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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 November 28th, 2010, 02:27 PM   #1
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I hate Grain!!!

Hello all, I have been using the XHA1 for two years now. I have also used this forum as a great source of information but I still seem to get grain in all my shoots. I have the XHA1, I have auto gain turned off and set to 0 or -3. I usually use AV or TV settings with my F-stop in the 2.0-2.4 range. I will use three point lighting with 2 extra softbox fills. I will shoot in HD 30-F. I can make everything in the frame look well light but I ALWAYS get bad grain when I shoot black colors. Any help would be great. Thank You
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Old November 28th, 2010, 02:36 PM   #2
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Use daylight balanced light.
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Old November 28th, 2010, 05:24 PM   #3
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Are you taking about grain in shadows of otherwise well lit scenes, or garin in shadows or dark scenes.

Is this a random grain (e.g., thermal noise) or a fixed pattern grain that may be dark current leakage of the CCD?

Slow shutter speeds will increase the visibility of dark current grain.

Have you tried coring adjustment?
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Old November 28th, 2010, 07:40 PM   #4
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I recall a similar experience when my A1 came back from factory service for the handgrip recall. They reset the camera to factory everything. Fortunately, I had backed up my custom profiles. One thing I had totally forgotten about was how off the LCD brightness is from what gets recorded. You really have to turn the brightness down if you use it to judge exposure. On the custom preset idea, try the attached. THose two things got my A1 back as it had been.
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File Type: cpf PRESET10.CPF (40 Bytes, 213 views)
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Old December 1st, 2010, 10:37 AM   #5
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Thank You

Thank you for such fast responses. I have not yet been able to adjust the settings. I plan on restoring both cameras back to the factory settings and working my way from there.
Don: Yes I seem to have grain in almost all dark areas. I like to play with dramatic lighting and all my scenes seem to have grain. I try the Sony HVR-A1U and I don't see as much grain as I do in both of my XHA1. The grain appears to be random.

Les: I will try the preset after I set the camera back to the original settings.

I will let you know if anything worked.
Thank you again!
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Old December 7th, 2010, 06:18 PM   #6
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Try to set yout coring to a higher level and set Noise Reduction 2 to middle/medium

Cheers
Shelton.
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Old December 8th, 2010, 01:47 PM   #7
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I came to the forum today to post the same thing as Kevin. I HATE GRAIN! In the past I have tried to use the NR2 setting, later to find it left a very noticeable and unpredictable motion blur effect. After that almost ruined a full day of filming I have been afraid to try any presets.
Will the core setting have the same effect?
Also, does the LCD setting have any effect on the recording, or is it that it adds grain that isn't really there?

Like Kevin, "I like to play with dramatic lighting and all my scenes seem to have grain"
Is this Camera just not able to achieve what I am wanting?
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Old December 8th, 2010, 05:55 PM   #8
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Quote:
"I like to play with dramatic lighting and all my scenes seem to have grain"
...I have been afraid to try any presets...
Is this Camera just not able to achieve what I am wanting?
Dramatic effects like high contrast can bring out grain. (Some people may want it for a Tri-X B&W film image like effect.) The adjustments, they can be saved as custom presets, are there for a purpose, so you can use them and find what combination of settings produce the image effects you are trying to achieve. Do not expect factory default setting to produce that special image you want, they are purposefully rather neutral and flat. The factory presets are, well, factory and are optimum for only some narrow range of situations and end results.

Learn to use the tool before trying something for the first time on a money shoot. Spend some time learning what each adjustment does, how they interact- adjust shoot, view, repeat until done. Read what other have posted of the past few years the machine has been in use, and then figure out what works for you. It takes time to become an accomplished performer/operator with any tool - unless you are content with point and shoot.

As to what effect coring has, try it and see. It is not like the NRs. NR2 may soften the image, NR1 may cause motion trails, and slow shutter may cause motion blur.

You may be able to use a tool like NeatVideo to clean up some noise and grain effects.
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Old December 10th, 2010, 06:54 PM   #9
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Hey Don, thanks for the help. You have convince me to give the presets another try. I know they have a lot to offer. Like you said, I just need to take the time to test them and see.
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Old December 10th, 2010, 07:45 PM   #10
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Hi

I have noticed some good results when I turned Coring to about 4 or 5 and NR2 to middle - I had 'dancing' pixels and this setting removed them

When I get a chance I will post two videos to illustrate the difference.

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Old December 10th, 2010, 08:40 PM   #11
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check out Neat Video; its a bit intensive on the PC hardware, but worth every penny; its FAR better than anything CS4/CS5 includes standard. I also have an XH A1 and find it incredibly grainy; Neat Video has saved many +6 gain shots.

NR/noise reduction i always leave off; i would rather work with a noisy image than a blurred one; plus post work filtering is always higher quality than in-camera work.

check out the demo; try a Neat Video filtered shot with NR1/NR2 off and compare it to a shot with NR1/NR2 at your favored settings.
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Old December 12th, 2010, 11:37 AM   #12
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Also try using the TRU COLOR Preset. I did that and my image looks 10x better then it did before. You can find the preset settings online. All i remember is the sharpness is turned to -9.
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Old December 12th, 2010, 11:40 AM   #13
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So I did some testing of the presets that are available here in the download library. I did the test in low light with a white card with black squares. I wanted to find a preset that removed grain without soften the image to much and without leaving that blur trail from movement.
The winner is "average film look" it did a great job and had a nice look to it. I went in and removed the color matrix for my purposes.
And Shelton is right, Coring to about 4 and NR2 to middle.
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Old January 5th, 2011, 09:09 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Duggan View Post
So I did some testing of the presets that are available here in the download library. I did the test in low light with a white card with black squares. I wanted to find a preset that removed grain without soften the image to much and without leaving that blur trail from movement.
The winner is "average film look" it did a great job and had a nice look to it. I went in and removed the color matrix for my purposes.
And Shelton is right, Coring to about 4 and NR2 to middle.

Thank-you for confirming that Jack.

Cheers
Shelton.
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