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Canon XL1S / XL1 Watchdog
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Old May 29th, 2007, 11:34 AM   #1
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How much longer are you going to keep it?

I love my XL1s, but I am concerned that the demand for HD will cause me to scrap this great piece of gear before its time.
I estimate that in 2 years the first question people will ask when they call will be "Do you shoot in HD" (whether they can play it back in HD or not).

How much longer do other XL1 owners think they will be able to use it before being forced to retire it and go "HD"
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Old May 30th, 2007, 12:58 AM   #2
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Personally, when HD cams become much cheaper or when my XL1 loose major value! Its just in a matter of time now, SD will probably become just like VCRs I guess, extinct. =) Just my thoughts.
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Old July 4th, 2007, 02:11 PM   #3
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From another perspective....

I'm just now getting into movie making from a VFX perspective and as a student who has only shot VHS, the $1500 price tag for a 1/3" 3CCD camera with fully manual control is enticing.

My question is more about how long will the XL1 last as a viable learning tool that can be used to produce quality imagery and require less from a computer and production pipeline than HD.

My buddy will include a $300 varizoom, 6" external LCD, a nice camera bag and 5-6 batteries.

I would send the camera to Cannon service to fix the viewfinder sunburn and get a lube and refresh job for $400.

So all of that stuff for $1900 ...

or $1900 spent on what other unit that will produce equal or better quality with 30f or 30p for compositing work, modes to learn manual iris, shutter, zoom and focus, a nice OIS and a very capable, great lens.

Still need lights, mics and a good tripod.

What do you think?
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Old July 5th, 2007, 08:05 AM   #4
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For purposes of use as a learning tool that is less demanding of a PC, it will last as long as the machine runs and has maintenance support from some source. Canon typically provides maintenance/repair support for seven years after a product is discontinued.

When Sony, Canon, etc. no longer sell SD camcorders is probably a reasonable time to think seriously about moving up if you have no other compelling business, educational, or hobby reason to do so before then.
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Old July 5th, 2007, 10:32 PM   #5
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Pre-empt the question on the phone call by asking if they accept content on HD-DVD...then uprez all your footage ;) They'll never know the difference, really! I'm just using SD distribution personally for the time being, so I have no need for HD. Until that time comes, My XL1s is in for hundreds of hours more of operation.
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Old July 8th, 2007, 03:42 AM   #6
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Don Palomaki wrote....

Canon typically provides maintenance/repair support for seven years after a product is discontinued.

When did the XL1s cease production? Was it 2004? This means it should be supported 'till about 2010 or 2011.

I intend to keep using my xl1s until it is either not economic to repair or people insist on HDV. I'm undecided if I'll stay with Canon or switch brands.
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Old July 9th, 2007, 07:26 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cole McDonald View Post
Pre-empt the question on the phone call by asking if they accept content on HD-DVD...then uprez all your footage ;) They'll never know the difference, really! I'm just using SD distribution personally for the time being, so I have no need for HD. Until that time comes, My XL1s is in for hundreds of hours more of operation.
Methods of "up-rezing"? Know nothing about the process. Explanations will be sincerely appreciated.
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Old July 10th, 2007, 01:33 AM   #8
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it was actually a bit tongue in cheek as it would be a bit obvious that the detail is lacking in the image.

The process I use is to take the full quality DV file and run it through compressor using the "Advanced Format Conversion" changing it to one of the higher quality HD formats. You are then free to work with it and export it/burn it as HD, but GIGO applies here (Garbage In, Garbage Out).
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Old July 21st, 2007, 10:36 PM   #9
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Thanks for the feedback, I feel better about keeping my XL1s for a while longer. Expecially since I just picked up a Canon 30D still camera the other day and would love to buy some better lenses that I could use on both cameras.
Can anyone reccomend an EF lense that would work well on both cameras, or is the whole interchangeable lense thing just a marketing tool that isn't really practical.

thanks
Mark G
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Old July 23rd, 2007, 07:16 AM   #10
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Mark,

I just picked up an Xl-2. My Xl-1s, acquired in '02, will serve as my #2/back-up, depending on the situation. I don't think that I will dump it for 3 or 4 years. It's been to good a mistress to me.
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Old August 14th, 2007, 08:07 PM   #11
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Robert, thanks for the idea.
Actually I was just thinking about that idea about a half an hour ago while reading posts on how HD cameras arent as good in low light. as primarily a wedding guy, I think a combo of XL1s and an XL2 would be an advantage over 2 lower priced HD cams.
Is the XL2 better in low light than the XL1s?
I assume that it is, but would like to hear from an owner of both.

thanks
Mark G
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