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Canon XL1S / XL1 Watchdog
Can't find it on the XL1 Watchdog site? Discuss it here.


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Old November 11th, 2003, 11:57 AM   #16
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Yes Silica Gel is a great invention isnt it!!!

And I know all about the Lab experiments that occur in those sealed up cases. I once saw a lens in Mexico stored in an airtight container and the stuff that was there NASA is still trying to identify! I'm just looking for the Pelican for transport and protection in back of pick-ups and cars and general transport. They are great cases and even have military order numbers and match military specs and standards. What size or model case do you use? And what XL1 and general gear do you fit in generally? I just have no store nearby that sells them, so I will have to order online, so I cannot up close see the bigger ones up close.

Any help would be great!
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Old November 11th, 2003, 12:27 PM   #17
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Christopher,

We have various Pelican 1650 cases and they hold a basic XL package very nicely.

If you want something bigger, the 1660 is the biggest case that Pelican makes.

One of of the nicest features of both cases is that they have wheels and pull handles which makes it alot easier to move around.

RB
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Old November 11th, 2003, 08:51 PM   #18
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Ruggedness--

The plastic doesn't bother me. I don't think Canon designed the XL1s to go through what Bob puts it through, we're talking about a camera here not a tank.
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Old November 11th, 2003, 11:40 PM   #19
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Sorry Corey, I disagree.

If Canon is really going to target the "Pro" side of the ProSumer market, they should make a more rugged product than they do now. If you look at some of my other posts, you will see that my main complaint is that the camera, although beautiful to look at, is pretty damned delicate.

And before you ask, "then why did you choose to go with Canon?"... the answer is that there were certain features we were looking for that we found in the Canon, one of which was interchangeable lenses.

Anyone who truly uses a camera in the field, and I don't mean your typical weekend warrior, I am talking about people who use it as a daily tool of their trade, need a product that can take a certain amount of abuse and punishment on a daily basis.

We put our XL cams through much worse than Bob. As a matter of fact, we will be deploying 2: XL-1 systems and 4: XL-1s systems, one of them in a helicopter, in what is anticipated to be a pretty vilolent riot situation next week during the FTAA conference here in Miami. This is in addition to 3: SONY TRV-950s. 2:SONY VX-2000s, and 2: SONY BetaCams. Our 950s and 2: Panasonic AG-EZ30s are used underwater almost exclusively, so yes, we do push the envelope with our gear.

While all cameras are inherently delicate instruments, you have to remember that not all video documentation takes place under controlled or nominal conditions. In my line of work and it seems pretty close to Bob's, I am not waiting around for a flower to bloom or a bird to feed its young, (No disrespect to nature photogs as you guys do some pretty hairy stuff to get the perfect shot, with sometimes spectacular results!), I am many times going into the Lion's den with no idea of what awaits inside. That is just the nature of my job.

The plastic, while effective in reducing weight does very little to protect the camera system itself. Sorry if this sounds a little crass but, if I lose a camera system due to damage incurred while in the line of duty, it is little more than an incovenience as I am not the one who pays for the equipment. Do I feel a certain sense of loss and responsibility if it happens? Definitley, whether it is my fault or not. Any true technician will tell you the same thing. It is just very frustrating when something breaks with very little usage and no mistreatment.

Unfortunatley, sh*t happens, and it always happens at the most inopportune time. The need for a rugged product is great and the manufacturers should take this into consideration when designing them, especially when tartgeting a higher end market.

RB
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Old November 12th, 2003, 12:09 AM   #20
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:::Reads post:::


:::Hides stack of nature footage:::


:::Smiles:::


Nothing to see here. Move along.
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Old November 12th, 2003, 06:57 AM   #21
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Wow!

Teague,

Checked out your site...very cool stuff!!!

RB
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Old November 12th, 2003, 04:35 PM   #22
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We...well somebody in our studio dropped one of our XL1s's out of a 3 story press box. Hit the ground top first and only cracked the lens connector and the front piece of glass on the lens. Yes that's an expensive repair but the camera itself is in 100% working condition minus the dent in the handle from where it hit on the rocks. We never found the lens hood.
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Old November 12th, 2003, 05:46 PM   #23
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: (O)


Dude...ouch.





About the site....thanks! I taught myself HTML to code that all by hand, myself. I'm a stickler for persistance, I suppose. I've been sucking at my molar all day to get rid of this damn popcorn kernel. (: ))
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Old November 12th, 2003, 07:06 PM   #24
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Ouch! But hey if you recorded it all then u could have sold it to Canon as an advert...haha! But know matter how tough you make a camera or any piece of equipment there is always something that comes along and never makes perfectly tough and finds the little chink in the armour somewhere.

I laughed at an advert for a Laptop that was made robust, drop proof, they even ran over it with a Landrover and it worked fine, great if ur a scientist in the rough, but the chink in this armour is the Laptop ran at the time on Windows 98SE or 2000...no Landrover proof gear can protect you from Microsoft and the dreaded "performed an illegal operation", "program not responding", and any other crash screen message.
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Old November 12th, 2003, 07:09 PM   #25
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We would have gotten it on tape but he pressed the rec button right as he dropped the camera - to stop the recording!. I did get footage of my PC100 falling off my 6ft tall SUV. I had it on the back recording and forgot aobut it and backed up and it made a 6ft plunge into asphault...never faltered though or did anything funny after that, worked as the day I got it!! Gotta love sony for that. Unfortunately the footage broke up about half way through the fall, still you hear me backing up and then "OH $%&*" and boom.
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Old November 14th, 2003, 01:43 PM   #26
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Gareth, It worked like a dream. Definately beautiful video and sound. I was on a 12 passanger boat and several times a day we got into a small flat bottom John boat and go into really remote areas. We were there 14 days. The first 5 days were at a researsh station with no electricity other than a generator two hours a day. This is where we got to go up into the canapy and video. On the boat I had regular power. All the humidity, heat, sun reflexions on the water, vibration, NOTHING bothered it. I cleaned the lens all the time, and used a head cleaner maybe twice. Bring a rain cover for it and some ND filters and a polarizing and you will have the time of your life. Oh , also, bring some close up filters for insects and flowers. I just finished editing my 6 hours down to 25 min. Oh, I only used Fuji tape. My wife and I recently returned from South America where we took a 100 passanger boat trip through the Straights of Magellan and down to Tierra del Fuego and Patagonia. Damn cold and windy and the Canon worked perfectly. Next stop, Brazil!! Bob
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Old November 19th, 2003, 11:21 PM   #27
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Another one bites the dust!

One of my producers took a spill while caryying a brand new (under 2 hours of tape through it) XL-1s today.

The results, although not pretty, could have been worse.

Cracked lens shade on a 16X manual lens...also brand new.

Focus now sounds and feels "gritty".

Anton Bauer UltraLight 2 ripped off.

Mounting plate, lens to CCD block loosened to the point of not being able to focus at the tight end of the lens. Also run the risk of tearing the plate off the body.

Camera gives a "check lens" error message...probably due to the loosening of the plate.

Should be a pretty hefty repair bill. Thinking of buying some NERF cameras for risky work!

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Old December 4th, 2003, 12:17 PM   #28
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XL-1 Plunge

My 2 month old XL took a 5 foot drop while mounted on a jib when it slipped off the case used to support the head end because the counter weights were removed. I didn't see it, but I heard it and I just closed my eyes and took a deep breathe before I turned around. I just knew that lens had snapped off. Luckily it was perfectly level when it fell and it was on grass. The only thing that happened was some dirt and grass on the hood.
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Old December 11th, 2003, 07:55 PM   #29
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I know these are not made of cast iron, but I have to say that with reasonable care I have managed so far to get three years of travel all over the USA out of my XL1, which was used when I got it (built in 1998).

It certainly has more than paid for itself, which I might not be able to say had I bought a more high-end cam (which might be just as delicate).

Problems? Well, I made the mistake of taking it out into the 200% humidity pre-dawn air of South Florida after bringing it right out of my air-conditioned hotel room. A half hour with a hair dryer couldn't revive it; a $350 tuneup at the factory did. (oh well, it was more than ready for its "annual" checkup.) Now, if I'm gonna repeat that scenario, I'll leave it plugged into 120VAC and pre-warm it before going out.

Oh, and recently my viewfinder developed a big crack down the front of it, probably the result of forgetting to turn the eyecup forward in my soft-side bag. I repaired that (maybe the subject of a new thread) and now it's stronger than ever before.

I'm not sure I'd want to risk bringing a really expensive camera into these crowded nightclubs and rock concerts and some of the other crazy run-n-gun situations I find myself in.
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