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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 July 13th, 2004, 12:35 PM   #76
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Steven: the GS400 isn't 3 chip right? If so then they loose quite a
lot of resolution due to Bayer transforms.
Quote:
The three CCD image sensors are specifically designed to capture as much image detail as possible and for shooting under extremely low light conditions. In super low light, the XL2 captures crisp and clear digital data. Under extremely bright conditions, the XL2 greatly reduces vertical white streaks and smears
Source: Canon USA (just under the "Focal Lengths using the XL2" table)
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Old July 13th, 2004, 12:42 PM   #77
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Yes, the GS400 is 3CCD, although they are only 1/4.7".

So they do mention low light... but don't seem to make it a very strong selling point like for the DVX100 or the PD170.

Maybe Simon Beer can give us more insight on this since he has access to a XL2.
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Old July 13th, 2004, 12:45 PM   #78
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thanks guys this has all been very informative.

Chris you've been very busy and we all thank you, this really is a keen watch dog.

Bravo
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Old July 13th, 2004, 12:53 PM   #79
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XL@ 16 X 9 pixel count, squeezing it to tape

This shoots 16X9 and then loses resolution to fit it to DV tape, am I right about this? Too bad.

But then I see you can link it to a PC to record direct to disc. Does this preserve the higher pixel count? That would be fantastic. Not HDV, but certainly better than coming off the compressed signal on a DV tape.

Much better(if this is true) in the long run for out putting it to film. Can anybody address this if you are in the know?

Hopefully my speculation is correct, and they get a MAC version of the DV-PC software.
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Old July 13th, 2004, 12:54 PM   #80
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<<<-- Originally posted by Rob Lohman : Native 16:9 seems to have a lot of confusion -->>>

I agree with Rob, but really we're just into semantics. If you look at Chris' section on the CCD block you will see that Canon simply doesn't use the area above and below the 16:9 frame. For all practical purposes that part of the CCD doesn't exist, so I'd consider this "native" for all practical purposes. Why should you care about the unused portion of the CCD when the active area has enough resolution to form a complete 16:9 image.

Actually, if you've followed the multiple GS400 threads, it appears that the GS-400 uses the same 1,070,000 pixel chips as the PDX-10 and maps 16:9 in similar fashion. I'd also consider this "native", but I suppose we could quibble about the finer points.

Here's how the PDX-10 uses its CCD's to produce video in the different modes, very similar to the XL-2, except the area which isn't used for video is available for still photos.

Now if you want something to complain about, I suppose you could question why Canon decided to discard that area above and below the 16:9 frame instead of using it to form a higher resolution 4:3 image. I'm sure there was a solid engineering reason for this decision though.
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Old July 13th, 2004, 12:57 PM   #81
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Geoff: no this will not work. All (pro)sumer 16:9 equipment works
like this. The image is always stored as 720x480 (NTSC) on DV
tape **AND** DVD. Just with a different pixel aspect ratio.

The increase is not in the horizontal resolution (that is still scaled
down to 720), but in the VERTICAL!!

This vertical resolution TRULY increases. It is not downsampled.
You capture 480 lines and you will get 480 lines. With electronic
stretching or letterboxing you would get something around 350
lines.

So that is the resolution that increased. The horizontal resolution
is always 720 pixels (although sampled from a higher source in
this case).

Real resolution increases vertically, spatial resolution increases
horizontally.

Boyd: that would result in dropping native/true 16:9 in regards
to 4:3. Ofcourse it still remains the same. I think this would have
not have sold well. Everyone would have said it did not have
native 16:9 even though the resolution have increased.

I guess the definition of true/native 16:9 is that it increases
resolution over 4:3.

Then again, the full 4:3 sensor would have to be sampled down,
so perhaps this would not constitute a higher resolution for 4:3
then. Perhaps it just took too much processing power to do at
a high enough quality? Who knows.
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Old July 13th, 2004, 01:17 PM   #82
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So the XL-1 and XL-1s create a cropped 16:9 image when working in that mode masking out the bottom and top portions of the CCD.

Now the XL-2 is the opposite. It is essentially a 16:9 camera with a 4:3 mode that crops the sides of the image. I would only use this camera in 16:9 so that appears to be okay, but I am curious as to how the image will look.

Greg
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Old July 13th, 2004, 01:21 PM   #83
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Yes, that is basically correct. After masking the XL1 range stretched
the image electronically back to full resolution.

Keep in mind that with the XL2 the 4:3 resolution is still higher
than the XL1S. So you actually increase your resolution, even
in 4:3 (especially in what was frame mode / progressive).

However you also increase focal length (zoom) and change
Depth of Field characteriscs as well. Those are more "problematic"
perhaps.

Then again, most people who want DOF also shoot in 16:9
(in this case).
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Old July 13th, 2004, 01:36 PM   #84
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Any idea why this camera was announced now and not at NAB? It seems to be aimed at much the same market as the Panny is and an announcement at NAB would have made a lot of sense.

Anybody want to buy a used GL1 and GL2?
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Old July 13th, 2004, 01:43 PM   #85
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That is simple to answer: they either did not want to or it just
wasn't finished yet. Canon has a clear history of just giving you
a camera introduction just shortly before you can buy one. This
camera is going to be out in August. That's just a couple of more
weeks from now!
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Old July 13th, 2004, 01:57 PM   #86
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Canon and HDV

Lots of people moaning about no HDV (me included, a little-though this cam seems sweet). On another forum(DVXUser I think) I read some rumor/speculation about Canon announcing/explaining why the XL2 is not HDV, tomorrow.

Makes me laugh. Here we are with a great new cam announced, and already speculation about a future cam! But I'm just as pathetic! I can't help it - now I am hoping we will see new Canon HDV tomorow! This is insane.

Still, XL2 looks cool. Can't wait for reviews.
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Old July 13th, 2004, 02:47 PM   #87
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Hey, it's obvious Canon knew they were a bit late to the game, their PR is already spinning "why it's not HDV"...*L*

I dunno, it's a nice unit, but it might have a much shorter shelf life than it's predecessor.
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Old July 13th, 2004, 03:15 PM   #88
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XL2 vs. SDX900

I know that the current debate some have in mind is the XL2 vs DVX100(A), but how does this stack up to the Panny SDX900? I realize that the SDX is obviously the beetr camera, but how much better?

Both are dv with native 16X9, both have alot of control over the image (Gamma, knee, master ped etc.).

Any thoughts?
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Old July 13th, 2004, 03:23 PM   #89
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HDV...

I don't think Canon will lose too many legitimate buyers (excluding dreamers) by leaving off HDV. For getting the job done (like the DVX100A) the XL2 is highly qualified and I can't wait to see its real world performance.

Besides, what good is a little extra resolution when it will take until 2008 for HDTV to be in 15% of homes? I'm all for an affordable (and quality) HD solution but I think Canon made the right decision by leaving off HDV.

Dealing with HDV, I feel, limits you in creativity. Especially in post and distribution.

btw - I love HDTV and I'm on my 8th HD set since 1998.
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Old July 13th, 2004, 04:20 PM   #90
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I know people are going to bag on me for being negative (1 day out from release) but I'm really interested to hear the take on the Xl2 from those with lots of experience with different cameras based on what you've read so far (And seen for those few who are lucky enough)

I'm sure you can put stuff in perspective for me, but looking at it on the surface it really does seem like an almost nothing offer. Sure, better than the Xl1s but hey that's 3 years old. Compared to DVX100a, not much there.

XLR been on other cams for years.

16:9 - Nice, but is it that much of a winner? We could chuck anamorphic lenses on the old ones.

DoF and magnification characteristics have changed (For arguably the worse) cause there isn't a full 1/3" 4:3 chip usage anymore.

DVX has had presets so nothing new there

Xl2 has no lens markings on barrel - ie. No real focus pull (And yeah I know about the focus preset thing)

2" LCD which is a flip out of the EVF

Progressive 24fps - Just catching up to the DVX here

So it seems that they offer, basically interchangeable lenses over the DVX. I'll be interested to see more about the audio specs. I'd imagine, like all camera manufacturers that they hardly even put R&D into it. But this is an area that would have been nice if they'd just gone hard out and put in some good audio circuitry.

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