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Canon XL1S / XL1 Watchdog
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Old February 5th, 2003, 07:06 PM   #46
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I would like a less sensitive thumb trigger and audio levels visible in the EVF.
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Old February 6th, 2003, 12:57 PM   #47
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Wish List fr XL-2

setable timecode
Timecode In and Out connectors for shared TC
fully manual 16x lens with onboard iris
fully manual 3x lens with onboard iris
viewfinder switchable between BW and color
onboard XLR connectors
removable non-tape recording medium
If granting many of the wishes makes the price rise too high, keep making the XL-1s and add the XL-2 as another model rather than as a replacement.
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Old February 8th, 2003, 03:40 PM   #48
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For my wish list:

Solid state acquistion: Some form of memory stick. No more mechanical drives.

Digital HD. Variable iris and shutter. Shutter speed up to 50Kframes/sec.

No memory 10 hour battery.
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Old February 10th, 2003, 06:59 PM   #49
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I see I'm 2 days late, and 47 posts short, Chris, but if you're still reading these wishes, it would be wonderful if the EF Adapter would allow autofocus to be transmitted to EOS lenses in an XL-2.
This manual focusing gets old in the 21st century.

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Old February 15th, 2003, 04:42 PM   #50
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an inside camera focus wheel for my bad eyes.

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Old March 2nd, 2003, 02:22 AM   #51
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Important -- Please Read!

Howdy from Las Vegas,

I have a sudden opportunity here at the PMA show to speak at length to Canon USA's Video Division V.P. about product development. It will be a chance to provide feedback like yours about what you would like to see on a possible next-generation successor to the current XL1S.

My intention is to walk in with a hard-copy print of this complete thread. If you have any other thoughts on this particular topic, to either re-emphasize any previous suggestions already made, or new ideas that haven't been presented here yet, this is your chance!

My appointment is scheduled for Monday evening, 7pm PST. You guys have until then to get your wish-list requests in to this thread before I print it out in entirety and hand it over to the top management of Canon Video. They are interested in what you have to say here. We're already at 50 posts to this thread, let's make it more than a few more and put in your final summaries for what you would seriously like to see in an XL1S successor... feature sets, form factor, backward compatibility, new technologies, whatever... just keep in mind that such a potential camcorder *must* come in at a price point not much higher (preferably same or lower) than what it is now, less than $5000 USD.

Again: here's your chance -- make the most of it in this extremely limited time frame -- and I look forward to putting your ideas directly into the hands of the important people at Canon who can make a difference. This is a very rare opportunity for me to get face-time with a high-level executive who is genuinely interested in this very topic. I want to make it count for you guys. Please take advantage of this and let's sum up the key points we've made and bring up whatever we've forgotten. Your words matter. The time is now -- make it count! Much respect,

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Old March 2nd, 2003, 02:59 AM   #52
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Thanks, Chris

As I see it, Canon should make their priority keeping the XL line the top dog in prosumer-level digital cinema production. An XL2 should give better resolution (HD if possible) and more progressive-scan frame rate options (15P, 24P, 30P, 60P if possible).

I would prefer the CCD block's image to fill the frame. I would prefer the standard EVF to show the entire scan area.

On the cosmetic side, the things the XL series most has going for it are the glass and the body. Interchangable lenses are a must and the standard lens should be as bug-free as engineering trade-offs allow (back-focus issues reduced as much as possible). The standard mic the XL1s currently carries is just fine for being an on-camera mic.

MiniDV will remain an adequate standard for the next 2-3 years, but if the XL2 is to be a revolution in prosumer-level video gear, it will need an upgraded capture medium. If any camera could introduce a new tape format and make it successful, it would be the successor to the XL1. Replacing the tape transport with a hard disk solution may also be an avenue to consider. (The XL2 could even borrow an idea from the DEVA digital sound recorder and write video data to DVD-ROM during idle periods.) In any case, standard definition prosumer cameras are on their way out, and the XL2 will need to be able to write more data, faster, and with less compression. Along these same lines, support for newer data transfer standards, such as IEEE 1394b, would be most welcome.

The camera should be capable of producing convincing greenscreen mattes, so embracing MPEG compression schemes as the new JVC prosumer HD camcorders do is to be avoided. I wouldn't mind a 4:2:2 chrominance sampling ratio, but I understand if this is beyond the realm of prosumer gear.

I wouldn't mind if the camera's internal image DSP was kept to a bare-bones minimum. The less the camera futzes with the image, the happier I am. I have no use for built-in titling, built-in cheesy film dust/hair/grain.

I would like the options to throw all camera information up on the EVF and video out during shooting, for example, the VU meter, the aperture/shutter specs, etc.

The XL1 series have always been leaders in low-light performance, but I wouldn't mind sacrificing low-light shooting capability for larger, higher-res chips. I really don't care about XL2 footage matching XL1s footage. The XL2's image should be new and wonderful.

On the audio side, I wouldn't mind XLR jacks right on the camera, or at least a good accessory permitting XLR audio input. (Frankly, the MA-100 and MA-200 accessories are a good trade-off. They keep the base price of the camera low but permit an option for those of us requiring good external audio.) I'm content with 2 channels/48 kHz/16 bit audio, but would certainly welcome more channels/faster sampling/bigger dyanmic range and the option to trade off between these during shooting (just as the current XL1 allows for additional channels at the cost of sampling rate).

An XL2's weight should not exceed the weight of the XL1. Better balance on the camera should not come at the expense of a better lens.

With the XL2, Canon has the opportunity to continue the success of the XL1 line and meet the challenges posed by recent offerings from JVC and Panasonic; or, it has the opportunity to make the follow-up to the brave, bold, revolutionary XL1 a mundane consumer camcorder. I fully expect Canon will be looking to the future, not to the present, when considering their design trade-offs.
All the best,
Robert K S

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Old March 2nd, 2003, 05:34 AM   #53
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Change the Audio 1 level controls from the ganged level/balance to two level contols to better support two differnt mics (or make it a use choice - which could be done in this digital age).

And enjoy your visit to Lost Wages.
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Old March 2nd, 2003, 06:35 AM   #54
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Having just received my Warm Cards, I wondered why these settings can't be offered in-camera. A "Warm Setting"...or perhaps a couple of degrees of warm settings (adding a touch of blue to whatever you're white balancing off of) or dial in, and a "fluorescent" setting (adding some green to what you're white balancing off of).

Since they're just now collecting a wish list, they must be a good two years away from releasing an XL2. Dang. My number one on the wish list will be to release it by next year.
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Old March 2nd, 2003, 09:02 AM   #55
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I'd like to put my name along with Robert's recent post. :)

I'd really like a larger viewfinder LCD, and snap focus on a stock lense. those are my two hands-on peeves with my stock XL1s.

I also feel the zoom noise signal is much too loud, I always hear zoom noise on playback. I should not have to invest in extra audio gear (XLR adapters, etc) to ensure clean zoom noise.
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Old March 2nd, 2003, 10:09 AM   #56
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Simple for me.
1/2" CCDs. If JVC can make the DV500 in the same price range as the XL1s, with 1/2" CCDs, Canon should be able to put bigger chips in the next incarnation of the XL1 without too much fuss.

Lens: Drop the servo assist on the new lens. If you have to change the lens mounts, that's fine, but I'd like to see a standard industry mount rather than a proprietary one.

Viewfinder: Please, please, give us a crisper viewfinder with better resolution. It doesn't have to be the $1500 B&W one, just better than the current one.

XLR inputs. Everyone else has them.

A "Film Look" mode, where, frame, colour and sharpness settings are pre-tweaked to give a more film-like look. This would be a big hit I think.

My bottom line is, I want a camera that is more PRO and less 'SUMER.
I for one would be happy to see the camera go to more of a shoulder mount design, rather than the hand held. Canon already has the GL2 which can compete in the handheld market. A camera that sits more on your shoulder would be welcomed by many, including me.
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Old March 2nd, 2003, 10:52 AM   #57
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<<<-- Originally posted by Dan O'Bannon : an inside camera focus wheel for my bad eyes.

Dan O'Bannon -->>>

In Scott Billups book, Digital Movie Making, page199 there is a focus wheel that works well to focus on but my problem is focusing the view finder to my eye. With this wheel on a menu inside the camera I could focus my eye to the view finder then I would know my subject is "really' in focus.

Thanks, Dan O'Bannon
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Old March 2nd, 2003, 11:13 AM   #58
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Remote Control Sensor? B7W View Finder

I didn't read all posts so I appologize if someone already posted this request.

I put on my new B&W view finder and was trying to use my remote control and realized it had no sensor eye on it. It would be nice to use the remote in situations when you're interviewing and don't have an extra cameraman.

Thanks, Dan O'Bannon
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Old March 2nd, 2003, 12:17 PM   #59
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First of all, Robert has some very good thoughts (DSP etc.).

I ran this through my head a couple of times and this is what I
personally think is important (in order of preference):[list=1][*]allow upgradeable firmware so that problems with lenses
and the device itself can be fixed. Perhaps even new features
can be added over time.[*]keep the same lens mount so that investments in things
like the wide angle lens, manual lens and mini35 adapter etc.
has not been for nothing.[*]harddisk based storage instead of tape.[*]variable FPS (perhaps some presets are good enough, but
it would be great if you could shoot some crisp slow-motion
especially! Besides that, 24 fps would be interesting for us
indepedent movie makers. This will be impossible with the current
DV standard though. Perhaps with a harddisk based medium
Canon can go with an alternate file format. MPEG2 is probably not
a good choice, unless it is only full frames @ high bitrate).[*]a flip-out LCD. Very handy for shots where you are unable to
look through the viewfinder![*]true progressive scan CCD blocks[*]direct analog-to-firewire (this allows you to directly capturing
an analog signal over firewire instead of taping it first. If there is
a harddisk medium this can be dropped since we do not get more
tape ware in that case.)[*]flash (like) card that allows you to store and load settings.
Also please with software to read them in (back them up) and
change settings on the card (like gamma curves and whatnot).
This would be a killer feature!![/list=1]
After this we really get into wishful thinking which will probably
not happen in the current price range, the following add-ons
would be really great:
  • larger CCD's with higher resolutions (HDTV)
  • even better low-light performance
  • built-in XLR inputs
  • built-in shoulder mount?
  • different levels of ND built into the standard lens
I think it will be almost impossible to stick to the DV format if
Canon wants to be revolutionary and future minded. The format
is to inflexible (from what I understand) to take care of things
  • higher/different resolutions
  • higher/different framerates
I think this is enough and I'm sure other people will give their
thoughts on the subject.

I want to thank Canon for taking the time to read through our
thoughts on this subject matter and take this matter into
consideration. I'm anxious to see/hear what they have chosen
for a new design.

Thank you!

p.s. Dan, there is still a remote sensor on the back of the camera.
Perhaps you can reach it through a mirror (not a nice solution,
but it should be workable!)?

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Old March 2nd, 2003, 12:25 PM   #60
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<<<-- Originally posted by Dylan Couper :

A "Film Look" mode, where, frame, colour and sharpness settings are pre-tweaked to give a more film-like look. This would be a big hit I think. -->>>

I think Canon would be selling themselves short if they added just one film look setting. I've already suggested a "Virtual Stock" ability which I think would be nicer since it would allow US to tweak the settings.

3. Virtual stock: the ability to use a computer software program to create presets for gamma, color curves, contrast, brightness and several other filters. Then saved as a certain file type to be stored on a removable media card (CF card?) and then put in the camera and dialed in. This would be nifty since we could all trade virtual film stocks over the internet to uptain certain "looks".
Can I also suggest perhaps firewire 800 with the ability to record to external hard drive perhaps in 4:2:2 at 24p.

Maybe Canon could make sopme type of accessory mount which would allow us to mount it to the back of the camera
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