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Old January 3rd, 2006, 11:24 PM   #991
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thanks guys for the help and suggestions. I'm still going to stay away from the Sony cameras, just because of their lack of progressive scan.

However, and this is a HUGE however, i'm not nearly as sure about the DVX as i was. 2 reasons, both of which came from you Mathieu :D

1) The DVX really IS grainy! Even in normal lighting conditions it seems. Am i just seeing things? After your comment, i looked more closely at the caps from various sites and yeah... lots of noise! The XL2 by comparison is really clean.

2) I hadn't thought of this, but yeah, the DVX really is more of a handycam model... isn't that going to be a problem anytime i want to take the camera off the tripod? I would think so... I just don't want to end up with home-video shakiness all the time. The XL2 having that shoulder mount probably helps a ton. Anybody know how the DVX performs off the tripod?

So yeah, now i'm really starting to lean towards the XL2 since it has the features i want and is only about $500 more than the DVX.

The only real concern i have about it is its viewfinder. It's apparently very difficult to focus with it? I know from using my Canon Rebel 350D that i simply refrain from using the manual focus because the viewfinder is so small and it's very difficult to manually focus accurately... fortunately, the Rebel is just a still camera. With a camcorder, an out of focus shot (especially in non-repeatable situations like weddings etc.) this would be DEVASTATING, wouldn't it??
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Old January 4th, 2006, 01:09 AM   #992
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Autofocus Use

Though you ruled out the Sonys, I think the autofocus features in these cameras is pretty good. Head to head against the Canon XL1 a few years back, my VX2000 performed heads above the that camera. I understand the XL2 had improved somewhat, but there was still a lot of drift. The Sony provides a quick autofocus in most lighting situations. And you can focus with a temporary autofocus button, and then change over to manual to avoid drift as your central focus might move to side.

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Old January 4th, 2006, 02:05 AM   #993
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DVX100b is better than the A but noisy and in low light... VERY NOISY! It does have great colors and ease of use. XL2 has less noise but is much harder to use and master... if you are looking for low light performance, PD170 is the way to go. Widescreen? No other choice but the XL2... 4:3 24P with ease of use? DVX

ash =o)
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Old January 4th, 2006, 12:11 PM   #994
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Ok, i think maybe i need to clarify something about low-light. My idea of low(ish)-light is indoors, with the only lighting being light bulbs or fluorescent lighting. Really low light means a single candle or something to that effect, right? I don't know if this made any sense. I just know from my still camera that simply being indoors drastically changes what i have to do to achieve a good result, so i assumed it would be somewhat similar with camcorders.

With that in mind, imagine i was shooting a wedding video (which i'm actually doing in April this year), will the XL2 do a good job? I'll either be shooting inside of a mormon church (mostly fluorescent lighting) or at a reception center.

Chris, thanks for the comments. I've also read about that drifting issue with the XL1 and i've read that the XL2 has pretty much fixed it... it's good to know that it may still exist though, so thanks. Reviewers seem to have varying opinions on things like that.

Ash, thanks for your input, i know you have (or at least had) both the XL2 and the DVX. I'm glad the noise issue was brought to my attention before a purchase. I still can't believe i missed the issue from all the caps and video i've seen. About the "ease of use", i've learned over the years with software that i've bought for 3D work that the easier it is to use, the more limiting it becomes when you grow as an artist. I need a camera that will grow with me and the XL2 seems to be a good choice in that respect too.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 12:22 PM   #995
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In decent light and in 4:3 I can cut the DVX100b and XL2 seemlessly... if I use the DVX in stretch mode I have to differ the lengths of shots... For someone who is not a very skilled operator I will always recommend the DVX, it has a robust following and great resources. Both cameras will grow with you but the XL2 offers better 16:9 and more options for lenses, etc. Hard to miss with either, the determining factor for many is 4:3 vs 16:9

ash =o)
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Old January 5th, 2006, 02:38 PM   #996
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Keep in mind here Raji that, for a relativly new cameraoperator, you can't expect to just buy a fancy new 24p camera, pick it up, and shoot 24p or 30p and get good results. As you can see through all the posts here, shooting anything progressive or in 25p is a different world than 60i.

While all the cameras available in your price range will enable you to make great looking wedding videos and such, the primary factor in good video is having a good operator. A very experienced operator can take a crappy camera and still get good pictures. (Or, as I like to say, Lance Armstrong would still win the Tour De France even if he was riding a Huffy!) So, hopefully you have allready looked at all the posts concerning how to properly shoot and edit with progressive material.

Not mentioned yet are the camera ergonomics. The XL-2 wins here. You definatly want a shoulder mount camera for shooting weddings unless you'll be on sticks the whole time. Standing and hand-holding a camera all day will kill your back if it's not a shoulder mount like the XL-2.

As far as audio is concerned, check out the Sennheiser Evolution G2 wireless Lavs. Great sound, good price ($500 each @ B&H), and user selectible frequency's with a frequency scan feature. We had a lot of problems with other mics in the $500 range with RF interference and poor reception range, and the Sennheisers have been flawless so far.
Jeff Carrion
Midwest Outdoors Television

"TV said that? Then it must be true." -Homer Simpson
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Old January 5th, 2006, 11:23 PM   #997
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camera recommendation for shooting racing.

My website is . I currently shoot stills, but I want to get into making videos, as I have another guy that goes with me to most events that shoots the stills already.

I am sort of set on the canon XL1s, but would like your professional opinons since I am new to professional video, in which I do not mind learning to do.

Basically I will be shooting all sorts of auto racing, from drifting to drag racing. The events will mainly be during the day, but some will run into the evening and night.

I plan to run the camera on my shoulder or tripod, but plan to buy a boom/jib (with only vertical movement, since getting both vertical and horizontal movement booms run into the 1000s) some what soon after my camera purchase. I also might buy a cheap steadicam for walking with it in the pits and such.

I want the quality of the video to look as movie like as possible, with my budget being about 2200-2300 MAX (new or used, doesnt matter).

Thank you for your help,

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Old January 6th, 2006, 06:16 PM   #998
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Everyone with a reply is going to have a different opinion. I would say the XLs, but if you plan on running around with it on a Stedi Cam and a Jib, it might be a little to heavy.

Maybe a Panasonic DVX100 or Canon GL2?
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Old January 6th, 2006, 09:51 PM   #999
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hello mark,

got my xls about a year ago. shoot mostly of a tri pot. since i only have the viewfinder, i got myself a 7" mountable lcd, and a 14 field monitor.

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Old January 7th, 2006, 09:22 AM   #1000
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Each major brand/camera does one thing better than the others. For the Canon, it is the longer than normal 20x zoom lens, which may be of real benefit for some types of car racing. I own a DVX, which is wider than average 10x zoom (useful for my type of work, keeps me from needing a WA adapter in many situations) , while Sony might be called an average 10x zoom.

OTOH, most people think that the DVX has more capabilities to be "film-like", whatever that means. It took me a couple of months to figure out which was best for me. They are all tradeoffs of one "better" for one "worse". Try some different ones if you can, maybe even hire some people (students?) cheap just to shoot some test footage with you, so you can see what they all do in your environment and which you like best. Also see how they feel in your hands. It may be cheaper to hire a student for a few hours than to rent a camera.
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Old January 10th, 2006, 10:25 AM   #1001
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thanks for replying. I didn't realize that you had because i keep forgetting that just posting something or replying to a post doesn't automatically subscribe to the thread like i'm used to on other forums.

i do understand that i'm not simply going to get pro results from having 24P in the camera and that most of the film look has to do with the lighting of the characters and the set. At my budget, this is currently going to be next to impossible, but will hopefully become a reality as time goes by.

i did end up choosing the XL2 because of its slight advantage over the DVX in terms of image quality (i saw it for myself at a local store), stock audio quality and last but not least, the shoulder mount, which i realized was a huge plus half-way through this thread.

thanks for all your replies everyone! You've all been a great help
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Old January 10th, 2006, 01:07 PM   #1002
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Hi, I'm currently in the market for a DV Camera and seem to be leaning to an XL2, but I was wondering what other people though of their camera's. If I'm going to get a Canon I think I what a Panisonic or JVC. Please tell me of any good camera's equal to the XL2 not XL2E. I really do not know where to put this post so I put it here, if I should have put it elsewhere please tell me where. I'm new to the boards. Thanks, John
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Old January 10th, 2006, 02:24 PM   #1003
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Camera to Buy

Sounds like you may have already made up your mind.

If you want input from people, you need to be more specific about what you are going to use your camera for. XL2 is a great camera, but are you will to use it as it is intended ? If you are going to be "running and gunning", this camera may or may not be best for those needs. Each DV camera out there has its pluses and minuses, all anyone here can do is let you know based on their experiences how there particular camera holds up in the way you want to use it.

Chris Barcellos
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Old January 17th, 2006, 07:42 AM   #1004
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1st Short Camera choice

Hello all. Newbie poster here, but been lurking and learning for months.

I know there's a thread already running asking which cam to hire for a feature shoot, but I'm hoping i can add this very straightforward and specific question into the mix as well.

There's much more to this of course, but I'll limit my question to the following:

I'm shooting my first short. I'll have a 35mm converter (SG35) for shooting and I'll have Final Cut Pro with Nattress filters for post (iMac). Naturally - among many other things like lighting and style - i want to use the available technology to get the best 'film look' i can. I have extensive experience of shooting and editing DV / miniDV (PD150/Z1 - Pinnacle Liquid 5.5/6). However, i'm not at all au fait with HD/HDV and haven't yet grasped how it differs re: shooting & post workflow / workload.

And so to the question:

I have the choice of 3 cams to shoot with. Which one (bearing in mind this is my first short) would people suggest...

1) Sony Z1
2) Canon XL1

I'd like the finished product to stand up under scrutiny online and on DVD.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

PS - i'm a bit obsessive and determined ;-) so if it comes down to shooting for Gold or settling for silver, I'd usually choose to shoot for gold even if it takes longer to prepare for.
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Old January 17th, 2006, 09:16 AM   #1005
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If you're only showing it on DVD and online, you may not need to shoot in HDV since you'll be converting it down to SD again. If you're planning to project on a screen or any other use where resolution is important, I'd go HDV.

In terms of editing, from what I've heard, it's similar to DV where you simply capture and edit, but it won't be as fluid since the resolution is higher.

From the list of cameras you present, I'd choose the JVC if you neeed HD. Is the XL1 you list the original XL1, or is it the updated XL1s? If you need SD, the XL series cameras are great, but if you can find the XL2, it's a significant improvement.
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