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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 October 6th, 2009, 07:36 PM   #1
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First Try with XHA1

I filmed this for a friend, using (embarrasingly) the Green (Auto) setting of the XHA1. Didn't turn out too bad, if I say so myself. The side camera is an HV40, which also recorded the sound. I used Sony Vegas for my editing. The startup artifacts happened when I uploaded to MotionBox.

A Most Notorious Woman - The Second Proposal

Jeff Dillon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 6th, 2009, 07:55 PM   #2
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: North Conway, NH
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You know what? Everybody has to start somewhere. It's actually a smart and measured move to shoot letting the camera handle the details whilst you get used to using it. My guess is that as you shoot more you will take more of the control back from the camera. It's smart to limit the variables that one might mess up when one is early in the learning curve.

My first shoot with the A1 was two years ago this week at a local fair. With the weather warm, dressed in shorts and sneaks, I shot in full manual, missing some shots whilst groping for buttons and switches and blowing shots completely that would have been there for days. In wild conditions I now shoot in TV mode, with exposure lock at the ready if I need it.

I hadn't thought about it but I have the good fortune of celebrating my two year anniversary by recording the memories about a long dead race track from the legendary Ken Squire in the morning and three of the track's winning drivers in the afternoon. It's fitting, but I digress because I'm good at it.
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Old October 9th, 2009, 12:50 AM   #3
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I don't have much experience with filming performances like this but could give an important tip. In your clip the light conditions don't change so you could expect that the camera should get it right in auto settings but with a pitch black background and with the stage lighting on the front subjects it always tends to overexpose.
This is what I see with your footage as the camera gets it wrong, that's why it's very important that you at least handle the iris setting yourself. Best to do this is to have the camera in "tv mode" so you can lock the shutter and then set the iris to manual with the "exp lock" button. In this way the camera still does auto focus but with a well lit stage that shouldn"t be a problem.
Also be careful with the feedback you get from your lcd screen, use the zebra's to check overexposure on the face which is the most important area that you have to keep right exposed.
Next step would then be focusing manual, especially when the light changes the camera's focus will start to "hunt" which doesn't look nice, especially with hdv that is much more critical with focus then standard definition was. here it's best to zoom in, focus on the subject you want to remain sharp and zoom out again, then you can be sure it will stay in focus, even if they almost turn out the lights.
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Old October 21st, 2009, 12:47 PM   #4
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Location: Cleveland, Ohio
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That clip looks fine. Don't worry about using the auto settings on the camera - framing and composition are much more important, usually.

Plus for a situation like this, once I zoom in to focus, and then set my aperture - I wouldn't be messing with the camera much anyways.

Keep shooting.

Will Mahoney is offline   Reply With Quote
Old October 25th, 2009, 09:01 PM   #5
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If your shooting in a controled setting where lighting is not an issuie, the green box setting is fine. I use it frequently when in the right enviroment. Now granted, there will be many times when the green box is not the best setting to use. Especially in low light conditions.
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