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Old October 19th, 2003, 11:22 AM   #1
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Panasonic pv-dv953 vs. Canon Xi

Both of these camcorders are about the same price. Which is the better buy?
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Old October 19th, 2003, 01:01 PM   #2
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It might depend on what you want to do with your camera.
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Old October 19th, 2003, 03:15 PM   #3
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Not much user feedback on the Xi out there yet, Mike, as maybe you've gathered. The Xi probably will do better in low light, but that's a guess. Perhaps another question you'd be interested in having asked: Which does better or more accurate colour, the Xi with it's nifty rgb filter or the 953 with it's 3ccds? How do their audio compare? Motor noise? If you can wait for others to gain experience with former camera, do so. If you need something right now, and don't want to take a chance on an unknown xam, go with the 953. If you're willing to take that chance, get the Xi, but be sure to let us know all about it :-) . You might ask Allan Rejoso over in the Pana dv/mx room about this.
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Old October 19th, 2003, 05:28 PM   #4
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The 953 is a solid camera- nice build and sturdy.

I'd always take a 3CCD cam over a single chipper- the only negative about the 953 is it's low light video- which is grainy- so unless you plan on shooting allot of low light I'd say go with the 953- it's razor sharp and in decent light, it's video will be excellent.

(The XI is considered to be amongst the best of current single chippers- but still not good enough to warrant it passing a 3CCD cam- just my opinion)
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Old October 19th, 2003, 06:39 PM   #5
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Count on most of the responses to your inquiry to be 953 user feedback heavy with generous helpings of Xi hearsay on the side, Mike.
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Old October 19th, 2003, 06:55 PM   #6
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According to Allan after testing them several times, and the Japanese Mag reviews he read, the Xi is slightly better with low light than the MX5000 (PV-DV953); and the GS100 is slightly better in low light than the Xi. He also concludes, as do these Mag reviews, that the Xi video seems better than the GS100 footage (and the GS100 footage is slightly better than the MX5000/PV-DV953 footage). But in lower light, the GS100 footage beats out the Xi footage. So both the GS100, a 3 chip cam, and the Optura Xi, a one chip cam, produce great video, but with the Xi being a little better. That's pretty amazing for a 1 CCD cam.
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Old October 19th, 2003, 07:59 PM   #7
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Amazing, indeed, Frank. Does Allan say anything specific about Xi's color being equal to 3ccd color reproduction, if such a quantification can be made, or is it very close but not quite?
Regarding low light: I recently looked at still comparisons of the trv900 and the trv950 (Beale...) in same low light. The final word was: the 900 does much better in low light. But the stills show the 900's picture as brighter, yes, but with a whole lot of grain, whereas the 950 was darker, yes, and less grainy. Personally, I would want the darker and less grainy picture. This is the sort of thing to keep in mind when concerning oneself with the low light performance of two different cams ( directed to Mike, not Frank). Or to reiterate Glen's comment: "it might depend on what you want to do with your camera."
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Old October 19th, 2003, 08:33 PM   #8
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Quote:
Does Allan say anything specific about Xi's color being equal to 3ccd color reproduction, if such a quantification can be made, or is it very close but not quite?
Yes. The Xi's color is better, thanks to Canon's RGB. Allan's posted all this in the MX forum, by the way.
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Old October 19th, 2003, 08:37 PM   #9
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RGB filters on single-chip cams go *a long way* toward replicating the three-chip look. The old Canon Optura Pi could come very close to matching video from an XL1 or GL1 back in the day, if the conditions were right. The new Optura Xi is in the ball park of the XL1S and GL2 image quality. It's amazing.
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Old October 20th, 2003, 01:34 AM   #10
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I plan to make a snowboard video. Super bright days with super bright snow. Overcast flat light days. Cold weather. Follow cams taken while snowboarding.
The Xi seems great but I am still leaning towards the 953.
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Old October 20th, 2003, 02:06 AM   #11
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Go to it man!
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Old October 21st, 2003, 03:23 AM   #12
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Frank, as far as I remember, Allan did commend the Xi in terms of color reproduction claiming it is approaching 3xCCD models, but do not remember he said it actually is better then common 3xCCD in similar price range. As about low-light I do remember Allan was dissapointed by Xi low-light performance. though do not remmeber his comparison with 953 (perhaps it would indeed beat 953 in this respect). According to his opinion GS100 still does noticeably better in low-light then Xi.
Where Xi would clearly lead is in Still imaging, that sounds to be very fair - single multi-pixel CCD usually outperforms 3xCCD in terms of still imaging.
Among contemporary single-chippers Xi sounds to be a best bet in its price range indeed (however I've heard Canon is considered as historically somewhat weak in camcorder's mechanics reliabilityt and performance, though it may become an history as of today)

Regards, Alex
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Old October 21st, 2003, 04:48 AM   #13
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Thanks Alex. I recall Allan saying the Xi footage to be better/richer than the GS100 in good lighting, but poor video quality in lower light; and this is where the GS100 beats out the Optura Xi. Perhaps Allan can clarify this. Regarding quality/reliability, I would have to go with PV-DV953. It's all muscle. I've never even seen a GS100 yet. Perhaps in late spring Pana USA will bring them in to North America; but then again, who knows.
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Old October 21st, 2003, 05:07 AM   #14
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Oh, Frank I was sure you're one of the happy owners of GS100. :-?
Anyway the cam is put together quite tightly, have nice solid feeling, though my SLR setup definitely feels like tank comparative to probably any camcorder. :-)

Alex
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Old October 21st, 2003, 05:19 AM   #15
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Nope. I own a Panasonic MX300, and only played around with the PV-DV953 a few times. (Maybe several times.) Plus I have 2 older JVCs DVL9500 cams. That's all, my friend! But I do get to use other cams from time to time. The one I had the most difficulty with was a Sony 250. Never again.
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