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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 March 5th, 2007, 10:00 PM   #1
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Filter Kit for A1

What's anybodies recommendations for the A1. I'm trying to keep it in the $250 range.
thanks.
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Old March 6th, 2007, 03:07 AM   #2
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I`m using Cokin P Chinese analogue filters on my A1 that ran me under $70 including 3 stage filter holder with 3 stage stackable hood, polarizer, and set of 4 graduated filters.
Using matte boxes with A1 will prove difficult as the positioning of the on-board mic doesn`t allow vertical replacement of slide-in filters so one must turn the filter holder or matte box to the side to replace or remove a filter. In case of the Cokin P system it`s really easy to turn it sideways just make sure to align it afterwards. Also Cokin P system isn`t the most light proof out there so care must be taken to avoid flare when using vertically tunable graduated filters.

Cheers,
T
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Old March 6th, 2007, 03:43 AM   #3
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Have a look at the new Cokin's Mattebox :

http://www.cokin.com/ico6-mattebox.html

You can use either Cokin Z-pro 2mm resin filter (good for the price, so cheap!!) or 4x4 4mm glass filters from other brands (tiffen, hoya, ...).

This mattebox is light, you don't need rodes. Juts fix it to the lense with a cokin screw in adaptor. The package sells in France less than 500 including 3 Z-pro filters and adaptors of differents size (72mm, 82mm) .
I was about to buy a Vocas Mattebox & filterholder, but when I saw the Cokin Mattebox, I jumped on it. Great stuff.

Cheers,

Pascal
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Old March 6th, 2007, 04:27 PM   #4
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Canon Filters

Get the Canon FS-72U set. 3 Filters are included and it's made by Tiffen.
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Old March 6th, 2007, 08:48 PM   #5
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I have also purchased the FS-72U (Canon) set for the same reasons - it's made by Tiffen. And, it was very little more expensive than a Hoya set.
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Old March 6th, 2007, 10:50 PM   #6
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I called the Cokin USA distributor today and they couldn't tell me where I could find one of the new Cokin matteboxes. Doesn't show up in a search @ B&H. Anyone know where more info can be found?
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Old March 7th, 2007, 11:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthony Leong View Post
Get the Canon FS-72U set. 3 Filters are included and it's made by Tiffen.
this is gonna sounds really dumb but how do they attach? Do they screw on to the lens?
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Old March 7th, 2007, 11:32 PM   #8
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Yes, they screw in.
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Old January 4th, 2008, 10:40 AM   #9
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Does the Cokin P series come in a 72mm fit for the A1? I can only find a listing for 62mm and then a jump to 82mm? Is there an additional 72mm adaptor plate or something to get a fit to the A1?
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Old January 4th, 2008, 11:39 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James Jackson View Post
What's anybodies recommendations for the A1. I'm trying to keep it in the $250 range.
thanks.
James,

I understand your bugetary concerns but I would strongly caution you not to use resin filters on an HDV camera. They are not anywhere near the optical requirements to get the full HD use out of your camera. I get calls from people all the time who are looking for dealers to buy our new 4x4 glass kit that is very affordable and they tell me that they learned thier lesson the hard way with resin filters.

A proper matte box (there are plenty of low cost ones (under $500) out there from other companies) and glass filters will serve you far better and you won't be replacing your resin filters next year. I don't know of any professionals that use resin filters. Glass can be resurfaced from scratches several times unlike resin that once you get a little nick on it thats it.

Remember, it starts with the glass on your lens and only gets worse from there.

http://www.schneideroptics.com/Ecomm....aspx?CID=1431


Ryan Avery
Schneider Optics
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Old January 4th, 2008, 12:14 PM   #11
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Any second opinions on this (glass vs. resin) by someone who doesn't sell anything?
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Old January 4th, 2008, 11:52 PM   #12
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Many low cost and all resin filters are not coated. Unlike some still sessions, with video you mostly can't go back to recreate it. IMO you need multi coated filters.
Cheers.
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Old January 5th, 2008, 02:51 AM   #13
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Remember that the quality of an optical system can be quickly degraded by anything in the path; if you are at all concerned about the quality of a given lens, be just as concerned about the quality of your filter choices, just as Ryan indicates. Glass filters are the only logical choice for HD cameras.

A pola would be my first choice, and the A1 will do just fine with a linear polarizer (I do not believe that there are any cameras in this class that require circular polas, however this continues to come up). A UV filter is a typical choice for a leave-on-and-forget filter, but it should be understood that even the best UV or clear filter is still another glass element that is being added into the optical path, and may affect flaring, reflections and other abberrations. If you use your camera in adverse conditions and cannot always guarantee the safety of your front element, it may be a worthwhile compromise. In the film industry, we don't use protective filters unless there is a possibility of damage on a given shot (explosion, water, squibs etc) and even lens caps are only used to protect the lens in the case. Investing in a decent mattebox (and they are MUCH more affordable than they used to be, thanks to competition in the marketplace and folks willing to manufacture and sell their designs with virtually no apparent markup) will be a sound investment, as any filter and all lenses for that matter benefit from being shaded from ambient and direct light. Make sure your mattebox has a good articulated eyebrow, and preferably sideflaps as well.

Beyond that, I'm not sure of the utility of the Canon designated .8 ND filter for most applications. The camera itself has built-in 1/6 and 1/32 filters, which translate to 2.5 and 5 stops of ND respectively. A .8 ND is close to 3 stops, so it duplicates the effect of the first filter position. A more useful filter would probably be an ND.3 (one stop), as it would allow for a more subtle range of ND possibilities when used in conjunction with the built-ins:

1 stop (N3 glass filter
2.5 stops (Built-in filter 1)
3.5 stops (Built-in filter 1 and N3 glass filter)
5 stops (Built-in filter 2)
6 stops (Built-in filter 2 and N3 glass filter)

When performing a shot that travels from exterior to interior, often the entire aperture range of the camera will be used from wide open to stopped down, and it is critical to be able to fine-tune the ND that may be used to set the optimal range.

These days it is becoming increasingly popular to use post filters to duplicate the effect of many of the typical color, diffusion and contrast filters, and certainly that science is progressing by leaps and bounds. I used to use the Tiffen Ultracons with video but haven't in years. If you intend on shooting a lot of landscapes where no actors will be passing in front of the sky, ND grads can be useful to equalize exposures and color grads may enhance the effects, however these can become quite expensive to collect as a variety are needed (soft and hard grads depending on focal length) and often the effect can again be recreated in post these days. For a lockoff landscape shot I will generally bracket my exposures, doing a stopped-down sky pass which can then be combined in post to the desired degree.
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Old January 10th, 2008, 06:47 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Papert View Post
Remember that the quality of an optical system can be quickly degraded by anything in the path; if you are at all concerned about the quality of a given lens, be just as concerned about the quality of your filter choices, just as Ryan indicates. Glass filters are the only logical choice for HD cameras.

A pola would be my first choice, and the A1 will do just fine with a linear polarizer (I do not believe that there are any cameras in this class that require circular polas, however this continues to come up). A UV filter is a typical choice for a leave-on-and-forget filter, but it should be understood that even the best UV or clear filter is still another glass element that is being added into the optical path, and may affect flaring, reflections and other abberrations. If you use your camera in adverse conditions and cannot always guarantee the safety of your front element, it may be a worthwhile compromise. In the film industry, we don't use protective filters unless there is a possibility of damage on a given shot (explosion, water, squibs etc) and even lens caps are only used to protect the lens in the case. Investing in a decent mattebox (and they are MUCH more affordable than they used to be, thanks to competition in the marketplace and folks willing to manufacture and sell their designs with virtually no apparent markup) will be a sound investment, as any filter and all lenses for that matter benefit from being shaded from ambient and direct light. Make sure your mattebox has a good articulated eyebrow, and preferably sideflaps as well.

Beyond that, I'm not sure of the utility of the Canon designated .8 ND filter for most applications. The camera itself has built-in 1/6 and 1/32 filters, which translate to 2.5 and 5 stops of ND respectively. A .8 ND is close to 3 stops, so it duplicates the effect of the first filter position. A more useful filter would probably be an ND.3 (one stop), as it would allow for a more subtle range of ND possibilities when used in conjunction with the built-ins:

1 stop (N3 glass filter
2.5 stops (Built-in filter 1)
3.5 stops (Built-in filter 1 and N3 glass filter)
5 stops (Built-in filter 2)
6 stops (Built-in filter 2 and N3 glass filter)

When performing a shot that travels from exterior to interior, often the entire aperture range of the camera will be used from wide open to stopped down, and it is critical to be able to fine-tune the ND that may be used to set the optimal range.

These days it is becoming increasingly popular to use post filters to duplicate the effect of many of the typical color, diffusion and contrast filters, and certainly that science is progressing by leaps and bounds. I used to use the Tiffen Ultracons with video but haven't in years. If you intend on shooting a lot of landscapes where no actors will be passing in front of the sky, ND grads can be useful to equalize exposures and color grads may enhance the effects, however these can become quite expensive to collect as a variety are needed (soft and hard grads depending on focal length) and often the effect can again be recreated in post these days. For a lockoff landscape shot I will generally bracket my exposures, doing a stopped-down sky pass which can then be combined in post to the desired degree.
Charles, well said. . .

Also, it is true that you do not need a circular polarizer for any HDV camera on the market today. A circular polarizer is a linear polarizer with a 1/4 wave plate installed to confuse the beam splitters present in video tap systems on 35mm motion picture and 35mm still cameras.

Ryan Avery
Schneider Optics
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Old March 4th, 2008, 05:28 AM   #15
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I purchased a Cokin P series filter holder and I'm looking forward to giving it some serious testing. Obviously the factory lens hood does not fit with the filter holder in place, can anyone recommend a suitable replacement hood that will fit with the cokin holder?
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