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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 August 23rd, 2008, 05:51 PM   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: England
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Help with Gain Please

Hi Guys

I was wondering if anyone out there using the Canon XH-1 could possibly help me out?

I have recently just got my hands on this camera, so everything is new to me.

The problem I have is the gain control and you have probably guessed, I have got to much grain in some of the shots, specially with the wedding dance.

I was using a light with a 20w lamp, everything looked fine through the viewfinder and the lcd screen, until you actually see it on the big screen. It looks totally sh*t basically.

What I would like to know is, have you guys got any tips on how I can reduce this grain in post.

I'm using PP2 and after effects.

Hope you can help.


Wayne Greensill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 23rd, 2008, 10:30 PM   #2
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First question is have you turned Off AGC? (Auto Gain control) because that will destroy your footage to maintain exposure. If you have turned it Off then maybe you've set the gain to high, basically anything above +12db is asking for grain.

I would be very surprised you are getting very grainy footage if you are sticking to those principles.

Another option which I don't really recommend is the Noise Reduction option on the camera, if you take shots of static images with very little movement it can produce quiet good image but if there is any movement then lots of trailing.

In post I sometimes blend the frames at 99% speed (if its not audio synced) and usually smooths out the grain but get a tiny amount of trail.

hope that helps
Peter Szilveszter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2008, 12:38 AM   #3
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Like Peter said, turn agc off and lower your shutter speed to 1/25. In extreme dark places you can use the +6DB preset from Wolfgang Winne which gave me great results comparable to the lowlight capacities of my vx2100 (in combination with the 1/25 shutter). And if possible don't go higher then +6db.
Noa Put is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 24th, 2008, 05:40 PM   #4
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Wayne... IMO +6 is too high for a quality wedding video. I use +6 for shooting night motor races and I still find it distracting. 1/25 shutter will help. You may want to consider letting the video get dark and trying to fix it in post, but that land is infested with its own set of demons.

I like the concept of 99% speed with frame blending. I may have to play with that at some point. Won't work for motor racing tho.
Tripp Woelfel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 26th, 2008, 10:54 AM   #5
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I had the same problem with the same camera, get "neat video" it can make 12db gain look like 0db. works great. you can download a trial and buy for $100 bucks. I
Gary J. Walker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 26th, 2008, 11:02 AM   #6
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Can you post a link to the wolfgang preset or is in the library?
I use +12 very regularly in wedding videos and get nothing but praise. I think we sweat way too much over technical details that certainly don't matter to brides. Now promotional videos and the like I would never use gain. At all, but at a wedding you are dealing with circumstances that are out of your control. It is our sole job to capture the images, and whatever it takes to do that, I will do. Just MHO you understand. I think +12 when rendered to SD DVD is fine. I have no problem with the grain at all...
Bill Grant is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 26th, 2008, 11:18 AM   #7
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I'm with Bill on this one. Keep the shutter speed at the default to smooth the dance and accept the grain.

But of course you can be proactive in this. Before the dance starts go make friends with the DJ, say how good all his coloured lights look playing on the couple. Talk to the MC and ask him to guard those chandelier dimmers in case some helpful guest considers total darkness looks 'more romantic'.

Tom Hardwick is offline   Reply

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