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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 1st, 2006, 09:05 AM   #16
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i completely agree with most of what you've said, tony. as i said, i bought this for still photography, where, unlike video, there's no magnification factor, and the 300mm range is not nearly enough for small subjects in those circumstances. and this one costs about the same as a good 500mm or 600mm prime, so relative to the other lenses people buy for longer reach, it's not that expensive, just hard to wield. the fact that the big lens fits on the XL2 is more of a sidenote. for most outdoor video, my 400mm is the lens of choice.

the difference between shooting video and stills, too, is that camera shake is more of an issue with video. i found i can actually mount this directly to a monopod, and shoot crisp stills, but if i were to try to do the same with a video camera, the footage would be useless. and with the hood reversed, it fits in the same backpack i use to carry my XL2, so it's not entirely un-portable...

still, i am looking forward to the full moon, and to see what happens with the XL2 and the canon 1.6x....
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Old February 1st, 2006, 07:20 PM   #17
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I have to agree with Tony in that the lenses beyond 600 mm are too unweildy and subject to atmospheric conditions, bugs in the air, heat waves, dust and vibration. There are a few soles using the Sigma 300 800 with 35mm still cameras , and they are happy with the results. However, using the long end of that lens with a video camera is going to require extremely good conditions and help with stability. A perfect opportunity for me to mention my RONSRAIL, designed specifically for long lenses such as this. Some of you are familiar with the product, others may be interested in my website. Take a look!!
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Old February 2nd, 2006, 10:46 AM   #18
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well, fortunately, i'm not trying to convince anybody of anything here, only displaying a choice of mine which i thought might be of general interest...everybody likes looking at new and unusual gear, don't they?

i never claimed that laying down money on a sigma 300-800mm lens is a good idea for everybody (or anybody, for that matter), only for myself and for my purposes, which include the longest-possible still photo reach.

as expensive as it is, a brand-new sigma cost me over $2,000 less than the cheapest used 600mm prime, with all the advantages of the zoom with no visible loss of sharpness....so i'm willing to trade some portability to gain in price and reach.
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Old March 21st, 2006, 07:41 PM   #19
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okay, so this silly photo of my XL2 mounted to a sigma 300-800mm lens is the third most-downloaded thing on my silly multimedia website. i can pour my heart into my DVC challenge videos, and nothing! but one quick snapshot of a big scary-looking lens, and it's an immediate hit....

it's like video porn or something....

i'm using the sigma lens for the current DV challenge.....
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Old March 23rd, 2006, 06:45 PM   #20
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It's easy to miss the point that it doesn't stress the XL-2 mount any more to attach it to a monster of a lens. The tripod supports the lens and the camera just rides on the end of it. No problem at all unless you try to manuever the rig by gripping the camera body. The camera is not endangered any more than with a smaller lens with the exception that it more difficult to manuever and is easier to lose control of the entire rig and smash it into something. The stability issue is the main problem and many have used supports to minimize vibration. Bottom line is a lens like this may be unwieldy, but it will not damage your camera if used properly. I base this statement on having used a 500mmF4 Canon with an XL1-s quite extensively.
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