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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 September 6th, 2009, 12:59 PM   #1
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Wondering if the presets are worth it

Hello,
I've shot a film, it's been submitted to many festivals, I'm waiting.
I shot using one of the presets from Mcallister, I liked the one I used, but frankly since I still had to do a huge amount of work on the color in post, I'm using Vegas, I'm wondering if it's actually worth it bothering at all about presets and instead not do all the color and desaturation work in post.

What do you think?
Larry
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Old September 6th, 2009, 01:08 PM   #2
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I know for me that I have not seen a preset that I can't duplicate in post. I hate the thought of shooting a bunch of footage with a preset then not liking it after it's all been shot. I choose to color correct in post and then copy and paste that setting to all my other scenes.

You can't undo a preset like you can a post setting. Having said that, there are some people that like their favorite preset so much that they always shoot with it and never worry. I am not one of those.

Just depends on the shooter I guess.
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Old September 6th, 2009, 01:13 PM   #3
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Right now I have a tendency to believe you're right!
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Old September 6th, 2009, 07:26 PM   #4
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The camera's factory default might not look all that colourful or sharp and contrasty, but it captures the widest spectrum of useful information and is designed to be worked on, in post. I am even beginning to like the reality look of the camera tapes.
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Old September 7th, 2009, 04:01 AM   #5
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Hi

There is an article written by another forum user which describes how to get the most out of the XH-A1 and to have as much recorded information to work with in post:

TrueColor configuration for XH A1

There is also a preset for this, TRUCOLOR, which also is described on the above link.


/Bo
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Old September 7th, 2009, 08:29 AM   #6
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Correct

Don, you're right, what matters is to capture the widest spectrum of useful information.
BO, thanks for the link, very useful
L.
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Old September 8th, 2009, 09:39 AM   #7
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Most of my shooting (event shooting) needs to be turned around as quick as possible, leaving no time for color correction. Before the event, I show a few examples of the presets and ask the client if they have a specific "look" they are after. Then I'll select the appropriate preset ahead of time and shoot away, limiting editing to dubbed audio and stills, transitions, and titles.

If I ever get off my duff and start shooting more creative works, I'd go without a preset and make the desired changes in post.
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Old September 8th, 2009, 10:49 AM   #8
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Call me crazy, but I think I like the image of the HV30, over the XH-A1, and in post don't see any difference. I was talking to a guy at B&H, and mentioned that to him, he just laughed and said "don't tell anybody that".

I'm considering selling my A1 and getting a couple more HV30's and a 35 mm adopter. Am I crazy?
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Old September 8th, 2009, 12:07 PM   #9
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Presets

I don't care for presets and don't use any of them. I experimented with a few but found them to be cumbersome and caused more work in post than I normally experience. So.......no presets for me!
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Old September 8th, 2009, 06:05 PM   #10
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Phil,
So you shoot with presets "off"?
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Old September 8th, 2009, 08:40 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Thames View Post
Call me crazy, but I think I like the image of the HV30, over the XH-A1, and in post don't see any difference. I was talking to a guy at B&H, and mentioned that to him, he just laughed and said "don't tell anybody that".

I'm considering selling my A1 and getting a couple more HV30's and a 35 mm adopter. Am I crazy?
The HV30 image is great as long as the lighting is reasonably good. The XH-A1 can work better in a wider range of lighting because of the amount of control it provides.

Richard
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Old September 9th, 2009, 07:30 AM   #12
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Does no preset really capture the widest spectrum of useful information?
I've been using a preset that looks almost identical to the factory setting but there is considerably less zebras (blown highlights) when shooting contrasting lighting. But it could just be my untrained eye.
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Old September 10th, 2009, 01:39 AM   #13
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Rashdan,

that is why the XH-A1 is so good. It has a wide range of parameters to adjust depending on the situation. I'm not a video professional, I am an video hobbyist. I used to shoot as flat as possible using the TRUCOLOR preset but it forced me to do so much manipulation in post so I decided to use preset more often. I'm mostly using VIVID or PANALOOK presets and adjust them depending on the situation to get the look I want which saves me time in post as I find color grading pretty difficult. But that's my workflow and of course other people use their systems different.

Regards,

/Bo
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Old September 10th, 2009, 05:59 AM   #14
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i have used the Trucolor preset for awhile (and am happy with it!), and just recently have been experimenting with color matching to a HV30. even white balanced in camera, it seems both cameras need CC to get a better white balance and get rid of color casts. i read that using the cinemode settings in the HV30 match better with the XHA1 in i forget which preset (#13???), but i found the cinemode to be anemic/soft, and even with extensive CC in post i could not make it either pleasing or match to the XHA1. I found when shooting 30f, the HV30 in TV with no other changes in camera can be matched really well with the XHA1 using Trucolor. i think i would have a hard time telling which camera is which... (maybe i don't have the best eyes...)
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Old September 10th, 2009, 07:13 AM   #15
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Bo what do you mean?

Bo you wrote: I used to shoot as flat as possible using the TRUCOLOR preset but it forced me to do so much manipulation in post so I decided to use preset more often"

What do you mean? Do you mean you have to color correct? That's the point isn't it?
You shoot TRUE COLOR then you try to find what you need in post?
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