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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 May 19th, 2015, 06:27 PM   #1
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Noisy Footage. Last resort before sending my old Canon off for repair.

Hoping someone can give me some advice about Canon's tape based xh a1(s). I get a terribly noisy image in what seems like any light or any setting. I've read a lot about this camera having a lot of noise or "grain" issues out of the box, but most people put their presets in and they say their footage looks fine. Of course, my AGC is off, low gain setting is set to -3db and I don't use the ND filter. I've also gone through and customized the coring and such according to some peoples' specifications for noise reduction. Still get the noise.

Posted some pics below. I'm using manual focus, 30fps, -3 gain, 3.2F, shutter 1/60. The first picture was taken with a custom preset and the parameters are shown below it. The second picture of the mantle was taken with the VividRGB preset and its parameters are below (sorry they're sideways, whoops). The last picture is just a shot of my TV to show what my camera typically does with blacks. Actually it does it with all colors but it's most visible with blacks. I could upload more pictures, but I've never had one come out without this dancing noise, despite using different settings. Could it be my exposure or something else I'm not tweaking correctly? I'm hoping I'm missing something here.

Xha1 - Album on Imgur


Obviously any help is greatly appreciated. I'm hoping to avoid spending the money on a DSLR for a little while longer. This camera is still well liked for it's on-the-job versatility, among other things. Also, even though I've never been happy with the footage, this camera was a gift and has sentimental value to me. Maybe somebody can tell me what I'm missing before I send it to Canon. Thanks.
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Old May 19th, 2015, 07:46 PM   #2
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Re: Noisy Footage. Last resort before sending my old Canon off for repair.

Stills aren't very useful for demonstrating noise levels. Could you potentially upload the video of those clips?
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Old May 19th, 2015, 09:19 PM   #3
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Re: Noisy Footage. Last resort before sending my old Canon off for repair.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ys0ccsoiws...Info3.mp4?dl=0

Here's some footage with similar settings and plenty of light. 30fps, 1/60 shutter, -3db, Higher F-Stop, I'm guessing it was somewhere between 6 or 7. Even viewing the clip over the internet, you can see the noise crawling all over the shot. All my stuff looks like this.
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Old May 19th, 2015, 10:54 PM   #4
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Re: Noisy Footage. Last resort before sending my old Canon off for repair.

It actually doesn't look worse than I would expect from that camera. Has it ever not looked like this? Do you have any clips that contrast with the noise level apparent in this?
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Old May 20th, 2015, 06:17 AM   #5
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Re: Noisy Footage. Last resort before sending my old Canon off for repair.

It doesn't look any worse than I would expect from my XH-A1, either. In fact, it doesn't look al that bad at all. Maybe I'm missing something in your clip.
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Old May 20th, 2015, 04:06 PM   #6
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Re: Noisy Footage. Last resort before sending my old Canon off for repair.

It's more apparent if you download the clip. The streaming sort of blotches out the noise. The best example of what I'm talking about is the last photo in the album I posted. Dark colors look completely terrible. Everything else looks like that too, it's just more obvious with the darker colors. The result is a dull, soft staticky image that is, to me, completely unusable. Thanks for your help, guys. I'll upload some more video as soon as I can.
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Old May 20th, 2015, 09:54 PM   #7
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Re: Noisy Footage. Last resort before sending my old Canon off for repair.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy Gray View Post
It's more apparent if you download the clip.
That's the way I watched it.

Quote:
The result is a dull, soft staticky image that is, to me, completely unusable.
The lack of lighting is the biggest problem with the image. That's what makes an image look dull. Noise levels look normal to me on my calibrated display.

Quote:
I'll upload some more video as soon as I can.
Video of your XH-A1 that looks like you think it should in similar conditions? I would still like to know if the camera has ever looked like you wanted it too and what the situation was it was in.
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Old May 24th, 2015, 04:33 AM   #8
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Re: Noisy Footage. Last resort before sending my old Canon off for repair.

Looking at the MP4, the image is problematic. I agree the lighting is the major issue, not the camcorder
The background lamp blows out the whites into super white, on the order of 108 IRE.
The face is poorly lit, with highlights under 40 IRE, abut half what one might expect.
It also reduces the luminance range available for other image detail.
Not a combination that will produce a good looking if the human face is the point of interest.
But if that is the effect you are trying to achieve ...
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