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Canon XH Series HDV Camcorders
Canon XH G1S / G1 (with SDI), Canon XH A1S / A1 (without SDI).


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Old December 12th, 2007, 12:24 PM   #1
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Why not record to SD card?

Hi


I just don't get it. Why didn't Canon made it possible to record to the SD card in the XH-A1? As I understand the write speed to a SD Ultra II SDHC is about 9MB/s and HDV has a bitrate of 2,5MB/s (25Mbit) so speed can't be a problem. I've tried to save a HDV file on a SD card and there was no problem playing it on my PC fom the card. A firmware upgrade to handle recording to a SD card would be a nice christmas present. Perhaps sometime in the future when/if 16MB SDHC card will store more than one hour of HDV footage. Or an external cheap SD recorder connected to FireWire instead of an expensive hard disk recorder.

Or am I simply asking to much??

(Sorry if you've allready read this post but I made it in wrong forum earlier.)

Regards,

/Bo
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Old December 12th, 2007, 02:52 PM   #2
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I was wondering about this also...
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Old December 12th, 2007, 03:12 PM   #3
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It's indeed a logical thought. Same applies to the HV20. And maybe even for the XL H1. In one move, they could establish a serious competition for Sony's recent initiatives.

By the way... speaking about firmware updates, like a lot of people I had hoped that Canon would do something more with the excellent comments on this forum.

One year after the release, we should not hope for it anymore. They've got our money added to the numbers for the shareholders, why would they care to please us with some extra's?
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Old December 12th, 2007, 03:13 PM   #4
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Interesting thought...

I had bought a 2G SD Card for mine when I first got it because the cards were on clearance for $15 and I was planning on taking a lot of stills at an upcoming shoot. If I were able to store 2G of video that would be nice...
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Old December 12th, 2007, 10:20 PM   #5
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Well considering Sony have gone the CF route, for this precise purpose alongside tape, I agree wholeheartedly. The issue however is creating an element which can do a live transfer from the the recording device through to the SD device at the same time. More than likely this would overload the CPU of the camera if doing it in software, but I'd be glad to pay $1000 for this kind of HW utility.

As for firmware, I also agree. Considering FW updates are plentiful on the Canon D-SLR range, it would be nice to see certain elements (such as XLR on/off, OIS on/off, Zebras and peaking on at the same time) accessed live during recording via a custom button.

Another thing I would like to see is an option which records metadata and shooting settings onto SD card (as HDV cant do this on tape) which logs each clip via timecode onto a text file on the card, which can be pulled up for review. This way, zoom, focus, aperture, shutter, etc can be reviewed per clip. It's not the best solution to timecode logging, but it works. Then if you remove the tape, voila, instant new folder with tape 2.

Another thing I think would be VERY beneficial would be an in-cam Frame converter. Shoot in 50i, then during capture or playback, have the option to convert this to frame mode on the fly.
This way, you can shoot the entire event in 50i, then certain scenes can be converted, without loss of quality, simply by using the cameras own field joining algorythms to create said frame.

There is LOTS that can be done with this camera, sadly however I personally do not see HDV surviving for more than two years from here, as we are now seeing AVC Intra making headway. With Sony and Pana's joint push for this codec, Long GOP will thankfully be a thing of the past.
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Old December 13th, 2007, 12:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Jefferson View Post
There is LOTS that can be done with this camera, sadly however I personally do not see HDV surviving for more than two years from here, as we are now seeing AVC Intra making headway. With Sony and Pana's joint push for this codec, Long GOP will thankfully be a thing of the past.
True, but on the other side... also the new Sony Z7 is a... HDV. HDV is as well with Canon, Sony as JVC still 'kicking and alive'. AVC is only known at stage for its problems in NLE's, and no pro cam's seem to adhere to this standard.

Problem with standards is they often survive themselves, beyond technical evolution and possibilities. for reasons of portability, market presence, development & manufacturing costs, reliability,... market preference?

Isn't mpeg2-compression - still used in a zillion applications even in digital TV in Europe - not the best example of this?
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Old December 13th, 2007, 11:43 PM   #7
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Well, MPG2 is a HD standard. Be it SD or HD delivery across free to air HD TV through to SD DVD, BD and HD DVD. this will more than likely remain for quite a substantial amount of time. As an acquisition source however, it has never been the best option. As for the Sony cameras, or any camera actually, I would not expect any further HDV or Long Gop offerings.
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Old December 14th, 2007, 07:13 AM   #8
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Peter,

A little off topic but:

Maybe I misunderstood your post but are you aware of that by pressing "Data Code" on the remote, you will see camera settings recorded to tape. In combination with the possability to record the active scene file and it's settings, together with the time code to a still picture to the SD card, you can recall the camcorder settings for each scene. The only trouble is to allways remeber to take a still picture with each scene. ;-)

It's not perfect but it's a workaround to get info. No white balance info though...

Regards,

/Bo
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Old December 14th, 2007, 05:43 PM   #9
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It seems to me the reason manufacturers are making tapeless cameras is that it's cheaper. It's true that the metadata is good, but look at the workflow--if you are in a business where you need to keep your original footage, you're going to have a lot of time in making some sort of permanent storage, whether tape or disc. XDCAM and XDCAM HD solves this problem by using discs, which store just like tape--but they cost more. Until there's a solid state recording medium that has the capacity of tape and the low price--ie., where you can store it without having to transfer it before you reformat the card--then there is going to be a lot of extra work. Plus the possibility of error exists, whether human or technical. You forget to transfer something, or you transfer it to a drive and the drive crashes before you get it to disc, a file gets corrupted, etc. For my purposes, tape or XDCAM is still the best solution. I think eventually the media will get cheap enough to have the greater permanence of tape and its lower price.
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Old December 14th, 2007, 08:01 PM   #10
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Oh man, if Canon released a firmware that allowed recording HDV to fast SD cards they would go down in history as being possibly the coolest camcorder manufacturer ever :) It would also send a lot of folks to Canon that were trying to save up 6K for the Sony.

Having said that, I'd say that hardware and software limitations make the likelyhood of this happening slighly less than zero.
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Old December 14th, 2007, 08:07 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bo Sundvall View Post
I just don't get it. Why didn't Canon made it possible to record to the SD card in the XH-A1?
Two reasons maybe:

(1) The A-1 is less expensive to produce.

(2) Other formats for recording direct to digital are currently available. They will get less expensive as time goes on.

This may seem a bit strange to say.

I worked in a lab of a big American corp until I retired a few years back.

We were lucky to buy small pieces of new equipment that performed, perhaps, one function, for under $15K.

In no way am I connected with Canon..wouldn't recognize the name of anyone who worked there...but....

I'm constantly amazed at what a consumer can get for $3 - $4K compared to what we spent to get the kind of quality you find on the A-1.

For what it's worth....
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Old November 13th, 2008, 10:59 AM   #12
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Still no updates on this possibility eh? Sux!
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