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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 20th, 2010, 04:56 PM   #1
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Steadicam Merlin w' XH A1S

I finally was able to purchase a Merlin for my XH A1S...it's really difficult for me to get it to settle down. I have had it for a week and I have checked the Merlin Cookbook for settings. I am using the stock battery and it just won't calm down..I think it's a bad match..the camera is just too heavy for the Merlin.
Please help with any "secrets of the masters".

Merry Christmas

Joe
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Old December 20th, 2010, 07:52 PM   #2
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It's not too heavy. I added a sizable light on top that really moves the C.G. and still am able to balance it well. Have your read the manual, viewed the training DVD? You have to get a proper drop time for sure to keep it from swaying. You will find the guide ring adjustment to be important to fine tuning to get the final solution. It is best to have a stand to put it on while trying to balance it to limit the number of battles you are fighting. There is an arm you can buy which is not too expensive and will mount on any light stand, definitely a must buy.
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Old December 21st, 2010, 05:57 AM   #3
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I use my Merlin with an XH A1. I really haven't spent that much time with it but I have got it to work fine.

The main secret, as far as I can tell, is to set it up roughly, using the cookbook settings, and then to fine tune it with the rotating adjuster on the swivel. The way I conceptualise it is that the centre of gravity of the camera has to be lifted up until it is just about to become top heavy on the swivel. And then it floats properly.

At the same time you need to adjust the pitch and roll screws to keep the camera centred on the swivel point ie not tipping forward, backward or right, left.

So, it's a combination of using both of these sets of controls to raise the camera up, whilst keeping it centred and level on the swivel, until it gets high enough above the swivel that the pendulum effect disappears and the camera begins to float. First a bit of one and then a bit of the other. And so on until it is right.

Does that make sense? Possibly not! If it is confusing, I apologise, but it's the best explanation I can come up with.

BTW I have always used the smallest battery.
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Old December 21st, 2010, 11:15 AM   #4
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Thanks to all for your responces...I guess it's just a matter of putting in the time before the light bulb goes on. It's reassuring to hear that it can be done..I was beginning to think I bought myself the wrong Christmas gift!

Happy New Year

Joe
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Old December 21st, 2010, 02:00 PM   #5
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Tutorial by Shiv Kumar

Hi Joe,

I used the tutorial of Shiv Kumar (Canon XHA1 and Steadicam Merlin ? Tutorial By Shiv Kumar On ExposureRoom) to use the Merlin with my XH A1 and that worked pretty fast and fine. Working with the Merlin will take a lot of practice and exercise (because of the weight) but it works fine and you can make nice shots with this combination.

Regards,

Robert
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