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Canon XL1S / XL1 Watchdog
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Old October 14th, 2002, 07:12 PM   #1
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Canon XL-1

I have been reading this page for a long time now. I have read about picture quality, sharpnes, number of pixels, and so on. I use the Canon because it it is tough. I have dragged mine through the Amazon river, Africa, and all over the USA. I have dropped it from 10 feet off a bamboo bridge, had it in 100% humidity, snow. rain, heat and cold. I have had it on EPA hazardous waste sites, exposed to chemical fumes, had it kicked, stomped and gone through DECON and yes, it is still working. Oh, by the way, this past weekend I had a friend slip and fall on it and snap off the coupler for the viewfinder and mic. and with plastic tie's and duck tape IT STILL WORKS. And that is why I have a Canon XL1.
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Old October 14th, 2002, 09:23 PM   #2
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Go you good thing. My viewfinder was held on with gaff tape for a couple of months in country NZ. What ever you need to get the job done I say.
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Old October 15th, 2002, 12:28 AM   #3
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It takes a licking and keeps on ticking.
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Old October 15th, 2002, 01:39 AM   #4
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I had a horse headbutt mine.
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Old October 15th, 2002, 02:52 AM   #5
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hahahahha

sorry that came from left field and really made me laugh!!

heh heh

now please tell me how a horse was able to get that close to a camera and headbutt it?
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Old October 15th, 2002, 03:17 AM   #6
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Stupid horses. I saw friendly horses in the field next to a trailer I was staying at. I ran up and popped up the XL1S to video horses. The first one saw it and charged me. I don't know why it thought it was a good idea to headbutt my camera. All I know is that I saw it coming close, closer, closer and then it filled the frame. Fade to black. I got a lensful of snot too.
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Old October 15th, 2002, 03:24 AM   #7
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I guess we won't buy any used gear from you...! :-)

My viewfinder got bent and the Lightwave mic mount got torn after a wire-arrest landing in a "Cod" aboard the USS Abe Lincoln. It wasn't in a case and was probably strapped atop a pile of equipment on the plane. Stood up well to the powerful surveillance radar aboard ship, too!

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Old October 15th, 2002, 11:55 AM   #8
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For what it's worth, I don't think it was damaged. Only my butt and the horse's nose.
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Old October 15th, 2002, 12:06 PM   #9
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Ok I'll confess

re; this thread http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?s=&threadid=3682

My partner and I were on a 1 day shoot alone with no crew other than ourselves……..

On a river in Alaska’s Matanuska Valley…….we had filmed the footage that we needed for the day, and were pretty much packed up to hike back to our vehicle (approx. 2 miles). We still had an XL1s out and ready……just in case we ran across anything…..(boy, what karma)

About ½ way back while making multiple river crossings and beating through the bush for shortcuts……. we ran across two grizzly cubs…….they started whining the second we walked up on them. We immediately heard the sow crashing bushes down stream, and “eye balled” her about 50 yards away. I pushed record pointed it her way and we took off running like a couple of dummies.

Lucky for us she came to her cubs full bore, stopped, sniffed them, and stared us down………..at that time we were about 20 yards away (do the math, bears are faster than humans who need to change their underwear =).

During this whole ordeal….we splashed the camera with water, used it as a climbing aid to make it up a river bank, and used it as a secondary aid to crash through the dew filled brush that was over 6’ tall in some places.

After we got to the truck and settled down, we reviewed the tape on another camera, and it looked like footage from Blair Witch.
Out of focus, filming the ground, and bushes etc…………..

Hmmmm…..I wonder if they need any footage for their upcoming addition to the series =)

Let’s just say…..it will make our bloopers for sure……

After a good professional cleaning…..the XL1s keeps on a tick’n….
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Old November 10th, 2003, 04:29 PM   #10
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Using the XL1/s in the Amazon

Bob,

I know I'm picking up a rather old amusing thread here but I haven't got much else to go on.

How did the Canon XL1/s bear up when using it in the Amazon or anybody else if you have experiences of shooting there?

Thanks

Gareth
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Old November 10th, 2003, 05:00 PM   #11
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Funny this thread should start, but I was setting up tripod and lights the other day and the camera itself, how the hell it happened I will never know, but the camera decided to fall off a table leavng all 5 of us gobsmacked! Luckly it fell onto the forward handgrip part that seemed to cushion the impact. I did some tests and it seems to be working as per usual. I almost died when it happened, damn scary!

I wish I could answer you Gareth, but I'm very likely going to be in Mexico in January, so cannot answer your quite to the Amazon, and I live in a really high humidity area over there, and go into the Jungle out there, Not quite the Amazon but close enough.

From past experience and that of other Mexican and South American shooters I have chatted to, we share same idea that Sony tapes handle the humidity very well. I used Sony cameras primarily with Sony tapes and they took the heat and very high humity very well. Plus Sonys are a bit easier to get over there, so I have only ever used Sony and never had any problems in both Continents. If your going to high humid area I would pack lots of silica gels in case and bags and be very careful about switching between car/buildings with air-con and outside humidity. I would leave the camera a while to adjust, before trying to shoot. And look after stuff carefully cos in hot high humid areas theres a kind of fungus/mold that seems to attack metal parts/objects on equipment, or even get into lenses over time if not stored properly. So I would very periodically clean gear. Even after not having taken my Minidisc player to Mexico for 3 years and cleaning it, this strange mold seems to be on non-brushed/coated metalic parts. Its like little faint whiteish specks.

I'm thinking of getting a Pelican case for this purpose of being good sturdy and air/water tight cases. Anyone have a Pelican case??? If so what size you use? I'm looking to get one to fit Xl1s with standard lens, MA200 spare battery and AT shotgun mic. Anyone have one - what size and what you fit in?????
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Old November 10th, 2003, 05:20 PM   #12
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Hi Christopher,

Thanks for the reply and what a start! I know I probably shouldn't have but you made me laugh with that opening paragraph. Joking aside I'm glad your camera is okay but I couldn't help visualizing the look on your faces and the comments that probably went with it. I think many of us have had at least one big scary moment.

Anyway, the info is much appreciated because I know nothing about shooting in that type of environment.

I've done Kenya but the main problems there were lots of light and dust.

It's the humidity and fungus thing that worries me. I won't be going until this time next year so plenty of time to plan and be educated on what to expect.

Let us know what pelican case you go for if you do, especially if it can accomodate several lenses.

Thanks again

Gareth
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Old November 10th, 2003, 08:35 PM   #13
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Man I would hate to see an XL1s kicked around. To me, an Xl1s seen broken is like a watching a train hit a Ferrari.... *Cringe*
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Old November 10th, 2003, 09:00 PM   #14
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It's a crap shoot!

From one of my previous posts...

"I documented the aftermath of the boiler room explosion on the S.S. Norway on Memorial Day weekend here at the Port of Miami. The interior temperatures of the ship were well above 150 degrees farenheit. The operating temp for the camera, as specified in the manual is 120 degrees F. I was in the ship for the better part of two hours with the temperature constant and a very high degree of humidity. The XL performed admirably."


From another post...

"Of these six cameras [two: XL-1 & four: XL-1s], we have had to repair five of the eyepieces due to stripping of the screw wells or overall catastrophic failure of the same.

We all have our own personal shoot kits and I treat mine with kid gloves. Yes we do get into some tough situations but the gear is constantly and meticulously maintained.

I could not believe it when I went to pull my camera from its KATA bag and wound up with exactly the same dilema, a useless viewfinder. All of the screws that secure the eyepiece housing to the metal dovetail plate were loose and the plastic wells where they anchor were completely broken."

I also had one drop about four feet and land on the right side of the 3X wide angle lens. The tape door and carriage were damaged to the point where it would not operate and was sent to Canon for a complete tape transport replacement. The lens was also sent out to replace a bent focus ring.

While these cameras seem to operate very well under adverse conditions, I feel that they still have a long way to go in the "ruggedness" department. WAY TOO MUCH PLASTIC!!!

CHRISTOPHER...

Pelican cases are tremendous when it comes to protecting your gear. One of the best things about Pelicans is the fact that they are air and watertight.

This can also become one of your biggest problems when shooting in severe environments and then storing your camera in what is, in essence, a hermetically sealed container.

The same traits that keep dust, moisture and other contaminants out are the same traits that will seal them in and turn your camera into a biology experiment.

We use our Pelican cases, for cameras, stricltly as a mode of protection when in transit, other than that the cameras are kept on a shelf or in soft-sided cases where air can circulate.

Two very inexpensive words that will save you alot of expensive repair bills...Silica gel.

RB.
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Old November 11th, 2003, 11:08 AM   #15
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Keith...


I don't suppose you'd upload the video of the occasion for us to enjoy? Was film rolling?




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