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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 November 29th, 2011, 10:54 PM   #16
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

Pavel,
You explanation sounds reasonable to me but I am afraid it is pure speculation, right ?
Canon calls the ND filter "gradation filter" in their brochure and manual. There is no reference to an "electronic ND filter" (as you call it) anywhere.
Until someone actually takes their XF100 apart and looks at the parts I guess there is no way of telling how this thing actually works.
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Old November 30th, 2011, 07:09 AM   #17
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Doppelbauer View Post
After that experiment I was looking into my XM2 and there was a clear difference when I pressed the ND button.
You need to compare it to consumer cameras which don't have a wheel but move the ND silently in place when the camera hits F4. The XF100 is not the first to do this. Canon hv20 has them and Sony HC1. HC1 is the first consumer HDV camera and it works exactly like this. You cannot attenuate a signal beyound -6db easily as it will eat the dynamic range.

You guys are comparing physical wheels, they are different. They are usually used in semipro-cameras like the Z1 or XF300. ND's that slide into place quietly and usually at F4 are used by consumer cams and they went for those in the XF100. The lens assembly is the same as in HF G10 anyway.
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Old November 30th, 2011, 11:01 AM   #18
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Doppelbauer View Post
Pavel,
You explanation sounds reasonable to me but I am afraid it is pure speculation, right ?
Canon calls the ND filter "gradation filter" in their brochure and manual. There is no reference to an "electronic ND filter" (as you call it) anywhere.
Until someone actually takes their XF100 apart and looks at the parts I guess there is no way of telling how this thing actually works.
No optical ND filter can make slow and smooth change of the exposure (during turning on).

Last edited by Pavel Sedlak; December 1st, 2011 at 12:48 AM.
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Old December 1st, 2011, 05:11 AM   #19
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

Except pretty much all gradation type ND's that move slowly into place. It does not go fully into the light path at once. It slowly moves into place until it's full. (Or rotates between darker and lighter areas)

No digital gain can make exposure that much down as this clearly physical nd is doing. If that would be possible, every camera would have them. Something like the F3 or FS100 would benefit hugely from it. But no, they don't have any kind off digital "attenuation" because it is not possible to do. -6db gain is the most at this time.That is how the ND operates on the Canon HV20/30/40 and the XF100/105. Basically how it operates in ALL consumer cameras.
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Old May 3rd, 2012, 06:04 PM   #20
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

Martin, I'm shooting with a 300, but unless there is some odd difference between the 100 and 300 file structures, there were some things you stated that I don't agree with, but am willing to be proved wrong.

On the 300, I can easily do extended run clips and they line up with *no* problem together.

For example, this recent video I shot on the 300 spans two clips.
There is no noticeable *cut* between the two as you watch it. You simply drop the two clips onto the timeline (I use either Adobe or Vegas, this one was edited in Adobe) and it works. If for some reason you stopped the camera and then started it quickly, yes, you would have a problem. But I've not found it to be a showstopper and I routinely shoot stage performances.

Can the 100 actually be different? Seems hard to believe. Especially important as I am considering buying one as a B camera for doing this kind of shooting, which is why I took interest in your post.

Also, your comment about the need to follow the folder structure is only partly true. There is a pull down menu on the XF Utility that is called "export to MXF". This strips the structure off, and deposits all the shots in one folder, just like you get with MOV files for example. I have experienced no significant downside to this in six months of shooting, *but* I don't often need the markers etc. that some folks might use in their cameras. So there could be a reason you need it, but most of us probably don't. So just "export to MXF". Try it, you'll probably like it.

Hope this helps clarify these statements.
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Old May 3rd, 2012, 10:55 PM   #21
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

Al,
This is a misunderstandig. Adjacent clips play back gaplessly on the XF100 just as well as on your 300. However, there is a gap in the file structure on the memory card. Some bytes on the memory card are being unused between the clips - at least that is what Canon Service in Germany told me. As a result, you can not use the full capacity of the memory cards. I've tried it over and over again - now both with 35 and 50 mbps. I am never able to use more than 12 to 13 GB of a 16 GB card. But, again, visually you SEE no problem when playing clips back. It's just a waste of card space.

The cumbersome folder structure is, of course, only needed when importing files and converting them to mov format (which is needed for FCP X). After you have imported and converted the files to mov-format you can obviously store them anywhere you want on your hard drive. I don't think FCP X can use native MXF, right?
BTW, in the meantime Canon has released an import plug-in for FCP X. But from what I have seen so far it also needs the folder structure to do the import.
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Old May 4th, 2012, 01:55 PM   #22
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

Right you are. It was a misunderstanding of the post. However, I'll have to check out the card issue. I am under the impression I have used entire cards. Could it be an issue with PAL vs. NTSC formatting?

As to the folder structure, you are right in that if you are using FCP, you usually transcode. FCP can use the native files, as they are XDCAM if I remember right. I had no problem importing them, and converting them when they were on the timeline, them later in the process. But it's been a long time since I did that. It may not be XDCAM, but I do believe it was.
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Old May 4th, 2012, 02:45 PM   #23
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

I am attaching two pictures to demonstrate the problem.
There is a 16 GB card in CF A. The camera reports 12.9 GB of the 16 GB are being used ("Recorded") and my Mac reports 3.06 GB free space available ("verfügbar"), which is about the same. I can easily use those 3.06 GB on my computer and copy various files onto the card to prove the memory is really available.

BUT the XF 100 still says "Available 0 min" and refuses to continue recording.

I really don't know if the XF300 suffers from the same problem nor do I know if this is PAL-only.
However, I see no reason why there should be a difference between NTSC and PAL.
There is certainly no difference between 35 and 50 mbps as I've tried both.
Attached Thumbnails
XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos-p1070240.png   XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos-p1070241.png  

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Old May 5th, 2012, 06:10 PM   #24
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

That certainly is odd. I'll try and fill up a 300 card today or soon, and report back. Thanks for the screen shots, that makes it quite clear.
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Old May 28th, 2012, 04:11 PM   #25
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Doppelbauer View Post
I have been using the XF 100 camera since summer. There are a lot of things I liked and some not so great features. If you are interested: I have collected my impressions here: Canon XF 100.
Lot's of things I agree with and some I don't.

Regarding default shutter speed/angle, observer this curiosity: If you choose Menu -> Camera -> Shutter -> Speed, and have framerate to 25p, then yes, the shutter speed defaults to 1/25s. Now, Set Menu -> Camera -> Shutter -> Angle, and it defaults to 180° - or 1/50s! Is that wierd??? As you choose between speed/angle you can see the image getting brighter/darker.

Regarding slow motion, I have shot slow motion, but I don't find it much useful as you can't record sound. I'd rather record normal speed and stretch on the timeline.

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Old May 31st, 2012, 03:00 PM   #26
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

We've got two of this cameras (XF100 - PAL) and love them except for one thing. I like to have the 'zoom' ring set to 'focus', since I can zoom with the rocker and change iris with the dial, but the guy who shots with me like to have his set to 'zoom', so when we end up switching positions we both have the wrong setting!

So, I really miss the extra zoom and/or focus ring. I just couldn't justify 2x XF-300s instead (wish I could).

6db is about as high as I will shoot this camera (we do a lot of low light stuff) and at that point it's starting to need some love from Neat Video. Anything more than 6db and it's way too noisy for me.

I dislike the placing for the card initialisation (formatting) in the menus. What were Canon thinking when they designed this menu system?

I never, ever, use the view finder unless the sun is so bright the LCD just can't be seen.

I do like the waveforms etc, which are very useful, especially for setting up green screen.

All-in-all if I needed buy another camera I would probably buy another one of these - assuming the XF300 was still out of budget.

It also matches up with the Canon DSLRs pretty easily, way more easily than the Panasonic cameras we had before, and the ability to set the K value for white balance was the final clincher.

So far we've shot a couple of hundred hours on both cameras and they have worked flawlessly.
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Old June 6th, 2012, 03:11 PM   #27
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

So yes, Martin is correct in that the cards don't fill all the way. Only thing I can think of is that maybe that's a good thing? On my 7D I can fill the card and the last clip is usually lost. Also, on most hard drives, you never get the actual amount of GBs advertised once it is formatted. But it does seem an excessively large amount of disk space to waste.

On a positive note, I just shot my first shoot with the infrared. It worked really well. The location was a cistern (old military base water holding tank, which is now rented out to musicians). I used daylight from a porthole that you climb into the cistern from, along with a small camera mounted flo-light to setup the IR. I can't share the video yet, but do have the ability to use stills from it for PR purposes.

Take a look at the wonderful film noire that can be achieved with virtually no light. Wayne is known for his hat, so the main shot is a given.

http://albergstein.smugmug.com/Video...-Cistern-M.jpg
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Old June 13th, 2012, 01:43 PM   #28
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Re: XF-100 - My impressions after a 100 hours with the camera plus some test videos

I have recently started to use an XF100, so Martin's review was really useful. I have printed out his suggested settings to try out at some time.

I have just checked a "full" 16GB card from the camera, and find it has 12.6GB of data, 2.17GB free space, and the capacity is 14.8GB. I was disappointed not to be getting an hour of recording time, but had put it down to the higher data rate setting (not being technically minded enough to think of anything else).

Like Al, I have used it in infra-red mode. In fact, this will be it's main use, and it will replace my Sony A1. It is much more light sensitive than the Sony, and I am getting really much crisper results using the same 140 infra-red LED array I was using before.
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