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Old January 17th, 2007, 05:56 AM   #1
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Camera for broadcast wildlife for BBC

Just been to see a TV company who makes programs for BBC Wales and they expressed concern over using HDV for wildlife shooting. I was thinking of using the Canon XL H1 or the JVC GY-HD101E as you can use still lenses on both. I would be using the supplied lens as well as Nikon prime 35mm lenses.


I would appreciate any comments on this, particularly from someone who has come across this problem before.

Many thanks

PS Just discovered the GY-HD250U for about the same price as the Canon Xl H1

Last edited by Andrew Davies; January 17th, 2007 at 06:27 AM.
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Old January 17th, 2007, 09:08 AM   #2
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My guess would be that the BBC is (in)famous for maintaining maximum technical quality of the material it produces. Shooting in HDV means shooting to MPEG2 which is a poor choice for master material that may need editing.
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Old January 17th, 2007, 11:02 AM   #3
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I'm interested in this point as well, I have a project coming up in the summer that is to be sold to the BBC and I had intended to shoot HDV with an HD100 and an HD251 so I had an HD master and then downconvert to SD and print to digibeta for delivery.

If anyone sees a problem with this it would be good to know.

Andy.
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Old January 17th, 2007, 12:47 PM   #4
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This thread may be of interest:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=84068
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Old January 17th, 2007, 08:34 PM   #5
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If you saw the recent BBC2 show "Johnny Kingdom, a year on Exmoor" you will have seen the presenter going out and shooting wildlife footage on (what I think was) an XL-H1, and the footage being broadcast as part of the show. As the camera itself was often seen on screen - in footage shot by a second camera crew - it would be hard for anyone to say that BBC doesn't accept footage shot on this camera!

edit: take a look at his website, http://www.johnnykingdom.tv/ theres an image of him holding a white camera, that looks like an XL1, although I'm sure during the series he was seen with a black coloured camera like an XLH1
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Old January 18th, 2007, 04:05 AM   #6
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Paul - Johnny uses an old XL2 camera (SD). All his DVDs are shot with this camera (and some on the older XL1s SD camera).

The camera that you see him using in the Johnny Kingdom BBC series (such as 'Johnny goes to Lapland') is also the old SD XL2 and NOT the latest XL-H1. Most of the main footage and sections showing Johnny is I think mainly shot by BBC cameramen using different cameras to Johhny, and footage of some of the wildlife shot by Jonny is slotted in during post.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 04:10 AM   #7
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I think he was using an XL1 or 2. I watched this series in despair as it was not even worth half an hour on some little known digital channel let alone a whole series on BBC2. The wildlife footage was appallingly shot. I guess the BEEB allowed this as it was part of Johny's quirky character that irritated me intensely.

Amazes me how they can produce programs like Planet Earth and rubbish like Johny Kingdom on the same channel!
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Old January 18th, 2007, 04:33 AM   #8
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I agree with you in some respects, especially as all of Johnny’s footage is handheld using the telephoto end of the 20X and rarely if ever on a stable tripod. But it just goes to show that big-budget channels will air material if they think that the content is interesting enough or different enough to draw viewers.
Johnny has gathered quite a following over the past decades filming on Exmoor, so obviously the Beeb thought it would be interesting enough for a series. Johnny's programs and footage have been shown in earlier BBC series, so they obviously must have had high enough viewing figures to plough money into the present series.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 05:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Davies-Patrick
Tony,

I also picked up on this afew months ago but have heard nothing since, nor seen any evidence of the completed training DVD. Have you heard or spoken too anybody who has seen footage or used with this camera combination.

Regards

Mick
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Old January 18th, 2007, 05:09 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Davies-Patrick
Tony,
I too picked up on this a few months ago, but have heard nothing since. Have you spoken to anybody about it or seen any of the footage from useing this combination. Also has the training DVD be produced!

Regards

Mick
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Old January 18th, 2007, 05:13 AM   #11
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Sorry about the double post thought I had lost the first one

Regards

Mick
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Old January 18th, 2007, 05:46 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mick Jenner
Tony,
I too picked up on this a few months ago, but have heard nothing since. Have you spoken to anybody about it or seen any of the footage from useing this combination. Also has the training DVD be produced!

Regards

Mick
The training DVD is still in production. I've asked Nigel to contact me as soon as it is available, so he should Email or ring me when it is completed.
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Old January 18th, 2007, 07:07 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mick Jenner
Tony,

I also picked up on this afew months ago but have heard nothing since, nor seen any evidence of the completed training DVD. Have you heard or spoken too anybody who has seen footage or used with this camera combination.

Regards

Mick
Hey Mick,

The website indicates a release date in February.

http://www.wildlifefilmmaking.co.uk/
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Old January 18th, 2007, 08:01 AM   #14
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Hey Mick,

The website indicates a release date in February.

http://www.wildlifefilmmaking.co.uk/
Thanks for the above, I missed the new web site.

It would be interesting to hear Mike Linley's views on the comparison between the XL H1 and the JVC's as he also lectures on the XL wildlife training courses organised by http://www.wildeye.co.uk/.

Regards

Mick
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Old January 20th, 2007, 10:31 PM   #15
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After 6 months of using the XLH1 on wildlife shooting I can say I am well pleased with the look of the footage. I shoot only in 60i and play the footage only on Sony's 25U deck. I found the other frame rates too strobey and not natural. In very fast action like bighorn rams in battles, I find the footage very stable and sharp when I do my part. Using a 1/125 shutter or faster helps and of course manual focus. I'm working on a film to be entitled The West is still Wild and I have no doubt that broadcasters won't turn me down. My last SD film is now being edited ( Journey Home ), shot over 8 years with the XL1 on the Chinook salmon on the Fraser river system, which is the greatest salmon river in the world. When the footage is viewed on a HD monitor I would say well shot SD footage is more than worthy to be aired.

Happy filming everyone,

P.S. Out for a snowshoe walk the other day and watched a marten trying to catch a fleeing snowshoe hare.

Leon Lorenz
www.wildlifevideos.ca
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