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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 February 22nd, 2009, 11:23 PM   #1
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hey guys, like i said in my intro on the site, i am a student at Mississippi State. My major is ITS, but my true love is working with film and editing it. My buddy and i are messing around with starting a fishing show, but not in the near future. we are just trying to get experience and knowledge about everything as of right now. my real question right now is about the camera i am using. I currently am using a couple of Sony Handy Cams. I have been working with them for about 4 years. As for the editing software, i have always used Adobe Premier Pro and just upgraded to CS3.

The camera that i have been looking at is the Canon XH-A1. I would really like to have a camera that has a lot better quality than what i am using now, (the Sony's). With the cameras that i have now, they pretty much do all of the technical work for you. I am just worried that if i do get the Canon, i am going to make too big of a jump, but i really like the specs of the canon and the fact that my audio options will sky rocket. I love the xlr connections due to the audio quality and accessories.
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Old February 23rd, 2009, 02:29 AM   #2
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so is this the camera that yall think i should get? or is there a better suggestion out there?
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Old February 23rd, 2009, 02:56 AM   #3
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You won't find the XH-A1 too big a step I'm sure. You can always start out in full auto mode (video and audio) and progress from there. The only thing I'd say is that you may not see a big improvement in picture quality unless you take active steps to use a tripod, learn about aperture, ND and exposure settings and gain a lot of experience with the camera.

Once experience is on your side your films will indeed start to look better, but in auto mode you'll be hard pushed to see any difference.

tom.
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Old February 23rd, 2009, 05:24 AM   #4
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If you have any Photography experience it will easily apply to video and the controls for this camera. The benefit to this type of camera is that all controls are buttons rather than menu driven, which makes using them and trying them much easier.

Quote:
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Once experience is on your side your films will indeed start to look better, but in auto mode you'll be hard pushed to see any difference.

tom.
Unless you are shooting in SD now, than the quality of the video will be 100% better even if you produce SD dvd's from HDV video.
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Old February 23rd, 2009, 06:28 AM   #5
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I also made the jump right from a Sony consumer camcorder to the XHA1. IF you have the proper lighting you will see a HUGE difference in the picture quality even if you are in auto mode. This camera has a lot of options when it comes to the type of picture you want. Even if you use the factory settings, your pcture will be good providing that the light source is good. The XHA1 has many feature to help you deal with low light situations. I've had mine for about a month now and i'm very happy with it.
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Old February 23rd, 2009, 12:13 PM   #6
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I guess i am worried about the 3 adjustment rings on the lens barrel the most. the Focus, Iris, and zoom ring. Im not too worried about the zoom, i try to stay away from that as much as possible when filming faster action shot, like the fishing and hunting shots, that seems to ruin a shot if you over adjust. what i am really worried about is the iris and the focus ring. is it going to be difficult to adjust these 2 quickly? i know that you can put it in auto mode, but i would like to pick up the skills to better my shots.
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Old February 23rd, 2009, 02:55 PM   #7
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Regarding iris and focus rings, you can use the cam in manual focus and then press the instant auto focus to pull it into the ball park and then fine tune from there. You can also do the same with exposure lock... i.e. leave it in auto and then lock it and adjust when you start shooting.
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Old February 23rd, 2009, 03:47 PM   #8
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so do you all agree that this is the best camera for what i am looking to do?
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Old February 23rd, 2009, 07:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
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so do you all agree that this is the best camera for what i am looking to do?
It's a great camera. Is it best for what you want? Only you can answer that. If you're looking in the US$3,000-3,500 price range Sony has offerings with CMOS sensors. I excluded those because of the dreaded rolling shutter effect. Search these forums and you'll find a ton of info on it.

If you can do the additional spend, get the XH A1s. Its improvements over the XH A1 are well worth the extra $300.
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Old February 24th, 2009, 05:34 AM   #10
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If you can do the additional spend, get the XH A1s. Its improvements over the XH A1 are well worth the extra $300.
Hear, hear.
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Old February 24th, 2009, 11:16 PM   #11
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I have tried looking around on the internet about the differences between the xh-a1 and the xh-a1s. i cant seem to find it. can someone briefly fill me in?
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Old February 25th, 2009, 07:01 AM   #12
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John... There's a lot of good information here. Here's one big thread: http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/canon-xh-...vs-xh-a1s.html

There was a comprehensive comparison that I think Chris did shortly after the announcement that did a great job of quantifying the differences. Unfortunately, I cannot seem to find it now.
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Old March 4th, 2009, 01:49 PM   #13
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Hey John -- the XH A1 is an awesome camera and we have 3 we are selling right now. They are used, but only slightly for wedding/event work and have extended warranties that cover the next 3 - 4 years (I have to check to see exactly when they expire). We also have some great tripods, shotgun mics, etc.

We're currently getting out of the wedding/event video business as we find we're focusing more on the photography market. We also have another business called GigBooks.com that has taken off.

Justin
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