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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 26th, 2005, 12:44 AM   #1
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Underrated SD SDI

I have noticed that everybody is crazy about the HD SDI and trying to figure out a way to make it useful in the field. The truth is that it is not an easy task!
One thing that I guess most DV producers are loving is that it is possible to use the uncompressed SD SDI output for great looking chroma keys, which most of the times are done in studio. Hey, this kind of connection hasn't been available in sub $10,000 DV cameras and now we can. We can even shot a whole production connected to a portable Betacam SP or Digital Betacam without a problem. This is really cool and this will change the market for higher priced cameras in many markets where SD is still big. And, by the way, you still have the HD SDI option and the HDV option!

Although 2/3" cameras are a big step from 1/3" cameras, hey... some people will never know!

-EDWIN
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Old September 26th, 2005, 08:06 AM   #2
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You're quite right, Edwin... although I don't know who would buy the H1 at $9K for its SD capabilities, they are in fact rather remarkable!
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Old September 26th, 2005, 08:39 AM   #3
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Connecting to a portable DigiBeta recorder would make some kind of sense, but BetaSP doesn't accept SDI, and does not have picture quality enough for it to make sense to record to it, even if it did have an SDI connector.

However, what interests me is how much of the quality of the camera is masked by the compression, be it DV or HDV and/or how much the compression masks flaws in the camera. By having a pristine SDI output, we can now conduct such comparisons, and that to me, is the best thing about the SDI output!

Graeme
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Old September 26th, 2005, 11:46 AM   #4
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We have a digital betacam deck here at the U. If and when we get
an HD1 I plan to use SDI in some tests. Also, if you look around you
can find an inexpensive SDI capture card. Then use FW800 which is
cheap and easy storage. I plan on testing that too for bluescreen work.
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Old September 26th, 2005, 12:16 PM   #5
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To DB or direct to a computer for green screen work sounds like an excellent way to use the SD SDI out. Please tell us how you get on if and when you get the chance.

Graeme
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Old September 26th, 2005, 12:24 PM   #6
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The XLH1 will be one of the best SD cameras in the industry along with the JVC HD100.

Even though a SONY DSR570 has 2/3" chips at the end of the day the best you will get is DVCAM from the camera. Of course you could buy a cable to turn the 26pin connector to analog component but I am not sure if this is before or after dv compression.

The XLH1 finally gives us a SD camera under $10,000.00 to shoot high end SD video either in the field with a deck or in a studio capturing live.

I have keyed video from everything from a Canon XL1 to a SONY DSR570 and besides the picture looking just a hair better in difficult lighting situations with the DSR570 the keys and complex color correction were no better from the two cameras. 1/3" or not we will now have a whole new level of SD quality that would have cost us into the $20,000.00 and above range in the past.

Heck 2 years ago I would have even spent $9,000.00 for this camera even if it was just an XL2 with SD SDI built in. High quality output is very important to me and it sure would have been better than buying a DVCPRO50 camera for double that price or higher.

The HDV and HD SDI are a huge bonus to an already great SD camera.
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Old September 27th, 2005, 02:21 PM   #7
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My mistake with the BETA SP thing.
By the way, what's the data rate of the SD SDI?
-EDWIN
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Old September 29th, 2005, 01:55 PM   #8
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wouldn't XL H1 also record SD on regular miniDV tapes? if so, why would there be a need for SDI?
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Old September 30th, 2005, 11:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yi Fong Yu
wouldn't XL H1 also record SD on regular miniDV tapes? if so, why would there be a need for SDI?
I think it's because the SDI would be uncompressed.
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