XF305 Test Footage - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

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Canon XF Series HD Camcorders
Canon XF305, XF205 and XF105 (with SDI), Canon XF300, XF200 and XF100 (without SDI).


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Old August 7th, 2010, 10:14 AM   #16
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Hi Glen,

The Waterfire footage was shot with several different gain settings because testing the camera was the only reason I was even there. So you can't really come to any conclusions without knowing what the settings were for each individual shot. The clips range from -3db to +6db, but the majority are +6db.
The footage looks okay, but not as good as other cameras I have tested previously at this same event.

With other cameras, such as the EX1 or F800, not only was I was able to shoot at -3db most of the time, there also seemed to be a lot more dynamic range between the fire and the people in the background. If I exposed to keep the flames from looking too blown out with the XF305, then the backgorund almost disappeard. With the EX1 I could have good background detail and have the flames looking good at the same time.

The good news is that the XF305 looks pretty good with the gain boosted, so maybe it's poor light sensitivity it's not a big deal. But I still stand by my contention that at 0db, the XF305 is at least 1 to 1.5 stops slower than an EX1.

On the other hand, in bright sun with harsh shadows, I'd give the edge to the XF305. In my opinion, that camera really looks great (better than any of the XDCAMS) in that type of environment.
I agree with you Doug when I tested the XF300 at NAB. I could see that it was a least 1 to 1.5 stops slower than the EX1. For me personally the XF300 would have to be better than the EX1 in low light for me to justify buying the XF300 and selling my EX1 and EX3. I do a lot of shooting in poorly lit consert halls and sometimes video lighting is not allowed. I still may pick one up if Canon drops the price.I have yet to shoot with the production model. I going to call my dealer and see if he can lone me a demo unit.
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Old August 7th, 2010, 03:42 PM   #17
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XF 305 slow motion test

This was a simple slow motion test but I was happy with it...filmed @50fps and conformed to 25fps

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Old August 7th, 2010, 06:58 PM   #18
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Glen, I wouldn't get too excited about the waveform monitor and vectorscope. :-)
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Old August 7th, 2010, 09:20 PM   #19
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Glen, I wouldn't get too excited about the waveform monitor and vectorscope. :-)
?

Okay. I guess the rest of the camera is pretty good.
Doug, between the two, if you had to choose one do-all camera, would it be the XF305 or the EX3?
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Old August 7th, 2010, 09:43 PM   #20
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Actually, Glen, IMO the waveform monitor is fantastic - easy to read, reliable & detailed. It's really made nailing exposure simpler and more consistent on the shoots I've used it on, especially in harsh outdoor lighting conditions. I used the camera on an Animal Planet pilot two weeks ago - going in and out from a pasture to a stable, in partly cloudy conditions - and the waveform saved my exposures over and over.
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Old August 7th, 2010, 10:38 PM   #21
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The video I've seen of the waveform, etc. looks nice. I know I wouldn't mind having that feature on my camera.

Brian, I think I asked you on another forum, but...

If you're shooting an Animal Planet pilot with the XF, does this mean it's been cleared for full acquisition by Discovery HD? They own AP. We know BBC approved the camera, and they have pretty tough standards.
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Old August 8th, 2010, 05:53 AM   #22
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Actually, Glen, IMO the waveform monitor is fantastic - easy to read, reliable & detailed.
Brian,

That's sure not the way I would describe it. It's tiny, it has no markings, and is pretty crude in it's accuracy compared to a real WFM. I'm curious to know why you think the waveform on the XF305 is better to use than zebra? The zebra tells me exactly what I need to know about my exposure faster and easier -- and it doesn't eliminate the audio meters like the WFM does.

Also, how would you use the vectorscope in a real-world situation?
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Old August 8th, 2010, 09:35 AM   #23
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There's no zebra on the camera?

And Doug, you're artfully dodging my question. ;-)
You have both cameras, the EX3 and the XF305. Which would you recommend as a do-all camera? Because I sure can't afford both.
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Old August 8th, 2010, 10:26 AM   #24
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Yes, there's a zebra on the camera. Two zebras in fact, and they can both be customized.
That's why I'm wondering why anyone would use the WFM, instead. I totally understand the benefits of using a real external WFM, but the built-in WFM and vectorscope of the XF305 fall woefully short of being anything I would choose to use. But, with that said, I am open to hear the arguments for using it. Maybe I have overlooked something.

Glen, there are too many variables for me to be able to recommend the right camera for someone else. Each model has it's pros and cons. I'm not even going to say which camera I personally prefer because that would require me to spend all kinds of time explaining the reasons why.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again, you won't go wrong with either camera. A few years ago I was shooting an inteview with Bill Warner, founder of Avid, for a CNN feature story and he said something that has stuck with me: "If the choices are so similar that you can't decide, then it doesn't matter which one you choose". It's a simple thought, yet very true.
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Old August 12th, 2010, 06:41 PM   #25
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Doug,

How did you shoot the 2nd clip? It looks like you were in motion going the opposite direction.
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Old August 12th, 2010, 08:36 PM   #26
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Brian,

That's sure not the way I would describe it. It's tiny, it has no markings, and is pretty crude in it's accuracy compared to a real WFM. I'm curious to know why you think the waveform on the XF305 is better to use than zebra? The zebra tells me exactly what I need to know about my exposure faster and easier -- and it doesn't eliminate the audio meters like the WFM does.

Also, how would you use the vectorscope in a real-world situation?
I have yet to use the vectorscope in a real-world situation. The only application I can see is if I'm using a highly saturated custom preset and want to make sure my colors aren't going off the charts when shooting a particular scene.

I don't know where you got the idea that I said the WFM was better than zebras because I've never claimed that. But it is an excellent tool and I often use it in conjunction with zebras, or on it's own. It's great for checking exposure across my frame once I get a scene lit - I can tell in an instant how much information I'm getting in my shadows & highlights, & also where and if it's crushing or blowing out or retaining some detail. I've found it to be very accurate for what information it gives. Sure, compared to a dedicated vectorscope it's not ideal, but to be able to call it up on my LCD with the push of a button is really nice.

On my last shoot, where it really benefited me, was when I was going in & out from direct sun to very dark wood stables. I had both zebras on, as well, one set for highlight clipping & the other for skin tone - however, in the stable, there were no highlights & no people - only animals. Before my eyes could adjust to the darker environment, I was able to use to the WFM to tell me how much the camera was reading in the shadows of the stable, and my exposures going from location to location were much more consistent than they probably would have been without it.

Hey, maybe the WFM doesn't work for you - you're certainly not stuck with it. Personally I'd rather have even a crude WFM over none at all - although I think it's a good step above crude. It works great for me, and gives me an extra bit of confidence that I'm getting the exposure I want when I don't have a second chance. I've found it to be one of my favorite features of the XF cams.

Last edited by Brian Woods; August 12th, 2010 at 09:36 PM.
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Old August 13th, 2010, 06:03 AM   #27
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Hey Brian, thanks for the detailed explanation of how you use the WFM. I've played around with it a ittle more since my previous post, and my opinion hasn't changed. I guess, like many features on a pro camcorder, some people are going to love it and others will have no use for it. Looks like we represent both ends of the spectrum. Nevertheless, it is interesting to hear how you use it and you make a good case for it. Thanks.
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Old August 13th, 2010, 06:08 AM   #28
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Doug,
How did you shoot the 2nd clip? It looks like you were in motion going the opposite direction.
That was just a hand-held shot from the deck of a ferry.
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Old August 13th, 2010, 06:49 AM   #29
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Man, I wish I could try out one of these cameras. Unfortunately, my local video dealer won't carry Canons. He says they're unreliable, that they don't sell enough to keep them in stock, or something. So, I'm getting all my info from you guys.
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Old August 13th, 2010, 10:24 AM   #30
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Glen, I'm going to be shooting in St Augustine at the end of October. If you still haven't gotten your hands on one by then, I'd be happy to meet you with my XF300.
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