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Canon XL1S / XL1 Watchdog
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Old February 21st, 2004, 08:22 PM   #1
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I Love My XL-1. See My Clips...

I have had an XL-1 since 1998 (It's been factory tuned once) and I would never consider using anything else - ever again. I use it in very unforgiving environmental conditions and I consistently get excellent results.

Do I shoot manually? Rarely. Do I focus manually? Hardly, if ever. Do I stay on top of the camera in case it goes awry? Constantly, but I'd do that with any camera.

It's large enough to rest on my shoulder and short enough to swing around in very confined spaces. I don't want to hold a camera in front of me with two hands. I need a free hand for other things. I don't want to lug a $50,000 ENG camera - those poor camerman can't ever keep up; they might as well have boat anchor chained to their leg.

I look into the LCD viewfinder. I can't use a flip-out LCD. The glare of the sun or pitch dark night would render a flip-out useless.

I throw it in and out of the back of helicopters. I use it as a crutch when climbing cliffs. I use it as a shield from breaking waves when I'm near water. It's been dropped, stepped on, slammed into, sprayed with jet fuel, and bled on. I constantly beat the crap out of the this camera and it has never failed me.

Checkout some of my clips at:
http://www.henry1.com/film_audio.htm
(more to come)

The night time video was taken on a starless, moonless night. There were no street lights, car lights, or house lights lighting the scene. I literally could not see my hand in front of my face. Not a problem. (Of course, the clip has been compressed for web transport). The raw footage is a thing of beauty.

If there's anyone out there who tortures this camera more than I do (and I seriously doubt there is) I'd sure like to hear from you. Anyone else shooting from helicopters or doing serious aerial photography;still or video?
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Old February 22nd, 2004, 05:32 AM   #2
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Eric, a lot of us had great stories about the durability of this magnificant camcorder. Go back to page 5 and read the post "stands up to punishment" I cannot imagine a stronger camcorder. Who do you shoot for. Bob
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Old February 22nd, 2004, 05:57 AM   #3
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I went to the web page. WOW. But, I could mot download the videos, just the stills. Great stuff. Bob
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Old February 25th, 2004, 04:45 PM   #4
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That's some nice looking footage and I doubt anyone will beat
their XL1S up more than you. Great work you guys do as well!
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Old February 25th, 2004, 05:11 PM   #5
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Hi , All.

I'm freelance and do not work directly for the Sheriff's department, although I am their primary camerman. It's a great gig.

I'm always looking for work shooting or editing in the San Francisco Bay Area, especially the North Bay.

I use the old XL-1 (not "s").

Rob,

I'm first generation American. My parents are from Holland. All of my relatives (Oma, Oom, Tante, etc) are still in Holland.

My Dutch is deplorable. I still understand some and can read some, but I'm way out of practice. It's shameful...
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Old February 26th, 2004, 07:45 AM   #6
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My XL1s spirit is Alive again,

Very good work!

thanks for sharing Eric.
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Old February 26th, 2004, 09:59 AM   #7
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Hi Eric,

Oh yeah, you're the Henry One guy. Awesome stuff, superb website, great material! You have a dream job in some people's eyes.
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Old February 26th, 2004, 10:19 AM   #8
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Also wanted to note that all the audio clips were recorded with the factory mic attached to the XL-1.

In the case of the audio clips on the henry1 site, raw footage was captured in Premiere Movie Capture, dragged to the timeline, the video track was removed, the audio was exported as a wav file, converted into an mp3 file, and uploaded to the website.
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Old February 26th, 2004, 10:02 PM   #9
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Nice work.

Been there, done that, killed 3 so far!

The camera seems to endure the rigors of dirty, hot, humid, dusty, gritty, tactical work with no problems but seems to cave in under little things, like a clumsy producer.

Thankfully, we have an open repair contract with a vendor that just ships them off to Canon for repair.

Go figure.

As far as your having a great gig, I agree. I did it with my Department, free of charge, for six years before making the decision to take a full time job. Never a dull moment!

RB
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Old February 27th, 2004, 03:36 AM   #10
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" Groeten uit Nederland dan Eric! "

So how did you wind up in the US?
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Old February 27th, 2004, 04:27 AM   #11
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Dank u, Rob.
Mijn ouders kwamen op de boot in 1960 langs. Ik was geboren in San Francisco in 1963. Ik moet me voor mijn het schrijven verontschuldigen. Ik ben niet zelfs zeker als het werkelijk om het even welke steek
houdt.

Does that make sense? *laff*

Anyway, used to visit Holland every couple of years, but haven't been back in almost 20 years. There are so many relatives to visit its hard to have any real fun or do any site seeing. And if you don't visit everybody, somebody always gets mad. I always said that I'm just going to sneak into the country and not tell anybody. Of course, one day, somewhere, someone would see me walking down the street and all hell would break loose.
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Old February 27th, 2004, 04:52 AM   #12
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Holland isn't *that* small! <grin> The first two sentences are
pretty good, the last two are not that great. No worries though,
I perfectly understood!

So are you just a camera man on that team or do you also work
as part of the "rescue" force?
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Old February 27th, 2004, 07:17 AM   #13
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I think the last sentence was suppose to translate to : "I must apologize for my writing. I'm not even sure it really makes any sense." There, you see, it was true after all, It DIDN'T make sense. My mother would be very ashamed of me.

I'm not really an official part of the team at all, although the crews are very generous and go out of their way to make me feel like a part of the team. I'm just a very lucky and humble camerman.

Our relationship is mutually beneficial. Take the henry1.com website for instance. When you visit henry1.com, it's obviously a site that promotes the helicopter unit. What isn't so obvious to others, but is very plain to me, is that the website is a vehicle (more like a huge truck) to showcase and distribute my work and talents.

...and to think this all started because I used to take pictures of their helicopter flying over my house...

Am I lucky? Yes. Was it accidental? No.
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