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-   -   GL / XM assorted posts, 2003 (http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/canon-gl-series-dv-camcorders/5789-gl-xm-assorted-posts-2003-a.html)

Michael Buendia January 2nd, 2003 12:18 AM

zebra settings
can someone explain to me the zebra settings/ire values? i've noticed that if i use the gl2 with the zebras set at 80 ire the lines will show up wherever there is any light (over sensitive)!

i was under the impression that the lines would show up wherever there was bright lights/highlights/hotspots on skin, metal or walls. on a dv cam i use at work (sony d30) the ire is set to 75 and the lines show up only whenever there are high lights. i feel it's very useful for exposure whenever i don't have a field monitor.

on the gl2 the zebra patterns seem to be over sensitive. should i increase the settings to 85 or 90 ire (general exposure)? how does the higher ire #'s affect the way you will use the zebra patterns for exposure? when should i use the lower setting and when should i use the 100 ire setting?

can someone please clear this up for me? also, i would like to know if there is a way to save more than one custom preset? if the cp icon isn't shown on the viewfinder or lcd does that mean the camera has reverted back to its factory preset settings?


Graham Bernard January 2nd, 2003 02:14 AM

Yup, me too! - I'd like some "How-To's" on this one - please. More than that would be - Why and Where I'd be using them. You can see I'm a Newbie to the functionality of this prosumer 3CDDer - having come from a an Analogue Panasonic. Thanks in advance,


Jeff Donald January 2nd, 2003 03:37 AM

Grazie and mbuendia 34,

The setting of Zebra Pattern controls has been covered quite extensively. Use the search button in the upper right and you will find numerous threads dealing with zebra pattern and IRE. If after reading some of the old threads you still have unanswered question, post in one of the old threads or start a new one.


<<--- can someone please clear this up for me? also, i would like to know if there is a way to save more than one custom preset? if the cp icon isn't shown on the viewfinder or lcd does that mean the camera has reverted back to its factory preset settings? --->>

You might want to post different topics as separate posts. You will get faster, and more complete responses by separating them out.


Bill Ravens January 2nd, 2003 03:23 PM

Zebra settings can be used to determine exposure under a variety of criteria. The settings correspond 1 for 1 with IRE. So that at zebra 100 (IRE100) you've maxed the image out according to NTSC standards. If you choose a zebra of 100, NO zebra stripes are acceptable in the viewfinder. A zebra of 75 is used when the exposures are set for human flesh tones. That is, with a zebra of 75, your talent's face should not show any zebra. For day to day work, a zebra of 90-95 provides a little early warning of which highlights are approaching that dreaded 100IRE cutoff.

Chung Lee January 3rd, 2003 06:49 AM

GL / XM assorted posts, 2003
XM2 Cheap Batteries here
But I should better buy an original Canon?? I read lotz of people
using the no name battery, but is it good for your camera??

Mark Härtl January 3rd, 2003 07:21 AM

Hi chunglee,

I bought some batteries from www.sabahoceanic.com and everything is fine. Two BP-945 equivalent batteries cost $90. You can see details and discussion here: http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...&threadid=5290.

Vidterry January 3rd, 2003 03:36 PM

Strange problem with GL-2
I fear my GL-2 has an electronics problem, but want to see if others have any thoughts.

When I turn on the camera...set to camera...all I get through either the viewer or LCD screen is grey 'snow'. Nothing I do with any settings affects this. I've gone through the manual for setup, I've looked at troubleshooting...cannot get this to show a view through either piece.

THEN...occasionally...it will 'click' into a view mode...but will be totally out of focus, and neither manual focus, nor any W-T setting in auto will bring it into focus. Next time camera is powered on...all grey again.

I've tried Canon support, with several emails, and all the steps on their online support...but have gotten NO response from them, and none of their 'keywords' prompt an auto response.

Sure seems like electronics problem out of the box to me. That will be a real pain.

Any ideas, or anyone else seen this.

OR....am I just plain missing a step in settings on the camera. Seems as though most are accessed through the menu, and I can't get a view of the menu to set most things.


Terry in Iowa

Tom Christensen January 3rd, 2003 03:53 PM

Do you get a recorded image on tape? Do you get the same effect on an external monitor?

Either way, the thing sounds like it is broken. Nothing on the menu gives you that kind of side effect. The only way I can think of to get any kind of snow is to run a TV signal into it. I assume that is not the case.

Hopefully, it is still under warranty or you can send it back to the place of purchase.


Chris Hurd January 3rd, 2003 07:23 PM

This is a job for Canon Service, the sooner the better. Contact info at http://www.dvinfo.net/canon/skinny.php#service

Bill Hardy January 3rd, 2003 09:30 PM

Spotlight mode; just for spotlights?
Maybe not. Upon answering an e-mail from someone who wanted to know how to reduce video noise in the GL2, I started fooling around further with the cam. The shortcut I found to instantly kill video graininess surprised me. Here is my reply to the e-mail:

"I have found that as long as the cam has a little light, be it even tail lights from a car at night, noise will be reduced in the scene. Sitting in a nearly dark room will naturally bring video noise. You can't expect the cam to give a decent picture in that situation (Except in spotlight mode, if you read further). Here are some things I have found that reduce noise:"

(Manual Mode suggestions were deleted here)

"...In Spotlight Mode (The easy way):
May sound crazy but try it sometime. Sitting in a room with minimal lighting plug your GL2 into a TV monitor. In auto mode you should see some video noise. Yuck. Now switch the cam to the SPOTLIGHT setting and observe all video grain COMPLETELY dissappears, and I mean ALL of it. Now, in CP mode bring up Setup Level 2 or 3 clicks to help compensate for the darkened picture produced by the Spotlight mode. Pretty neat huh? I just discovered this trick while typing this e-mail. It would be very interesting to get some real world shots using this setting...very curious to see how it would look. Get back to me if you decide to experiment on this and obtain some results. I may just experiment further myself tomorrow."

Of course, I doubt if this is a cure all to graininess in all dimly lit situations because your scene may end up too dark from the Spotlight mode, though the shot will always be grain free (even in total darkness!) But I suspect this mode can be used in situations other than a scene with a spot light, and I think it is worth checking out in dimly lit indoor situations as well as outdoor sunset or dusk situations. I encourage all GL2 users to check it out. I may post some frames soon if I get some favorable results.

Ken Tanaka January 3rd, 2003 10:21 PM

While "Spotlight" exposure mode can have the effect of reducing grain in dark areas of certain scenes it's important to understand what it actually does in order to use it effectively.

Basically, Spotlight mode sets the camera to a center-weighted "spot" exposure meter, similar to that of a still camera. Metering predominantly on the center portion of the frame (which is assumed to be much brighter than areas to the sides) prevents the camera from automatically increasing the gain, which is what it might do if it read the average exposure for the frame. When the camera's gain is increased, so is the amount of noise (grain) in the picture.

So there's really nothing magic about "Spotlight" mode. (Nor is it unique to the GL2; the XL1s and probably the Optura and Elura have this feature.) It's just a convenience for certain situations. (Actually, I'm convinced it was designed mainly for proud poppas to get better results when shooting their kids' school plays.) You can manually control the gain (and everything else) yourself by shooting in Manual mode.

Of course the best way to avoid grain and get a better image is to...turn a light on! <g>

Mark Härtl January 4th, 2003 04:58 AM

It's even more simple Ken: Spotlight disables the gain. It's always 0 db. You can see this, when you are in Manual mode (1/60, F1.6, 0db) and in a dark room, so that the exposure meter points to the left. When you switch to Spotlight mode now, nothing will happen, the exposure stays the same.

I use the Spotlight mode when I'm using a video light: The camera won't use gain because it's too dark but will close the iris when it gets lighter again. You can use the Spotlight mode too if you want an automatic exposure mode but don't want gain to be used.

Ray Danders January 4th, 2003 07:39 PM

On-Off and remote filming
I was out fishing on a bay in Lake Michigan a few days ago, and I had my GL2 set up on a tripod on the waters edge. I thought that if I hooked a trout, I could use my remote control to start my camera. I couldn't get it to work.

My questions are, does anyone know what the range of the remote control is?

The second question is that in 5 minutes or so the camera turns itself off. Is there a way to overide this function or is there some other way that I haven't figured out yet to use my remote to turn the camers on and start filming?

Also does the remote only work from in front of the camers, or can it work from the rear or other angle?


Graham Bernard January 5th, 2003 01:21 AM

Fishing with LANCS
Hiyah - "does anyone know what the range of the remote control is?" my manual states 5 metres or 16 feet. Yours should say the same.

My manual also comes with some warnings regarding the use of the Wireless Controller:

* When using the wireless contrioller in brightly lit places or outdoors, the effective range will be less

* The camcorder may have difficulty in picking up the remote signals at extremely close range

* Do not leave ther controller exposed to direct sunlight, or in hot or humid places

* When the batteries run out, replace them both together

* Make sure the shoulder strap does not obstruct the remote sensor

"Also does the remote only work from in front of the camers, or can it work from the rear or other angle?" The remote has a very narrow angle of effectiveness. It can be fairly wide, but I've found it to be quite sensitive - yes? And no, it cannot be used from the rear. I've found that even if I try to operate the remote AND its sensor is "obscured" by the Canon's sunshade, the remote will not work. I think it is fairly line-of-sight. However, do some experiments to ascertain how far round the cammy you can get and still see the Tally lamp blinking on and off - yes?

As to the camera turning itself off, this is a "good" thing as it preserves the "rolling stock" of our motors and rollers within the cammy. I don't believe the cammy is actually "off" - yes? I hink it is more in "hibernation". Now if one could override this, it wouldn't be advised - I wouldn't use this function if it did exsist.

Now to options!

I would suggest a hard-wired LANC [ Local Application Control Bus ] device to get the cammy under your control. Of course this would mean trailing wires - not something I would imagine you would relish, with all that fishing gear; water-edge calamities; cammy on a tripod; sharks leaping out of the water, youngsters playing with your kit - get my drift here? Sooooo . . . . I would suggest some LANC device THAT in itself could be "remotely" wirelessed-up for your benefit, allowing you to not be concerened about the LANC wires etc etc - yes? AND it would be omni directional at the same time. I suppose you could have the LANC wireless thing "strapped" to the fishing rod, allowing you fast reaction times in switching the cammy in to active shooting mode. I know there are some amazing LANC devices on the market - fairly cheap too - that can not only cope with the start/stop BUT also zoom in and out. Basically the standard operating options are "transferred" to this LANC. You may even consider some form of LCD monitoring device - up close and personal to your "fishing" position, so you can get a Canon eye view of what it is viewing fromm say 15 feet away - fanciful? Maybe, but it depends on how far you wish to take, what I think, is a very interesting project.

Another thought while I'm writing this, is for maybe a type of "proximity" switching device - similar to that of house security lamps - that would "kick-in" when more than an average amount of activity -from you - appeared in front - or in this case to the side - of the camera - yes?

The long and the short of it is that, if you are not positioned relative to the cammy at an acute enough angle for the Remote Sensor to function, you will not get what you want. However, if you could "pick" a spot to fish where the angle was comfortable for you and the cammy, you might not catch any fish anyway! Fish tend to be very aware when you are getting frustrated! Know what I mean? Sooo . . . like in most things, you would need to explore "other" alternatives to achieve your objectives.

Oh yes - try before you buy! See if you can "hire" such equipment and test it out. If you intend to do alot of filming of yourself catching the "monster" it would be worth seeing if you liked the set-up first - yes? Then you could go onto to decide whether to invest or not in the above LANC system - yes? But, like all things I purchase I'll always try yo attempt to "use" the piece of equipment in the future anyway. LANC systems can be useful where you don't want to agitate the cammy while shooting something close-up, AND/OR you want to have a 360 degree observation of what is going on around you - while your cammy "focuses" on the job in hand.

Hope this has helped - others will confirm or deny the "hibernation" thing I was attempting to describe.


Bill Hardy January 5th, 2003 05:56 AM

Ahh, I see Mark; that's why there is absolutely no video grain ever in spotlight mode. Is is not simply reduced; it seems to be totally eradicated in not just certain scenes but any scene. I have however compared 0db in manual mode to spotlight mode and somehow spotlight mode accepts more light and gives a visibly better, brighter picture on my cam. Wonder why that is?

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