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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 September 4th, 2004, 11:34 AM   #16
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Bill

Like the xl1s and gl2 (and probably every other 3 chip camcorder) on the market, Canon applies a certain amount of sharpening at it's default setting. This typically makes the image look "better" on a SD monitor, but can show artifacting when viewed on a computer, or HD monitor.

All the canon semipro cameras offer control of this sharpening in -I think- 6 steps of increase and decrease from the default level.

I haven't experimented with any of this yet...I'm still trying to get a feeling for the default settings on the camera. Initially my recommendation would be to decrease the sharpening a few notches in 4:3 mode. 16:9 seems to be about perfect when set at default.

Barry
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Old September 4th, 2004, 12:09 PM   #17
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I would love to see some of that beach footage.
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Old September 4th, 2004, 12:26 PM   #18
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This is good to hear! Sounds like a wonderful successor to the XL1!

The detailed reports have been most useful. Looking forward to footage!
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Old September 4th, 2004, 12:38 PM   #19
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You know I'd be happy to host some video for you Barry, if you need the server space. Just let me know.
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Old September 4th, 2004, 01:06 PM   #20
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David Lach wrote:
>>>>>>>>I'd love to see some footage shot handheld in 24p with the OIS on, using the whole focal range to do various types of shots (fixe, pan, live zoom, etc.). No matter the subject, I just want to know if the stabilizer is good enough to shoot quality sequences handheld without giving motion sickness to the viewer, and how "intelligently" it reacts to wanted motion vs unwanted motion.

David, there is such footage already available for you to view. Have you not yet seen the footage of Vienna, Austria that Johnnie Behiri shot? http://www.dvxuser.com/articles/FirstXl2


As I understand, much of this footage was shot by himself with virtually no tripod at all and no crew, no big HMI lights, no permits, no PA's with walkie talkies, no big budget, etc. Strictly run and gun. Johnnie had the demo XL2 in his hands for only a couple days, but I think he did a super job at providing us a solid example of what to expect. http://www.24puser.com/XL2Video.wmv

I'd say to definitely take the time to download the "nightime" footage http://www.24puser.com/nightxl2.wmv You'll see not only fine run and gun shots but also the strengths of the clean low-light capabilities of the XL2. Johnnie is an experienced ENG shooter and his skill at acquiring wonderful b-roll and people shots is evident in the footage.

Let us know, ok David?

- don
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Old September 4th, 2004, 01:19 PM   #21
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David, Don

Just from the impression side, I have to say that the OIS seems very impressive to me. I shot a little handheld at the beach zoomed to 20x, and it was very stable (and I'm not!)... a little floaty, but in a nice way...the OIS on the xl2 really is really noticeable that it is doing something at controlling larger movements, not just the jittery micro-movement that we don't know is there until we turn it off. Conversely, all my tripod stuff that I shot yesterday had the OIS turned on, and I didn't see any wandering to speak of.


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Old September 4th, 2004, 01:50 PM   #22
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Thanks for the info Barry, I was indeed wondering about the use of the OIS with a tripod as this is often an ugly combinaison.

Don, thank you for the link, I had not seen it yet since the last time I tried downloading the link didn't work. It is a quality run and gun OIS lens no doubt. Very sharp and although a bit floaty with the OIS on, certainly not in an unpleasant way. This seems like the perfect run and gun lens (especially with that neverending telephoto) for journalists and documentary filmmakers.

And you're right, stunning to say the least in low light. I sure wasn't expecting that. This camcorder might be the last SD from Canon before taking the HDV plunge, but that doesn't mean it's not a major improvment over anything on the market right now. I sure have no remaining doubts about buying this little gem. All that remains for me to do is figuring the lens combo I'll be using.
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Old September 4th, 2004, 04:02 PM   #23
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Thanks Barry

Your info is great, however I could no longer wait for footage....
Had to go buy one myself! Hehe
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Old September 4th, 2004, 04:24 PM   #24
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I got mine yesterday and haven't gotten to do much testing just yet. OVerall it is well made camera and I like it. BUt coming from my DVX100 (XL! prior to that) I am a little uncomfortable with the body style. I mean...I knew what it would be like but I haven;t held the XL1 in over 2 years. I have longed for an XL series cam that did 24p the entire time I had the DVX. Now that I have it it feels wierd! Not bad. JUst need to get used to it again. I will post impressions soon. However for others who have it I have a few questions.

1) When I am in a quiet room and have the unit up on my shoulder I can hear a "ticking, clicking sound" coming out of th camera right next to my ear (no tape inserted so not tape noise). I actually sounds similar to a laptop hard drive seeking data. It is there quietly and when I do a zoom it gets even louder. Anyone else hearing this?

2) so far in my hour or so of playing with the thing I absolutely hate the iris switch! I thought that it would increment up or down faster when you held it in place. It moves too slow! If I have a person moving from a bright source into a dark source I want to be able to get from 6.0 to 1.8 in an instant. As I see it now it takes 2-3 seconds to increment across that range! I hope I just need to find a menu setting to change the speed. But as of this moment I am not liking this. Anyone finding the saem or found a fix?

Disclaimer: I have barely used it so all of my very first opinions are subject to change. I may have to get used to it.
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Old September 4th, 2004, 04:59 PM   #25
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Marty

I've heard the sound you mentioned....I think its the autofocus...but I'm not sure...I'll give it a whirl and see if I can figure it out. So far I haven't heard it come through on the tape, but I was at the beach so...

I'm going to agree with you somewhat on the iris switch...I'm not a run and gun type so it doesn't effect me as much. But the simple iris wheel from the xl1 and dvx I think is a better solution, short of a control on the lens.

Steve
congratulations...I guess I should thank for for earning me my first 5 Canon All star points...when I get to 1000 I get a free tape cleaner.

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Old September 4th, 2004, 05:09 PM   #26
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best program to capture video from our new camera?

I've never used widescreen or 24p before. You guys recommend anything?
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Old September 4th, 2004, 05:17 PM   #27
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I would think that this iris thing is more of an issue in a controlled drama type environment. Where you plan for and actually make adjustments to the iris on the fly for artistice reasons as well. I was hoping that there is setting to change the speed.

Also...I went out and shot some footage in my yard. A hawk was cornered in a tree and was being badgered by some bluejays. I though I was in focus in the viewfinder. When I watched on my TV the focus was very soft. Same on a scene where I zoomed into the numbers on my mailbox. Looked sharp in viewfinder.....soft on TV. This was in 4x3 mode. I had a very bad experience with soft focus issue with the XL1 and loved the DVX. I could always tell when I was in focus.

Also...the colors seems a bit.....muted. I am finding everything is kind of greyish for lack of a better word. It is not really overcast and the grass is a deep blue but from the XL2 it seems pale......kinda private ryan like but not as much. I am a little worried.

I am simply shooting in manual mode and really have left all of the defaults as is. 24p of course. Hope I figure it out! Cause I am not feeling warm and fuzzy inside right now.

And for the record I am wanting to love this camera so much! I am not in anyway trying to nitpick. But certain things are standing out to me as odd.
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Old September 4th, 2004, 05:31 PM   #28
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Marty, is the iris switch like that little flick switch on the GL2? You sort of flick it up or down?

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Old September 4th, 2004, 06:20 PM   #29
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Steve,

you'll capture your footage normally as this is simply a normal DV stream...afterwords you'll convert the footage to 16:9 in the software (final cut pro, or qt pro do this) for viewing on the web, or most televisions will convert it for you.

Aaron...it's just like the one on the gl2.

Marty....I've done some side by sides with the DVX100 (not the A version) with both cameras at default...the saturation on both cameras is virtually identical, and certainly within range of each's in camera controls. (I'll post stills soon.)

If you aren't doing this already...a good way to focus any DV camera is too zoom in all the way, focus and then back out and reframe. The at 20x the zoom on the xl2 requires exponentially more accurate focusing than the DVX100's 10x lens.

Barry
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Old September 4th, 2004, 08:34 PM   #30
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Frame Grabs from XL2 and DVX posted

Ok. these aren't too exciting but they do provide a decent side by side comparison of the DVX and XL2 images.

Both cameras were set to default settings. Manually white balanced. Exposure was approximately f4.4 1/30 sec. Cameras were in 30p mode. Light source is daylight filtered through a skylight (glass).

http://homepage.mac.com/barrygoyette/PhotoAlbum13.html

Here are my observations

color on the two cameras is very similar, with the yellows on the xl2 running slightly red (part of this is due to the exposure difference detailed on the photo page). The DVX oversaturates deep blues...see the vase at center.

Both cameras slightly over-saturated the scene, this could be due to my setting the zebras at a level for minimal highlight blowout to occur.

In 4:3 mode the xl2 adds a slightly more aggressive sharpening compared to the DVX. With a prononced halo in some situations. in 4:3 mode the XL2 appears to resolve slightly greater detail. In 16:9 mode xl2 resolves substantially greater detail.

Contrast is similar between the two cameras.

I'll try to have some full resolution footage up tonite (.mac uploads take awhile, so be patient)

Barry
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