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Canon XL and GL Series DV Camcorders
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Old September 11th, 2006, 10:34 AM   #181
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ash Greyson
I love the Canon XL series cameras but the viewfinders suck, they are terrible. Terrible for focus, terrible for contrast, terrible for color. They are good for framing, nothing more.
So, what would you recommend? I have been part of the "blown fuse club" (as has Ash as well...) and am very jittery about the FU1000. While a boatload of threads have been written about external viewfinders, it looks like these are our options...
1: Get a regular CRT monitor (which involves extra weight, & heavy batteries as well as mounting/monitoring challenges)
2: Get a good viewfinder like the FU1000. Great for focus and underscan, but carries with it a reasonable suspicion that it smokes the fuse on the XL2. Additionally, it cannot tell you how about colors, so you're back to adding a CRT for that...
3: I'm looking at a high end LCD like the Marshall, but by the time I'm done adding all the necessary extras like sun shade, xtra batteries etc, I'm approaching $2000. OUCH!
4: Get a low end LCD, like the Nebtek, Varizoom, or Ikan. Great for framing, easy(er) on the budget at around $400-500, but not really acceptable for color and focus. (But, how does it compare to the XL2's viewfinder?)

That's what it looks like to me. Am I right, and what did I miss?
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Old September 11th, 2006, 01:21 PM   #182
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brendan Marnell
Thank you all for your observations and advice.

FU-1000 seems to be a winner but having seen a picture of it I must conclude that it only works with XL2 & XL1, not with XM2(GL2) and that it's a sizeable accessory which probably means that it would not be practical for run and gun. Has anyone used it successfully without a tripod? (I'm beginning to think I'm the only one on the planet videographing without a tripod! And I thought it was my body odour!)
It's a bit larger than the stock viewfinder but not to the point of being unusable in hand held. You are correct that it only works with the XL series and not the GL series cameras.

FWIW, I used one for quite a while on my XL2 and never had any problem with handheld. But then again, I don't do much handheld.

-gb-
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Old September 11th, 2006, 03:16 PM   #183
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Boston
It's a bit larger than the stock viewfinder but not to the point of being unusable in hand held. You are correct that it only works with the XL series and not the GL series cameras. -gb-
I second that. But I'm one of the FU-1000 blown fuse victims. Canon Germany, however, told me, that a re-designed connection cord would solve the problem. I had my FU-1000 fitted with the new connecting cord and (so far) I haven't had any problems.

Anyway, for scripted work I'd always have an external monitor (or, in my case) a laptop with a suitable capturing software for pre-viewing exposure and color rendition. However, such a setup is certainly not suitable for run and gun work.

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Old September 11th, 2006, 06:17 PM   #184
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There is not real cheap solution, svideo to a monitor that has 400+ lines is the best bet but in the field, I have not found anything that works for run and gun. I have a datavideo monitor that has pretty low rez but it takes DV in which provides true color and decent for focus. There are an ABUNDANCE of cheap LCDs out now with fairly high resolution, battery power options, etc. BUUUUUT, these are made for car-puters, to be mounted/protected and NOT for field work. I always poke fun at my buddies about their disposable monitors. Best bet, the expensive Marshal.

I have learned to live with the XL2 viewfinder for run and gun work but it is for sure the achilles heel of the camera.



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Old September 11th, 2006, 07:09 PM   #185
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I'm hoping someone from Canon will tune in and perhaps release a CRT monochrome viewfinder ?

It's not unusual for the 'broadcast' divisions of major players such as Canon, Sony, Panasonic etc etc to lean upon their country cousins in the consumer department and have perfectly good products "knee-capped" in development to protect the lucrative deals they have with the various broadcast/broadcast hire customers....
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Old September 11th, 2006, 07:41 PM   #186
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allen McLaughlin
I'm hoping someone from Canon will tune in and perhaps release a CRT monochrome viewfinder ?
Hi Allen. You mean apart from the beautifully-named FU-1000?

Richard
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Old September 12th, 2006, 05:18 AM   #187
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Originally Posted by Richard Hunter
Hi Allen. You mean apart from the beautifully-named FU-1000?

Richard
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 12:28 PM   #188
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ghost infos in viewfinder?! help!

hello,
my new xl2 is one week old (and I absolutely love it) but I have noticed a strange problem. The informations in the viewfinder (shutter speed, framerate, ...) are displayed a few times like ghost images. its really strange...
it is also happening with the gain / shutter and rec lights beyond the lcd.

here is a picture, but it is difficult to see (in the middle of the pic)...
in reality it is far worse.

http://img110.imageshack.us/my.php?image=img0514ll1.jpg

it is not happening if i look at the pure lcd screen.

is there a way to fix this or do I have to send the camera to canon?

ps: sorry for my bad english. :(
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 01:40 PM   #189
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Wow...I don't know what to tell you. Never seen that before. Might have to go ahead and contact Canon and let them know the problem.

And you're English is better than many of my friends...and we're all Americans!

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Old October 23rd, 2006, 01:57 PM   #190
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christoph Wieczorek
hello,
my new xl2 is one week old (and I absolutely love it) but I have noticed a strange problem. The informations in the viewfinder (shutter speed, framerate, ...) are displayed a few times like ghost images. its really strange...
it is also happening with the gain / shutter and rec lights beyond the lcd.

here is a picture, but it is difficult to see (in the middle of the pic)...
in reality it is far worse.

http://img110.imageshack.us/my.php?image=img0514ll1.jpg

it is not happening if i look at the pure lcd screen.

is there a way to fix this or do I have to send the camera to canon?

ps: sorry for my bad english. :(
You'll notice that it's backwards. I noticed this also right after I got my first XL2. You are seeing the image reflected off of the eyepiece magnifier. That's why it disappears when you open the flip-up.

I'm thinking that the filter they use on the eyepiece to help protect against sunlight exposure (it fried some original XL1 VF's until they started putting in a filter) is what causes the reflection.

In short, your camera is not defective.

-gb-
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 04:45 PM   #191
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Boston
You'll notice that it's backwards. I noticed this also right after I got my first XL2. You are seeing the image reflected off of the eyepiece magnifier. That's why it disappears when you open the flip-up.

I'm thinking that the filter they use on the eyepiece to help protect against sunlight exposure (it fried some original XL1 VF's until they started putting in a filter) is what causes the reflection.

In short, your camera is not defective.

-gb-
But i do not have one single 'reflection'. I have several reflections.

So every XL2 viewfinder has these kind of reflections? Really? I can't believe it.
If i film in dark areas it is so extremly disturbing... :-(
I must turn off all the informations in the viewfinder...
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 04:58 PM   #192
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I've never seen this before until just now when I checked, but I can definitely see it in my viewfinder. It's not backwards like Greg describes though--it's just a smaller version of the onscreen info.

It's definitely a reflection, as it moves around when I move my eye around on the VF. It seems pretty normal that the glass in the EVF would reflect a bit of light. If this is happening because of the filter that Greg guesses is the cause, well, I'd rather have a slight reflection in the EVF than have to worry about frying the LCD if I leave the eyecup pointed upwards in sunlight for a few seconds every now and then.

In any case, I don't find it distracting at all--like I said, I never even noticed it until now.
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 08:32 PM   #193
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I've noticed this since the camera was new. I think it is inherent in the design, but doesn't really cause any problems most of the time. I expect people with spectacles see it the worst, because there isn't such a good contact with the rubber cup at the edges and so more light gets in to cause reflections.

Richard
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Old October 24th, 2006, 01:23 AM   #194
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarrod Whaley
It's not backwards like Greg describes though--it's just a smaller version of the onscreen info.

It's definitely a reflection, as it moves around when I move my eye around on the VF. It seems pretty normal that the glass in the EVF would reflect a bit of light. If this is happening because of the filter that Greg guesses is the cause, well, I'd rather have a slight reflection in the EVF than have to worry about frying the LCD if I leave the eyecup pointed upwards in sunlight for a few seconds every now and then.

In any case, I don't find it distracting at all--like I said, I never even noticed it until now.
It distracted me at first, but then my eye just learned to ignore it. Then I got a FU-1000 so I didn't use the color VF much. I thought I remembered it being backwards, but looking again closely at the picture, it's not backwards. I was going from memory since I don't have my XL2 anymore.

-gb-
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Old November 10th, 2006, 04:49 PM   #195
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Loose plastic in viewfinder

I'm not quite sure what happened but I looked throught he viewfinder today and it appears as though a piece of plastic has become loose from the side and is dangling down. The plastic is between the magnifying glass portion and the back glass. By opening the small hole to clean the glass inside, I cannot access the plastic. It appears as though I would just need ot get inside and it would just clip back on. I have two questions:

1. Anybody know how to get inside the viewfinder so I can try and reattach this piece? I cannot use the LCD through the viewfinder s the plastic is now in the way.

2. Is it possible to remove the viewfinder portion (part with the magnifying glass that is on a hinge) so I could send just that part in for repair as opposed to losing the whole cam or the whole LCD?

Thanks for any ideas.

Patrick
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