JVC ProHD100 series for wildlife at DVinfo.net

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Old February 7th, 2007, 07:35 PM   #1
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JVC ProHD100 series for wildlife

I just noticed in another forum that JVC has (has had for a while, apparently) a series of HD camcorders (variously called GYHD101, 102, ProHD100 series, etc) that feature interchangeable lenses with a 3rd party bayonet mount for Nikon or Canon 35 mm still lenses. In short, everything the XLH-1 offers for less than $6,000.
Although I only today discovered this item, I suspect some of us are already using it. Happy with it? Any info about how much these 3rd party lens adapters cost would be helpful.

Steve Siegel,
Miami FL
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Old February 8th, 2007, 01:49 AM   #2
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Hi Steve,

Check out this site http://www.wildlifefilmmaking.co.uk/ , but I have yet to see any footage with this combination.
It is also interesting that Mike Linley also teaches on a Canon XL course run by Wildeye http://www.wildeye.co.uk/e.


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Old February 8th, 2007, 05:21 PM   #3
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Hey Mick,
I went through that site last night. It's what piqued my interest. I haven't been able to find another reference to that specific model (the 101E) anywhere.

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Old February 9th, 2007, 01:31 AM   #4
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If you go the next thread Camera for braodcast wildlife forBBC you will see Mike Linley came on board yestday. If you address the question to him I'm sure you will get a reply Mikes' Post as follows

Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1 Mike Linley


Hi just been told that my name was mentioned recently so i thought I'd raise my head above the parapet for the first time. must just say that I have been watching this forum for years and found it absolutely INVALUABLE for finding out about my cameras so thank you Chris.
Yes i do run courses for the xl series of cameras and i do have a 3 hour training video coming out on the use of hdv cameras for wildlife film making using the jvc as an example....and its a great camera.....but i own an xl1, xl2, xlh1 and an xm2.
I'd be happy to contribute further now that i have dipped my to in the water.but i am not that great at typing !!!


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Old March 2nd, 2007, 03:53 PM   #5
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JVC hdv 200

What is the experience out there with the HDV 200 series cameras for wildlife shooting if any?
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Old March 2nd, 2007, 06:24 PM   #6
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If you followed the link for the full story there was a detailed explanation of why they chose the JVC. They made valid points for the JVC and each was a good reason to go with the JVC over the canon. I think the main ones being: native progressive scan and true 24p.

In addition, I believe the JVC has a more solid body construction than the canon and would hold up better in an outdoor environment.

On the down side, the stock 16x lens is not suited to wildlife work. If your working at the end of the lens range it shows chroma. If you're planning to buy the adapter for photographic lenses then the stock lens is a none issue. But if you want to shoot with the lens that comes on the camera then you need to invest in the 17x lens.

Both cameras create a wonderful picture, but the jvc seems built to customize and accomdate third party add ons.

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Old March 3rd, 2007, 05:04 AM   #7
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I have been shooting for the last year on a film focussed on the endangered dugongs here in Mozambique. Topside has been shot with the JVC HD100 and all underwater with the Sony Z1. We have shot HDV 25P throughout and will deliver a SD master for broadcast. We are editing native 25P and downconverting to PAL DV on delivery, this way we keep an HDV master. All 1080i material is being cross converted into 25p, this way we can pan and scan a little for framing some shots.

The JVC camera produces some amazing images with fantastic detail and with a little tinkering with the settings will reproduce fantastic colour, with it you have a lot of good image control possibilities.... you can read all of this in any article about the camera.

I have the Mike Tapa Nikon-JVC adaptor which I have used with various lenses. Cost around 200GBP and does what it says, you can use Nikon stills lenses with it. You need support rods and a good, rock steady tripod with it otherwise shots are unusable, color rendition is completely different, it is all manual and due to still lens construction focussing takes a little finesse. This will be the same with any adaptor of this kind.

I like the camera very much and in controlled situations you can really use the camera to its best. I have however a few grumbles about the camera and its practicality and use in the field which in my case is off the back on boats, in the bush and generally being treated how a camera gets treated when it is used as a tool for 10 hours daily/nightly as the case may be.

All the following are based on my camera which is an early series HD100E, some things may have changed in later models and with the 200 series...

Build quality: Mine has been through a lot and survived but I do baby it a little as there are no replacements here. Others I have seen did not fare so well. The handle feels plasticy, there are lots of entry points for dust and grit. The sound monitor (earpiece) is prone to loosing the cover. I have lost all the input/output (Firewire/RCA etc) covers. The camea runs very hot.

Sound: Good with external mic, onboard is hopeless.

Viewfinder: Terrible. The saving grace is focus assist as in some conditions it is impossible to focus using the standard viewfinder.

Lens: Yes it does have CA but what do you expect from a lens of this price. I am certain that the Canon HD lens optics on the XLH1 are better but it is still not an easy lens to use, no backfocus etc. I have some beautiful images on tape using this lens. Breathes a lot as well.

SSE: This is the dreaded split screen problem that affects certain shots. I have seen this in many lighting conditions. Especially low contrast, big wide landscape shots, unfortunately this film has many of these and some post time is going to be spent trying to rescue these shots.

Editing and Post: Problematic. FCP now supports 24/25P natively but not without glitches. Issues with capturing are the worst but hopefully FCP and JVC will make a plan, look at the JVC forum on this site to read up on these issues. HDV is processor heavy, memory heavy and rendering effects, even on the new quad cores is very time consuming.

Startup time: Takes about 14 seconds from switched off to recording at speed, by this time the bird has often flown.

Power: You will need the AB, IDX or PAG solution for the camera, or a lot of small batteries. Like 10 for a full day shooting.

Ergonomics: With a big battery it is OK to handhold. Without it is terrible and very tiring.

To finish: Excepting all said above, for the price the camera is great and you will be able to shoot some amazing images with the standard setup. It gives you loads of options, there are loads on add ons, adaptors, alternative lenses etc. It is almost robust enough for my work but not quite, I would like to have seen more though put into the build quality. All the button are in the right places. The image quality is fantastic, true progressive 1080P would be better.

For me the camera has served well but I will be upgrading to a HDX900 with a true HD lens as soon as I can. I hope this all helps anybody thinking of buying a JVC.


Natural History Cameraman
Earthmedia Film, Oslo, Norway
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