OK - now I love the XL-2 lens 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 November 24th, 2004, 02:36 AM   #1
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OK - now I love the XL-2 lens

So now that I know *how* to focus the stock lens I have to say I simply love it.

Now what I need is to find someone in Wellington who has a Century Optics Wide Adapter that I can try out...
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Old November 24th, 2004, 04:06 PM   #2
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Man I'm still trying to get used to operating with the xl2! I did some test shot outside today and it was bright as hell. I had the shutter at 1/48 and all I saw were zebra patterns. Is it normal to use the ND filter for outside shot? I'm getting used to holding the camera on shoulder I guess.

Hey Chris, do you mind sharing your thoughts on *how* to focus? I'm trying to learn as much as I can with the xl2. I guess we all have to get used to it. My previous camera was a dvx.

Thanks

Sid
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Old November 24th, 2004, 05:26 PM   #3
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It's pretty much mandatory to use ND filters outside. That's specifically what they're for: to cut the amount of light entering the camera, while having no other effect on the picture.

With the DVX I usually use both stages of ND filter for outdoor shots.

Use the ND, that's what it's there for.
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Old November 24th, 2004, 05:26 PM   #4
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No problem, Sid!

At first I had set all my switches on the lens to manual or off. This was a bad idea. Based on an earlier post I found on this forum I now do the following to get a good solid focus with the Canon 20x IS lens:

Check the settings on the lens. They should be configured thusly:

Stabilizer = "off"
Position Preset = "Focus"
AF Switch = n/a (if the Position Preset is not on "AF" then this does not matter)
Focus Selector = "M"

To focus: zoom in on your subject and focus. Zoom back to frame your shot. Your subject should still be in nice, crisp focus.

I've been using a focus card that came from Serious Magic with DV Rack, but you could easily make one for yourself with a graphics package like Adobe Illustrator. I wish I had known this when we did our test shoot two weeks back, but the manual seemed to be rather lacking in info on this.

Good luck and have fun!
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Old November 24th, 2004, 06:33 PM   #5
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Thanks Barry I'll do that. Just wanted to make sure that using the ND on the lens will not degrade my resolution in anyway.


Chris, thank you so much for taking the time to answer my question. I'll definately give this a try. So once you zoom in and focus, it will still be in focus even if you zoom out? I guess I just have to practice practice practice.


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Old November 24th, 2004, 06:54 PM   #6
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If the Position Preset switch is set to "Focus" that is what will happen. Give it a go and see what you think.
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Old November 24th, 2004, 07:54 PM   #7
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Zooming in, focusing, then zooming out to the frame size you want; is standard practice with zoom lenses.

I started out in Super 8mm, then 16mm using zooms. It is foolproof. Zoom in, focus, then zoom out to where you want to be. The image you zoomed in on will be in focus no matter where you zoom out to.

The only thing you have to watch is your depth of field; how much in front of your subject and how much behind your subject is in focus. This will change with f stop and distance.

Not sure how critical this is in video or how much a big factor it is. But in low light situations with film lenses, it can be a very big factor.

Perhaps someone who is more experienced with video can help out on this.
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Old November 24th, 2004, 07:58 PM   #8
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I thought that this was the way to go with the XL-2's lens, but that pesky "Position Preset" switch will catch you out if you are not careful. Funny how there is no mention of that in the docs for manual focusing.
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Old November 24th, 2004, 08:03 PM   #9
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Chris, good luck with your film. Man, I wish I had the money to travel to New Zealand to work on a horror film.

I hope you will post some screenshots as you get them, I am looking forward to tracking your film's progress.
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Old November 24th, 2004, 08:41 PM   #10
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Uh - click the link! It'll take you to our film diary on Live Journal. There are a couple of stills and production shots from our screen test a weekend or two back. FWIW - I moved here a couple years back in the hopes of getting into the film industry. Can't say I've regretted it for a moment! :)
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Old November 27th, 2004, 01:46 PM   #11
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<<<-- Originally posted by Chris Mills : No problem, Sid!


Check the settings on the lens. They should be configured thusly:

Stabilizer = "off"
Position Preset = "Focus"
AF Switch = n/a (if the Position Preset is not on "AF" then this does not matter)
Focus Selector = "M"

To focus: zoom in on your subject and focus. Zoom back to frame your shot. Your subject should still be in nice, crisp focus.
-->>>

Manual says:
1. Slide focus selector to M
2.Zoom In
3.Rotate ring to adjust
4 Zoom to Frame

How is this different, which is better or correct and best results?
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Old November 27th, 2004, 02:45 PM   #12
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Kent,
The use/setting of the Position Preset switch is not mentioned anywhere with regards to manual focusing of the lens. It does not say to set it to "Focus" and that is what is different. If you do not have it set to "Focus" then focus will be lost when you zoom.
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Old November 29th, 2004, 12:13 PM   #13
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<<<-- Originally posted by Chris Mills : Kent,
The use/setting of the Position Preset switch is not mentioned anywhere with regards to manual focusing of the lens. It does not say to set it to "Focus" and that is what is different. If you do not have it set to "Focus" then focus will be lost when you zoom. -->>>

Are you sure this makes any difference? I am not seeing a difference with how it reacts when I change the "preset" to focus or zoom or whatever. Can you please elaborate?

thanks
Marty
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Old November 29th, 2004, 12:20 PM   #14
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When you set the Position Preset to "off" the zoom-to-focus-then-frame approach wont work because you loose your focus when you frame. I had erroneously thought that I should turn off all the auto whatzits as I don't want them messing with my image - Position Preset does matter.
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Old November 29th, 2004, 12:46 PM   #15
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Well, I simply dont get the features at all. Im not seeing much of a difference no matter how its set except AF or manual.

definatly weird.
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