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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old September 20th, 2004, 11:03 PM   #1
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XL1s or something else?

Hello there Everyone,

This may sound like a dumb question, but if you had to pick between an XL1s and some other camera to shoot with (in the next class down for monetary reasons) which would you choose?

I would appreciate your advice on my situation. I currently have an XL1s for sale in the classifieds and I was wondering if I should keep it or push to sell it. I haven't used it too much (less than 15 hours of tape), so I'm definitely not an expert on its ins and outs. I've been using it for church event type filming but originally purchased it to get into wedding videography. Well, I'm finally getting some wedding and other event videography things lined up. But I put in on sale thinking that I was just going to give the whole thing up and take the loss.

I've already committed to a couple of events, but now I'm wondering if I've got the right camera for what I want to use it for. I'm having some difficulty becoming proficient in the best way to focus quickly and accurately with the XL1s.

In your opinion, should I sell the XL1s and get a VX2100? GL2? Some other slightly cheaper camera? Suck it up and learn how to use the XL1s better?

Thanks for your help,
Ron
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Old September 20th, 2004, 11:44 PM   #2
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PD-170, but wait on it, somthing new will come

It seems like each camera has its flaws anyway you look at it. The XL1-S is an outstanding camera, but for weddings and events, I personally would recommend the pd-170. In all honesty, I would use the XL1-S for the rest of the season, and hold out for somthing new(belive me, im tempted to trade in my GL2s for the 170s)



John
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Old September 22nd, 2004, 10:36 PM   #3
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Hi Ron,

I don't exclusively use an XL1 for weddings, but it is a very good camera. It does great in most settings, e.g., outdoors, well-lit sanctuaries, etc., except when it comes to the reception. Usually it's too dark and you will need a good video light. I think an XL1 is only rated at about 5.5 lux.

Anyway, my favorite camera is the PD-150 (the new version being the 170). I think it has a warmer look, and is excellent in low light conditions. At receptions I'll put my 2x wide angle lens on (which boosts the ambient light) and I don't need to supplement with a video light.

Give it time, you'll get used to it. I switch back and forth with mine depending on the situation, but it's because I'm familiar with both of them.
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Old September 22nd, 2004, 10:54 PM   #4
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Dave - a quick question for you...My problem with the XL1s is that I haven't spent enough time with it to learn how to properly acheive good focus when panning/zooming. Is the PD-150 or PD-170 much better at this for a novice/intermediate user?

Thanks
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Old September 23rd, 2004, 10:14 PM   #5
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Focus Comparisons

Good question! I may be partial, but to me anyway, it seems easier to manually focus with the Sony camera through the view finder. It's a B&W image, but very sharp resolution. I don't think the Canon is as easy to manually focus because the view finder isn't as sharp, or clear. I find myself relying on auto focus more often to get the distance right, then I flip to manual, them zoom or pan. The Sony holds its focus better than the Canon when on auto. The Canon seems to "search" more.
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Old September 23rd, 2004, 10:44 PM   #6
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Dave is right, ive heard the sony has a (much) faster auto focus. The GL2s focus can be a problem in certain situations.



John
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Old September 26th, 2004, 05:31 PM   #7
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John,
As you probably know, the GL2 can lose focus while zooming especially in dimly lit scenes. I use to have this happen during processionals/recessionals, etc. What I do now is go manual focus, zoom in on the subject and set focus. The camera will then hold focus on any shots in that scene.

I'm also strongly considering the PD170. I'm just tired of the GL2's 12dB look at low-light receptions. Unforunately, I don't see Canon doing anything about making the GL2 truly competitive with the VX-2001 or PD170. And now there's the HDR-FX1 to consider...
Bob
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