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Old March 16th, 2007, 01:07 PM   #1
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jvc vs canon for wildlife

I am new here and am trying to decide which camera to purchase. I am leaning towards the jvc gy-hd100 (0r 110), But how does this camera compare to canon XL's or XLH1? I know there is a significant price difference compared to the XLH1. Should I be concerned with only a 16x lens with the JVC?

It would be great to hear from people who film wildlife, (as that is my intentions with the camera). What camera setup are you using, and any favorite lenses? Thanks for the help!
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Old March 16th, 2007, 01:22 PM   #2
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Jason,

JVC's stock 16x lens is very soft at the longest point. You may be best to look at other lens options. The camera itself is great though.

The slow-mo (SD only on 100 series) could be good for wildlife shooting.
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Old March 16th, 2007, 01:33 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Davis View Post
I am new here and am trying to decide which camera to purchase. I am leaning towards the jvc gy-hd100 (0r 110), But how does this camera compare to canon XL's or XLH1? I know there is a significant price difference compared to the XLH1. Should I be concerned with only a 16x lens with the JVC?

It would be great to hear from people who film wildlife, (as that is my intentions with the camera). What camera setup are you using, and any favorite lenses? Thanks for the help!
OK, I'll bite... I went through the same process a year ago.

IF you are predominantly shooting wildlife, or outdoors in general, then the Canon is far and away the better choice. We've never polled this forum, but I'd be willing to guess that most on the UWOL forum are Canon (XL1, 2, H1, XH or HV). IF you were shooting indoors (dramatic, documentary etc.) most or some of the time, then it's a much closer call, as both are great cameras and the JVC is considerably cheaper.

But IMHO, when shooting wildlife (if you're serious about it), you absolutely need the extra reach the the EOS still lenses provide. I took a 70-200 L series f/2.8 to Costa Rica recently, and even though I was shooting subjects as larges as howler monkeys (who were relatively close), you will be frustrated by the lack of focal length at 16x or even 20x.

Of course shooting HDV presents a whole new set of challenges (whether JVC or H1).

You could also consider a good used XL2. You will certainly simplify your workflow, while producing entirely acceptable images for DVD.

I'm sure others will chime in.
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Old March 16th, 2007, 05:06 PM   #4
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Jason, second what Ken tell you. I'v used ef-lenses up to 500mm, 3600mm equivalent on the Canon XLH1, and with that reach you can shoot details of birds on a long distance etc.
Note that you should budget for a heavy duty tripod too if you decide to go for Canon XL-series with long lenses.

Take a look at my website for some nice video shot with Canon XL-series and ef-lenses.
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Old March 16th, 2007, 06:39 PM   #5
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I know either stock lens will need to be replaced for certain shots of animals at a distance, but more specifically, comparing the two cameras what is the advantage or disadvantage over the other. For me right now the price is more desirable with the jvc, but is it in my best interest to spend the extra $$ for the canon XLH1. I have read great things about the jvc, but out in the field and elements how will it hold up? I also believe its lighter than the XLH1, which would be advantageous for packing it in several miles. Thanks for all the help.
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Old March 16th, 2007, 11:21 PM   #6
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Jason,

Based on my pre-purchase research and things I've read and seen since, the Canon's are more field friendly. If you haven't seen and held both cams in the flesh, then you should. Per Johan is using his in sub-zero temps. Didi Schoeman (and others) are using XL's in the dry, dusty plains of Africa. Michael Devlin has his H1, hanging off his charter fishing boat between Panama and Alaska. I really can't believe how well Per Johans cameras (XL2, H1) even operate in that environment.

I won't knock the JVC, and I've only spent a small amount of time with the HD100, but the Canons has easily accessible buttons that recess to keep them out of the way (very few controls on the Canon require menu access). Caps the seal tightly to cover headphone jacks, firewire port etc. I did read a report somewhere on here about a guy shooting with the HD100 somewhere in Africa, and he had to replace some external parts that were wearing badly.

The extra weight of the H1 means it sits well on your shoulder. Add the dual battery holder and it balances the back end even better. Also that way you can shoot practically for days.

Again it depends on your use, but if you're SERIOUS about shooting wildlife, that where the XL's excel (pardon the pun). The EOS adapter opens up the entire range of first class glass in the Canon still lenses. I really don't know what system you use to extend the JVC telephoto capability.

Is the H1 worth the extra money? Well, that's up to you. If money is tight, be careful, because with HDV, the camera cost is just the beginning. You will almost certainly need a major NLE/software upgrade. Serious tripod and head, external microphones. Then you start looking at matte boxes and follow focus gears, and HD monitors (for both field and office) and so on and so on...

You should ask at the JVC forum (don't cross post though). Just ask how many guys are shooting telephoto outdoors (wildlife).

I really don't think too many on this UWOL forum are shooting HD100's. I might be wrong, but...

By the way, this forum is frantically finishing their entries for the UWOL Challenge, so that's probably why response to your original question is kind of light.

Hope this doesn't come across like JVC bashing, I very nearly bought one instead of the H1. The big thing for me, and a big part of the price difference, was the ability of the H1 to bypass HDV compression via HDSDI out.

You're right to ask alot of questions first. Probably a real good thing to do is go to a shop that has both, and check them out.
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Old March 17th, 2007, 12:36 AM   #7
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The bulk of the cost difference is because of the SDI outputs on the H1 for studio work. If you want/need this feature on the JVC you need to buy the HD250 model. The other deciding factor is if you want native interlaced or progressive cam. In interlaced mode the H1 tops all other prosumer cams for TVlines resolution captured. In progressive mode shooting the JVC tops all other prosumer cams for TVlines resolution captured. Although the H1 has a "progressive" mode that comes close, I have read conflicting reports of how close it stays under motion.
The other deciding factor would be form-factor. The JVC is true ENG shoulder mount, while the Canon retains that chest mount of it predecessors. So if your not exclusively tripod that might be a deal breaker.
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Old March 27th, 2007, 05:34 AM   #8
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JVC HDV as wildlife camera

Hi. Im a wildlife filmmaker from Spain and Im considering to buy the JVC 251. With an adapter you can use Nikon mount SLR lenses and they work the same as the EOS lenses in the Canon video cameras. In this link you may find more info:

http://www.dvuser.co.uk/content.php?CID=133

I hope this helps.
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Old March 29th, 2007, 01:52 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the help. I think I will give the JVC a try. Ill keep you posted! By the way anyone coming to Missoula for the wildlife film festival?
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Old March 29th, 2007, 02:18 AM   #10
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Jason, good luck with your choice! Please keep us posted and especially if you post footage, that would be nice.
The Missoula festival is too far away from me, maybe next time :-)

Best;
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Old April 3rd, 2007, 07:54 PM   #11
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I am thinking of going as I won a award for cinematography after entering Sheep and Grizzly Country, however it's a busy time for grizzly filming also.

Leon Lorenz
www.wildlifevideos.ca
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