Clarification on XL2 recording (DVCAM) at DVinfo.net

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Canon XL and GL Series DV Camcorders
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Old October 14th, 2004, 10:17 AM   #1
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Clarification on XL2 recording...

... the gist of this message got sent to some other forum in an earlier post... but nobody is replying to it. So I'm trying again and hoping it stays in the more active XL2 forum:

I'm getting all sorts of different information on the miniDV vs. DVCam recording format capabilities of the XL2. In short, can the XL2 record on DVCam? If so, is it recommended by experience? I'd love to do it as the DVCam stock is superior (especially the Digital Master version) in quality, but not sure if I should (even if it can). Couldn't find anything in the manual except that it runs miniDV.

I haven't run any tapes in mine yet (dying to, but trying to figure this out first) and I know once you start with one format, you better stick with it.

Thoughts anyone? Thanks!
Ramsey
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Old October 14th, 2004, 10:41 AM   #2
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No, the XL2 can't record in DVCam. DVCAM is a Sony proprietary DV format.

It is only available on Sony's camera.

For more information, see this thread: http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...am+proprietary
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Old October 14th, 2004, 11:04 AM   #3
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The XL2 cannot record DVCAM. It is strictly DV only.

However.

You can use DVCAM tapes in this camera -- specifically the little Mini-DVCAM tapes marked "Sony DVCAM 40" -- these are the same cassette shell as standard Mini-DV cassettes.

Once you have a DVCAM tape inserted into an XL2, you'll record standard DV (not DVCAM but plain vanilla DV) onto that tape. That's what's great about DVCAM tape, you can use it to record regular DV. You'll get half again as much DV onto a DVCAM tape as what it's labeled for. As an example, on a Sony Mini-DVCAM 40 cassette, you'll get 60 minutes worth of DV. Hope this helps,
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Old October 14th, 2004, 12:53 PM   #4
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That helps a lot. Are there any downsides to using DVCam tapes in the XL2?
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Old October 14th, 2004, 01:25 PM   #5
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Cost of the tapes maybe.
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Old October 14th, 2004, 01:40 PM   #6
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The main difference between DV and DVCAM is tape speed. DVCAM records at a faster speed, therefore twice the tape carries the same info. The benefit is less dropout.

The tapes are the same, usually DVCAM tapes are a better quality tape to handle the higher speed.
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Old October 14th, 2004, 01:41 PM   #7
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how is DVCam superior to DV?
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Old October 14th, 2004, 01:50 PM   #8
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In terms of tape stock, Sony DVCAM -- along with Panasonic MQ (Master Quality) -- is simply the best, most robust, highest quality tape you can buy.
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Old October 14th, 2004, 01:57 PM   #9
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Sony makes a Digital Master tape (DVCAM) as well... PDVM-40DM.

Thanks for the insight, y'all.

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Old October 14th, 2004, 04:01 PM   #10
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<<<-- Originally posted by Greg Milneck : The main difference between DV and DVCAM is tape speed. DVCAM records at a faster speed, therefore twice the tape carries the same info.>>>

Is it not that a 40 minute DVCAM tape will record 60 minutes of MiniDV, so thus not a factor of 2x...brain too addled to do math, it's either 6300 percent more or 1/275 to the power of pi...
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Old October 14th, 2004, 04:30 PM   #11
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DVCAM records at 1.5x the speed of DV (eg: 40 x 1.5 = 60). Therefore you need 50% more tape to record in DVCAM mode. Sony is the worlds largest maker of magnetic media. Hmm, no doubt it's just a coincidence that they encourage you to use DVCAM... ;-)

For details on the recording format see Adam Wilt's website http://www.adamwilt.com/DV-tech.html#DVCAMStandards
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Old October 17th, 2004, 09:30 PM   #12
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The only real advantages to the DVCAM format is that the audio is locked with the video and the tape speed is 1.5 times that of DV which may result in fewer drop-outs as your tape ages. As for image quality, they are both digital and therefore as long as the data (binary, 0's and 1's) can pass the image quality will be the same. I have two PD170's (DVCAM capable) and record DV format almost exlcusivley unless I want to get fancy with timecode. I use only Sony MiniDV premium tapes for either format. I am satisfied that, unless you have a specific need for DVCAM (sending it somewhere that requires DVCAM format), DV should do the job for you just as well and you don't loose that 20 minutes of recording time.
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Old October 17th, 2004, 10:27 PM   #13
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chas, what you want to say is "half again as much."
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Old October 18th, 2004, 01:33 AM   #14
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DVCAM is to DV
as
SP mode is to LP

The primary difference being the speed of the tape that runs through the camera, thus spreading the data over more surface area.

The other big difference, as was mentioned earlier, is that DVCAM employs locked audio. That's not exclusive to DVCAM however; the DVX100 and the JVC DV500 and DV5000 all use locked audio as well.
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Old October 18th, 2004, 02:41 AM   #15
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<<<-- Originally posted by Chris Hurd : chas, what you want to say is "half again as much." -->>>

Actually Chris, what I'd REALLY like to say is "I wish either my DSR20 or DSR30 could be switched into MiniDV recording mode, so I could fit a program longer than 40 minutes on a standard MiniDV tape"...
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