Begging for shouldermount design at DVinfo.net

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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 27th, 2008, 04:39 AM   #1
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Begging for shouldermount design

I'm (a little) mad at Canon. I've spent the better part of last week searching for a suitable bag for my XH-A1 plus Varizoom shoulder rest plus Rode NTG2. The only thing that would fit is one of these mega-suitcases with a width of 70 cm! I refuse to buy that, because these cases are 1 meter high and I would look like the wife has just kicked me out of the house. Seriously, why on earth didn't Canon make this superb peace of equipment in a shouldermount design? OK, there's the XL-H1A or -S, but I'm not Rockefella. Sony has understood that the only good place for a cam, to be in balance, is on your shoulder - or a tripod - and they have made the very affordable HVR-HD1000. Even my old Sony Betamax - the one with the separate 12 kilo recorder - rested comfortably on my shoulder, and that was 25 years ago. Is this called progress? Or am I just being hard to satisfie? I hope the Canon design guys read this and start working on a XH-A1 S. With 'S' for Shoulder. And keep the aperture ring on the lens.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 09:36 AM   #2
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I use the Pelican 1520:
http://www.pelican.com/cases_detail.php?Case=1520

You can drop it in the ocean, shoot it with a shotgun, drop it from the 5th floor, or drive over it with a truck without damaging the camera.

Plus it comes in a variety of colors including international orange (great for keeping an eye on it in a crowded place.) And you can take it on a plane as carry on.

I got mine from B&H for $130 (It was 115 but was $15 extra for padded dividers instead of foam).
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Old May 27th, 2008, 09:51 AM   #3
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I have a very comparable case right here, but just as the Pelican, it is only 46 cm wide. The length of the XH-A1 WITH the Varizoom and the mic is almost 70 cm. That's the problem: the camera itself will fit in hundreds of cases or bags, but the complete combination is way too big. And I hate to srew and unscrew the shoulder mount each time. I want to be able to hide the camera (from rain, dust, spray...) in a second if necessary. That does not allow for dismantling the whole setup.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 10:23 AM   #4
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Get the Canon quick release tripod adapter plate, TA-100 is the number, I think. Then you can unsnap the camera in a second and stash it. It's about $135 from B&H. This is a good thing to have because in addition to the small 1/4" threads, it has the standard 3/8" threads, so you can use the camera on a full size professional tripod if you ever need to shoot with a teleprompter or something else that requires a bigger tripod. And, it will work great for your purposes too.

As you pointed out, Canon does make shoulder mount versions. the new XL H1a model is down to around $6K or so. Criticizing the XH A1 for not being the XL H1A is sort of like criticizing a 2-door Toyota for not having 4 doors.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 10:43 AM   #5
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Thanks for the tip, I'll check that adaptor plate out.
I'm not criticizing the XH A1 for not being the XL H1A. I just fail to understand why the concept of a shoulder mounted camera was abandoned for the prosumer market. I would pe perfectly happy with a camera that has the specs (and price) of the XH-A1 in an shoulder-mounted package. That this is possible marketingwise, is proven by Sony's HVR-HD1000 and Canon's XL2. Putting a viewfinder at the tail end of a camera is nonsense in my opinion. It belongs in a more advanced position if you want the camera to be in balance. It is virtually impossible to use the XH-A1 - and all other camera's of this concept-with mic and some accesories, just holding it with one hand before your face. Cramps assured within 10 minutes. I had the XL2 and balance-wise it was a much better product.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 10:54 AM   #6
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Checked the Canon tripod plate and that indeed seems a workable solution. Too bad Manfrotto does not sell the tripod-side part of its quick-release mounts separately. Then I could leave the same base plate mounted on the camera for the Varizoom shoulder rest AND the Manfrotto tripod head that I have.
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Old May 27th, 2008, 11:28 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luc De Wandel View Post
I just fail to understand why the concept of a shoulder mounted camera was abandoned for the prosumer market.
That's not the real issue here though. The real issue is that you fail to realize that the concept of a Canon shoulder mounted camera has *not* been abandoned for the prosumer market. It's called the XL H1A.

Quote:
I would pe perfectly happy with a camera that has the specs (and price) of the XH-A1 in an shoulder-mounted package.
The good news is that such a camera exists. As has already been mentioned, it's the XL H1A. Keep in mind that it is less expensive than the XH G1.

Quote:
That this is possible marketingwise, is proven by Sony's HVR-HD1000 and Canon's XL2.
Actually those are two completely different types of camcorders. They don't have very much in common at all.

Quote:
It is virtually impossible to use the XH-A1 - and all other camera's of this concept-with mic and some accesories, just holding it with one hand before your face.
Woah -- "just holding it with one hand" is a very serious mistake -- you need to keep *both* hands on the camera. There's nothing you should be doing with your other hand that's more important than keeping it on the camera where it belongs. This goes for any type of camera design, shoulder mount or otherwise. Always use *both* hands.

Quote:
I had the XL2 and balance-wise it was a much better product.
And now for HD you can have the exact same thing as the XL2. It's called the XL H1A.

Bill Pryor made an excellent point above, about "criticizing the XH A1 for not being the XL H1A is sort of like criticizing a 2-door Toyota for not having 4 doors." I'm having a very hard time understanding what the problem is here in distinguishing between the XH A1 and XL H1A. You need an XH A1 in a shoulder mount design? Presto -- it is done. It's called the XL H1A. I don't see the point in dragging this out any further.
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