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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 20th, 2006, 05:06 PM   #1
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HDV NOISE SAMPLES - The codec at its worse

I am on the fence about HDV. From what i have seen it looks real nice, but I do hear mention of a less film-like noise due to the compression. Can anyone post clips of this type of noise. IE: the codec at its worse. I love Canon cams, and I really want an XL or maybe a G1 but I wanna see just how bad the worst case (noise) scenario I could be dealing with.

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Old September 21st, 2006, 07:15 PM   #2
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I wish I could. But I've never been able to successfully produce this "supposed so called" noise.
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Old September 22nd, 2006, 08:33 AM   #3
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LOL, me neither Robert.

It seems like a strange request. What kind of shooting are you going to be doing? This kind of problem would only really surface if you are shooting a lot of stuff under very low light.

I would suggest that you find a way to rent the camera and try to do some testing under what you consider normal shooting conditions and see how the camera fairs.

In my opinion, it does as well and sometimes better than any other camera in its class.
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Old September 22nd, 2006, 09:37 AM   #4
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There are some codec oddities I've run into. I shot someone the other day with a speckeled, tightly patterned shirt and it was HORRIBLE. It probably wouldn't have been good with SD, but you could really see the HDV codec breathing.

But that's few and far between. It's pretty awesome most of the time.

Kevin
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Old September 22nd, 2006, 01:59 PM   #5
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I understand reservations in camera owners to post footage of their cams behaving badly. But I think its very educational to see this stuff from any camera a person might be interested in. I really do totally want one of the canon hdv cams. All the footage looks really amazingly awesome. I will be shooting a short soon, nothing too unusual as far as super low light or snow etc.. and I want to shoot it in HDV. But just as I am getting excited I hear these folks saying that there is wierd noise at times in the hdv codec. Noise is a very very vague word, I have seen occasional dv mosquito noise and I live with it but this is a new codec and I just wanted to see just how bad this type of (hdv) noise was. If this stuff is not real or is just not that bad then great. But if there are any examples of it I would just like to see it to see what I would be dealing with (in post, lol). Its good advice to test the camera myself but I just thought with all the users of these cams out there I could tap a resource.
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Old September 22nd, 2006, 04:35 PM   #6
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i have never seen any problems with hdv from canon as of date. the best hd footage ive seen under $100k besides red. i think it is better then xdcamhd.
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Old September 22nd, 2006, 05:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee Alford
i have never seen any problems with hdv from canon as of date. the best hd footage ive seen under $100k besides red. i think it is better then xdcamhd.
I've just edited an HD show with both HDcam, H1 and XDCam HD footage and I can tell you it's not as good, but it's close.
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Old September 22nd, 2006, 10:40 PM   #8
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so when you say "not as good", can you be more specific?
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Old September 22nd, 2006, 11:37 PM   #9
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I just bought an F350 XDCAM HD, and have a lot of experience with HDV from Sony Z1s, HD100s, and Varicams.

The XDCAM HD at 35mbit, in my opinion, is better than DVCPRO HD. At the very least, it's in the same ballpark.

The flames can begin.....now :-)
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Old September 23rd, 2006, 03:37 PM   #10
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I'm not surprised. Variable bit rate MPEG2 could indeed surpass DV100, depending on the image fed to it.

XDCAM 35mbit 24p records discrete 24p with no wasted bandwidth on pulldown frames, just like Canon 24F and JVC 24p, correct?

Nate, how do the variable frame rates look overall, and can you actually ramp frame rates in-camera?
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Old September 23rd, 2006, 04:50 PM   #11
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Dynamic range is smaller, highlight handling is worse, slightly more "electronic" look on the H1.

I'd agree with Nate on the closeness to DVCPro HD, I took Alister's 350 out today with his new HD lens and I got some stunning footage of a 1930's air display. I'll try and post some clips later in the week to show just how good the 350 can look.
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Old September 23rd, 2006, 05:09 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barlow Elton
I'm not surprised. Variable bit rate MPEG2 could indeed surpass DV100, depending on the image fed to it.
People assume all codecs act the same when comparing bitrates. DCT and MPEG2 couldn't be more different. MPEG, despite all it's implementation problems, is just smarter tech.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barlow Elton
XDCAM 35mbit 24p records discrete 24p with no wasted bandwidth on pulldown frames, just like Canon 24F and JVC 24p, correct?
Yup. Exactly alike.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barlow Elton
Nate, how do the variable frame rates look overall, and can you actually ramp frame rates in-camera?
Anything over 30fps is half-vertical resolution, and the MPEGs are actually 1440x540, although some of the software out there covers this up and calls it either 1440x1080 or 1920x1080. Despite that, because the H resolution is so high, things still look pretty good. One or two shots in a sequence of this res would never get noticed. A whole program of it might get noticed by techies. FYI, the camera does no ramping. Just any integer between 4 and 60fps (although below 4fps you also have interval recording, starting at 1fps and going down from there).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Connor
Dynamic range is smaller, highlight handling is worse, slightly more "electronic" look on the H1.
I'd agree, out of the box the latitude is not awe-inspiring. It seems to be just fine in any of the Cine Gamma modes however (which, despite their moniker do some serious dynamic voodoo in the knee). A Cine gamma setting coupled with a raised Black Gamma setting can really stuff some more stops in the signal. The "electronic" look I'd wager is the detail, which of course can be dialed down in about 5 different ways.
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Old September 24th, 2006, 12:36 AM   #13
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DV form of codecs which cover DV dv50 and dv100 really are bad codecs for the bitrates they use. Look at photojpeg for example. For SD work photojpeg at 75% is a I frame only 4:2:2 codec at an amazing level of quality.

DV = 3.4MB/S
Photojpeg 75% = 2.7MB/S

You can see that photojpeg is smaller in size but yet blows away DV in terms of overall quality as well as color space detail. Photojpeg 75% is well known as a good online codec for Broadcast work that can come very close to uncompressed video.

This shows how bad DV really is at encoding. DVCPROHD is a 100 mbit form of a DV codec so it doesn't encode very well when compared to other codecs. This is why I agree that mpeg2 at 35 mbits and higher can actually look better than DVCPROHD.
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