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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 10th, 2007, 04:01 PM   #91
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My A1 has just arrived 4pm east coast time along with a V1. So I will shoot for the next three days to compare side by side. My first results will not be up until tomorrow late day or early Sat.
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Old May 11th, 2007, 05:12 PM   #92
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I had the opportunity to take 4 hours with the A1 today. I also ran the V1 but did not run tape in the V1 but did in the A1. I do not want to reduce the value of the V1 camera for the retailer if I return which I plan on doing.

Well the report from Canon which was in the box with the camera said they made sure the A1 was to spec. I don’t know if this means they made a change or if it was to spec when it arrived. I have not had a clear answer on this with Canon yet. My suspicion is they reset the camera to specs because it is different.

I will have time to post some clips late in the day tomorrow from what I shot today and what I will shoot tomorrow. Right now I am trying to keep a few clients happy in the spring boating rush.

Quick summary of today:
Both cameras hooked up by component each to a Dell 24” native resolution 1920 x 1200 with a window in my office open to out side and each on a tripod. The day was perfect sun and clouds so lots of changing and great spring colors. Setting the cameras very close to each other and 100% zooming in on the same item I found the Sony was noisy out of the box. So at this point I was more interested in resolving the Canon issue so the Sony sat in factory setting.

After all the constructive input in this forum, checking other post, and talking to close friends who shoot a lot I decided I was over exposing and closing the iris too much while shooting. So my goal was don’t close more then 5.6 at full zoom and stay open even more if possible. When zoomed wider not a problem just at 75% - 99% of max zoom it seems like a problem. This made a huge difference in clarity of the image no matter what the preset. So after finding this I ordered .6 and 1.2 HD-ND filters. Since I shoot in bright light and would rather use a ND filter on the front of the camera then the in camera ND to reduce the light and keep the noise to a minimum. Does this make sense? It seems to me at full zoom in bright light the ND’s on the camera help yes to reduce the light but also add noise which seem to contribute to the movement I was seeing. I can only see this while doing the changes monitoring on the 24” on the 2.5” I can not see the difference.

Next I found to keep the focus on MF all the time. Sure use IAF to get close but at that point go manual to fine tune and use magnification to get the first grab then dial in with MF. At full zoom the AF hunts too much for me. This makes me realize I need an on camera monitor. I have received great advice on this product and will purchase next week so focus will be much easier. Next in Custom Functions I adjusted the Focus Ring Control to slow, Focus Priority off, and Zoom Indicator to numbers. All of this helped in having better control of fast MF.

At this point you are saying what about the grainy/noise/movement I was complaining about. Well it was not a problem with the custom presets one Steve’s Vivid and a new one I am working on for bright conditions on the water with fast action (I will post when I am happy with the results and done testing) plus all the camera presets. But on the factory setting with preset off it is too soft and it seems to have minor grain and noise at full zoom. But as I said in the second paragraph the camera seems much better and I am getting different results then prior to sending the camera to Canon. Is this due to my new setting some what but not only, I think they reset the factory settings. And by the way Canon FedEx overnight back to me very nice!

So am I happy with my first 4 hr test. Yes this camera gives me more control then I ever thought possible in a HDV camera. Do I miss my Z1 not now, but the Z1 is an excellent camera I have just changed my path. Now it is time to refine my finding and do some structured test out side the office and post some results. It sure would be nice to bring the 24” monitor on the road but I guess a 7” will be just fine.

More soon and if you are considering a A1 buy it!
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Last edited by Paul Cronin; May 12th, 2007 at 09:17 AM.
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Old May 13th, 2007, 05:15 PM   #93
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Reading my last post I meant to much ND and iris too closed not over exposed.

This is a hand held clip with my DvMulti rig which I use a lot. Not the best content but shows how much better on first try the camera is at full zoom and a range of focus.
30F
3.4 iris
60 shutter
1 camera ND
Gain off
Manual focus from 10 meters to infinity
IAF off
Focus priority off
Vivid preset
Custom Function with focus ring at slow

Sorry for the late post I have been overloaded. And Chris I did not look to see the .wmv file size.
I have been trying to do too many things at once this weeked.

More clips coming this week if any one is interested?

I had to re-enter the time zone, date, and time in the camera when it came back from Canon. Does this happen on a reboot? I know on reset all it does not happen.
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Last edited by Paul Cronin; August 10th, 2007 at 09:01 AM.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 09:50 AM   #94
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Three frame grabs from a shoot last night with the A1.

I can not seem to solve the aspect ratio problem with frame grabs from Avid Liquid. They are in the right aspect ratio and size in Liquid but when I switch them to any other software they are squeezed. This happens even though they are the correct size. Thoughts?

Also I can not seem to upload .bmp files so I switch to .jpg. Both are with in the size requirements but maybe this is related to the Liquid problem.

It was a wild evening with the colors and haze.

30F
60 shutter
Iris 3.4 - 6.7
Formatt 1.2 ND filter
All are very close to full zoom
Two are auto focus and one is manual
Vivid preset except the dark is my preset
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Last edited by Paul Cronin; May 16th, 2007 at 01:20 PM.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 10:08 AM   #95
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Regarding aspect ratio:

Open up stills in Photoshop
From top menu, go to IMAGE->IMAGE SIZE
Uncheck CONSTRAIN PROPORTIONS
Enter "1920" in the WIDTH box
Resave image

The original still is an anamorphic image that gets unsqueezed on your TV screen and your pixel aspect ratio is 1.33. When you resize in Photoshop you are creating a square pixel image that is non-anamorphic and can be viewed with the proper proportions.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 10:48 AM   #96
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so have you solved your 'wavy' issues? Was the solution canon tweaking it? Or your new knowledge of tweaking other stuff in camera? My A1 comes in today, guess I`ll have to test stuff like this very early on.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 10:58 AM   #97
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Thanks Steve I will do that and repost the pictures.

Nathan,
I think Canon did a change in the camera. As I said in a post above the camera had a reboot due to time zone, date, and time needing to be reset. Right out of the box it shot differently with more control over the image. Thank You Canon!

For me to go out and shoot the same settings in the same location yes it is not the same day but I do not seem to have the problem. Now I am just concentrating on tuning my skills for the years to come.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 12:04 PM   #98
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Cronin View Post

Formatt 1.2 ND filter
t
Where you using a polarizer whem you had the original problem?

The reason I ask is because I have a Cavision 4x4 polarizer that you can't zoom through without getting double images.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 01:36 PM   #99
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Doug I was not using a polarizer but will keep a look out for the same problem since I do use one at times. I just started using the .6 and 1.2 ND's on the A1.

Here are the three pics and proper aspect ratio thanks to Steve. I do still have to change to .jpg over .bmp since .bmp fails to upload.
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Last edited by Paul Cronin; August 10th, 2007 at 09:01 AM.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 01:51 PM   #100
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This camera's settings as it comes from the factory the black are so stretched.
Here is a manipulated image.
Attached Images
 
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Old May 16th, 2007, 01:59 PM   #101
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That shot was me testing my preset. Also this was just as a dark cloud came overhead. So you are saying I should change the black stretch to press not mid?
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Old May 16th, 2007, 03:14 PM   #102
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To be honest with you, I use Steven's VIVIVRGB. This camera has too many setting and I don't have time to do the trial and error sequence.

The settings on this camera are more of an engineers settings. I have my Sony and Panasonic matched with just racing the color a bit.

I entered Steven's settings manually and there are a lot of things to change.
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