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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 November 11th, 2004, 02:58 AM   #16
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Is the XL2 for me

G'day David C, I to am looking at the xl2. Similar situation to you have been in the Broadcast realm for about 27yrs and I'm fed up with heavy cameras. The Xl2 seems pretty impressive from what I've seen. I think that it is ideal for news gathering. Everyone gets wrapped up in the quality of DV but at the end of the day the only person who counts is the viewer and you don't hear them complaining about camera quality. The important thing to remember is that if your a crap shooter with DV then probably a crap shooter with HD. Would love to hear more from you about what you think of the camera and where you are thinking of buying it.

George
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Old November 11th, 2004, 03:09 AM   #17
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Hi George,

I love the kit I was looking at at John Barry's in Sydney this week. I could just "sign up" right now. It was SO impressive with the Matte Box andrails that it looked a thousand times more expensive than what it was. I could email a pciture for you if you like.

There are some things concerning me though but I guess they are things you can work around once you get the camera.

1) Balance on-shoulder
2) Comfort on-shoulder (very awkward and uncomfortable - have you tried it yet?)
3) Focusing "on the run" - although I was shooting indoors in the test, it seemed to be focusing critically...in other words, even on a wide shot, I could move the focus ring and see things in the distance move out of focus...somewhat unusual when you are used to a broadcast camera on a wide shot where depth of field is maximum. I used to be able tp put the lens on "infinity" and leave it there until I needed to zoom in and only THEN did I have to focus. This was confusing (and worrying).
4) No 4:3 viewfinder markers when shooting in 16:9

And that is about all. It impressed me and the pics were great. I used to use a DSR300 that I loved.

Just a shame I can't get hold of one of the XL2's to try before I buy in a real shooting environment.

Happy to stay in touch.

David C
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Old November 11th, 2004, 04:26 AM   #18
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I have hired my old Sony DSR-300 DVCAM for a shoot tomorrow and I must say it was nice to have it on my shoulder again. Solid, firm and comfortable. Shame the XL2 just doesn't feel like this camera.

I comment on this because this is, ultimately, what I will be comparing the XL2 to if I buy it.

I will miss the:

1) Audio monitoring from the built-in ear piece in the camera body
2) "Proper" white balance operation
3) Large tape format
4) Safety zones in the Viewfinder
5) Built-in V-lock for batteries and radio mic receiver
6) Modular Radio Mic setup
7) Proper focusing mechanism
8) Proper iris mechanism
9) Doubler (2x extender) on the lens

If I didn't need (and like) 16:9 I would buy another one of these but the later version. Bloody widescreen!

Mind you, I could buy the DSR-570 kit for $25,000 Australian more than the XL2 kit I am considering just to get those features!

David Cleverly
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Old November 11th, 2004, 06:43 AM   #19
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Thats a cheap 570 kit Dave.What about lens's and Batts? Everything is a compromise just got to find the right one. The trouble with the xl2 is the price in Oz. There is such a big markup on it here. I looked at the xl1s back in April and it was still selling for around Aud$8k, everywhere else in the world it was half that price. Anyway good luck with what ever you do.

George
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Old November 11th, 2004, 07:51 AM   #20
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The 570 kit is around $46,000, the XL2 kit $20,500.

At the moment, my XL2 quote goes like this:

1 x Canon XL-2 3 CCD 25P 16:9 Video Camera
1 x Canon 3x 3.4-10.2mm wide angle lens
1 x Sennheiser Eng Wireless kit system
1 x IDX power Kit made up of the following items
1 x IDX VL-2 Plus 2 Channel Battery Charger/Power supply
2 x IDX E-80s 82Wh Lithium Ion V-Mount battery pack
1 x V-Mount Apaptor plate for Canon XL-2
1 x IDX X-Lite-II professional Eng light 50W with D Tap
1 x IDX X-Lite Barndoors
1 x Manfrotto 516-515 tripod kit
1 x Manfrotto 523 Professional Zoom Controller
1 x Chrosziel 4x4 Mattebox Kit made up of the following items
440-01 4x4 DV Sunshade
S1001-85 Adapter 85:85mm
411-23 Adapter 104:85mm Clamp on
420-02 Center Bracket for Lightweight Support
401-40 Lightweight DV Support for XL-2
1 x Portabrace Rainslicker
1 x either a Pelican 1650 case or Portabrace CTC-3 Traveller Camera Case

Total Kit Price for all of the items listed above with the choice of either the Pelican or Portabrace bag comes to $20,500.00.

I cannot afford a 570 kit (I could finance it but there would be sweat on my brow every day hoping I would make enough money to cover it) and there are things in this XL2 kit I could probably do without but when I saw it set up as above I just fell in love with it and thought : "Wow, what a great and complete kit". Maybe the 570 will be the NEXT purchase after making some money with the XL2 - but then XDCAM will be a consideration, too - total kit price $60-$70k. Depends upon my work.

There are still things that concern me, but I guess I would get used to it over time. At least I would be shooting again and making some money. Everyone seems pretty satisfied with thei XL2.

David
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Old November 11th, 2004, 10:05 AM   #21
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David,

There is a headphone jack on the back of the XL2's carry handle, with volume adjustment. The 16x manual lens will give you more of the feel you are used to. The 20X manual lens will give you a longer tele and image stailization to smooth out those really long/shaky shots. But there isn't always time to change lenses. Most of the other pro features are missing from the mini DV cameras. I'll have to investigate the battery options for the XL2.

I don't think you'll need the matte box. That will save you a couple grand right there. Just use 72mm filters and the stock lens hood.

You could save yourself some more money and not get the 3x wide angle lens, but get the Century .7 wide angle adapter. Depending on which lens you get, there is one for the 16x manual lens and one for the 20x auto lens. I believe that you can use this throughout the whole zoom range on both lenses. Double check though, I am not certain about that.

Good luck in your camera quest!
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Old November 11th, 2004, 10:33 AM   #22
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What about the Ikegami HL-DV7AWE? It's 2/3 inch chips, 16x9 and has more of the features that you're looking for-Unislot, batts, etc.

The US price is around $12 grand, but I assume it's not too much more in Oz. Just tried the money converter and it's about $15,000 Australian.
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=NavBar&A=getItemDetail&Q=&sku=352454&is=REG&si=feat#goto_itemInfo

http://www.ikegami.co.uk/frameset.html

If I didn't need the cine gamma and 24P I might have gotten this camera. The Ikies are really nice. Check out their website
http://www.ikegami.co.uk/ not sure if you would go to the UK, or the Japan site, but here's the UK.

Here is the global site
http://www.ikegami.com/
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Old November 11th, 2004, 11:49 AM   #23
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Quote:
3) Focusing "on the run" - although I was shooting indoors in the test, it seemed to be focusing critically...in other words, even on a wide shot, I could move the focus ring and see things in the distance move out of focus...somewhat unusual when you are used to a broadcast camera on a wide shot where depth of field is maximum. I used to be able tp put the lens on "infinity" and leave it there until I needed to zoom in and only THEN did I have to focus. This was confusing (and worrying).
That's odd. Always thought bigger CCDs meant shallower DOF. That was actually my biggest problem with buying a video camera for fictional work, too much depth. That's why I'm still considering buying or renting the Mini35 adapter some other time in the future to get shallower DOF on the XL2. I can see why you'd want the biggest DOF possible for news gathering though.
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Old November 11th, 2004, 03:16 PM   #24
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Thanks Guys, Mark, there are a couple of other cameras I would like (such as the HL-DV7AWE and the 570, but on top of the body price comes lenses, tripod, lights, mics etc. Grand total of around $33,000 for the Sony DSR 570 and probably the same for the ikegami.

This is why the XL2 is so hard to go past, especially all kitted up like I saw.

Just a shame about the comfort and the features.

You get what you pay for I guess but I still see the XL2 as good value considering the pictures you get out of it.

David
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