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Old January 9th, 2004, 11:37 AM   #1
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Canon Survey Slants HD

Just received an email from canon with a link to a survey for GL/XL users. The survey is 3 pages and slants heavily toward the HD question. It also allows for the users to input their own opinions and suggestions about the future of the XL/GL line. In addition they are offering a neat little portfolio/media attache with a canon logo pen, for all who participate; a nice little perk for being a dedicated user.

I imagine that this is for those who are XL club members, but do not know for sure. Just thought I would drop the info for all to view.

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Old January 9th, 2004, 11:50 AM   #2
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That's very interesting information, Dick. Thank you for giving us the heads-up.

Of course it also suggests that Canon may still only be in the earliest stages of planning successors to their XL1s and GL2. If this is true (and it may not be) we will not be seeing new products from them for more than 12-18 months.
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Old January 10th, 2004, 12:19 AM   #3
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Ken penned:

"Of course it also suggests that Canon may still only be in the earliest stages of planning successors to their XL1s and GL2. If this is true (and it may not be) we will not be seeing new products from them for more than 12-18 months."

Sigh....what a let down!

If updated pro-cams are but a glimmer on Canon's Snooze-ometer, then the Panasonic DVC30 may be the "GL3" for me to purchase in 2004!

http://panasonic.co.jp/bsd/sales_o/0.../ag-dvc30.html

Dorothy
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Old January 10th, 2004, 01:28 AM   #4
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I won't pretend to know what's going on at Canon, but allow me to present a speculative opinion on the matter. As Ken points out, and as I've said elsewhere on these boards, design concepts generally require 12 to 18 months to reach the market. That's for the clay mock-ups to become wooden models, then plastic molds, tooling processes, etc. to the final pre-production MT samples. However, we're talking about body designs here. The software guts of the thing... feature sets of the electronic innards, and so on... are usually the last stage (in order to incorporate the most recent technologies and so on). If Canon is fishing for user input, that might actually imply that the body castings are done and now they're choosing and programming the chip sets and internal menus and such. Some user input regarding desires such as 2/3rd-inch CCD's, full-size tape transports, etc. may be discarded if the body shape and dimensions are in fact already set, but other input regarding electronic features may be exactly what they're looking for and easily incorporated into the existing design (assuming there is one). In short, my own best *guess* is that an XL1S replacement may in fact be much farther along and coming sooner than we're suspecting here... perhaps within 6 to 12 months instead of 12 to 18.

And I agree wholeheartedly with Dorothy, the forthcoming Panasonic AG-DVC30 looks like a knock-out. I've got my eye on it myself. Hope this helps,
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Old January 10th, 2004, 01:40 AM   #5
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I'm betting we'll see the XL2 announced in February or March 2003 and arrive 2-3 months later--my only basis being the deadline for the XL1s rebate.
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Old January 10th, 2004, 01:14 PM   #6
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I aint no expert, and I surely donít have any Canon connections, but it just seems like releasing the XL2 in 2005 doesnít make any sense, especially when you stop and think that the DVX100A is out now. The DVX100A would kill the XL1s sales for an entire year IF Canon waits until 2005. (On the message boards no one is even considering whether or not they should get an XL1s or a DVX100A, itís only whether or not to get a DVX100A or a PD170.)My bet is that the XL2 will be out either in April, or mid summer of 2004.
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Old January 10th, 2004, 03:28 PM   #7
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Chris,
With the greatest of respect for your expertise I venture to ask if these electronics companies design a body first and then try to figure out what to put into it. Shouldn't it be the other way around, work out the internal workings and then build a body for it all to go into?

Of course the auto industry often comes up with a body design and then ends up putting an under-powered engine and inadequate suspecsion in it initially, but most everyone else designs things from the inside out. At least I think that's how it usually works. But I'm no engineer, I'm just a consumer.

At any rate, what a burst of hope your comment brought that all the lights are not out at the Cannon design shop.

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Old January 10th, 2004, 07:08 PM   #8
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Nick,
As ridiculous as it may seem, the field of industrial design does indeed operate bass-ackwards quite often. I have no insight specifically into cameras but I do know that most other consumer products are designed and developed from the outside-in. That's why, for example, manufacturers so often parade non-working models through trade shows months before the real product is available.

Of course this process makes the job of engineering the innards much more challenging.
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Old January 10th, 2004, 11:04 PM   #9
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Nick, Ken said it best, and if it's any consolation, I verified with CUSA back in '99 that the original XL1 had enough room inside to accomodate hypothetical native 16x9 chips. They actually do the outer shell design first, and then pack the inside. Sounds bass-ackwards as Ken points out, but they do know what they're doing. Chipsets often change by the month, so those are the last components to go in. It's a science they've been perfecting since they got into camcorder design back in the '80's. Hope this helps (and hopefully the new stuff will show up sooner rather than later).
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Old January 10th, 2004, 11:22 PM   #10
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And, what if it is all bait? I'm trying to be optomistic here, so bear with me. What if they already know exactly what the camera will be, and they are just searching for some reassurance? I do believe, as the others, that they know exactly what they are doing! I don't know much about the business of designing and producing a new camera, but I do know that deception is a tool of the trade. I can only hope that they will deceive us all! Here's to the XL2 (if that's what they call it!)...surprise and anticipation are beautiful and tedious things, let us all embrace them as best we can!
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Old January 12th, 2004, 12:57 AM   #11
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The kind of survey that Canon is distributing could be a "verification" study; instead of looking for "ground floor" customer feedback, someone in the company is trying to verify that they've made the right design decisions (or to make a last-minute plea to change some design decisions.)

In any event, I wouldn't assume that this survey means that Canon is 12 to 18 months away from announcing its next-generation cameras.

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Old January 12th, 2004, 01:22 PM   #12
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<<<-- Originally posted by J. Clayton Stansberry : I do believe, as the others, that they know exactly what they are doing! -->>>


Do they? I ask cause this whole HDV thing sounds a little dodgy to me. I mean sure, noone's gonna stop it now, but MPG2 editing is the worst in my experience. And MPG2 encoding? Is that really going to be good enough for independent filmmakers? There must be something I don't know about the HDV standard - does anyone have any good links that talk about these things and how they're solved with moderm technology/software etc?

Oops- sorry to branch a little OT.

Thanks
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Old January 14th, 2004, 09:16 AM   #13
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I suggest that we get away from the crutch of tape master, get rid of the transport and the tape; go straight out ( via firewire 800+) to a HD and have a switchable compression selector that allow MPEG2, DV, HD and totally uncompressed. My god, you got to think out of the box; if the tape (MINI/FULL) can only recieve some 5:1 compressed data for DV, then they reconfigure it to output HDV to tape, that is Messed up. Just get rid of the tape all together. No CD/DVD/Tape just pure data on a harddrive, it is digital for god sake. Back it up onto a DVD and forget about it. Oh and no more tape running out, getting eaten, F 'ed up, or otherwise. Harddrive are cheap.

Just a thought,

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Old January 14th, 2004, 09:23 AM   #14
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The current HD cam is switchable to plain DV (ofcourse you loose
the higher resolution then).

Aaron, I always felt the same about mpeg use and editing. BUT,
they are only storing full frames. So it is actually more like
MJPEG within an MPEG structure (not technically sound this, but
you get the idea). Which is not far from what DV is actually using.
So I can't imagine it would be that hard to incorporate in the
current NLE systems.
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Old January 14th, 2004, 09:53 AM   #15
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The JVC has a 6 frame GOP, I think, so it's not as bad as DVD which generally has a 15 frame GOP, but it's certainly not storing individial frames. It needs the 6 frame GOP to get a watchable HD picture out of 18mbs.

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