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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 July 27th, 2007, 01:39 AM   #1
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Please help with next purchase decision!!

I hope this question doesnt sound like im being lazy I have just did so much research I honestly have to say i am getting bewildered with it all and need help coming back to reality.

For my next cam purchase i'm deciding on either the xha1 or the xlh1. Im leaning towards the h1 because of the stamped timecode. Is this really a good enough reason to make this upgrade... after all i could purchase a seperate time code deck, right? Is this thinking the right way? If so i wouldnt even know what deck to get or whats compatable with canon. On the other hand if the pic of the h1 is remarkably better than the a1 i will go with the h1. But i don't know if there will be a remarkable difference in pic between the two cams. It's evident im confused as Ive read the a1 has the same guts as the h1.. is this really true.. I mean there is a 5000.00 difference in price. Any comments or thoughts in whether its an upgrade worthy of making for the timecode or if the pic really is better than the a1.

All I am doing with the cams are instructional dvd's with 3 player interviews. I currently have one a1, am using Vegas for editing and premier pro for special effects. If I stick with the a1 I could spend the extra moneys on a time code deck an editing mixer, matrox hardware, etc to make life easier... perhaps even quicker. Any suggestions in whether i should just upgrade my editing gear and perhaps purchase a time code deck versus the upgrade to the h1. Is it better to have an external time code deck versus transfering through cam?

Main objective is to make life a little easier in the production and post... not to mention crisp clear pictures. Any thoughts will surely help me get a better grip on my next few purchases. TIA

As far as my editing software and the pc i work on... I am totally content... just thought id make mention for all the die hard FCP users out there ( :

Last edited by Robyne Hunwick; July 27th, 2007 at 01:43 AM. Reason: *Edit*
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Old July 27th, 2007, 10:40 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robyne Hunwick View Post
Im leaning towards the h1 because of the stamped timecode.
Sorry but there is no difference here with regard to Time Code... both camcorders offer the exact same Time Code options and there's no difference in how TC is written to tape. The difference between the XH A1 and the XL H1 with regard to Time Code is that the XL H1 has the ability to accept incoming Time Code from an external source, and can send Time Code out of the camera as well. The XH A1 can't do either of those things. Other than that, there's no difference in how they handle Time Code.

Quote:
i wouldnt even know what deck to get or whats compatable with canon.
It's pretty simple -- if you want to use the 30F or 24F Frame modes, then your only option is to use another Canon HDV camcorder as a playback deck, such as the consumer pieces HV10 or HV20. If you don't intend to use Frame mode, then any Sony HDV deck will play back Canon 1080i60 video.

Quote:
On the other hand if the pic of the h1 is remarkably better than the a1 i will go with the h1.
No, there's absolutely no difference in the quality of the image. The XL H1 and XH A1 share the exact same processor, image sensor block and quality of optics. In this regard they are identical.

Quote:
I mean there is a 5000.00 difference in price.
That price difference is justified by the important features that XL H1 has over the XH A1, which are first and foremost uncompressed HD-SDI output, Time Code input and output, and GenLock, as well as interchangeable lenses and four-channel audio.

You seem to be overlooking another option though... the XH G1. It's identical in every way to the XH A1 but also includes the critical features of the XL H1 (SDI, Time Code in/out and GenLock), at a much lower difference in price ($3,000 instead of $5,000). Hope this helps,
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Old July 27th, 2007, 11:04 AM   #3
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Chris I am surprised that you insist there is "absolutely no difference" between the image produced by the XLH1 and the XHA1.

I agree that at certain settings the differences may be imperceptible. I shoot indoors without lights quite a bit and find the differences to be noticeable.

I am not sure that I would have paid an extra $5K for the improved image quality though - to me the price difference is justified by the ergonomics.
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Old July 27th, 2007, 11:36 AM   #4
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Look again -- I said there's no difference in the *quality* of the image.

Nor should there be, because (as previously pointed out) the CCD block, the DSP, and the quality of the glass are all *identical* between the three camcorders XL H1, XH G1 and XH A1.

The XL and XH don't quite match right out of the box, but it's easy enough to tweak them so that they do. However the point is that all three camcorders share the same guts and the same kind of glass, and that's a fundamental concept to understand.

There are some major differences between the XL and XH in the technologies used for autofocus and image stabilization, and generally speaking, the newer XH has an advantage over the older XL with regard to image controls and some other considerations, but the heart, brain and eyeballs are equal on all three.

I wouldn't consider shooting indoors without lights to be an appropriate circumstance for any camcorder, though. Common, yes; appropriate, no.
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Old July 27th, 2007, 11:44 AM   #5
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Chris thanks so much for your response. I am starting to understand in greater depth the difference between the two cams.... perhaps even the three. I will do further research on the timecode, sdi, genloc misc and report back with any additional questions. Thanks again for being there
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Old July 27th, 2007, 02:34 PM   #6
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Ok... With your help Chris and after doing some research and talking with Scott over at Texas Tapeworks I am narrowing the purchase down to the G1. However, I don't want to use either the A1 or the G1 for the tapedeck. So I guess Im going to have to get the HV 20... not to excited about this though. I could always do 3 cam shots now... but wouldnt this be too hard to sync in post edit?? (My life is complicated enough as it is!!) Maybe Ill sell the A1.. I have a buyer for it so would not be too much effort....

I sure am GLAD I have you guys and your sponsors!!
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