Fan Boy Rant :) my new XHA1 at

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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 May 21st, 2008, 07:46 PM   #1
Regular Crew
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Victoria BC
Posts: 29
Fan Boy Rant :) my new XHA1

After digging around and after chatting up some here (thank you Steven and a few others) I have to say I am so impressed with the image quality I am getting from my A1. I shoot documentary style for Vancouver Island Health Authority. Most recently shooting a DVX100. I've been looking at different systems for a few months now, and after settling on this camera I am stoked about it's simplicity of use, and quality of output. HDV and FCP seem to me (after much research and trial and error) seamless. I've outputted HDV from both an NTSC DV (photo jpeg compression) timeline to Quicktime out to DVDSP after scaling up footage to fill a 4:3 frame... DVD's look clean; crystal clear and sized proportionally.
I've outputted HDV timeline using photo jpeg compression to an HDV Quicktime file and that to into Compressor's 190 best and out to DVDSP to create an SD project from HDV footage, same results but in 16:9 and it too is incredible.
The two presets I've used (thanks guys for these) Wolfgang's -3db and Dempsy's Truecolour. I do post to colour, and use Stib's filters on this stuff, either HDV timeline to SD timeline after edits or direct out if I am going for a 16:9 SD project and well; I love this camera.
A few (who don't own this camera yet) have run up my leg saying "it's not real HD, cause it's missing...) nothing I say. It's in the ballpark my friends.
Thank you for this site, and for 1. Convincing arguments to buy into the format. 2. Did I mention I love this camera.
Thanks again.
Wayne Dupuis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 21st, 2008, 09:32 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Reno, NV
Posts: 81
Welcome to the club! It is a great camera. There will always be detractors, and there will always be some features that would be nice. But the overall flexibliity and versatility of this unit made it a must have for me, and a lot of others.

But let's keep it a secret. ;-)
Jason Sovey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 21st, 2008, 10:13 PM   #3
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Denver, Colorado
Posts: 1,854
Originally Posted by Wayne Dupuis View Post
It's in the ballpark my friends.
It sure is.

1.) You're in Vancouver right? Forget about SD, it's too beautiful for that where you live.

2.) Use the force Luke. Trust your eyes. Forget about the automatic metering, use the manual modes, keep the shutter speeds down for smooth motion handling, use the ND so you can open up the aperture to F3.4 to F3.7 at the wide end, and stop down to F4.0 to F4.8 at the long end. When you work within those ranges, you work within the sweet spot of the lens range for optimum resolution, sharpness, contrast and color. And just happens to have a pleasingly shallow depth of field, and wonderful bokeh within those ranges as well.

3.) Use the aperture ring, back and forth, trial and error until the image in the viewfinder or LCD looks right. You can nail the exposure everytime this way. If you rely too heavily on automatic exposure metering, the camera will misinterpret the scene in some situations. Ansel Adams never had an electronic viewfinder. You have the advantage of looking right at the picture and how it will appear. By adjusting the exposure until the scene looks right in the viewfinder or LCD, you'll adapt very quickly and the A1 will be your friend.

All my A1 videos have perfect exposure because I've mastered the art of using the A1 as a tool.

I'll be moving on to something else before too long, maybe the EX3 or F350, to seek out new challenges, but for 60i, the XH-A1 in good light is about even with the big dogs on all counts, and then some if you count the versatility of a pretty fast, wide and long fluorite glass, quite decent indeed. So I hope you enjoy. It's going to take you a while to find the look you want from it, but it's inside the wrapper.
Tom Roper is offline   Reply

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