Canon GL2 vx. Sony VX2100 - Page 2 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 February 13th, 2006, 02:51 AM   #16
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I've only used the Sony VX1000 once, so I can't comment much on the Sony line.

On the other hand, I own 3 GL2's, and I think they're great. It sounds like most of what you are doing is for fun, so I would go with the GL2 simply because it performs so well AND costs a lot less. The money you save will allow you to purchase a nice tripod, the wide angle lens, a bigger battery, some filters, maybe a monopod as well. In your case, that's what I'd do.

Regarding the GL2 on low light, I've found that using the manual settings you can film in pretty low light situations without grain. It takes a little extra effort, but it's not that hard. I had a wedding just this past December that had a reception dance floor that was BARELY lit, and I still got good footage from it. My assistant, using semi-manual settings, got brighter footage, but it was also grainier.

I also shot a band last night that was lit by red and green LED lighting, and some REALLY minimal house lighting. Upon viewing the footage today, I was very happy with the results. It took me about 2-3 songs to get the look I wanted, but it worked.

I go with GL2's and get yourself some accessories with the left-over $$$.
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Old February 13th, 2006, 03:15 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travis Cossel
Regarding the GL2 on low light, I've found that using the manual settings you can film in pretty low light situations without grain.
Travis? Please post here your Low Light recipe for success. I go Manual and to have no GAIN-GRAIN my exposure range is waaaayyy low.

And yes! Spot on Travis! The budget difference will offer some necessary accessory - $ $ $ - headroom!

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Old February 13th, 2006, 03:35 AM   #18
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Nothing magical, but here's what I used last night:

Shutter: 1/30
F: as open as possible, usually 1.6 to 2.2
Gain: 0-6DB

It should also be noted that I removed the wide angle lenses from both cameras and avoided zooming in. It wasn't candle-light, but then again, pretty much any digital camera is going to hate candle-light. d:-)
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Old February 13th, 2006, 03:38 AM   #19
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You've got to know that the VX is quite a bit dearer than the XM for pretty good reasons Dave. Superficially they appear somewhat the same and there's no denying that the Canon is a great camera at a great price point, but Sony know their stuff and their market.

The bigger chips, twin ND filters and faster lens (though it has less zoom) means dof on the Sony is easier to control. Both share the same VAP Steadyshot mechanism which is good, but the PD170 parentage shows just how tough and war-ready the VX is, as underneath it's exactly the same camera of course.

I dispute Alan's claim that digital zoom on the Canon doesn't degrade the image (it does), but if at all possible get to handle each camera. I would say this though - you'll be delighted with either camera, that's for sure. Both are pretty long in the tooth as neither shoots 16:9 very well, but they're both big sellers for good reason - they perform beautifully.

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Old February 13th, 2006, 04:09 AM   #20
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I just wanted to point out that with a 20x lens you shouldn't need to be messing with digital zoom anyways. In my opinion, digital zoom is more of a novelty feature on ANY camera.

Good points, btw, Tom.
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Old February 13th, 2006, 04:10 AM   #21
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Tom,

I really did not mean to say that digital zoom does not degrade the image. Of course it must do - the laws of physics see to that! Blame it on too much New Zealand wine and the hour.

What I did say is that it is usable in the XM2, whereas in the XM1 it is not. Even so, it is only usable up to a point, before the image degradation becomes unacceptable, maybe 1.5X, certainly no more.

You really cannot beat a longer lens, and the XM2 is way ahead on that count - if, of course, your planned use of the camera requires that feature.

Unless you have a stout tripod the extra focal length brings problems of steadiness - the OIS is very good, but it has its limits.

With the XM1 I felt that if one really did need the extra image size it was better to use some zoom in post rather than on the camera.
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Old February 13th, 2006, 04:32 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Travis Cossel
Nothing magical, but here's what I used last night:

Shutter: 1/30
F: as open as possible, usually 1.6 to 2.2
Gain: 0-6DB
Yeah . . I too would use 6db. But I was getting the point across of NO Gain<>Grain for our friend. Oh yeah, 6 will spruce stuff up!
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Old February 13th, 2006, 04:52 AM   #23
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Graham,

Well, last night I was on 0DB for around 90% of the time. My point was simply that I hear a lot about how the Sony is better in low light, but I think the GL2 performs well enough, especially if you experiment with the manual settings a little. Also, I went for quite a while (on paying jobs) with my GL2's without even getting into manual settings, so for what our friend here is looking to do, I think he's more than fine getting a GL2.
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Old February 13th, 2006, 08:04 AM   #24
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I think with all the great info from this thread that anyone out to buy either a Sony or Canon will find a lot of good advice here. The Sony owners can give their point and Canon owners give their 2 cents or 2 pence. I know the 100x zoom is a selling tool for what ever reason. I have mine set so that I can not over zoom on my GL2.

I would be a Sony owner if they had a 20x zoom. I own a smaller Sony and love it (Hi 8 tho) I wanted the most zoom I could get for outdoor and wildlife footage. If you will be using mostly in doors for events like weddings zoom maybe would not be a big factor, but it came down to the money for me. But like the others have said you will not be sorry with either one you buy. One thing I did do,I bought a small $250.00 DV Canon to use as a playback deck with the money I saved with the Canon GL2 rebate. ZR200 Canon also had a $30.00 rebate.

Steve
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Old February 13th, 2006, 08:41 AM   #25
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I have to say that much as I have liked my XM1, and my XM2, I agree with Steve - if the VX2100 or PD170 came with the 20x zoom of the Canon I would have bought Sony both times, despite the higher cost
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Old February 13th, 2006, 05:44 PM   #26
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I own a VX2100 and a GL2. I've commented about the two in other posts here and at camcorderinfo (where I go by "fretread"). I also have a Panasonic GS200 and I've bought four used Sony TRV22s from ebay for my high school video club. I'm happy to own the great VX2100 and I've used it in a couple of situations where its low light capability gave me better results than the GL2 would have.

But the GL2 is easily a better bang for buck than the VX, IMO. Even if they were the same price I'd have trouble not picking the GL2 for most of my shooting. My only complaint against the GL2 is its slightly pinkish skin tones, but that's correctable in post--when I want to correct. Sometimes the blush is desireable. Anyway, like others, I favor the 20X zoom, the control layout and logic, the audio control, the size and weight, the frame mode, and the overall more romantic look all the above gives the footage.

I shoot a lot of stage stuff, and I've learned that it's best to use the "spotlight" automatic exposure mode at all times with all three of my cams, together with "indoor" or incandescent white balance. The reasons would make for a thread by themselves. At any rate, I like that I can temporarily knock down the exposure of the Canon using the exposure lock dial without having the cam switch out of spotlight mode. The VX does switch out of spotlight mode if I tweak the exposure, and I'm inclined to forget it has done so.

In fairness to the Sony, I have yet to try it with diffusion filters. I suspect that the image would be more to my liking, and still retain the low light and color accuracy of the VX. That would turn my head.

BTW, although its not in the same league with the two discussed above, I consider a used TRV22 to be the BEST bang for the buck in the world.
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Old February 13th, 2006, 07:26 PM   #27
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Finally, someone who actually owns both cameras. Thanks for detailed input, Fred. Makes me feel even better about my purchase of multiple GL2's!
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Old February 14th, 2006, 03:51 AM   #28
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Just a plug for the VX2100 Fred. I'm right with you when you praise the spotlight mode - I find it invaluable when filming stage shows. It's a very intelligent mode, unlike the backlight mode which is like a stopped clock - only correct twice a day.

If you enter the VX2100's custom preset mode you can indeed dial down the exposure level and this - in combination with the spotlight - may be what you need. Maybe not as convienient as the Canon though.

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Old February 14th, 2006, 08:02 PM   #29
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I have both a VX2100 and a GL2. Here are the advantages of each:

VX2100:
Better low light shooting. At wedding receptions I still get a sharp non-grainy image on the 2100 where the GL2 is dim and muddy.
Colorimetry seems more neutral. The GL2 makes flesh tones a bit ruddy.
The VX2100 feels more rugged.
Battery life (with the NP-970) is better.
Zoom control on lens lens barrel.
Better placement of the ND filter and focus controls. Numerous times I have accidentally enabled the ND filter when I was reaching for the manual focus on the GL2.

GL2:
Really nice 20x optical zoom.
More audio flexibility. You can adjust each audio channel separately without resorting to a Beachtek box.
Separate control of gain and aparture. The VX2100 only brings up the gain if the lens is wide open. Both this and the separate audio channel control are not included on the VX2100 (but are on the PD-170).
Less expensive.

I prefer the VX2100 to the GL2. They are both good cameras, but for what I do (weddings), the VX2100 has the edge.
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