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Canon VIXIA Series AVCHD and HDV Camcorders
For VIXIA / LEGRIA Series (HF G, HF S, HF and HV) consumer camcorders.


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Old August 21st, 2008, 02:50 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Boyko View Post
Low light differences between the HV20/30 and the XH-A1 are marginal? If that's the case, I might as well just get the Beachtek and stick with the HV20.
I have an XH-A1 and an HV30, I'd say that the A1 offers a far better low-light image, primarily because you have so many custom options for reducing grain, altering the gamma etc. etc. so there is actually a huge difference between the two.

However, there is also a huge difference in the price, and that sort of functionality is why you spend 2000 more to get the A1 :)

HV30 is a bit grainy in very low light (i.e. at night under dim table lamps) but then all consumer camcorders are bad under low-light. The second you have to add gain to your image you are out of luck.

If you have to do a lot of low-light shooting, and your budget won't stretch to an XH-A1, then you would probably do well to get yourself a secondhand prosumer DV camera, like the PD150 or similar, these rigs will be going for about the same price as a new HV30 these days, and you will get excellent low-light performance albiet at SD resolutions.
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Old August 21st, 2008, 03:02 AM   #17
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'albiet at SD resolutions' and at 4:3 I might add John.

'The only thing i dont like is the lack of manual controls.' said David. Well, the HV30 does have lots and lots of manual controls (though not over the internal NDs), so I think David means he doesn't like the way he's asked to access them. Quite a different thing.

tom.
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Old August 25th, 2008, 02:28 PM   #18
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My experience operating an HV30 has been relatively positive. True, it gets very grainy in low light. However, you can't realistically compare an HV30 to something like an A1. I'm using it as a second camera to my Sony HVR-V1u and it's done a decent job so far. The only thing I've noticed that I really don't care for is that my HV30 casts a green hue to everything. I had it out with the V1 for a project just this past weekend, and even after white-balancing both cameras side by side at the same time, the HV30 footage has a noticeable green hue. It takes quite a bit of color correction to get it to match up with the V1, but then again, I was expecting that. Aside from that, its small, lightweight, easy to use, and delivers a reasonably satisfactory image for what you're paying. I'd recommend it.
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Old August 25th, 2008, 08:56 PM   #19
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How about reducing the grain/noise with software. That usually softens images, but...

Any experiences with the topic of cleaning up shots?
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Old August 25th, 2008, 11:43 PM   #20
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I don't have much experience with dedicated noise reduction software, but I've had a few challenging projects that involved fixing up some footage well enough to splice it in with higher quality material. You'll have to fiddle with brightness and contrast along with whatever color correction tools you have in your NLE of choice. Unfortunately, depending on how much grain is in the picture, you might not be able to completely do away with it. There's that saying of "garbage in, garbage out" that holds a bit of truth in these situations as well. So, if you can avoid shooting with your gain turned up, its worth it.
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Old August 26th, 2008, 05:46 AM   #21
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You can control the gain applied by the HV-30. Setting all the exposure properties manually is kind of PITA, but it can be done.

Also, you can use Spotlight Mode, which will never add gain. However, you are limited to auto white balance only.
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Old August 29th, 2008, 04:53 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean James View Post
How about reducing the grain/noise with software. That usually softens images, but...

Any experiences with the topic of cleaning up shots?
Yes, I have a plug in that works really well to eliminate noise - i use it for old digital8 footage - Render time shoots up though -

-i dont use it for hdv as i have realised that if i shoot in such low light that grain appears i am being stupid....GET SOME DARN LIGHTS SHERIF I SAYS TO ME-SELF... in a hobbit accent...

- I read the post about using it in low light on holiday - i mean c'mon - do you mean videoing the lads at the nightclub at 2am drinking, or the kids in bed with the lights turned off - or paris sky at night -ha, ha - why are we debating this...
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Old August 30th, 2008, 02:19 AM   #23
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Thanks guys.

Does any one have any experience with comparing the Sony SR-12 with the HV-30 ? I know the Sony is an HDD / AVCHD format and I am a bit skeptical of AVCHD, but maybe now, this is unwarranted.

RC.
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Old August 30th, 2008, 08:04 AM   #24
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[QUOTE=Sherif Choudhry;926766]Yes, I have a plug in that works really well to eliminate noise - i use it for old digital8 footage - Render time shoots up though -

Can you please enlighten me on this plug in. Looks interesting Sherif.

RC.
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