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Canon Optura Junior Watchdog
High-end affordable consumer 1-CCD camcorders. PAL users invited!


 
 
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Old December 31st, 2003, 12:02 AM   #46
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When you are talking, your voice resonates inside you (kind of) and you hear it differently than the person you are talking to. If you take a recording of yourself and add reverb, it sounds more like you from *your perspective*. If the mic sounds like you then it doesn't necessarily mean that the mic is good. I'm just skeptical that's all. Camcorder mics tend to suck, so I'm extra skeptical.

The speakers issue: Listening speakers may not have flat frequency response and may be doing things to your sound (making it sound "better"), but that doesn't necessarily mean your mic is good. Speakers that expensive should have good dynamic range though, so you should be able to pick up motor noise...? For more accurate measurement of how good the mic is, you'd want monitor headphones like the MDR-7506 ($150ish?) or monitor speakers like Genelecs ($5k?). Your speakers seem to be too overpriced to be Genelecs (which AFAIK are the ultimate monitoring speakers, and the most expensive)??? Again I'm just being skeptical here, not trying to start some sort of pissing contest.

By the way, what kind of mic is the Schriber 568? Never heard of it.
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Old December 31st, 2003, 12:06 AM   #47
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http://www.nrgresearch.com/sa568.htm

My speakers are Meridian DSP6000s http://www.meridian-audio.com/p_d6k.htm
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Old December 31st, 2003, 09:12 AM   #48
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Re: Re: An Owner's Initial Experience

Quote:
The Nightmode is great! How else can you get well lit video without that kind of slow exposure? I mean, it allows you to shoot in low light. Not gimicky at all. In fact, this camera has tons of gimicks, but that is not one of them. The other digital effects are stupid and muddy up the UI.
Well, I'm glad you find this mode more useful than I do. Perhaps I'll revisit it and give it a more extensive test.

Under what sort of night shootings have you found the Nightmode to be most effective?

Quote:
The camera cannot shoot mpeg4 in 16:9 for some reason.
You also can't shoot any stills in 16:9 mode while videotaping.

Quote:
How is the wide adaptor? Does it allow full zoom?
My wide adaptor and video flash light have not arrived yet to my disappointment, so I can't give you first-hand report on either of them. Also, I'm definitely going to order the ext. mic DM-50.

Myong
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Old December 31st, 2003, 10:46 AM   #49
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Well actually it was one way to get a normal exposure indoors last night when I first tried the camcorder. True, you can also go into TV and put in 1/15 or something -- but the whole point of those quick access modes is to quickly get some working set of settings for a given situation.

So now my issue is I don't like the aliasing I get in 16:9 mode. I have not tried 4:3 yet but I will today. But I have not been blown away by 16:9 although I don't have a Sony 330, 70, 80, or other camera here to compare it to.
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Old December 31st, 2003, 11:45 AM   #50
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When I tried the Night mode, it wasn't in an indoor environment. It was actually taken outdoors at night. Now you got me curious to try this mode indoors to see if I could get better results with this mode in comparison to TV tweaking.

I also do not have the first-hand experience with the Sony or Pana counterparts, but from all the user comments I've read, Xi's 16:9 feature suppose to produce better results. Comparing with other camcorders in the same price category, I wouldn't be disappointed with the Xi.
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Old December 31st, 2003, 03:02 PM   #51
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I did my first shooting and I got a lot of wind or handling noise. I am confused by it because it seemed perfectly calm, etc.

I am happy to say that the camera looks about as good in 16:9 as 4:3, so I can keep it in 16:9.

At 1/30 of a second shutter the image gets blocky, which must have to do with the way the CCD integrates over time. 1/60 is the single best shutter speed.

My current feeling on the camera is that it has more sharpening than I would like which leads to video noise. I am just assuming they are doing sharpening, if they are they are making the camera much less like a pro camera. I wish there was a way to reduce this. I also think I see a CCD pattern in the image which is most noticable on pans over light scenes.

I also realised that lower noise is a benefit of a 3-CCD camera since the noise is averaged out.

I would love to have an hour with a 953 and Sony 330 because I would instantly know much more than I do now.
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Old December 31st, 2003, 04:04 PM   #52
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Try shooting with the Windshield on and see if it makes a substantial difference reducing the wind noise.

Would love to hear of your comparison when you do get a chance to try other brand camcorders.
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Old December 31st, 2003, 04:08 PM   #53
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You mean the windshield button? I am afraid to use it. How can such a feature work without physical foam? Since they did not explain it, I am afraid of what it does.
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Old December 31st, 2003, 06:26 PM   #54
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Also note that digital zoom does not work when Night Mode is on. This leads me to believe that Night Mode does 'binning' which means combining pixels into larger, more sensitive ones. This is done on CCD imagers for astronomy. In other words, a real feature. See http://www.ccddirect.com/online-store/scstore/binning.html
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Old December 31st, 2003, 06:57 PM   #55
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Is there a way to keep it from saying my time zone when it turns on? My time zone is N.Y. It turns out I don't much like NY, and I don't like seeing it each time I turn the camera on.
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Old January 1st, 2004, 05:18 PM   #56
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Ok, my friend gave me a tape shot on his 953. I compared it to the Xi on my 36 inch 16:9 tube HDTV. I compared indoor and outdoor footage. The Xi was sharper and had more contrast (not sure if the extra contrast is from a better lens or from the CCD and/or digital processing). The Panasonic had a little less noise visible in the shadows. It was hard to compare color, but I did not get the feeling that the Xi had worse color.

But I feel good now, because I was dissapointed in the Xi at first because I am so used to seeing only high end stuff (the last camera I used was a Panasonic HDC27P (720p).

But watching the Xi at 16:9 on my set blew away watching the 953 at 4:3 on my set. But my general feeling was that the Xi was equal or better either in 4:3 or 16:9 (well certainly better at 16:9).
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Old January 5th, 2004, 10:38 AM   #57
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Re: Re: An Owner's Initial Experience

Quote:
The Nightmode is great! How else can you get well lit video without that kind of slow exposure? I mean, it allows you to shoot in low light. Not gimicky at all. In fact, this camera has tons of gimicks, but that is not one of them. The other digital effects are stupid and muddy up the UI.
Well, I finally had a chance to revisit the Night mode and tested it in indoor low light setting. While it did light up a lot more -- in comparison to any manual adjustments -- I found it rather useless since it created so much streaking with slightest movements. Again, this feature could be useful for shooting scenes with absolutely no movements, or for creating special effects.

I also got to try the Xi's various Digital Effects, and I wouldn't charcterize them as "gimmicky" at all. I found so many features that were quite useful. The most useful of them all was Black and White for both stills and taping. I found that the B&W still shots worked the best with human objects, as it rendered such smooth and dreamy skin tones. I also tried panoramic shots in B&W with great results.

I also had a lot of fun taping in "Art," "Box," "Ball" and other such digital effects.
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