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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 March 19th, 2006, 05:19 PM   #1
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XLH1 Downconvert?

Gentlemen, a little help please: I'm shooting a project, deliverable in SD 4x3 DVD, for which I have completed the in-studio on-camera narration. For field shooting, I have the option of using an XLH1 or a native SD 3x1/3" Sony DSR- 200.
Question: 1. Which camcorder would you use?
2. If I chose the XLH1, what do I gain -- lose?
3. What settings do you recommend on the H1 to avoid the notorious " out-of-box color flatness"?

Many thanks and sorry if I'm somewhat off topic , but you seem like the folks to ask. -- Oliver
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Old March 19th, 2006, 06:23 PM   #2
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Oliver: I don't know what your level of expertise is, so it's difficult to answer. What I will say is that I shot over 40 short documentaries for a syndicated television show in the late '90s with the DSR200 and I am still amazed when I go back and look at the quality that camera produced.

I sold the 200 and bought a DSR300, which I still own, mainly for the lens and the ability to change nose mikes, which can't be done on the 200. I still own the 300, and it is also excellent - in general Sony cameras are superb in terms of construction and visual quality.

I've owned an H1 since December and have been shooting constantly with it since. It yields incredible HDV images, but if you are shooting 4x3 SD, the lens won't be wide enough for some interiors, like cars. It also has a bit of a learning curve if you intend to tweak it.

You are probably hot to use the XL H1 because it's one of the new kids in town, but if I were you I'd take a good look at the DSR200. If the camera's in good condition it will probably be a better choice for 4x3.
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Old March 19th, 2006, 07:06 PM   #3
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Also, Oliver, forgot to mention. I don't know if you'll be hand-holding, but I do 90% of the time. The DSR200 is (in my humble opinion) the best ergonomically designed video camera I've ever used - very much like a 16mm Aaton.

It's light, balances evenly on your shoulder, it has a low profile so you can look over to it to the right without lowering it, and the hand-grip is positioned lower than the lens so it doesn't kill your arm...

I truly wish Canon had emulated that design in the H1... Steve Rosen
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Old March 19th, 2006, 07:24 PM   #4
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XLH1 Downconvert?

Thanks Steve for the quick response. As you suggest, I dont have many hours on the H1 and your answer is pivotal in my decision to use the DSR-200. I'll get up to speed on the H1 on my own time rather than the client's.

I' cant say how fortunate I feel to be able to get the benefit of your experience just for the asking. Thanks loads --Oliver
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Old March 19th, 2006, 08:02 PM   #5
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Oh, and Oliver, the DSR200 uses 3 hour tapes and shoots DVCAM, both significant features... (it's basically a big DSR150)...
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Old March 19th, 2006, 10:24 PM   #6
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XLH1 Downconvert?

You're right again Steve. A few years ago I spent 2 days with the DSR-200 on my shoulder chasing racecars around Laguna Seca Raceway shooting the Monterey Historic Sport car event. -- Much more forgiving than a Beta SP.
Can't imagine handholding an H1 several hours without some kind of brace!

>>DSR200 is (in my humble opinion) the best ergonomically designed video camera I've ever used - <<
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Old March 19th, 2006, 10:25 PM   #7
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I split this out of the XL H1 Downconvert thread and put it into a new topic.
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Old March 20th, 2006, 01:06 PM   #8
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Thanks Cris

>>I split this out of the XL H1 Downconvert thread and put it into a new topic.<<
Thanks Cris, Your action makes sense. I was trying to hook Steve Rosen and got carried away. Sorry for the incursion. Peace, -- Oliver
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Old March 20th, 2006, 04:10 PM   #9
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It's no incursion at all, Oliver -- you've asked a good question which deserved to be under its own roof instead of being part of an unrelated topic.
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