XH-A1 On camera light! question. - Page 2 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 December 3rd, 2006, 10:14 PM   #16
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My first impression side by side with the Z1 using the same monitor is that under good to fair light it is better much much sharper but when the light level is lower then the Z1 is better, A1 is not as clean as Z1 when gain up, the A1 has 2 type of noise reduction, the first one is useless unless you taking still picture or if you want some trails effects, the second is what you want to use for moving video and it has 3 level, the first 2 level works but still not as clean as Z1, the 3rd level is equal to Z1 but then the picture becomes softer than Z1, I also adjust coring and some other stuff but it is still grainier than Z1 under low light. I think the main reason is because you don't have as much gain level increment as the Z1, it goes from -3db, 0db,+3,+6,+12,+18, at 12db it has more noise than the Sony at 18db but also brighter, I can live with 6db gain noise but I am hesitate to go to 12db gain and so that is why I think Z1 is better under low low light level. I was also trying to use auto gain, hoping that depend on certain light level the gain will fall some where between +6db and +12db where it did not have a setting for, because if you shoot full manual and let say that you are getting a proper exposure at all wide with f1.6 and shutter at 60th and gain at 6db, now if you zoom all the way in, the f stop will automatic closer down to f3.4, now that would be to dark, it might only needs a 3db gain or so to get an acceptable picture, but this camera does not have a gain limit, it jump all the way up to 18db or look like to me 36db gain noise on Z1 and to me that is noise city at 18db and I would not ever use it on this camera but I feel very comfortable using 18db with Z1. I also thinks the LCD sucks big time, I can not get an accurate color display on it like I am with the Z1, it seems a little yellow and quick to have hot spot but when I look at my 1080p monitor then it is perfect and so you don't really know exactly what you are getting, I try to adjust the LCD with color bar, try to match the color to my editing monitor so that way I will know what I am getting on the field but I can not. The zoom rocker is also so small and hard to get use to after using the Z1 for so long, the picture quality is definetly better than the Z1 under good to fair light, but under extreme low light then I think I have to choose the Z1, but take it with the grain of salt, I only have time to play with for 5hrs before I took it on a shoot, I'm sure I will get better with it the more I use it, I will keep it for sure, I like the 20X zoom, I can't get the same depth of field with the Z1 as I am with the A1, that is what I missed most going from a 1/2 chips camera to a 1/3 chips, I like the audio control, audio display all the time even in auto, I like the zoom speed control dial.
I think the A1 is a great camera if you have time to adjust, but if you shoot run and gun type of work, it is harder to get a good picture with it so you better be good and know the camera well to get a good picture, you have 9 custom preset and you better program it for every situation.
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Old December 4th, 2006, 06:49 AM   #17
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Khoi: many thanks for that in-depth impression, let me know if your opinion changes at all as you continue to use the camera. I have to make a decision on a camera by next week ...
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Old December 4th, 2006, 09:44 AM   #18
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I've been using the cinegamma 1 setup (is that what it's called--I don't have the camera with me at the moment). I tweaked that just a bit, taking down the sharpness one point and pressing the blacks a bit. That setup, shooting 24F works for me for everything. There's no need to go change camera setup when you're on location--that would be like switching film stocks.

The LCD is smaller than the Z1's, but it is high enough resolution to be quite useful. Adjust it and your viewfinder to color bars and that will help you out with exposure in a run and gun situation. You can't really use an LCD monitor to judge color accurately, but this one is pretty close, I've found. I think the Z1 is cleaner when using high gain but the A1 is very useable. My initial feeling in comparing it with a Z1 (not side by side) is that in a situation where the A1 might require a +6db gain, the Z1 probably will want a +12, but the +12 of the Z1 will look about as good as the +6 on the A1. That's not a direct comparison, just an educated subjective feeling from experience with both cameras. I do think the Z1 is maybe a little more intutitve when you first get it, but once you learn the A1 there's no problem in quick shooting.
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Old December 4th, 2006, 10:19 AM   #19
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" My initial feeling in comparing it with a Z1 (not side by side) is that in a situation where the A1 might require a +6db gain, the Z1 probably will want a +12, but the +12 of the Z1 will look about as good as the +6 on the A1."

That is pretty good, you got that right even when you didn't compare it side by side, but since I do weddings, when shooting inside a church, we can only use available light and sometimes it is pretty dark, with Z1 sometims I have to go to +12 to +18db, and so with A1 that would have to be +6db to +12db, if only it has a +9db setting then I think it would beat the Z1 in low light quality/grain balance. BTW I compared everything at 60i cuz I'm shooting with the Z1 and FX1 multicamera shoot and Z1 and FX1 ain't got no 24P. I know 24P will offer even better low light performance but I can't use that right now until I made a complete switch over, so my FX1 is on sale if anybody wants a very good camera at a very good price. (-:
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Old January 30th, 2007, 08:52 AM   #20
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On Camera Light

Could someone suggest a good on camera light for the A1? Thanks!

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Old January 30th, 2007, 09:21 AM   #21
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Hey Doug, try this link. http://dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=84963
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Old April 30th, 2007, 08:51 AM   #22
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Mounted Light for XH G1, What do you use?

I am looking for a light to mount on top of the camera for interviews in a setting where I cannot setup any other lights. I just talked to someone where I bought the XH G1 and he suggested the Canon VL-10LI, but after looking online, it doesn't seem to be very powerful.

Does anyone have any suggestions for a light to purchase?

Thanks,
Mark
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Old April 30th, 2007, 10:01 AM   #23
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How much light to you feel you need? What distance from the camcorder will the talent be?
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Old April 30th, 2007, 11:14 AM   #24
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I use the Dayled deluxe by Vidled and I am very happy with it.
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Old April 30th, 2007, 11:18 AM   #25
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Interviews

I will be using the light to do interviews "Vox Pop", so the subjects will be fairly close to the camera, aprox. 3 to 5 feet.

Thanks for the suggestions!

MArk
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Old April 30th, 2007, 11:54 AM   #26
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I use a bike light -- 5 or 8 LEDs -- with diffusion and a pale amber gel (they are naturally on the blue side of daylight balanced)

its attached to the base of the mic mount atop the hot shoe (ie below the mic)

at 3-5 feet, its enough to make an interview possible without overwhelming the subjects eyes

The weight is minimal, they last forever, and they don't cost too much ...
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Old April 30th, 2007, 12:19 PM   #27
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i use this with my A1 and couldn't be happier. well-built, highly controllable, good looking light. used it to conduct interviews in the most horrendous lighting environments.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...ughType=search

cheaper than litepanels. varizoom makes a similar model, but i preferred the build of the sony.
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Old April 30th, 2007, 02:22 PM   #28
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Power?

Thanks Meryem,
What does it use for power? It looks a bit big, is it cumbersome?
Mark

Quote:
Originally Posted by Meryem Ersoz View Post
i use this with my A1 and couldn't be happier. well-built, highly controllable, good looking light. used it to conduct interviews in the most horrendous lighting environments.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...ughType=search

cheaper than litepanels. varizoom makes a similar model, but i preferred the build of the sony.
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Old April 30th, 2007, 02:58 PM   #29
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good question....it uses sony "L" series batteries (which i already have, since i have an FX-1...). that might add to the expense quite a bit. it's not that cumbersome, but it does take up your shoe, so if you have a wireless mic, you'll have to velcro it elsewhere. or mount the light elsewhere. it's not that heavy and it is pretty well-balanced, with the battery. i have shot this light and the A1 using a 561B monopod. very nice build, actually.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 09:35 AM   #30
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VL-10Li

I think I am going to go with the VL-1-Li :

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=144312&is=REG

I was talking with the salesperson where I bought the XH G1, and he said it should be sufficient, that lights with too much wattage will just create overexposed areas. This light also uses the same batteries as the camera so they can be re-charged with the recharger that came with the camera.

Mark
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