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


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Old December 24th, 2006, 06:17 AM   #1
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What camera to buy?

Hi everyone
I am relativley new to video (a couple of years). but i am looking for a new camera - curently i use a panasonic NVGS 70, but I am looking for somthing with better peformance and more control. Is the XM2 (PAL GL2) a camera worth going for or should i be looking at somthing else? (DVX 100 perhaps?)
I was atracted to the XM2 because of its large stabilised zoom (i often film aircraft which somtimes require more reach than a standard 10x zoom) but is it worth it for that feture or am i wasting my time?
any thoughts would be great.

Matt
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Old December 24th, 2006, 07:15 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Austin
I was atracted to the XM2 because of its large stabilised zoom (i often film aircraft which somtimes require more reach than a standard 10x zoom . . . .
I own 2 XM2s. What is a Stabilized Zoom? Any camera is only as stable as the platform it is sitting on. I have tripods


Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Austin
. . . or am i wasting my time?
Well, if you think that the XM2 is going to stabilize when you are zoomed in - forget it. In this respect it will perform as any other camera does. If anything and because OF the 20x - which IS amazing - the error is going to be greater. I would think that for aircraft work a really good fluid head tripod used in conjunction with a 7" external LCD monitor would be choice.

Now, if anybody wants to counter me, please do. I would really like to know how I can make my XM2 stabilize WITHOUT the use of tripods and the like?

Anyway, Matt, why do/did you think that the XM2 has this ability? I'd like to know?

G
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Old December 24th, 2006, 07:36 AM   #3
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hi

sorry i was being vague (and showing my ignorance at the same time) when i was refering to "stabilised zoom" i was meaning of the fact that it has a large zoom and the lens is optically stablised. I do relise that a tripod is a vital elemnt to a stable shot. Besides Aircraft, i also am interested in making short films ( i plan to study film and television at uni the year after next). How well does the xm2 perform in this type of apllication? i guess in short, would this be a camera that would be suited to what im after? or should i be looking at another camera?

thanks g for your reply erlier

Matt
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Old December 24th, 2006, 09:15 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Austin
. . and the lens is optically stablised.
What does "optically stabilised" mean?

In any event do a search hereabouts for clips to download. There SHOULD be plenty.

I've been making a living out of this camera for 3 years - if that is anything to go by. One piece got a central London organisation shortlisted in a National Competition which they went on to win! - I have many small corpo jobs with it.

Others can chime in with their own experiences.
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Old December 24th, 2006, 09:45 AM   #5
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Graham -- I suspect that Matt is referring to the camera's Optical Image Stabilizer . . .

Personally, I have found that feature to be useful in situations where I needed to grab a full zoom shot and didn't have a tripod handy. It doesn't eliminate image shake, but it helps to minimize it. And, I agree that the 20x zoom is fantastic. It was the main reason why I chose the GL2 over other cameras.
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Old December 24th, 2006, 09:50 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graham Bernard
What does "optically stabilised" mean?
The GL2 (XM2) and just about every high quality 3CCD camcorder has Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) which can be turned on and off. Sensors in the camera detect movement and try to compensate for it by physically moving the optical elements. I believe Canon pioneered this technology and actually licenses it to Sony for use in their cameras (Sony calls it "Optical Super Steadyshot").

But I'm sure you already knew that, so it's probably just a question of semantics!
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Old December 24th, 2006, 11:58 AM   #7
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I was considering that, but also some other factor about the lens having some type of coating; an internal refractive quality I didn't know about or the glass was manufactured in some "clever" Canon way.

The one thing I've picked up, from meandering these boards is, NOT to assume - anything.

Now, if this IS the case, and Matt IS speaking about the Optical Image Stabilization - OIS - then, IMHO, it wont cut it for what Matt wants. If he uses it in a car, which is bumping about, you have a chance for this function to kinda work. Otherwise, my own experience of this OIS, it is less than adequate. IMHO it has lulled me into a false sense of security, when going handheld and I haven't liked it all. But that's my own experience. OR I have a greater need to have real stable shots.

As to the semantics, yes, guilty. But once we have arrived here then maybe Matt can get a clearer view on it all.

Now, over to those who like the OIS - I don't. I certainly would NOT rely on it for taking the wobble and jerk out of videoing aircraft. However, I would NOT decide on the XM2's ability to remove wobble 'cos of WHAT I say about the OIS. Getting beyond the OIS, this camera has truly stretched me. It has provided me with the opportunity to learn and some. I would NOT be making a buying decision to buy this camera 'cos of the IOS. I WOULD be buying this camera 'cos its audio monitoring - 3 meters? - are great. It has dial in apertures. It has great glass. The WIDESCREEN option, I feel is quite, MORE than acceptable for a 1/4 4:3 chip array and the White Balance presets are fabo.

DO NOT base your buying decision on its IOS. If you WANT a camera WITH some budget headroom - its a Canon-refurbed XM2. Do these refurbs come with a warranty too?

Just how much does the DVX 100 cost?

Now, the easy thing for me to say would be to go buy a Canon HA1!
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Old December 24th, 2006, 03:16 PM   #8
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hi evry1 thanxs for your relpys and yeah i was refering to the image stabiliser (me being vague again) so sorry bout that, but thanks for your replys. another reason why i was intitally atracted to the xm2 was the price aprox $2500 (AUD). is ther any other cameras around that price range worth looking at?
once again thanks for your replys

matt
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Old December 28th, 2006, 10:16 PM   #9
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Matt,

I have a couple sony camcorders and a couple canon camcorders, one of which is a gl2, equivalent to xm2.

they all have optical stabalization. In all the cameras the ois does so little in my book I do not tend to use it anyway.

If you are using a tripod I learned that you have to have the ois off or it will effect the video making it look shaky like (poor discription).

If I am out filming on the hoof, so to speak, I leave it on as it can't hurt already shakey footage.

I think it would be useful to make your own steady cam and learn to use it to help steady.

My wife is a pilot and I have done some filming of moving planes and I used a tripod, on 4 inch foam in the bed of a pickup and also steadied by hand as much as possible. doing it while moving is a jig in itself. You might tie yourself in or make a rope seat.

the xm2 is a great camera.
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Old December 29th, 2006, 06:41 AM   #10
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thankyou

hi evry1
thanks for the replys but after some consideration and much thought, iv decided to keep on saving and eventually go for an XL2. once again thankyou to all of you for your imput.

Matt
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