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


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Old December 28th, 2004, 03:25 PM   #1
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newbie needs help

hello all !
im a professional artist in the video game industry im looking to do some filming during my spare time
i have done tons of editing and post work over the years, im just ready to film some footage of my own to work with!

I have a few questions that id like to ask before i purchase my first camera.My current camera intrest is the canon GL2

1. i want to have film/broadcast quality imagery that i can use for my movies, I plan on shooting a documentry about my grand father, most the the time the shooting will be in a controlled environment, were the lighting ect can be monitored and controlled

2 a few questions about the camera, I noticed that the gl2 uses a
"cassete tape". My first concern is that it does uses a cassete tape. kinda makes me wonder about the quality, i assume that this is actually a "tape drive" rather than the old vhs type recording tape?

i also assume that i can record footage and immeditly download / save it to my laptop, rather than saving it to the cassete tape? correct? ( yeah total newbie questions)


3.after the documentery i would love to film some footage with the similar style as seen in film title sequences( the opening credit movie ) such as "se7en" and "mimic"
any comments if the gl2 could pull this quality off?

se7en reference
http://www.shift.jp.org/071/imaginaryforces/img/seven.jpg


thanks for the help!!!!
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Old December 28th, 2004, 03:42 PM   #2
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Hello Dan,
The Canon GL2, like most cameras in its class, uses MiniDV tapes as the recording medium. This is a digital, not an analog, format. Quality of the medium will not be an issue. Just get the best tape you can afford and stick with the brand.

The GL2 is capable of producing very high-quality imaging, certainly adequate for most consumer and amateur needs. There are, of course, better cameras but at substantially greater cost. All told, the GL2 is an excellent value and an excellent starting point for your stated intentions.

Like any camera, however, the quality of the end product is largely determined by the skill of its user. Lighting, sound, composition, careful and deliberate camera movement, et.al. all contribute greatly to the results. Acquiring these abilities requires far more time and dedication than the majority of new camera buyers realize. Take ample time to practice with, and to study, the GL2's features and capabilities. Few ever learn to use their cameras well and, consequently, become frustrated and often leave the avocation or start on a never-ending upgrade path that leads nowhere. Remember, the principal elements of success in videography and filmmaking are (a) skillfully telling a worthwhile story, and (b) being a good photographer.

Good luck and have fun!
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Old December 28th, 2004, 05:53 PM   #3
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1. What's your question? If the GL2 will do? Oh, believe me, it's a 3CCD camera. If you have good lightning, camera movement, with that cam you can get great results!

2. Well, there is nothing wrong with saving to tape, it's a digital tape, my friend. There isn't going to be a difference between saving to tape and to harddisk, exept that you could wear your heads from the cam sooner.

3. Yes you could do that, but why? You should drag your laptop everywhere, and have a long firewire cable, and if in the middle of the shot your cable gets out the port, gone is the shot. I don't know if those harddisk recorders also are possible for the GL2 but have a look at this article:

http://www.dvinfo.net/canon/articles/article88.php

At this way you save it to harddisk, no wear on the heads, AND you don't have the cons of dragging your laptop with you.
There IS a big con though: it's price. These things cost around 1000 dollars. You can still go with tape ;-)

Good luck!

EDIT: oops I saw Ken was before me with the information.

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Old December 28th, 2004, 08:14 PM   #4
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thanks guys you have been a lot of help!

one last question

im pretty sure that the dv cassete tape wont come with the camera,

so what is a good recommendation of tape?

and what is the cost $

well one more question while am here

i have done a tone of title sequence work for prossionaly for games and such, but i have never had the joy of shooting my own footage, most of the stuff i have used has been from exsisting footage or CG imagery , scanned photos ect

i have a huge intrest in filming footage for title sequences and was just wandering if anyone has ever had to film anything like this in the past, i am aware that most of the effects are done in post ( wich is really good for my case ) but i was curious if there are any specific advise you guys could shoot my way !!!


any knowledge would help

for reference go here and look at these movies

http://www.imaginaryforces.com/html/index.html?s=projects&q=5&id=82


http://www.imaginaryforces.com/html/index.html?s=projects&q=5&id=110


thanks again!
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Old December 28th, 2004, 08:23 PM   #5
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We have an entire section devoted to tape topics so feel free to dive in. MiniDV tape is widely available today so shop around. You'll get plenty of opinions on brands. But the best recommendation i could offer is to select the best grade of tape within a top brand like Panasonic or Sony, buy it in quantities for best prices, and just stick with it.
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Old December 30th, 2004, 07:57 AM   #6
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Maybe, and I'm not sure, you can ask advice for the special fx from the credits you want to make in the forum of the NLE wich you will be working with. Maybe there they could give you some advice? Try Premiere or Vegas or Final Cut Pro, I don't know what you'll use, but maybe there somebody will know more answers.
Good luck!
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Old December 30th, 2004, 01:32 PM   #7
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<<<-- Originally posted by Dan Richards : thanks guys you have been a lot of help!

one last question

im pretty sure that the dv cassete tape wont come with the camera,

so what is a good recommendation of tape?

and what is the cost $

Dan, I have used Panasonic DVM63PQ(professional) and DVM63MQ(master) for more than 2 years and have had no problems with camera heads or tape. $4 - 6 bulk price respectively.
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Old December 30th, 2004, 01:43 PM   #8
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Good suggestion, Val. That's my brand and grades, too.

Tape Resources has been an excellent resource for me for years.
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