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General HD (720 / 1080) Acquisition
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Old April 18th, 2007, 11:59 AM   #1
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Need a Travel Camera... but which one?

Hey all. I am an XL2 owner who is very satisfied with the quality and manual controls of that 3ccd behemoth, but I am planning on taking a trek through Europe in May and I know I can't lug it along with me.

Does anyone have suggestions of some nice compact (small and light) cameras that would compare to the image quality of the XL2? I have not played with many HD cams -- are they really worth the extra money? I also have a soft spot for 24p footage, but I don't think any smaller (consumer) cams have that function....

Any ideas or links would be appreciated! Thanks.
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Old April 18th, 2007, 01:34 PM   #2
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Check out the Canon HV20. 1080i, 24p palmcorder for under a grand. There's a whole section on this forum about it.
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Old April 18th, 2007, 05:49 PM   #3
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I second the HV20 recommendation. It sounds like it's exactly what you want.
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Old April 18th, 2007, 06:53 PM   #4
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HV20, absolutely, but be careful, you may find yourself never using the XL2 again.
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Old April 20th, 2007, 05:01 PM   #5
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looks good

I have been doing some reading based on everyone's recommendations, and it looks like a pretty nice little camera. I need to do a little more searching to see if I can find some sample footage online.

Does the HDV function account for it being a single CCD camera? Or would I be just as well suited to find a tiny 3CCD camera and scrap the HDV idea?

Thanks for the replies, everyone!
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Old April 20th, 2007, 05:05 PM   #6
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There is footage right here on this forum. On-line footage will never show the quality of the picture though.

I just carried my HV20 around NAB for four days and it is sure easier than an XL2 or XLH1!!!!!!!!!!

This camera is really great.

Mike
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Old April 22nd, 2007, 04:53 PM   #7
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Corey,

I don't think that the single ccd will be an issue with the HV20. In a very stringent test you could find some color differences between a small 3ccd camera and a small single chip camera, but in casual vacation footage a single chip camera will work fine.

The canon would match the color rendition of your xl2 very closely so that would help if you ever needed to intercut the two cameras on a shoot.

I think of that of the small cameras the hv20 would match your xl2 and expectations the best.

If budget is an issue and you don't want to spend over $500, look at the panisonic line of 3 chip cameras. The PV-GS320 is $400 at B and H. They make one of the smallest 3 chip cameras and the image quality is very good. Under outdoor or properly lit indoor lighting conditions it would produce an image that could cut with your xl2 as a second camera. The navigation of the menu's through the thumb wheel on the back is a plus and it's a top loading tape mechanism so you can change tapes while on a tripod.

With any small camera however, but aware that normal indoor lighting and general low light situations will leave the footage looking very poor regardless of the camera. And the manual controls on these units aren't very user friendly when your trying to set up a particular shot. They're best used as point and shoot cameras.

If you have the money the Hv20 would be the best option. In good lighting the HD resolution is well worth the extra money you spend for an hd camera. Otherwise I think Panisonic puts out the best sub-$500 sd cam.

Hope the info helps.

Ben
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Old April 22nd, 2007, 06:38 PM   #8
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Just for clarification it is a single CMOS cam.
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Old April 23rd, 2007, 07:20 PM   #9
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I have to agree...

The HV20 has some really nice features that the Sony HC series does not... and for a better price too.

You can't really go wrong with a CMOS. The color reproduction is better, uses less power, dynamic range is typically wider than CCD.

And no, you probably will never want to use an XL1 or XL2 again... but why would you in the first place? ;)
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Old April 26th, 2007, 01:52 PM   #10
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hey now

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt K. Miller View Post
And no, you probably will never want to use an XL1 or XL2 again... but why would you in the first place? ;)
Don't knock the XL series...they are great pieces of hardware and came along in a time when no other company had anything comparable to offer. The manual versatility of the XL1 and XL2 is still unmatched today when it comes to shutter/aperture control. The manual focus rings on the XL cameras as some of the best in the industry...why do you think the Canon XL1 is selling on ebay for $2000 used?!

It was good to me for the past 8 years, and never failed to produce stunning depth of field shots for my video productions, withou tthe need for a 35mm adapter.

Anyway, I've found most of the people who havent tried the XL series are the people who tend to knock it. It still holds up to brand new SD cameras.

~ Jason

Last edited by Jason Morrow; April 26th, 2007 at 03:03 PM.
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Old April 28th, 2007, 09:08 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Morrow View Post

It was good to me for the past 8 years, and never failed to produce stunning depth of field shots for my video productions, withou tthe need for a 35mm adapter.
I agree. the reason i bought the xl1s in 2002 was because i thought i would use many interchangeable lenses. much to my delight, i found that the standard lens had great depth of field and manual control, thus i never found the need to drop an extra 1000 dollars.

i upgraded to the xl2 expecting that i might finally begin accumulating a variety of lenses, but have again been so pleased with the camera right out of the box that i haven't found the need to do so.

several colleagues have a panasonic dvx 100a and they are constantly buying new mics, lens adapters and lenses to try to enhance the quality of their projects. they used to tease me because my camera cost over $1000 more than theirs, but now they have far surpassed my expenditures trying to replicate the same effects i've been getting for years!
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