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Old September 25th, 2003, 02:52 AM   #1
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A few nagging Optura Xi Q.s

Unsure where best to post this; threads on the Optura Xi, when searched, seem to come from all locations. The general discussion room seems neutral enough territory.
Well, I've read and read about this new cam. I'm fairly new to dv, and so uncertain about some of what i've read and how it pertains to me, but I have a few questions, some of which may already have been asked and answered, and still, for me, need clarification.
I own a PDX10 and am wondering if the XI's 16;9 would match it perfectly well.

Is the XI's low light comparable to the PDX10 (7 lux), or worse.
I understand the XI hasn't any LANC hookup, a crime. Is there an alternative, please oh please say yes?

Does anyone have experience with both of these cams? Would their footage be wildly incomparable?

You see, I'm looking for a less expensive and interesting alternative to getting a second PDX10. The trv950's 16;9 is not the same as the pdx10's, right?
Many thanks,
Shawn

ps This really is the best dv forum website around. Thanks to all who contribute. :-)
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Old September 25th, 2003, 03:36 AM   #2
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Shawn, Allan over on the MX Forum has played and tested the Xi. He's also read every Japanese Xi test. He's actually working on writing an extensive review, which he plans on posting here. Furthermore, the experts over at my local pro cam shop also praise this cam. Now for your questions.

The Xi's 16:9 would match the PDX10's 16:9 and then maybe then some. The color saturation is also amazingly rich (from what I got with Allan and the reviews he's read). The Xi's LUX would be better, but not as good as the GS100's lower LUX requirements. Don't know about the lanc. (I thought Canon brought it back with the Xi, but I could be wrong.) Experience? Yes, Allan does. The Xi footage will look warmer. Right, about the 950's 16:9 not being the same.
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Old September 25th, 2003, 11:23 AM   #3
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Fantastic, Frank. Thanks for the quick and concise response. Sounds like the LANC Q. is the only pin left standing. I eagerly await Allan's review. A very promising camcorder.
Regards,
Shawn
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Old September 25th, 2003, 12:47 PM   #4
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Shawn, you may always post your specific question/s over on the MX forum, because Allan visits there often, or you may e-mail him. He's a very helpful individual.
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Old September 25th, 2003, 04:48 PM   #5
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Thanks, Frank!
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Old January 9th, 2005, 02:17 PM   #6
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B&W on XI and Neutral Density Filter

Hi All,
First of all my best to all for this year.

I have two questions:

1. Who makes a decent and low priced neutral density filter for XI?

2. Can I shoot in Black and White using the XI, and if so, how do I do that?

Cheers,
Earon
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Old January 10th, 2005, 02:44 AM   #7
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I have no idea about the specific hardware you can put on your
camera or you can do (ie, B&W), but:

As you may or may not know you can also do color to B&W
conversion in post with your editing application or an effects
application. I usually prefer it that way because it leaves me
more options as to how the conversion to B&W is done or how
B&W I want it to be (fully, or 90% or 75% etc.).

Keep in mind that (to the best of my knowledge) there are no
native B&W DV camera's. So either the conversion is done in
camera or you do it in post.
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Old January 10th, 2005, 09:59 AM   #8
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<<<-- ...

As you may or may not know you can also do color to B&W
conversion in post with your editing application or an effects
application. I usually prefer it that way because it leaves me
more options as to how the conversion to B&W is done or how
B&W I want it to be (fully, or 90% or 75% etc.).

Keep in mind that (to the best of my knowledge) there are no
native B&W DV camera's. So either the conversion is done in
camera or you do it in post. -->>>

Thanks, Rob
I'll experiment with color curves in vegas 5. I haven't tried it yet for B&W, although I was able to turn some day shoots into night shoots in post using vegas. I'm quite new to all of this and am making ALL of the mistakes one can make as I learn.

I looked for possibilites to set the XI last night to rid the colors but couldn't find anything.

Earon
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Old January 10th, 2005, 04:45 PM   #9
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Re: black and white

scroll down to the bottom of this Tiffen page. You'll find some filters for black and white imaging.

Here's the write up on the filters.
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Old January 16th, 2005, 05:13 PM   #10
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Re: B&W on XI and Neutral Density Filter

<<<-- Originally posted by Earon Kavanagh : Hi All,
First of all my best to all for this year.



2. Can I shoot in Black and White using the XI, and if so, how do I do that?

Cheers,
Earon -->>>

Hi Earon:

I'm not sure on the Xi, but on the Optura 500 you can shoot either in sepia or B&W using digital effects.

Hope this helps,


R. Roman L.
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Old February 2nd, 2005, 11:56 AM   #11
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Accessories for xi?

Does anyone have any suggestions for nice add ons to the optura xi? (Filters, mics, lenses, etc...) Thanks.
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Old February 2nd, 2005, 12:20 PM   #12
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Check out this thread (click here)
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Old February 3rd, 2005, 10:11 AM   #13
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I thank you kindly sir.
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Old February 3rd, 2005, 03:52 PM   #14
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This might be a little off topic, but I have just found two of the best accessories ever to improve my Optura Xi shots, and they are free!

They are plugins for my editor;Vegas Video: link is below:

http://www.vasst.com/training/Vegasplugs.htm

The Auto-Leveler is amazing. It's like the auto-level control in PhotoShop. With one click, it auto balances all the colors and white and black levels. Also has some film-level settings in there too.

I got it last week, and couldn't believe the difference. Looks like I used a completely different camera. Gone are the grayish blacks, and the over-shifting to orange and green. It was like seeing through a clean window for the first time. I am going to put all my footage through this now. It's much more like the Sony color I prefer. Pure whites and blacks with lots of blue. I've spent hours trying to get the same effect with the color wheels, but couldn't get anything close to the results I got with one simple click here.

It also makes almost no difference in rendering times. The only drawback is that on certain shots where you are panning around, it occasionally gets lost and causes a color flickering effect. This was rare though. It's version one, so it would be cool if they put a "Hold" function in there that would freeze the values on a clip.

The other amazing freebe in that link is the "Smart-Smoother". Wow! I've seen expensive de-grainers that do the same thing. Basically, you set a threshold, and it removes the grain and chroma noise from within a shot, without effecting any of the detail. Amazing. Used tastefully, it makes the purest looking DV footage I've ever seen. It also does a good job at rescuing low-light footage. Also, your footage re-encodes much better to Mpeg 2 without adding more compression artifacts that way.

Anyone who is using Vegas out there with your Optura, try these and let me know what you think.

My basic accessories now that are must haves, are the Tiffen Soft/FX3, an ND, and a Polarizer lens filters, with the two plugins above , and Magic Bullet Editors. Oh my God....look at the difference. THAT footage came out of an $850, single chip camcorder?? :)

All I need now is something that rebuilds artifacts and gets rid of the DV blocking you get on reds, and some contrasting edges. It's not a fault of the camera - -it's from the DV codec itself. Anybody know of anything?
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Old February 4th, 2005, 12:49 AM   #15
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<<<-- Originally posted by Kevin Sturges : This might be a little off topic, but I have just found two of the best accessories ever to improve my Optura Xi shots, and they are free!

....
My basic accessories now that are must haves, are the Tiffen Soft/FX3, an ND, and a Polarizer lens filters, with the two plugins above , and Magic Bullet Editors. Oh my God....look at the difference. THAT footage came out of an $850, single chip camcorder?? :)

All I need now is something that rebuilds artifacts and gets rid of the DV blocking you get on reds, and some contrasting edges. It's not a fault of the camera - -it's from the DV codec itself. Anybody know of anything? -->>>

Kevin,
Can you post some footage?
Earon
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