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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 February 13th, 2005, 10:47 PM   #1
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XL 2 accessories

Hello all.

I recently purchased an XL 2 - finally took the step up from my GLs (2 GL 2s and a GL 1).

I am now working on adding all the extras I need to make efficient use of the camera.

So far, I have a uv lens and have orderd a Kata soft camera bag and am choosing a Pelican hard case. Next, I have to decide on a lanc zoom/focus controller, a portable LCD screen, and some method of additional support for shoulder use (can't figure out what good that shoulder pad is, since the center of gravity is about 8 inches in front of it! - And if I back the camera up to where it's easier to hold, the EVF is next to my ear!)

I would love to hear some thoughts on which lanc controller various people prefer and why. Be specific - does one have smoother control, sturdier construction, more versitility, more intuitive speed control...

Also, which LCD screens work best? Best resolution, color accuracy, brightness for use in brightly lit areas... Elsewhere on the internet, I read a suggestion to just buy a portable DVD player, since the cost was about the same and you get the player to boot (this was for use on a small jib - obviously not mounted on the camera), but when I looked at their screens, I thought the resolution was far too poor for focusing. Are the LCDs sold specifically as camera accessories better?

While we're at it, how do you guys who have been using XLs deal with the balance issue. It's pretty fatiguing to shoot the way it's built with no additional support or counterweight system.

Thanks in advance for the advice.

Vence Vida
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Old February 14th, 2005, 03:01 AM   #2
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you can adjust the viewfinder to slide forward about 2 inches which lets the shoulder move back a bit, that helps quite a bit with the balance and fatigue
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Old February 15th, 2005, 08:18 PM   #3
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Hello Vence,
I am also a new XL2 owner and am in a struggle to find a good case to carry all this stuff securely. I am afraid to use a soft case for fear that something will push into the camera and damage it.
I notice you were talking about a Peilcan case. Where did you find a Pelican case just for the XL2 or are you going to modify the Pelican to fit the XL2?
The Canon case is really expensive....

Sorry I cant help you with your other questions but I am in learning mode, also.

I will say that moving the EVF forward on the rail has helped to see the view finder. My problem is that I am right handed but left eye dominant and so I have to use my left eye to look into the view finder. THerefore, I have to move my head up and down all the time to see the entire scene.

Regerds,
Ed
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Old February 15th, 2005, 08:39 PM   #4
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I would get an Anton Bauer battery brick for the camera. I have and love it. I have the Dionic 90's with a dual charger. Not only can I shoot for about 8 hours on one battery, but it completely balances out the camera.

Matt
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Old February 16th, 2005, 08:28 AM   #5
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XL-2 accessories

I love the Portabrace range of bags. I use their camera backpack and it's a perfect fit for the XL-2 (even though I originally got it for my XL-1). The bag is sturdy, easy to carry and has a special contour to take care of the viewfinder.

Portabrace also make an excellent raincover. Unfortunately, I've just discovered that the one I bought for my XL-1 doesn't quite cover the XL-2.

As for other essential accessories, I never leave home without the following products from Lightwave Systems (available from www.zgc.com): System Isolater (which will also push the viewfinder forward), Universal Mini Mount (for the mic) and the Equalizer wind screen (also for the mic). The first two products are very good at isolating the mic from handling noises and the windscreen, as its name indicates, cuts wind noise significantly.
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Old February 16th, 2005, 10:18 AM   #6
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Thanks for the great advice everyone.

Ed: I am getting both a hard and a soft case. The Kata CCC-10 soft case for grab and go stuff (which according to the B&H tracking number, should arrive today!) and a Pelican 1620 for times that I need protection. The Pelican cases are much much better quality than the silver Canon case and cost less than half as much. The cool thing about the Pelican is that you can get it without the full foam, and then you can just put your soft case inside your hard case. Personally, I'm getting it foamed and going to cut spaces for my gear, but you can go either way.

As for moving the EVF - I already did that, and I still think there's too much weight forward.

Matthew: I have considered trying to use a battery set-up for balance, I just wasn't sure if it would help much attached directly to the plate that comes with the camera, or if I would need to suspend it behind my shoulder a little more to get a good balance.

Shekar: I agree, Portabrace makes great stuff - I had one for my GL-2, but I lost it - Aaargh! (Just the bag, not the camera) They are pretty expensive, though, and I'm trying to spread my dollars around. I think the Kata cases, although less expensive than Portabrace, are still decent bags.

As for a rain cover - B&H had a deal going when I ordered my Kata - they are throwing in a free Kata rain cover made for the XL2 ($50 normally), so I'll see how that works. Hopefully it's quality.

I'm sure I'll get an Equalizer eventually, as well.

-Vence
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Old February 16th, 2005, 05:15 PM   #7
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Hello Vence,
Thanks for the reply on the Pelican Case. I really want the hard case because I do not want to risk banging it against something when I am moving about. Can you give me the Model number or case number of the Pelican case for the XL2 that you think would work?
Also, this soft case you speak about, is it made just for the XL2?
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Old February 16th, 2005, 05:52 PM   #8
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One of our DVinfo colleagues, Charles P, recommended a competitor to the Pelican hard cases -- called Storm -- in an earlier thread:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthrea...threadid=36757

Pelican: http://www.pelican.com/cases/cases.html

Storm: http://www.stormcase.com/

I haven't bought a hard case yet, but have compared the Pelicans and Storms side-by-side and the one obvious difference is the much nicer, easier to use latches on the Storm. That's what I'll be buying shortly.
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Old February 16th, 2005, 10:25 PM   #9
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Hello Ed,

I think the Pelican 1610, 1620 or 1650 would work. 1620 is what I've heard others say they use with their XL2. This is the web-site I've used:

http://www.casesbypelican.com/pelican-cases-sizes.htm

As for Charles' (and Pete's) suggestion about Storm cases, this is the first I've heard of them. I've been exposed to Pelican for several years as a professional audio engineer, so that's just what I'm familiar with. I haven't actually ordered a Pelican for my XL2 yet, so I'm going to ask around and see what some of my local collegues know about the Storm cases. I'm always open to new and better opportunities. It looks like storm cases 2720 and 2750 are comparable to the Pelicans I named. The only thing I can't tell is whether they are lockable.

-Vence
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Old February 20th, 2005, 12:22 AM   #10
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Hey Guys,

First time posting but i'm sure it wont be the last.
Did I mention how awesome this DV Info community is... anyway...

If you want a more compact size, you can go with the Pelican 1600 case instead of the other 16xx range. The 1600 fits the camera perfectly. All you have to do is take the lens hood, EVF, and microphone off, and there's space to spare for other accessories. It takes less than a minute to rig/de-rig the camera.
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Old February 20th, 2005, 05:48 AM   #11
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specifically for xl1

http://www.all-pelican-cases-4-less.com/detail_pelican_1610_xl1.html

this case has ready-cut foam for xl1. don't know how similar xl1 is to xl2 but it looks roughly the same, sure the foam can be cut. this is the one i'm thinking of ordering. anyone got any feedback?
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Old February 20th, 2005, 07:56 AM   #12
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I just ordered a Storm 2720 case. It hasn't arrived yet, but when it does I'll let you guys know how well the case accomodates the XL2 and gear. Also, I have the Porta Brace Quick Draw. Ultimate soft/hard carry bag for the XL2. Has a protective area for the view finder, and it's long enough to keep the XL2/with 20X lens/adapter plate/Wireless mics all still configured together. Plenty of side pouches for batteries, tapes, etc. Very rugged and tough bad. Should last a long time.

For anyone who has a XL2, it makes good sense not to try and get by with a cheapo case. These camera's are expensive and sophisicated, so spending a few hundred is some awefully cheap insurance to assure your "XL2 baby" will perform like it should.
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Old February 20th, 2005, 07:59 AM   #13
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By the way...I have a friend who owns a Kata CCC-1...nice bag and works well for the XL2. He also has the Pelican 1610, and yes, those latches are difficult to open. That's why I wnated to try the Storm case..I'll let you know if they are any easier.
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Old March 11th, 2005, 10:06 AM   #14
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Vence,

After shopping around a bit, I think I'm converging on a similar solution to what you have already arrived at (small grab-n-go case plus maybe a big hard case for local use).

Wondering how that KATA CCC-10 is working out? I can't find one locally to try out but would like a carry-on size case that won't force me to completely break down the camera -- which wouldn't work so well for grab-n-go.

The Grizzly (which I have been able to find locally) would be great, but is just a little too big to be carry-on legal. I don't mind that I have to take off the mic, but wondering if the smaller CCC-10 fits the camera+20x, detached mic, detached 3x lens, and the other little bits that one must have with the camera for grab-n-go? Or is the case just too small to fit much more than the camera?
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Old March 11th, 2005, 12:55 PM   #15
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Pete,

Actually, once I got the CCC-10, I felt it was too small and I sent it back. The camera will fit, if you remove the mic or perhaps even the whole evf assembly. (with it on, it's very tight and made me nervous about bumping the side of the bag.)

But there is not much more room for anything else. - no way you could put a second lens in there.

I now have the Kata MCC-2. I found one at B&H in the used department that wasn't really used - just a return (like my CCC-10, I suppose).

I like it much better. I can drop in the camera with no disassembly for those time when I'm moving from place to place quickly and there is still room for accessories, including another lens.

I'm not sure if it's too large for carry-on. Could be.
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