Is it a good idea to buy an XL2 now?? at DVinfo.net

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Canon XL and GL Series DV Camcorders
Canon XL2 / XL1S / XL1 and GL2 / XM2 / GL1 / XM1.


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Old June 24th, 2008, 11:41 PM   #1
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Is it a good idea to buy an XL2 now??

Well I've notice the price is pretty good right now. I don't have a new 3 chip camera just a couple of 1 chips. If I ever need something good to shoot with I have a few friends to call which most are HD cameras.

So am I nuts for wanting to buy this now when there is so many HD stuff floating around???

I really do enjoy shooting with the H1 when I can , but I would really like my own to shoot with even if it is a DV camera. I just don't think I could afford the $8500 right now...my last fullsize camera I bought was the JVC X2 in 1996 so its been awhile since I went in on a good one.

I'll still have to put it on visa though.....and I don't have many jobs coming in either....

My brain is locked up and I can't think any further on it....


thanks,
Tony B.
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Old June 25th, 2008, 06:30 PM   #2
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Despite what the TV manufacturers would have you believe, there are still FAR more SD TV sets out there than HD. I bought my XL2 RATHER than an HD cam because it gives a high-quality image, has the degree of customization I wanted, and does it for less than half the cost of an HD camera with equivalent functions.

SD processing demands are considerably lower than editing in HD. This saves $$$ when setting up an editing computer. I use Premiere CS3, which supports HD and BluRay, so while I'm working in SD, everything I learn will move right over when I eventually go HD.

Delivery can be on regular DVD. Priced a BluRay burner and blank BluRay media yet? That's an eye-opener. Maybe in five years the price will approach what I think is reasonable. For now, I'll stick with my less-than-50-cent blank DVDs and my $49 SATA DVD write drive.

If all you want to do is shoot home videos using the auto settings, go buy a cheap HD camcorder. No point in buying a Ferarri when all you need is a golf cart. The XL2, while "technically" obsolete, will let you leave the nanny modes of operation and let you learn how to "make" a shot, not just "take" a shot.

The XL2 manual will scare the crap out of a novice user. It's when you move out of the Auto mode and move into the settings where you have to think that you discover how to get the look you envisioned. The good news is that all the different settings are easily accessible on the XL2. I've used other cameras that had similar features, but adjusting the settings meant having to wade through on-screen menus, where on the XL2 you just moved a knob or switch.

My take on the XL2 is that it's a good camera to get started on if you're serious about video, and will deliver a solid quality image once you've gotten to the point where you are comfortable with the camera. SD still has a few years of life left in it, while HD equipment will probably go through so many changes in the next few years that anything you buy today will be considered "quaint" in a few months.

Just my take.

Martin
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Old June 25th, 2008, 06:54 PM   #3
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I just bought a used one, and got what I think was a pretty decent deal. Set it up for 24p, 16:9 and a few other tweaks, and went out and shot for a day with it while visiting my parents. Took the footage back to the house and played it back on my father's 42 widescreen HD LCD set right from the camera (sent the video in SD via the SVHS cable). The footage looked fabulous. Super sharp, super colors. I bet it will look even better when I get around editing it and burning it to DVD!

I do television production for my living, and my dad did too for many years. We were both quite impressed with the IQ.

-Geren

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roy Beazley View Post
Well I've notice the price is pretty good right now. I don't have a new 3 chip camera just a couple of 1 chips. If I ever need something good to shoot with I have a few friends to call which most are HD cameras.

So am I nuts for wanting to buy this now when there is so many HD stuff floating around???

I really do enjoy shooting with the H1 when I can , but I would really like my own to shoot with even if it is a DV camera. I just don't think I could afford the $8500 right now...my last fullsize camera I bought was the JVC X2 in 1996 so its been awhile since I went in on a good one.

I'll still have to put it on visa though.....and I don't have many jobs coming in either....

My brain is locked up and I can't think any further on it....


thanks,
Tony B.
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Old June 25th, 2008, 09:27 PM   #4
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I love my XL2...have had it about 4 years now. But it is getting a little long in the tooth. That said, I am holding out for either the XLH2 (That I hope has solid state recording capabilities) or in about a year will go to the EX1 or EX3 by Sony.
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Old June 25th, 2008, 10:47 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Catt View Post
Despite what the TV manufacturers would have you believe, there are still FAR more SD TV sets out there than HD.

SD processing demands are considerably lower than editing in HD.

Delivery can be on regular DVD. Priced a BluRay burner and blank BluRay media yet? That's an eye-opener. Maybe in five years the price will approach what I think is reasonable.

The XL2, while "technically" obsolete, will let you leave the nanny modes of operation and let you learn how to "make" a shot, not just "take" a shot.


SD still has a few years of life left in it, while HD equipment will probably go through so many changes in the next few years that anything you buy today will be considered "quaint" in a few months.

Just my take.

Martin

Yes Martin exactly what's been going around in my head ..I do believe SD has at least 3 more years left.
And I am so use to shooting with all the XL series.

But that Scarlet cam from RED is buzzing around my head.... I doubt if I can wait that long for it....

The reason I need to get one is I never have a camera to practice with...so I go into a shoot with whatever I can get from a friend......nerve racking sometimes especially with all the buttons on each camera....what a headache....

thanks for the rest of the replies from the members I'll let this sink in for a week.....

Tony B.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 11:08 AM   #6
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Hi Roy,

Martin brings up some great points. Not everyone has the ability to view HD content yet. My clients specifically don't care whether or not their stuff is on HD or SD, as long as it looks good.

But you also bring up a good point...form factor. If you are used to shooting with the XL series, why not buy a cam that you're comfortable with? When we decided to buy a camera it came down to the Panny DVX100 or the XL2. I've had the same amount of experience operating the two cams, which was very little. But we liked the XL2's form factor a bit better than the DVX, so we bought the XL2 instead.

Also, if you have access to an XL2 (or H1) already, why not continue "playing" with the cams until you can afford an XLH1?

Best,
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Old June 27th, 2008, 03:25 PM   #7
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Hi Jeff,
I do understand to try and keep using my friends cameras when I can :) but I feel weird to keep asking to use them. Sometimes I don't get enough money to split up for a good favor so I might come out ahead if I did get my own cam soon.
I'm not even sure if I will be in the states til the end of the year so if I go to another country to take photos I might not need it then.....

My town has totally dried up as video work goes ....looks like I have alot of decision making and juggling to do in the next 3 months.....


Thanks Jeff,

Tony B.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 06:55 PM   #8
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Hi Roy,

Aside from my last post, that's how we bought an XL2 in the first place: borrowing the camera from a friend :)

If you don't think you're going to be around, maybe consider buying a used XL2 instead?

Best,
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Old June 27th, 2008, 07:38 PM   #9
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I just set out a check for a used one today! Great deal I think, camera, wide angle, rain cover, and extra batteries. all for $1850.00.

I have a GL2 and was thinking of going HD but my T.V. guy told me that they will broad cast in HD but most all show will be up converted to HD and I should not worry about HD for 2-3 years.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 09:40 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Anselmo View Post
Hi Roy,

Aside from my last post, that's how we bought an XL2 in the first place: borrowing the camera from a friend :)

If you don't think you're going to be around, maybe consider buying a used XL2 instead?

Best,

good idea....thanks Jeff.
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Old June 27th, 2008, 09:46 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Williams View Post
I just set out a check for a used one today! Great deal I think, camera, wide angle, rain cover, and extra batteries. all for $1850.00.

man that is a sweet deal....where are these for sale at? anymore hopefully..?

Tony
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Old June 28th, 2008, 11:59 AM   #12
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I am doing a living shooting with an XL2 for three years now and will continu for another year and a half before to go to HD for sure. So yes, it is still the time to get an XL2 and have one of the best SD tool in hand.
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Old July 5th, 2008, 05:57 AM   #13
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Is the XL2 a fantastic camera? Yes!!! Would I buy one now? No!

Well I own one, but if I didn't I would choose something else in the HD domain.

People may clame that SD still is dominant in broadcasting, and majority of TV's in peoples homes are standard NTCS/Pal.

All that is pretty irellevant.. Most editors know that what matters most is not what comes out of the final render, but rather what goes in to the NLE. (unless you do simple home videos, and basically don't care). But since you are looking for a more prosumer style camera, it would suggest that you are aiming for something more.

Even if you know that your recordings will be delivered in SD, there are many advantages for the raw footage to be HD.


If you want to do greenscreening, image stabilization or special effects, you will benefit from a higher resolution.

If you go even further, such as colorgrading or superimposing HDR, then a 4:2:2 system is at the very minimum.

With the Scarlet coming out in just about 6-10 months, it's a no brainer as far as I'm conserned.
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Old July 5th, 2008, 11:38 AM   #14
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yes the scarlet is in my mind :)
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Old July 18th, 2008, 09:56 AM   #15
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Martin made it all clear already in the beginning with his post, but a few words on top of his; people are vain.

Don't know how the Scarlet is going to look like, but the term "pocket" indicates something like the Sanyo XACTI to me (which I also own). Bring one of those out on mission and, yes, you can sneek, but not create respect. Take the XL2 on your shoulder and walk like Moses backstage at most events. The size and form has a huger impact than you probably can imagine and it creates an aura of seriousness that only broadcast cameras can deliver. Sorry Panasonic and Sony, most of your gear misses this point of being bulky.
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