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


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Old July 14th, 2006, 01:24 PM   #1
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GL2 good for beginning film student?

Hi everyone. I was just wondering if the GL2 was a good camera for a beginning film student. I wanted a camera to get a head start on filming some stuff and becoming familiar with the whole process. Does anyone have any experience with this situation? Thanks.
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Old July 14th, 2006, 01:48 PM   #2
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I've been happy with my GL2, but I bought it three years ago. If I was buying a camera today, I don't think that would be one that I would go for. In the same price range I would look at something like a Sony HC1.
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Old July 14th, 2006, 02:39 PM   #3
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I have a GL2 and two other 3 CCD camcorders. I think that the GL2 is one of the ideal camcorders for a budding filmmaker. If you do a search at IMDB.com you can find a bunch of films shot by indies with them. The combination of manual control, optical quality, audio features and affordability would make it my number one choice under $2000. The Panasonic AG-DV30, a newer release and a close competitor in the same price range, also deserves a look.

Personally I wouldn't go with HD for other than sports, news and documentary work.
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Old July 14th, 2006, 03:19 PM   #4
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Welcome to DVinfo Ryan! The GL2 is certainly a great camera and has proved itself over the years - I'm sure you could produce good work with it and learn a lot in the process. But it's one of the oldest designs on the market today. One thing that it lacks is high quality 16:9, so if you want to work in that format then you might think about some other options.

Now there's also this - in our "Area 51" forum, so it should be taken with a grain of salt. People have been predicting that Canon will introduce a GL2 replacement for years now, and so far it hasn't happened. But you've gotta think that its days are numbered. Just in case there could be a germ of truth in this thread, you might want to wait just a little longer. It would be unfortunate to buy the GL2 only to see a replacement come out in a couple weeks.

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=71386

But as Chris and the rest of us often say, if you need a camera now then buy one now and start putting to use. Otherwise you'll end up waiting forever for the "next big thing." :-)

What kind of budget do you have for a camera? That might help people make some other suggestions. And when you think about budget, remember that the camera is only one part of a whole system that you'll need. Don't spend all your money on just the camera.
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Old July 15th, 2006, 05:17 PM   #5
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Thanks for the responses everyone. I will take a look at the Panasonic AG-DV30.

My budget for the camera itself is about $2,000, with probably about another $400-600 on lighting and sound equipment. I won't be buying the camera for another month if I do get it, so hopefully the GL2 replacement will come around before then.

Thanks again everyone.
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Old July 18th, 2006, 02:33 PM   #6
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Ryan, I picked up a Canon GL2, an upgrade from a potura 300. I LOVED the camera to death. I didn't know much about it when I got it, but i quickly learned every control and thing it had to offer. I'm also a college student, a film minor. Other than this, the XLS are very ncie, but more expensive.

Your school should have some cameras to rent, like mine, but it's nice to have your own.

I'm actually selling mine with a bunch of extras, because I'm more into digital photography now. Look in the classified.
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Old July 19th, 2006, 07:12 PM   #7
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Patrick, that is a great deal on the GL2. Unfortunately I'm not quite sure when I will be buying my GL2 yet, as I need to find a job that works with my school schedule. Thanks for the offer though.

Yeah, I'm sure my school will have some nicer ones, but like you said, it's nice to have something of my own that I can just pick up and use whenever.
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Old July 19th, 2006, 11:22 PM   #8
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I have a GL1 and it has been a huge help in my film classes, mostly because my "partners" ran off with the $200 JVC "Best Buy special" camera given to us to do their projects and not mine, but yeah, the results have been great.

If there were a camera that you should start with at the bare minimum, it would be the DVX100A or B. The GL2 is fine, but as a filmmaker I think you could do better these days.
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Old July 20th, 2006, 07:39 AM   #9
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Ryan,

I went from the GL-1 to the GL-2 and now the DVC30. I am very happy with the DVC30 mainly due to its ruggedness and reliability.

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Last edited by Mark Williams; July 20th, 2006 at 08:44 AM.
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Old July 20th, 2006, 10:37 AM   #10
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Im 15 and i use my Gl2 nearly every week. I Love it. Perfect for a film student. i no alot of students in film schools and they all use XM/GL 2 or 1. (after me showing them footage of the Xm2 in action and they loved it.)
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Old July 20th, 2006, 11:06 AM   #11
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Thanks for the advice.

The DVX100 looks really nice, and the 24p makes it better. I'm going to have to try to come up with another thousand for that one.

At my price point though, I'm torn between the GL2 and the DVC30. I looked around and I can get a DVC30 with an XLR adapter for the same price as a GL2. Are there any significant differences between the GL2 and the DVC30?
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Old July 20th, 2006, 11:14 AM   #12
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I am also a film student looking to buy a camera. I eally think I am going to go with the GL2. The think that made me not like the AG-DVC30 is that it only shoots in 60i vs. the GL2's 30p, even though it isn't 24p, it's still really important to me to be able to shoot whole frames. I know that you should aviod mixing brands of DV cassettes to help prevent the "eject cassette error" but what tape do you suggest? Are there any that work well with the GL2? Any that you should aviod? I already tryed searching but couldn't find anything about it.
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Old July 20th, 2006, 11:26 AM   #13
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Well, the GL2 doesn't shoot true 30p, it shoots in "Frame Mode", which is 30p-ish. If Frame Mode looks good to you, then go for it, that's why I got my GL1 in the first place. But I've come to learn that 60i on the GL1 isn't too bad either, plus you save resolution by filming in 60i with the GL cameras.
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Old July 20th, 2006, 12:28 PM   #14
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Ryan,

There are lots of posts here on the DVC30 vs. GL-2. Just try a search. For me the major selling points for the DVC30 was its rugged metal construction vs. plastic, its variable zoom is really smooth from a crawl to rapid, its compact size/weight made my backpacking and hiking trips more bearable. As far as durability I have over 150 hours on my DVC30 and no problems. With the GL-1 and GL-2 I had broken plastic parts and record head alignment problems. But I must say I always liked the image quality of both GLs.
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Old July 20th, 2006, 07:39 PM   #15
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I'll go ahead and do that search, I didn't think of that.

Is there somewhere on here where I can see some footage shot with the GL2 and the DVC30?
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