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Canon XL and GL Series DV Camcorders
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Old November 28th, 2004, 10:10 PM   #1
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CH-910 questions

Just downloaded the XL2 manual from the sticky at the head of this forum (thanks Chris!) and realized that the adapter holder is shipped with the XL2. I'm purchasing one in the near future and have been pouring over the details since this Summer. I know the Canon CH-910 is supposed to ride on this adapter and can help counterweight the front-heavy lens and distribute the weight more evenly. My questions to current XL2 owners is:

1. Does it really help take some of the front-heaviness off the camera?

2. I've heard that it's a little obtrusive as well. Can anyone explain this? As in, does it get in the way when shooting on the shoulder?

3. Lastly, does anyone have any pics of their setup with the CH-910?

Thanks for any and all help, I greatly appreciate it!

PS - Just something I noticed...where in the heck is the audio jack for headphone monitoring? Can't seem to find it in any of the pics on the watchdog site or in the manual!
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Old November 29th, 2004, 04:54 AM   #2
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Hi Devin,

1. Some folks think it does.

2. It shouldn't get in your way, but it makes a big and heavy camera that much bigger and heavier. Some shooters prefer it that way though.

3. This is not the XL2 but rather the XL1S with the MA-200 and CH-910: see http://www.dvinfo.net/canon/xl1s-skinny.php#images -- with the XL2 the shoulder pad / XLR jacks section is much smaller than what you'll see here, but the CH-910 is the same.

4. Headphone jack is in the same location that is was on the XL1S. Refer to the XL1S image I linked to... just above the RCA audio inputs on the back of the camera handle you'll see an oval-shaped rubber plug. Behind that plug is the phones jack. Just above it is the phones volume control.
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Old November 29th, 2004, 06:30 AM   #3
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I bought the ch 910, thinking that it would help balance the camera, which I don't think it does. Also it kind of pushes against my right ear, and i had to slide the viewfinder out to the max ( away from the camera body). I did a "run and gun" shoot at night in a dark resataurant, and planned to leave the 910 on the adaptor plate. But I needed to use the light on camera, so the wireless receiver went on the 910 adaptor plate. the ch 910 stayed in my bag...
it does have a belt clip though, and I guess that could work in the right situation.
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Old November 29th, 2004, 10:50 AM   #4
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Thanks so much for your quick replies Chris and Bruce! I really appreciate all the help. Does anyone else have any war stories with the CH-910? I like hearing as many opinions as possible.
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Old November 29th, 2004, 12:02 PM   #5
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I returned mine immediately! Really. I thought I would love it....and while it balanced the camera a little I could not live with the 910 on the back as it constantly hit me in the side of the head and got in the way when doing creative angles and stuff. I decided I could live without it for now. I never really tried it in the field as I was sure that it would get in the way. Also......on mine anyway, it was always just a little loose. So when tilting the camera on the X axis the unit would move a little whioch would cause a minor shift in weight. This bugged the heck out of me!
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Old November 29th, 2004, 03:11 PM   #6
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Marty, thanks for sharing. I read elsewhere that the adapter sat a little loose on the rear shelf as well.
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Old November 29th, 2004, 03:22 PM   #7
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Own it, and used it for two weeks, shooting about twelve hours of footage. On tripod and off... never had a problem with it "bumping" my head. This is probably a personal thing... how you hold it, your own personal body dynamics, stuff like that. The XL2 has a little spring loaded clip that holds the pack on better than on the Xl1 model. You could always attach it to your belt as well, ENG style. As to balance, yes, I find it balances the unit better for shoulder mount work. I shoot with the 16x manual as well. On a side note, with dual bat packs attached, and holding the camera "low" and operating off the handle, it is MUCH better balanced in the hand.

My biggest beef is with the metal adapter itself. It is held on by three little phillips screws. A b!tch to deal with in the dark. I am still looking for a set of thumbscrews to replace them. Also, the adapter kind of creates a shelf above the xlr inputs... makes it a bit tight for my fingers to reach in there to disconnect the xlr with two plugs attached. Again, I am 6'4'' tall, so things that bother me, don't bother others... etc.
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Old November 29th, 2004, 05:57 PM   #8
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I shot with the 910 a lot this past summer on the XL1 with a MA100 and appreciated it for several reasons.

The running time with two batteries was exceptional especially for the low budget, run and gun stuff I was shooting. All handheld.

The balance was better with the added rear weight. I also have the Light Wave system isolator which offsets the viewfinder about an inch forward. This probably kept me from hitting the battery with my head.
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Old November 29th, 2004, 07:55 PM   #9
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I should mention I was shooting with the FU-1000 B&W viewfinder, so you can pretty much adjust the distance to viewfinder... might make a difference. Though the new lcd viewfinder on the XL2 also moves forward and backward. I just haven't used it as much.
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Old November 29th, 2004, 09:19 PM   #10
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Jim and Richard, thanks for sharing! Sounds like everyone has their own personal take on this thing. Does anyone have any pics of the rig on their XL2? I'm interested to see how much it would impede access to the XLR inputs.
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Old December 8th, 2004, 10:51 PM   #11
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Are you still looking for XL2 + 910 pics? I can send one if noone else has. I'm new to shoulder mounts so I'm not the best resource but here's my fun with the 910.

I got my 910 when I got the GL2 and never really used it with that camera. But I've never really used the XL2 _without_ the 910. So I can't really say if it's better or worse, it's the only way I've driven the camera.

The 910 clips on nice and sturdy for me. But when I first tired it, I hit my head on the battery! (I got a big noggin though, can't wear hats, etc). But I installed the Lightwave system isolator right after and never had that problem again.

The only problem I ever have is angling the camera sharply skyward. It just always seems like a very stressful affair, dunno if it's cuz of the 910 or cuz it's an XL2. But shifting the camera so one of it's "notches" sit on my shoulder usually helps.

Also I spent a day in the rain last week, and can say that a Portabrace rain slicker fits great over the 910.
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Old December 8th, 2004, 11:38 PM   #12
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Jeff, thanks for the insight! I'd love to see pics of your rig with the CH-910 onboard. You can find my email by clicking the link below. Thanks again!
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Old December 9th, 2004, 07:08 AM   #13
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Jim,
Could you give a link for that 'light wave isolator" you mentioned/
Jeff,
Is there a model number for the Porta brace rain slicker?
Thanks
Bruce yarock
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Old December 10th, 2004, 07:48 PM   #14
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Bruce,
you can look at it w/o leaving dvinfo :D
http://www.dvinfo.net/canon/articles/article45.php
Now I don't know if you are shooting xl1/2, but on my XL2 the EVF wire becomes very taut due to the increased distance. Almost worringly taut. Keep that in mind before buying.
If I weren't afraid to cut into the cable, I'd lengthen it myself. Cuz then the EVF could slide forward on it's own rods _another_ 1/2", and balance even better!!1

And uh it looks like a big RSXL2 for that rain coat model. BH has them in stock. I'm no expert but it kept my camera dry and didn't much interfere with me, including tape and batt changes. Only problem I had is if you shooting w/o a shade, the slick has nothing to "hold onto" on the lens.

I felt so bad for the director I was working with, I'm shooting away in the rain while he was throwing blankets and towels over his JVC ENG :/


And Devin!
I'll post some pics of the cam with the 910 on it tommarow. I'm on sleep dep and can't bother to put the thing together :(
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Old December 10th, 2004, 09:42 PM   #15
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Here's a link: http://www.lightwavesystems.com/products/canon/default.htm

and here's another:
http://www.promax.com/Products/Detail/6243
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