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Canon XL1S / XL1 Watchdog
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Old September 4th, 2003, 01:00 PM   #1
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Xl1S and what lens?

I need advice from the experienced. I am purchasing the Canon XL1s within the next 2 months. I understand I can buy the KIT that includes BODY and NO lens.

My goal is to make indi shorts for festivals, online, and learn the craft of filmaking. I want the highest quality possible and am sure that WIDE ANGLE is what I am shooting for. I want my DV films to have as close as I can get to a "cinematic" look that I will hope to accomplish using dolly, steadicam, proper lighting set-ups, editing and post tricks.

Can anyone reccomend the lens I should buy with my new purchase?
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Old September 4th, 2003, 05:35 PM   #2
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Yep. Buy the 3x lens.
You want wide angle, it's the only wide angle lens for the XL1. Mine stays on my camera about 70% of the time.

Alternately, your best choice may be the 16x manual lens, plus a wide angle converter. The 14x manual lens is great too, and about $500 cheaper than the 16x.
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Old September 5th, 2003, 11:23 AM   #3
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What can you tell me about the Manual Servo 16x
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Old September 5th, 2003, 12:23 PM   #4
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Check out this excellent article, by Ken Tanaka
http://www.dvinfo.net/canon/articles/article82.php
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Old September 5th, 2003, 01:01 PM   #5
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Thank you very much.
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Old October 23rd, 2003, 09:55 AM   #6
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Lens bag

what lens bag do you suggest for the 3x or 16x canon lens when you just put it in a big camera bag?
thanks
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Old October 24th, 2003, 05:38 PM   #7
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I may be labeled a heretic, but I'd go with the Panasonic DVX100
unless you can afford to wait for the next generation of XL1.

We just had a DVX100 in the video studio and WOW! The images totally
blow the XL1 away. Really really nice stuff that rival the DSR500
and Ikegami HD7 (both over $10,000). True progressive scan tops interpolated
(phoney) frame mode any day of the week.
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Old October 25th, 2003, 01:19 AM   #8
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Automatic Paper Weights.

John,

If your are going with the XL-1S, do yourself a favor and dump the auto lens and go with a manual lens. We have four XL-1S packages that were bought with the auto lenses and the manual lenses. The auto lenses have been sitting on a shelf, in their bags since day one. We use them strictly as a backup if one of the manuals go down.

The up-side to the 14X lens besides the price is that is has a conventional iris ring, where it was always meant to be, as opposed to the 16X that does not. For a seasoned shooter, this allows you to ride the focus and aperture simultaneously, giving you complete control of your shot.

We went with the Canon 3X wide angles because the focus was not as big an issue as when using the longer lens.

Keep it sharp!
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Old October 25th, 2003, 07:34 AM   #9
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John,

Monsieur Dylan Cooper's suggestion to start with the 3X is a an excellent one, especially if you are limited in budget and would not be able to afford the 16X Manual/ Servo with a Century Optics wide adaptor.

Here is a film that was shot entirely with the 3X, on the older XL1 in fact:
http://atomfilms.shockwave.com/af/content/anna_stalked

There is almost literally no difference in sharpness between the different XL lenses, such as shown here:
http://www.noisybrain.com/SDTV/ISII_vs_manualservo
However, there have been some issues with maintaining focus on the 16X IS XL lens. The 3X does not have this issue and the 16X Manual/ Servo certainly does not have any focus issues. The older Canon 14X Manual lens (such as the one that Dylan mentioned) is also a great lens - full manual style.

Here is an example of how the Canon XL lenses compare to the Panasonic AG-DVX100 lens http://www.noisybrain.com/SDTV/ISII_...ualservo/6.jpg and http://www.noisybrain.com/SDTV/ISII_...ualservo/7.jpg

I would say you would have an excellent setup with getting the 3X and a 14X or 16X Manual lens. Both lenses share the same 72mm thread mount, so you could use the same screw-on filters or matte box.

Remember one thing as far as filmmaking goes, it is a standard practice to use different lenses as needed. The 3X and Manual lens combination would work well also in that you could use an easier-to-use screw-on matte box instead of having to use a rod-mounted matte box if you were to use a wide-angle adaptor on the 16X Manual/ Servo.

- don
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Old October 25th, 2003, 11:19 AM   #10
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Note that you can use a lens mounted matte box on the 16x manual as Don says, but you cannot use it on the 14x manual, as the 14x's front rotates for focus. That's OK though because chicks are impressed more with rod mounted matte boxes. ;)

Side note regarding Don's XL1 to DVX100 pics. Wow, the XL1 seems to have a much sharper and brighter picture!
ALso, going over the 16x IS II vs. the 16x manual comparison, the manual lens does look sharper, but only if you look hard. In a real world comparison, it would probably go unnoticed.
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