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Canon XL1S / XL1 Watchdog
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Old May 18th, 2004, 03:44 PM   #1
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Considering buying one but have a few questions.

I have been eyeing up the XL1s for quite a while now and am really thinking of getting it, but I have a few questions first. I have heard that it does not perform well in low light and it gives a very grainy, pixelized picture. Is there some way to correct this on the camera itself, such as an exposure adjustment, or would I have to buy an adapter of some sorts? Also I have heard that the microphone picks up alot of body noise from the camera. Is this noticeable or not something to worry about? And one final thing. Does anyone know of any good sites to look for lenses and adapters of all kinds for this camera? I have seen pictures of all kinds, but haven't found any place selling them. Please fill me in. Thanks.

Mitch
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Old May 18th, 2004, 05:02 PM   #2
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Quote:
XL1...really thinking of getting it, but I have a few questions first...does not perform well in low light...very grainy, pixelized picture...some way to correct this on the camera itself...have heard...microphone picks up alot of body noise....
Geez, that sure is a lot of misinformation. Who told you all this? Don't believe any of it.
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Old May 18th, 2004, 05:59 PM   #3
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So it performs completely fine then? I have just heard that it struggles in low light from many people. How would I go about correcting it if I was getting a grainy picture?
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Old May 18th, 2004, 06:12 PM   #4
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Where exactly have you heard this? State your specific reference, please.

If you're getting a grainy image, simply turn the gain control from automatic to +0db or perhaps +6db. Grainy video usually indicates an auto gain that's too high. Not enough light? Simply add light. There are a variety of ways to do this. The XL1S performs adequately in low light, by the way. Not the best, but adequate.

The XL1S is a serious production tool intended for videographers who take their video seriously; i.e. they would add sufficient light to a low-light situation. Low-light situations and high image quality are mutually exclusive terms. You can have either one, but not both. The XL1S excels in image quality. As for low-light situations, just add light. That's pretty easy.

Beware of superlatives.

Guide to XL Lens Options.

Neutralize motor noise to the onboard mic.


Hope this helps,
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Old May 18th, 2004, 06:25 PM   #5
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Mitch, no camera is all things to all people. Mercedes, Porsche and BMW are all great cars, but they are all different. What type of things do you hope to shoot with your new camera, weddings, shorts, features, documentaries? The same camera that excels at weddings, won't be as well suited for features or documentaries.

I've owned an XL1 and XL1s for a few years and before that, Panasonic and Sony BQ cameras (I shot Beta SP and MII). I find the XL1's well suited to my shooting style and the type of assignments I shoot.

If you plan on shooting a considerable amount of low light footage (wedding receptions for example) then you might be better off with a different camera. However, if you have average low light needs then Chris' advice is on the mark and will produce fair to good low light images.
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Old May 18th, 2004, 08:50 PM   #6
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I am planning on making shorts and and hopefully, within the next year, a feature length film that I hope to be entering in to film contests. I have done one film and I have it posted under DV for the masses. It is called the Great Gatsby short. If you get a chance, watch it and leave your comments. My next one that I just completed will be up within the next few hours so look for that. The post will say something about the Grapes of Wrath. Anywho, I'm getting off track, I'm shooting right now with a Sony CCD-TRV87, very low quality. So I am looking at upgrading. Do you feel this is the camera to go with? Any input would be helpful.
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Old May 18th, 2004, 08:57 PM   #7
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have used one for 5 years. Got a mini35 2 months ago. It's a whole new camera.
Only complaint is the frame mode low resolution issue.
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Old May 18th, 2004, 09:28 PM   #8
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Check out my 'XL1 vs. Film Look Post' thread in this section.

Personally, I'm always stunned by the quality of the images I get shooting 1/30 Frame. To me, it's better then any of the programs that cost a ton of money to 'achieve' the film look.

We had to shoot part of a documentary in a photo gallery with no light on the camera allowed and no control over the lighting of the place and it performed amazingly.

then you can look at the lens options and see more benefits.
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Old May 19th, 2004, 07:08 AM   #9
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Is the 1/30 frame mode an option to shoot in on the XL1s?
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Old May 19th, 2004, 07:16 AM   #10
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Yes.
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Old May 19th, 2004, 11:02 AM   #11
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Mitch,

I've done three shorts and one feature on the XL-1, not even the S, and aside from some focus hiccups that seem to be fixed in the five years since I bought one, I dig the camera.

I hate to self-promote, but I have a DVD and VHS for sale (and a free trailer you can watch) of the film I shot it on. Go to my film company's site for more.

Hope this helps,

heath

ps-Sorry to take your closing, Chris H.!
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