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Old June 19th, 2004, 06:09 AM   #16
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If your not really bothered about frame mode or gamma, and just want to shoot straight interlaced video in 60i, then... well this basically doesn't narrow it down, because all these cams can shoot great interlaced video.

If I had wanted to film events or documentaries I would have probably gone with a vx2100 for its better low light reach. But because I want to shoot some nature/landscape work, and some short experimental films, it was between the GL2 and the DVC30 (as I could not afford a DVX100a). Both the GL and the 30 have a better zoom range than the sony, and they are lighter as well. I ended up going for the DVC30 for its rugged metal build.

You really need to try out these cams in a shop, so you can see which one is right for you. While we are on the subject of choosing a camera, there are other contenders such as the Sony PDX10 - which has the best 16:9 in this price range, XLR inputs and B/W hi-res viewfinder - but doesn't have great low light.

Before getting a GL2, you might want to wait till July, because many people think there will be one or two new cameras announced from Canon around mid way through the month - GL3 and XL2 perhaps? ;) - then again they might not...
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Old June 19th, 2004, 02:18 PM   #17
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Thanks for all the feedback everyone! Ok, so I mainly want to use this camera, which ever one it may be, to shoot my short films etc. And I want it to have as much as possible the "film" look. Would it be smarter to go with a camera with frame mode etc, if I plan on using that camera for films only and want a more "film" look?
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Old June 21st, 2004, 08:30 AM   #18
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shooting in frame mode will save you some time in post... since you are going for short films and I assume that you will have sufficient lights around your scene the I'd suggest the GL2 or the DVC30 for their frame mode capabilities... DVC30 will save you some more time with its Gamma :)
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Old June 21st, 2004, 05:00 PM   #19
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Ok. Thank you. Well, now I may just wait it out, considering it's very likely Canon may announce it's new line of products. Do think it's likely they will annouce a GL3 and not just a XL2(or whatever it may be called). Think Sony and Panasonic would soon release new products also? :) So many choices, so little time. ;)
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Old June 22nd, 2004, 10:57 PM   #20
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Lots of good info in this thread already, but I just thought I'd add some thoughts on "Film Like" shooting.

The look of film is based mainly on three features/limitations (depending on how you look at them) of film stock.

The first is frame rate. At a standard 24 fps each frame gets exposed for long enough that noticeable motion blur occurs in moving objects. This helps the eye believe that the motion is fluid and not jerky as video often appears.

The second is frame size. Professional film cameras (ie non super8) have an image size which is significantly larger than the dimensions of the CCD's in current presumer camcorders. Thus it is much easier to enhance the sense of depth in the 2d image by making the 'background' drop out of focus while still keeping the subject in sharp focus (Tons of good explanations of this principle can be found so I'm skipping all the technical why & wherefores).

The third is color/gamma. Film's dynamic range is fairly even throughout most of it's range, however traditional CCD technology tends to loose sensitivity at both the bright and dark ends of their range. What cine-gamma and JVC's s-curve gamma algorithms do is to attempt to level out the responsiveness of the CCD so that the image which is ultimately recorded has as much detail in the highlights and shadows as it does in it's mid range. Similarly adjusting the color matrix and/or color balance on a video camera can make a HUGE difference in the 'filmic' quality of an image.

One final element which can never be emphasized enough is that you will NEVER achieve the look of film unless you light your video with the same care as you would take if you were shooting on film.

In the case of the cameras discussed here, only the DVX100(a) does genuine 24 fps capture. The next best thing is probably a PAL camera which shoots at 25 fps. Next best would be any camera which possess a GOOD progressive scan mode, where at least you can reduce the amount of obvious interlacing between one field and the next. I put good in caps because not all of these progressive scan modes are the same. As I understand it Sony's progressive scan is simply achieved by doubling one field off the CCD, where as Canon has some funky trick involving it's Pixel-shift technology (I'd love to see a detailed explanation of how this works). I'm not really sure how the DVC30 handles this, but I know from various reviews and forum posts that there are significant differences.

In terms of depth of field issues, pretty much all of these cameras are going to fall down on this, but as always, the bigger the CCD the better. . . unless you really LIKE having everything in the frame in sharp focus.

Finally, as I mentioned before, only JVC and Panasonic seem to be addressing the gamma issue in their prosumer lines. There's really no good way to make these changes in post, the detail simply isn't there, so by allowing this detail to make it to tape these companies have a HUGE competitive advantage if achieving the look of film is what you're after.

Best of luck,
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