Got my HV20 today 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 9th, 2007, 05:23 PM   #1
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Got my HV20 today

Man, this thing is amazing! For $1000.00 I can't believe the image on this tiny machine, and this is coming from a former DVX100A owner! Of course, it's not great in low light, but that's to be expected. You can't have it all. Truly a great purchase.
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Old May 9th, 2007, 05:53 PM   #2
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Congratulations and welcome to the owner's club!

I think the HV-20 is a turning point--a defining moment for what kinds of HD cameras and features that are offered in the future for the consumer.

It only gets better from here![I hope!]
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Old May 9th, 2007, 08:39 PM   #3
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I sold my DVX100 last week. Owned it for 4 years. Two weeks with the HV20 was enough for me to let it go.
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Old May 9th, 2007, 08:52 PM   #4
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You guys are making me feel a lot better about my HV20.
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Old May 9th, 2007, 10:14 PM   #5
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When you say low light isn't great, in comparison to? Under what conditions? indoors, outdoors, evening lights or fireworks?

I am looking closely at this camera and would probably capture some evening events in modest lighting, some fireworks perhaps, so I am just trying to determine whether its OK, but could be better or do some events still look pretty good? Thanks for any feedback...
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Old May 9th, 2007, 10:17 PM   #6
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Try low light with setting in 24p at 1/48, and you will see a bit better low light performance than in 60i.
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Old May 10th, 2007, 08:48 AM   #7
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My experiences with low light and this camera have been extremely good. Better than the 3ccd sony I have been using.
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Old May 10th, 2007, 09:43 AM   #8
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Stefan... thanks for the info, If there are other opinions of low light operation, the more opinion's the better, one could analyze this to death I guess, but if I can going to invest nearly a $1000 for a camera, which I know is a 2nd generation, hoping to get least get a feeling that I can expect reasonable results under most situations.

Some of the sample video posted in some threads under what seem to be low light conditions in some cases, do look pretty good.. but getting a wider range of opinion, or if there are other sample video's that show the camera's capabilities in low light, that would be helpful...
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Old May 10th, 2007, 11:48 AM   #9
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Norm -
Had a bit of time with the HV20 (had to return for a bad card slot, replacement will be here today). I'd say the low light in my testing was pretty darn good. I didn't get as much time to tweak with settings as I'd have liked, but am looking forward to doing that today and tomorrow before doing some live shooting.

I bought the HV20 for the low light capability, and I've been reasonably impressed - it seemed to be able to maintain a bit more color than I'm used to as the lights went down, and was able to "see" better than I could for the most part - you're going to get some grainyness in low light, but that's to be expected, and it still probably at least as usable as SD video under comparable conditions...

The tests I did with both the little on camera LED light (too blue, and hot spot, at least up close, but perhaps there's a "sweet spot" for distance from the camera), and with my diffused Sony 20DMA at both 10 and 20W indicated that this camera managed to use whatever light WAS available a bit more efficiently than I've come to expect with HD cams in general.

I definitely wouldn't qualify the low light performance as "bad" or "poor", I'd give it very good marks out of the box, and I suspect once one learns the controls, you'd be able to shoot under most conditions - perhaps with some external light when needed... but unless you're shooting infrared/nightshot, you have to have SOME light, right?

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Old May 10th, 2007, 12:10 PM   #10
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24p cinema mode works wonders, it surprises me out of this little thing. I also find it useful to easily bump up the exposure to get more light when I need it, as long as the shots are steady. With this mode and some changes to the custom settings, I have what I consider very decent low light capability and a sharp image with very little noise, if any. Also be sure to experiment with color balance settings as they've had more of an impact than I realized they would. I was weary after watching low light examples before buying mine, and I watched them all; but after buying mine, none of what I saw matters. What this camera really shines at is filming lights at night, such as city lights and fireworks. The colors and reflections appear so natural when you're watching it, it's like you're there again. JUST hold it steady. EDIT: It's also noteworthy that I've noticed "at times" at dusk, if I'm careful I can see better shadows through the viewfinder than with my own eyes. There's really much variance to play with to get different results, with potential for disaster or nearly perfection.
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Old May 10th, 2007, 12:40 PM   #11
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Thanks for all the feedback... I guess I'll have to give it a try.. I am sure as I review, I'll have some more questions, though I am getting close to pulling the trigger on the HV20..
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Old May 10th, 2007, 12:57 PM   #12
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Confirming with everyone else that I'm surprised what a $950 camera can do. I shot about 2 minutes of footage outside my house, dropped the footage into final cut, used JES Deinterlacer to reverse pulldown, and ran it through magic bullet and came back about 40 minutes later to see the render finish.

Now to spend $800 on a Merlin (may drop down to a Glidecam), $100 on filters, $150 on a Røde Videomic, and $120 on a wide angle lens (aw man I forgot how expensive video can be.

Maybe I'll look into that DIY $14 stabilizer ;-)
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