A1 & HV20 Spot the Difference at DVinfo.net

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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 May 2nd, 2007, 02:52 PM   #1
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A1 & HV20 Spot the Difference

Short clip in .m2t format showing footage from the HV20 & A1 can you spot which is which?

A1 shot with one of the presets downloaded from DvInfo.
HV20 colour corrected in FCP (3 Way) to match A1.

http://www.millerandmiller.co.uk/XHA1-HV20

25p PAL
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Old May 2nd, 2007, 03:01 PM   #2
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HV20 then A1. CA of the HV20 lens gives it away. Or maybe I'm completely wrong! :-)
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Old May 2nd, 2007, 03:05 PM   #3
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Hi Ian, 50/50 guess but alas wrong.

It's the A1 first then the HV20.

The A1 has more chromatic abbreviation with it wider lens. The tiny giveaway is the catch light, the star of light on the HV20 has four stars and the A1 has six.

James :-)
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Old May 2nd, 2007, 03:11 PM   #4
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Wow, I like the HV20 shot better! Good thing I have one!
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Old May 2nd, 2007, 03:30 PM   #5
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so which preset did you use on the A1?
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Old May 2nd, 2007, 03:35 PM   #6
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This one:

http://www.millerandmiller.co.uk/XHA1-HV20/PRESET.zip

I can't remember what it's called, sorry.
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Old May 2nd, 2007, 06:29 PM   #7
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James, excellent job of matching them up. Man...I would have made the same guess as the other Ian... These cams were made for each other. It's a wider view also.

The HV20 is like the little engine that could...
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Old May 4th, 2007, 08:14 PM   #8
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The highlight blow-out gave it away for me - I found the same thing when moving from Sony 1CCD to VX2000E - I purposely didn't read the thread until viewing.

Damn they're close! Real quandary - this example makes it very hard for me to justify a A1. I just can't get past how good hv20 is & feel an A1 would be wasted because for run & gun I may never master the intricate set-up in the A1 menus. (My alternative is stick with pd-170P with its century optics 16:9 and grab the great but plastic hv20.
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Old May 4th, 2007, 08:35 PM   #9
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Hey Mark:

The plastic issue is highly overstated. I have Sony FX1, VX2000, and HV20, and feel it is well worth it given price v. performance. For an inexpensive intro to 24p, it is the way to go. I am learning a lot of do's and don'ts in 24p, and its cheap enough "tuition" in that course :) As I am finding out, 24p requires a different shooting approach, and I believe it is not a run and gun mode.... Spend $1k to find out intead of $4K
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Old May 4th, 2007, 11:44 PM   #10
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(Chris I have a similar collection: XHA1, HV20, and VX2000)

Mark, the HV20 is a great camera no matter what direction you go -- it can be a primary camera for small stuff or a legitimate B-roll 2nd camera for the XHA1

plus it can be carried in a fanny pack when you travel
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Old May 4th, 2007, 11:45 PM   #11
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that's a good point, too. one of the few ways in which the A1 is actually easier to handle than the HV20 is the addition of 30F mode, which canon left off the HV20. it handles motion a lot better than 24F/P. in almost every other way, though, the A1 has a much steeper learning curve to get really good with it.
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Old May 5th, 2007, 04:02 AM   #12
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whew! what an indecisive week...I am so impressed with the HV20 footage and camera controls, this colour matched sample sealed it for me. I'm surpised by the ability of the HV20 to retain shadow detail. I'm going to order a HV20.

I'm going to keep my PD170P for weekend event work, the problem was with a draw of NP-F960 batts I was going to be up for investment in A1 batts and thus carefully considered a Sony HVRV1P - low-light performance a concern though...fact is I really rely on the ole' Sony pushing to 12db or using HVL 10/20w light, the latter will be interesting see how it helps the HV20 indoors for personal use.
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Old May 5th, 2007, 10:50 AM   #13
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Having had & sold my A1 and now having the HV-20 for a little while there are some things I do miss and others I do not.

I do miss:
1) The longer lens of the A1, I think it was wider as well. I do miss it though.

2) 30P I really miss 30P for kiteboarding shoots intended for the internet/computer viewing

3) true manual controls

4) the more serious look of the camera


I don't miss:

1) The learning curve
2) The serious look of the camera (draws attention)

the HV-20 has been great, it is cheap, unobtrusive, there are few options so it is more shoot and go because that is the extent of it. I which you had a little more control of the gain and it was easier to deal with the codec for capture. I hope these issues are dealt with through firmware updates.

What is nice is it is an easy camera to play with and you don't feel like you are wasting your time by capturing images that will be to low of a quality to use down the road.
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HV-20, and vacillating between another A1 or the HVX-200
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Old May 11th, 2007, 01:15 PM   #14
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Wow, look at the difference there! Especially the detail in the grass. Yeah, I'm so glad I couldn't afford the A1 and ended up getting the HV20. Nice one.
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Old May 11th, 2007, 02:44 PM   #15
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i really like the little hv20, especially after many people's hard work figuring the inner workings of this little cam out and giving us a true manual camera. kudos. if the a1 was considered an enormous bang for the buck when it was still four grand just a few months ago, i guess that puts the hv20 in a whole other league price/performance than anything else out there. the hv20 kicks out a beautiful picture, and when the a1 is set up to match, it really is hard to tell the difference.

and to think i bought the hv20 primarily as a capture deck ;)

that said, i don't think the a1 has THAT steep a learning curve. and with it's true manual controls, infinitely tweakable image, and all the possible looks achieved with the a1, it's worth the extra cash IMHO. but really, a beautiful pair of cams as i see it.
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