XL2 artifacts in 16:9 mode at DVinfo.net

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Canon XL and GL Series DV Camcorders
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Old March 25th, 2006, 10:22 AM   #1
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XL2 artifacts in 16:9 mode

I am using an XL2 in 16:9 mode, 24p, 3:2:2:3, I am getting an artifact on the leftmost side of each frame. The first column of pixels is darker than the rest, the next column of pixels is lighter than the rest and the next three are darker in varying degrees. This causes a faint but distinct line down the left of each frame.

Here are links to frame captures of the problem:

http://192.35.232.110/blowup.jpg - a blowup of the artifact.
http://192.35.232.110/lineonimage.jpg - capture frame.
http://192.35.232.110/lineonimageE.jpg - captured frame with arrows.

Any information or help would be appreciated.

- JR
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Old March 25th, 2006, 10:56 AM   #2
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Jese, I'm not sure if this is due to the image processing of the camera itself or the lens. What lens are you using?
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Old March 25th, 2006, 11:57 AM   #3
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I am using the standard 20X that came with the camera. I have also recorded directly to hard disk, using firewire, and I get the same artifact, so it's not the tape.

Thanks,

- JR
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Old March 25th, 2006, 02:17 PM   #4
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This is considered "normal" by Canon. I went through a big deal with Canon service about this and this was ultimately what they said. They declined to repair it under warranty. They suggested if it bothered me to crop the final output! I think their thinking is that it's outside of action safe and therefore not an issue. It's possible it doesn't appear in all cameras. It is most emphatically not about capture, or the lens, or pulldown, or frame rate (I shoot 30p and I get it with both the 20x and the 3X and even with EOS lenses; I tried every combination under the sun). Like yours, mine is exactly 5 pixels wide in the very same spot. It also doesn't appear in 4:3. Once you know to look for it, you can see this in lots of 16:9 XL2 footage. It's very annoying and clouds an otherwise very satisfying consumer experience.

But one question that nagged me and that I wasn't able to eliminate: Are you using Final Cut Pro for capture?
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Old March 25th, 2006, 02:55 PM   #5
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I wouldn't worry about it.
I have an XL2, and capture with Sony Vegas... and it has been on everything that I have shot since day one, but I only actualy noticed it recently.
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Old March 25th, 2006, 03:58 PM   #6
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Interesting. I don't have this problem. I'd be intersted in knowing whether this was a hiccup in a batch of sequentially produced cameras or an ongoing, sporadic deal. There was an unheralded change to the XL2 mid -stride that involved removal of the film grain switch. The crazy firewire connect/disconnect blown fuse deal seemed to disappear with this later produced version as well. I wonder if this ties into it at all? I have the non-film grain button version and have none of the above mentioned problems.

Last edited by Eric Brown; March 25th, 2006 at 09:29 PM.
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Old March 25th, 2006, 04:59 PM   #7
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Hey, Eric --Mine is a post 'film-grain' model as well. Interesting to note that I have also seen the aberration on footage from PAL XL2's.
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Old March 25th, 2006, 09:27 PM   #8
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Maybe we can start doing a bit o' detective work here. Anyone else with the later "version" XL2 have this problem?
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Old March 26th, 2006, 08:07 AM   #9
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Mine is a post film grain PAL version, and, yes, the abberation is clearly visible.
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Old March 26th, 2006, 09:00 AM   #10
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If you look, most dvd releases of major holywood films have similar markings along the side.

I did not want to say this… but I think it looks sort of ‘filmic’, actually. :)
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Old March 26th, 2006, 08:58 PM   #11
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Mine's an NTSC version. Sounds like 2 PAL cameras with the problem. I'm just curious as to what specifically causes this abberation (if I can use that term).
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Old March 27th, 2006, 03:42 PM   #12
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I have captured video with Vegas 6, Microsoft video capture, and via firewire, directly to disk. All have this problem.

I have also noticed a similar artifact whenever there is a major change in color, for instance, along the border of a piece of paper, laying on a desk. I have accepted this as relating to an abrupt change in contrast. The 5 lines along the edge may be caused by a similar situation, an abrupt change in contrast or the start of a change in contrast.

This could be the result of an anti-aliasing algorithm or just what happens when there is an abrupt change in contrast.

My camera is an NTSC version.
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Old March 27th, 2006, 07:22 PM   #13
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Mine is only a few months new. I can't say that I've see the "dark line" off pixels either on my camera or computer monitor when looking at the footage.
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Old March 27th, 2006, 09:12 PM   #14
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The dark pixels are easy to miss, especially on a busy screen. Look at shots where there is a blank wall or other single colored surface that covers the left side of the frame. The effect if faint.
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Old March 28th, 2006, 09:58 AM   #15
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Normal ?

Brian, your quote, "This is considered "normal" by Canon," seems to be typical from some companies. They find a problem in their product and it becomes a "characteristic" of the product.

I find it hard to believe that after putting a good lens on a video capture system, they would accept this as "normal". However, I guess it depends on the cost to repair something that they overlooked in QC.

I Fed-X'ed my system to Canon yesterday. The support engineer said they had never seen this before. I can only hope they can offer a solution.
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