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Canon XL1S / XL1 Watchdog
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Old September 10th, 2001, 02:25 PM   #1
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follow focus for xl1

This question comes in 2 parts:
1: does anyone know how much a follow focus unit costs for the canon xl1 or atleast an approximation?
2: I was also told that you cannot change focus while a subject is moving to maintain sharpness when using the xl1 or any other minidv camera? Is this true or just a myth because it does not make sense to me as to why you couldn't follow a subject if the camera has manual focus.

Thanks for any answers.
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Old September 11th, 2001, 01:46 AM   #2
Obstreperous Rex
 
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Howdy from Texas,

>> 1: does anyone know how much a follow focus unit
>> costs for the canon xl1 or atleast an approximation?

They can get pretty expensive... about $1,000 or so.

>> 2: I was also told that you cannot change focus while a
>> subject is moving to maintain sharpness when using the xl1
>> or any other minidv camera? Is this true or just a myth
>> because it does not make sense to me as to why you
>> couldn't follow a subject if the camera has manual focus.

Okay, the deal is, with just about any DV camcorder you can't zoom and focus at the same time. This is a limitation of the servo-controlled lens found on not only the XL1 but *all* prosumer digital camcorders. You can zoom, you can focus, but not both at once.

If you're talking about following a moving object and maintaining focus manually, well sure, you can do that, as long as you're not zooming.

The exception to this rule is the XL1 with a manual lens. Because the manual lens isn't a vari-focus servo-controlled lens, you *can* zoom and focus at the same time. This is true for the older 14x manual and the new 16x manual XL lenses. With the 16x automatic lenses, though, you can't zoom and focus at the same time, nor can you with a PD-150 or comparable DV camcorder with a built-in automatic lens.

Hope this helps,
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Old October 7th, 2001, 06:41 PM   #3
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Cinetech Add-ons: Worth it?

Parts like to matte box, follow focus, etc look "cool" but does anyone have experience with them? It would be a large investment to find out that they are problematic. I'm thinking of getting some Cinetech products, so any help is appreciated.
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Old October 7th, 2001, 08:48 PM   #4
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Add ons;

Yes go ahead and get some adds Get a matt box that can hold at
Least Three Filters. Get rods with them to hold that mat box Get some ND filters A pol fil A follow focus is key with the new manul lens 16x.

I hope that helps?
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Old October 7th, 2001, 10:03 PM   #5
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Matte boxes - or compendiums as they also are known as - are one part filter holder and one part sunshade.

The sunshade part is to avoid stuff like lensflares, and to attach flags - to avoid REALLY bad lens flares.

The filter holder part holds filters. Usually a couple of fixed - and one or two that rotates for graduated ND filters or colored filters.
You can then stack all kinds of filters in front of the lens, rotate them for effects, you name it.

www.format.co.uk makes a nice 16:9 matte box for the XL1. It is called FM500 and has two fixed and one rotating filter holder. It holds 4x4 and 4x6 filters. They also make resin filters (way cheaper than glass - and IMHO ok for DV's resolution).

Another make is Alfred Chroiszel. Really pro brand - but VERY expensive. Formatt's is better priced and looks way cooler as it is 16:9 (if that matters to you).

Marty
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Old October 7th, 2001, 10:14 PM   #6
nielzen2000$
 
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Forgot about the follow focus.

Those knobs on the side are usually for the focus puller.

The white ring arond the knob is for marking different focus points during a take. The ring is usually flourecent for working in bad lighting.

Marty
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Old October 8th, 2001, 07:27 PM   #7
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where to get follow focus system for XL1-S

Tried contacting Cinetech, but no reply.
Any ideas where I can get pricing on MatteBox
and follow focus system for XL1-S?
Thanks
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Old October 8th, 2001, 10:30 PM   #8
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I'll see if I can get Mr. CineTech (Karl Horn) in here, but it may have to wait until the first of next week when I get back from Denver.
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Old October 9th, 2001, 12:14 AM   #9
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sweet

Thanks Chris!
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Old October 10th, 2001, 02:40 PM   #10
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http://www.format.co.uk doesn't work. Only a temporary problem or not available any more ?
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Old October 10th, 2001, 03:41 PM   #11
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Follow focus

I usea follow focus as 1st AC because it is easier to use the focus ring instead on the camera to pull focus. Leave my hands out the camera op way. Yes you can pull fucus on XL1s I have on DV handycam just by feel of and the camera operator telling by eye he too much work on shoot itself.
I hope that helps sort that if any can give not have follow focus I all Ears to hear thanks
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Old October 17th, 2001, 05:34 PM   #12
nbpjaroch7
 
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Follow focus and mattebox for XL1-S

Help!
Trying to find someone who supplies/makes
a follow focus system for the XL1-S.

Have tried contacting Cinetech, but no reply.
Any other ideas?

Anyone tried "follow focus" with just the 14x manual lens on the xl1? What are your experiences with the manual lenses for the XL1?

Any suggestions/ideas would be great. In pre-production of our first DV feature, and would
like the best control of focus possible.

Anyone seen the Canon "Making of Commercial" video? The XL1 kitted out in this special is what I'd really like on my XL1-S! (there goes all my money...hehe..)
Thanks!
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Old October 24th, 2001, 08:49 AM   #13
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follow focus

I think the company that made the follow focus, used in the commercial, was listed on XL-1 Watchdog. They sent me their catalog. The unit costs around $1700. Follow focuses are expensive, for some reason. The fact is, it's not a very complex device. If you have some basic machine-shop skills, you could probably make one for a lot less. Instead of the lens gear, you might try a pressure roller (made from a model-airplane tire).
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Old October 24th, 2001, 09:29 AM   #14
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Canon commercial

Speaking of the Canon commercial, nbpjaroch7...just what exactly is all that equipment shown in the XL-1 "Making of" commercial?

Looks like some kind of large battery on the MA-100...and XLR jacks plugged into the MA-100 are connected to a DAT deck, I guess. Any ideas on the specifics and other items shown?
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Old October 24th, 2001, 09:34 AM   #15
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Well John, I have that on DVD and if I have the time I'll go through it and name off all that stuff for you. Will try to do it this weekend -- unless someone can step in and do it sooner.
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