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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 February 9th, 2007, 05:00 PM   #16
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This is a great thread! I am in the midst of "should I keep my DVXA or sell it and buy an HDV cam." Upon looking over all the offerings I really like the A1 as well. I owned three XL1s a few years back and I loved them. So, I know Canon makes great stuff.

I'd like to know more about the VF compared between the two. The A1 looks really tiny next to the DVX. How is it using the VF?

Also, tell me about black and white. Is it usable? I like the B&W on the DVX and use it a lot. Doesn't the A1 have a B&W setting?

This all comes down to focus ability in the end. As any of you DVX users know, the flip out is better for focus than the VF. I went from a standard DVX to the "A" model and the best feature Panny added was the EVF Detail. I think it should not even have and on and off switch--it should be used all the time.

What is the focus assist like on the A1? I agree with Charles, you have to be able to focus even more critically with HD. I have come to rely on the flip out on my DVX for about 95% of my shooting. If the A1 flip out is marginal that is a big deal to me.
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Old February 9th, 2007, 05:38 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dom Stevenson
Thanks Philip. MY A1 is coming in a few days, but the rather manic response of the focus annoyed me when playing with the camera in the shop. The gain ring seemed to suffer from a similar lack of nuanced control. Anything to be done about that?
Hmm... not sure about the iris ring. I don't remember seeing a sensitivity adjustment for it, but I didn't have any problems using it so I didn't specifically look for it.

One nice thing I did find was that I could change all the rings to work in the opposite direction, which for some reason seemed more natural to my brain. I kept zooming and focusing the wrong way :)
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Old February 9th, 2007, 05:42 PM   #18
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I can focus just fine using the peaking function. I'm not sure why people say you can't get good focus with the LCD.
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Old February 9th, 2007, 06:19 PM   #19
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I'm not sure the size of the flip out viewfinder is that big of a deal. While the dvx's is bigger, the resolution is about the same (just the pixels are packed tighter on the A1). So unless your eyes are going, I doubt that there is really much of a difference in focusability, although I agree with the others in that the DVX alway "felt" easier to focus than any of the canon cameras, I think this is just an illusion caused by the size of the screen.

I've never had a problem achieving precise manual focus with either the h1 or a1, with or without the focus aids turned on, and the autofocus feature on the a1 works pretty darn well, certainly better at the shorter end of the zoom, but quite well until you get up into 20x land.
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Old February 10th, 2007, 11:51 AM   #20
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The flipout LCD is not as big as some but it's super sharp. I most always focus with the viewfinder and never even use the peaking or magnification. The LCD is sharp enough to focus with it if you want. I tried it out during an interview shoot to see how it was and I was pleasantly surprised. You can zoom in, focus, zoom back and all is well, just like normal focusing with the viewfinder. The peaking and magnification are good but I haven't found them all that necessary yet.
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Old February 10th, 2007, 11:58 AM   #21
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All the time I keep wondering why are everybody talking about too small LCDs and how bad those are for focusing but I just realized that it`s because I`ve used to use manual f1.2 lens in my 35mm still photography. That shouldn`t be tried at home.
So it really depends on the users`s background.

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Old February 10th, 2007, 12:16 PM   #22
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I agree. To me the LCD is spectacular. I'm accustomed to 2/3" chip bigger cameras that don't have one, so any LCD looks great. Also, I don't see why people say it's difficult to focus cameras when you're shooting HDV. Focus is focus; it's either in or it's out.
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