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Canon XL H Series HDV Camcorders
Canon XL H1S (with SDI), Canon XL H1A (without SDI). Also XL H1.


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Old April 28th, 2008, 02:26 PM   #136
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Let me clarify my opinion. (note "opinion" please.)

I feel going from an XL2 to the XLh1 was un upgrade. I moved from one format to another, superior format that will undoubtedly make a huge difference in image quality that I was experiencing.

I feel moving from the H1 to the H1S/A would be more of an update. It will bring some new features and some better usability but for the most part I expect the image produced will be comparable to the H1...unless the lens turns out to be the bomb and make the H1S the next RED!

Anyway....I never upgraded from my XL1 to an XL1s, or from my DVX100 to the DVX100B as the minor updates that brought new features just weren't worth the hassle of selling my exising equipment and buying new. Would I have like the new features? Sure. But they were not enough to make the move. Too little for all the effort involved.

However when I sold my HVX200 to get the XLh1....that in my mind was an upgrade. I felt the image was far superior and justified the trouble of having to sell/rebuy new equipment. Although both were HD, the H1 just looked like "HDNET" HD and the HVX...well not so much. A great camera but felt more like a medium def format.

These are my opinions and I hope that is understood. If I could have an XLh1S over the H1 without losing money or having to go through the hassle of selling my H1, would I? Sure. There are some nice new features. But I don't really feel any of these warrant the trouble....at least for me.

No harm intended. I am actually happy with the positioning of the H1S/A as it re-affirmed my faith in the original H1. If they had put new sensors or packed it with a better EVF or manaul HD lens or gone solid state with better codec....I do not think I could resist it. In fact, I am a sucker for new cameras....I have a problem buying the latest gear I would say and my wife would agree! So for the H1S to not be enticing to me should speak to it's improvements...or at least to it's lack of "major" changes.

It is however a good camera for Canon to hang on the XL line and a worthy successor to the H1. However it is primarily an update to an already great camera.

Peace again. It's all cool.
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Old April 28th, 2008, 04:19 PM   #137
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XL-H1S. Enough said.

S as in Nikon D70S. As in Mark II, Mark III. They did some nice updates. Like Panasonic updated their HVX-200 to the HVX-200A. If you are buying a new camera, that's very nice. But I don't think it is worth the update. And again, I don't see why they could not give us many of the upgrades through a firmware update. But Canon's not like that. I already knew that. They release a camera, do one or two firmware upgrades (mainly for the wideangle lens) and that's all. They are updating their DSLR firmware continuously. I am sure they can make my servo lens focus slower through firmware, they can add the image profile updates through firmware. Of course they can't update the lens through firmware. But I cannot see why it would not work the same on an old XL-H1 model. Of course I understand that the audio limiters are a hardware thing and cannot be added.

The only big thing for me is the XL-H1A. You get the new update for a very attractive price. $6,000 is very nice for what you get, and you don't have to pay for what most of us will never use. That's good. So I guess if I would be updating, it would be to the XL-H1A. But it would still cost me money.

If I would buy a new camera now I would buy the new Sony, or maybe the XL-H1A. But not the XL-H1S. Its overprices for what you get. The same goes for the JVC updates. Too slow. We are now in a world with progressive sensors, over- and undercranking and we are moving towards tapeless. They did have a good response to the Sony EX1 lens though.

Next year we will see the XL-H2 or a true successor. I can wait another year till Canon takes this great camera to the next level. I can live with most shortcomings of the old model. I got used to them.

To conclude. I think the lens is a real upgrade, not an update anymore. And I also think it could work the same on the old model. With a firmware upgrade. I really cannot see why that would not work.
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Old April 29th, 2008, 07:15 PM   #138
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Its good to be Jim Martin ;^)

Its nice to hear that Canon will be at least listening if not participating in the forum. I have a few thoughts as to some of the features I'd like to see in any new camera.

These cameras EX1/3, H1 etc are now being used a lot for Digital Cinematography so....

Option of DCI frame size output (2048x1080P), how hard can this be? They will need a new sensor so just make it 2048 wide and crop in camera when using HD output. Even if it was just available on the HDSDI port.

At least 3x1/2" sensor full raster (see above) 2048x1080P

World standard camera, 24, 25, 30P etc no sending back to Canon for upgrade.

Solid State recording....well obviously!!!

422 Recording, non proprietary media, up to 100Mbit

3Gb HDSDI capability with 422 and 444 output, all at true 10 bit, backwardly compatible with existing 1.5Gb HDSDI.

Actually with the introduction of 3Gb HDSDI standard theres no reason not to allow 444 ouput as an option, the bandwidth is available.

Cost $3000, ha ha just kidding, the new EX3 is approx. under $13K, so theres one benchmark.

I can dream can't I ;^)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Martin View Post
I just wanted to let everyone know that, at NAB, for the first time, Canon brought the entire design/engineering team to Vegas. I was very lucky to get to spend a couple of hours with them discussing the next camera (XL). I won't get into details of what was discussed but every valid and resonable upgrade that has been mentioned here was put forth. I also made a point that they should be checking here on DVinfo on a regular basis to find out what people want and any problems or concerns that may come up. I don't expect them to get involved in discussions but I think they will be looking and taking notes.
The bottom line is I think they really got what was being discussed, and hopefully, we see major upgrades on a new camera next year.

Jim Martin
Birns & Sawyer Inc
"At the ArcLight"
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Old May 1st, 2008, 10:25 AM   #139
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Hey, I know it says that the Magnify can be recorded now on the XL-H1S, but will the new camera allow for use of it without recording it to tape?

Perhaps anyone who went to the Birns and Sawyer presentation can confirm?
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Old May 1st, 2008, 01:14 PM   #140
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marty Hudzik View Post
What features are intiguing enough to sell the H1 you have and take a loss getting the new one? Seriously....I am asking because I am curious.

Also....what happened with your EX1? Still got it?
Hey Marty,

Hope all is well with you.

The EX1 is owned from a colleague of mine ... I just have access to it whenever I need it :)

I haven't decided what to do in terms of "upgrading" but ...

As for the XL H1S, there are several things I'm interested in:

1. Embedded TC and Audio in the HD-SDI (as I need the TC-out for slaving the Edirol R4-Pro, it would be good to have TC embedded in video)

2. Variable peaking frequency ... could help quite a bit for focusing ...

3. AGC Limiter ... interested in this for some of the event work I do from time to time

4. perfect syncing with my colleagues XH-A1 (he's been a second cam for some recent shoots)

5. The new lens controls and iris ring

6. Being able to record one channel the on-board shotgun mic (when I'm not recording double system sound)

Again, just thinking about the upgrade ... nothing definite at this point.

Did you recently purchase the FU-1000?
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Old May 1st, 2008, 01:57 PM   #141
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Galvan View Post

Did you recently purchase the FU-1000?
Yes. Picked it up a few weeks ago from the classified section of this site. As I stated above, the jury is still out on it as I have only been able to use it in synthetic environments....not real shoots where the typical focusing problems rear their ugly heads.

By the way, the list of features you mentioned are decent but I can't see them being worth the extra money needed after selling an existing H1. At least not for me. Of course I have almost never had a need for the SDI out anyway.

To a person looking to buy who doesn't own one yet it really adds a ton of new selling points. The lens is probably the biggest one for me. It's a shame Canon insists on not making many of the new options available to the current H1 owners too.
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Old May 1st, 2008, 11:02 PM   #142
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I can confirm for you, it's a choice in the Custom Function menu whether or not to record the focus assist magnification.
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Old May 3rd, 2008, 09:29 AM   #143
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marty Hudzik View Post
It's a shame Canon insists on not making many of the new options available to the current H1 owners too.
You still don't seem to understand that most of those new features involve physical design changes and different internal components and therefore are not possible on the first H1 with a simple firmware upgrade. I've said it before, but those options *are* available to the current H1 owners -- the process is to sell your old camera and buy a new one. That's much less expensive, and far more reasonable, than the expectation that an older camera should be physically retro-fitted to become a new one. That just isn't practical, or even possible, with the kinds of differences there are between the XL H1 and the new H1S and H1A.
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Old May 3rd, 2008, 12:27 PM   #144
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And I keep thinking that many of them can be made available.

The new lens could and should work on the old XL-H1. I guess they did not change the lens mount and the rest is the lens talking to the body. Focussing speeds and those kind of things are firmware. Otherwise the 6X WIDE shouldn't work on the older XL-H1 either. It worked, after a firmware upgrade. So I don't see why this new lens would change that game.

Variable peaking... should be possible.

Embedded audio in HD-SDI... not possible of course.

Audio limiters... not possible.

Mixing on-board mic with XLR... most likely not possible.

So yes, I still think Canon COULD and SHOULD update our firmware. They do it for their professional DSLR photo camera's as well. Attitudes likes this is what makes RED so special. And if companies like Canon keep acting like this they will lose all their customers to companies that do listen.

I am happy with the updates of the XL-H1 though. The new models address many complaints (although not all) and show that Canon does listen.
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Old May 3rd, 2008, 01:13 PM   #145
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You just listed three features out of four that are not upgradeable via firmware. Plus, the number and type of changes that have been made to the new cameras is indeed proof that the manufacturer is listening to their customers.

A firmware upgrade to the H1 won't begin to measure up to the numerous changes of the H1S and H1A. Once again, the most logical upgrade path is to simply sell off and move up. Remember these are business tools which pay for themselves (or at least, that's how they are intended to be used). Not all H1 owners will feel a need to change up, but for those that want to, the upgrade path is obvious.
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Old May 3rd, 2008, 10:17 PM   #146
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I am not even talking about firmware here. I'd simply like to see canon actually release good usable components on a regular basis that make the modular design of the xl series more useful. The h1is just about 2.5 years old, they have released 1 additional lens and that is it? The new lens is not for sale, even with limited functionality for us h1 owners unless we buy a new camera, which makes us feel like we should just buy a fixed lens camera to start with. The idea of having a good camera head is we have lens options but that so very limited here it borders frustration.

So I don't expect huge firmware additions but would hope canon could at least make new lenses backward compatible... Even with reduced features ...
at least within the same generation of cameras which the H1 and H1s are.

Thanks
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Old May 4th, 2008, 07:41 AM   #147
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I agree with Marty.

Still no manual HD lens. They could have upgraded the viewfinder easily and it was the major complaint of everyone. Canon made the XL-H1 modular but so far you get very, very limited benefits for buying into this system. The main reason why I still like my XL-H1 so much is ergonomics. I like shoulder mounted cameras and I like having all buttons on the outside. The XL-H1 especially delivers in access to all functions on the outside of the camera. But I wished Canon put more effort in the whole modularity aspect.

I hope they read this and think about what is being said here.
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Old May 4th, 2008, 09:15 AM   #148
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A question about the new cameras going the other way:

We have the 6X lense for the original H1 - I assume that this 6X will work fully in conjunction with the new H1s ?
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Old May 4th, 2008, 09:34 AM   #149
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Yes, of course -- the 6x Wide Angle is fully compatible with the H1S and H1A.
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Old May 4th, 2008, 09:37 AM   #150
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marty Hudzik View Post
... hope canon could at least make new lenses backward compatible... Even with reduced features ...
I thought we already went over this. The new lens *is* backward compatible, with reduced features. Anybody who buys an H1S or H1A will be able to use the new lens on an older H1, with some features disabled.
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