Canon VL Lenses on the XL1?
an article by Don Palomaki

The Canon L1 and L2 Hi8 camcorders used the VL Series interchangeable lenses. The XL1 uses a new XL interchangable lens system. Many of people have asked whether or not the VLS lenses can be used on the XL1.

Unfortunately, the answer is no. The mounts are different and there is no adapter currently available.

The question is, would you really want to? Consider the following issues.

Canon engineered the lenses for the video acquisition system. With the XL1, the lens was designed to provide a minumum of 600 vertical lines of resolution on a one-third inch CCD system. In the case of the VLS lenses, they were designed to provide a minimum of 450 vertical lines of resolution on a one-half inch CCD. This corresponds to 300 lines on the smaller one-third inch chips. Thus, mounting a VLS lens on an XL1 may result in far lower video resolution than the DV format supports. Actual resolution delivered to the CCD will also depend on the factors of zoom range, focus and aperature settings.

The one-third inch CCDs in the XL1 mean you'll need a shorter focal length lens for the same field of view as the one-half inch CCD in the L1 and L2. The 16x (5.5-88mm) normal zoom lens on the XL1 provides about the same field of view as the 8-120mm normal zoom lens on the L1 and L2. If mounted on the XL1, the VL Series 3x (5-15mm) wide angle zoom lens would provide only a marginal (maybe 10%) increase in field of view over the standard XL1 lens, and provide no stabilization option (the Watchdog notes that the coming 3x wide angle lens for the XL1 won't have stabilization, either).

It is not certain how much automation and informtion feedback (f-stop setting and different zoom speeds) would be lost.


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