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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 September 21st, 2005, 06:42 PM   #76
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If you want an extender, I would suggest buying an EOS adapter and
using 35mm glass. All extenders have a tendency to soften the image.
Sometimes that is okay (faces), sometimes it isn't (detail). The 7.2X
factor provided by EOS/35mm glass will give you the telephoto
you really want.
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Old September 22nd, 2005, 03:06 PM   #77
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Okay Canon, get on this one. We want you to license and deliver this
technology in a battery powered porta pack (or on board a camcorder).

http://videosystems.com/e-newsletter...tenders092205/
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Old September 22nd, 2005, 11:24 PM   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacques Mersereau
Okay Canon, get on this one. We want you to license and deliver this
technology in a battery powered porta pack (or on board a camcorder).

http://videosystems.com/e-newsletter...tenders092205/
For those too lazy too read the link, it refers to a Holographic optical disk.

It could store up to 3.9 TBytes, and access it at 1Gbps.

I've actually used a 100GB version of this type of technology. I got ~250Mbps sustained from the drive in read mode. Writes were slower at about 100Mbps.

Despite the hoopla this type of media suffers routinely from reliability issues.

See the way they get all that data and bandwidth out of these systems is by writing more than one bit at a time (per laser pulse... its all in the article.) This system writes 60,000 bits per laser pulse.

While VERY cool, the problem is that the media is about 1000 times more sensitive to vibration than DVD, HD DVD or Blue Ray. They can solve this pretty well for systems that are intended for stationary use. It helps if the system has processing power to do lots of ECC calculations really fast.

As you may know, camcorders are rarely stationary. (Yes yes- GALACTIC understatement.)

The biggest problem with holographic storage research though is that they keep aiming for ever loftier goals and never release. For proof check out the BYTE magazine archives from the late 1980's. You can see claims for 50GB holographic media that's coming out in a few years.

Like I said above these things actually exist right now. THe 39GB version in the article is the size of a credit card, but what really rocks is that the actual media is about as big as an SD flah drive, or a US stamp.

I would like to see a 200GB blue laser version for desktop machines, if they can release it now. That would derail the HD DVD format war rather nicely.

Especially if it could read the big HD DVD formats. That's why I want BLUE LASER.

If Blue Ray and HD DVD are allowed to mature before a release of holographic storage then they'll need vastly improved storage to displace those media. 500GB+

Whatever, just RELEASE SOMETHING NOW because it will never be perfect.
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Old September 30th, 2005, 11:50 AM   #79
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lenses, more lenses...

I've read this entire post, and I just want to add, just like others have done, that we need more lenses. I'm hesitant to sell my XL2 (which I just bought -- sorry for me) and get the XL H1 because there isn't more than one HD lens availalbe.

I love my 16x servo, and 3x wide angle, and rarely use the 20x lens that came with the camera. But I'm not going to use SD lenses on an HDV camera.

Also, what's the deal with 35mm lenses? They're standard def, right? So why the heck would I use SD lenses on a HDV camera? Does anyone know if any of the 35mm lenses are considered "HD"?

Hello, is anyone listening? :) I REALLY hope that the 16x Servo is the next lens on the list to be "HD-ified." And I must say that LONGER lenses are important to everyone in the wildlife filmmaking industry. So many of us use this camera. I'd love to see a 500mm HD prime. :) (or at least a zoom that goes out to this length).

But the real question is, do we just wait for REAL HD... that's what I was hoping Canon would do, skip over HDV and go right to HD. Sony is currently making their HD cams smaller - heck the HD 900 will be put in a casing the size of the 730s now. It's coming fast, and I'm anticipating a XL-HD in a year or two --wishful thinking :)

Can I just say I love this board?
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Old September 30th, 2005, 12:08 PM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tracy Graziano
Also, what's the deal with 35mm lenses? They're standard def, right? So why the heck would I use SD lenses on a HDV camera? Does anyone know if any of the 35mm lenses are considered "HD"?
35mm still photo lenses already resolve to higher-than-HD standards, so they're all considered "HD." Just make sure that you're not using the cheap glass like the throw-away lenses given away with inexpensive SLR's like the old 35mm Canon Rebel G. If you stick with Canon "L" series glass (with the red ring around the lens barrel), you'll have more than enough optical quality for HD.

Quote:
And I must say that LONGER lenses are important to everyone in the wildlife filmmaking industry. So many of us use this camera. I'd love to see a 500mm HD prime. :) (or at least a zoom that goes out to this length).
You can always use 35mm EF lenses for this purpose, and besides, the stock 20x HD lens on the XL H1 gives you more than 700mm.

Quote:
But the real question is, do we just wait for REAL HD... that's what I was hoping Canon would do, skip over HDV and go right to HD.
HDV recording on the XL H1 should not have come as a surprise since it's no secret that Canon has been part of the HDV consortium from the beginning. And HDV is real HD, just ask the people that have been using it. Any other HD tape recording format would have just about tripled the price of the XL H1... for example a DVCPRO HD tape transport costs about $16,000 all by itself. It's highly doubtful that Panasonic or Sony would have allowed Canon to put one of their HD formats on the XL H1 anyway. But you do have uncompressed HD out from the XL H1 as it is, through the HD-SDI connection, so you can record to any HD format you choose onto whatever High Definition VTR you've rented for your shoot. So you can say that Canon did in fact "go right to HD." It's whatever HD flavor you want it to be, whatever you've budgeted for. Rent an HDCAM deck for a week and bypass HDV completely if you want.
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Old September 30th, 2005, 03:08 PM   #81
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chris brings up an interesting point that i'd like to see more examples on. been browsing the HD editing sections lately and i'd love to see more HDV footages, raw vs. SD. i think just a few seconds of it is good enough (won't take up 2much space). just make the footages have some details (cloth, fabric/texture). why are people bashing HDV? i've seen some footages of the JVC HD cam and it looks pretty good on a 40+ samsung HDTV.
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Old September 30th, 2005, 03:35 PM   #82
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The vast majority of those who "bash HDV" are people who have never once used it. These are the type who get hung up on numbers and specifications... for example the issue of compression... heavier compression is not a bad thing at all when it's done right. For example nobody seems to complain about the H.264 spec, it is only 8mbps, I've seen it projected on a large screen and it looks awesome. Thankfully the "HDV bashers" are a rare breed on DV Info Net; we do our best to discourage those nay-sayers who have no pratical experience with the whatever they're trying to talk trash about.
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Old September 30th, 2005, 04:05 PM   #83
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agreed, A lot of people have no clue about specs and especially withbroadcast. So long as the picture quality is good, and your delivery is on an exceptable format. Mini Dv is not a broadcast standard, but most will broadcast it. Some HD stations do require no more the 10 or 20% of content to be HDV, with exception if the film is say about everest, and the weight of the camera is a factor.

In theory, everything in a imaged is compressed regardless of format, it s a replication of life, and the only thing that matters is how well what ever the format you use, replicates.

If you want to complain, it can be graphic and effects people doing compositing, because rendering out DV causes artifacting.

My theory is if it looks good, and has a great story, and somebody will air it, that is all you need. People over look the story part and that is why TV is so bad for the most part.

Ofcourse, i'd love to have a 90k Vari-Cam to shoot on.
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Old September 30th, 2005, 10:25 PM   #84
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plus, when you downconvert from HDV, doesn't regular SD DVD look better than regular DV to SD DVD?
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Old October 1st, 2005, 02:52 AM   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Hurd
The vast majority of those who "bash HDV" are people who have never once used it. These are the type who get hung up on numbers and specifications... for example the issue of compression... heavier compression is not a bad thing at all when it's done right. For example nobody seems to complain about the H.264 spec, it is only 8mbps, I've seen it projected on a large screen and it looks awesome. Thankfully the "HDV bashers" are a rare breed on DV Info Net; we do our best to discourage those nay-sayers who have no pratical experience with the whatever they're trying to talk trash about.
It is easy to get hung up on technical nonsense.

Still there are many valid reasons for working with other formats.

Compression IS an issue.

Of course it is never as easy as saying that "HDV sucks" or that "HDV is great." It is a compromise, and a complicated one.

HDV was designed to make it possible to acquire good images with a cheap camera. It does the job.

HDV was not designed for complex editing, but it can be edited effectively. Mostly this just entails throwing CPU power at the problems of HDV editing, and current machines can handle this with aplomb.

HDV was not designed for compositing, but within limits it can be composited very well. For example it makes a great background layer in any composite. As composites get more complex, HDV is less suitable.

Examples of composite situations where HDV breaks down are lace, long hair and spill suppression.

The next step up intraframe compressed formats like DVCPRO HD and HDCAM. For fairly modest upgrade in disk requirements you get a much better edit and composite codec.

DVCPRO HD handles lace and spill suppression much better than HDV, but can still be tripped up. Compositing long human hair remains an issue, but you can throw some time and procesing power at it and get good results.

Uncompressed formats give you the best results possible. Even at this "ultimate" quality level you can find images unmanageable. For example 35mm film has issues with grain. Grain is often removed as a precompositing step. It is often added to the image after the composite is complete.

Its all about how you intend to use it.

I suggest using a mix of formats as your production requirements change.

For many that will mean that HDV will be used all the time if HD is used at all.

My advice to everyone however is to learn in detail what the limits of the formats are, and when you need to press for higher end acquisition.
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Old October 1st, 2005, 03:20 AM   #86
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Nice balanced post - and 100% correct!
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Old October 1st, 2005, 11:08 AM   #87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yi Fong Yu
plus, when you downconvert from HDV, doesn't regular SD DVD look better than regular DV to SD DVD?
Does HDV produce a better image for DVD output than SD camera recording.

With DVD as the final output I would say no.

HDV's main benefit over DV is raw resolution. It is worse than DV in many other regards. (Of course I love resolution... so its a good trade off.)

DVD throws away all the extra resolution, so in the end you gain all of HDV's problems and get none of its advantages.

DV is a better acquisition format for projects destined for DVD only. Notice the last part.

If you want or need better images for DVD release, then shoot a better quality SD format, like say DVCPRO 50 instead. The Canon XL-H1 allows uncompressed SD SDI output as well, so I can record DVCPRO 50, DigiBeta or even just raw uncompressed SD.

These basically give better color data. DVCPRO 50 and Digibeta are 4:2:2 formats. So if you want quality similiar to them for DVD distribution with HD acquistion you have to look at DVCPRO HD or HDCAM.

Now, I believe that our industry is in transition and we have to consider future viewing of our video. That means considering HD.

If you plan on making a future HD product (say a Blue Ray disc) then HDV has one HUGE advantage over any SD format: Resolution.

The best SD images don't upconvert to HD very well. They always look out of focus compared to material acquired in HD.

Of course while HDV looks decent often, it is NOT as good for HD production as DV is for SD production. You have to move up from HDV to a better format faster than you had to with DV in SD.

I hope that last bit made sense.

So... there you have it. Up to you to decide how your footage will be used today, next week, next year and in ten years. Then you can decide what format to shoot.

Of course, rather than obsess about all this I agree with Mike Dalton... it is always preferable to focus on STORY than technology. If its a good show except for technical issues viewers will still accept it.
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