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-   -   GL2 / XM2 Frame mode (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/canon-gl-series-dv-camcorders/3415-gl2-xm2-frame-mode.html)

Ryan G. Reed July 10th, 2004 12:13 PM

Will Frame mode cause problems converting NTSC to PAL
I have a wedding I'm shooting for a friend here in the U.S. but then I need to convert the footage to PAL. I really like frame mode but I'm worried that it may cause me problems when I convert from NTSC. Any experiences or thoughts? Should I shoot it in normal interlaced mode or use frame mode?

Jeff Toogood July 10th, 2004 08:13 PM

Mixing Frame Mode & Normal Mode Footage
I was wondering what the result of mixing footage shot with my GL2 in frame mode and footage shot with a PD-100 in 'normal' video mode would be?

Will their be a drastic difference in the way the footage looks? can it be edited together? or shoudl I just shot the footage in normal mode with my GL2?

The reason I ask, is because I was thinking of shooting the more 'dramatic' moments with the GL2 in frame mode.


Ken Tanaka July 10th, 2004 10:18 PM

There will be a "drastic difference" between the two. I think the first difference you'll notice is that of color and sharpness. I've not seen footage from a PD-100, but Sony's generally lean toward cooler, more greenish skin tones than Canon. Sony's also tend to produce a sharper image, not always a good attribute but generally a crowd-pleaser.

So to get these two cameras to play nice you'll probably need to skip frame mode on the GL2 and do some color and sharpness adjustments on the GL2 to accommodate the Sony (which may not be as adaptable).

Rob Lohman July 11th, 2004 07:18 AM

I have no experience but the best tip I can give you is to test your
workflow. If you have other wedding footage shot in NTSC frame
mode convert that to PAL. This firstly tests your NTSC to PAL
conversion methods and secondly how well it will look.

Hank Freeman July 11th, 2004 08:31 AM

interesting effect
actually, the effect can be very interesting. the viewer will notice immediately but be at a loss to describe it. i've produced documentaries using frame mode as b-roll video for a voice-over and found it to be cool.

Charlie Durand August 11th, 2004 02:05 PM

Frame Mode Questions
Hey gang,

I've been doing some test shots to compare video shot using frame mode and video shot interlaced.

I only see the difference on my computer. And sometimes it's a negative difference. If I shoot something with a lot of movement frame mode seems to get blurry sometimes.

On the television I can't tell a difference.. unless I'm in frame mode and there's a lot of movement. Kids running, that sort of movement.

So my question is, when would frame mode be a good option for shooting video? I'm not knocking it, just trying to figure out what people use it for and when.

Second, should I see a difference on a regular television? Maybe my television is too old or cheap because I just don't see the difference. I know televisions are interlaced. That's probably why frame mode isn't doing anything.



Ken Tanaka August 11th, 2004 02:13 PM

Re: Frame Mode Questions
"I only see the difference on my computer. And sometimes it's a negative difference. If I shoot something with a lot of movement frame mode seems to get blurry sometimes.

On the television I can't tell a difference.. unless I'm in frame mode and there's a lot of movement. Kids running, that sort of movement."

A television is where you -should- see a difference, as that medium is what video, and particularly "frame mode", is targeted towards. The view on a computer monitor is largely immaterial unless that's your planned primary venue.

"So my question is, when would frame mode be a good option for shooting video? I'm not knocking it, just trying to figure out what people use it for and when."
Use of frame mode (progressive scan) is largely a matter of aesthetic preference for most people. Fast motion will seem jittery because both scan fields are being recorded simultaneously. So there's less visual blurring that interlaced recording introduces.

We have hundreds of threads on frame mode so a Search will keep you entertained for quite a while.

Prech Marton August 12th, 2004 01:41 AM

Re: Re: Frame Mode Questions
And something more:

you LOSE resolution in frame mode with gl2!

Rob Lohman August 12th, 2004 03:11 AM

I couldn't see too much of a difference on my TV either Ken. The
difference is mainly in the motion signatures as you already found
Charlie. At what shutter speed where you shooting? I would not
advise you to go under 1/60th unless it is for that effect. Because
it will strobe more indeed.

Personally I loved the way it looked and how it was a tad softer
due to the resolution loss. But I guess that is personal.

Which mode is best for you depend on what you are trying to do
with it. If you are making a fictional dramatic piece most people
tend to agree that frame mode helps in this regard (gives it a
slightly more filmic look). However if you do home videos for the
family or broadcast stuff then I would stick with interlaced.

David Crompton August 29th, 2004 08:23 PM

Frame Mode footage exhibited on LCD screens
I have done a series of portraits shot in frame mode that will now be exhibited on LCD screens. In looking at the footage on these screens for the first time I am seeing that the edges are jagged and over all I am not happy with the look. Is there any way of dealing with this footage so these interlace issues look better or is the only choice (to get a decent picture) to view them on conventional TV monitors...

Help, please!

Miguel Lombana August 29th, 2004 08:29 PM

David what resolution are the LCD screens in question set at?

I edit with 2 LCD and preview / playback on 1 LCD TV of which all are fairly small (17" and 15") however I don't see what you're seeing. I'm wondering if this is a resolution or input issue?

David Crompton August 29th, 2004 09:05 PM

I am using an LG Flatron RU-20LA61 LCD TV. It's 20".

I am going through the S-Video input so I don't know that a resolution can be set, can it? I assumed it would be automatic, but maybe not?

David Kelly August 30th, 2004 12:00 AM

Think your problem could be the limited resolution of the LCD you have used. From what I gather it only has a resoltion of 640 x 480. This may be ok if your images are that otherwise the electronics can generate steps that are not there due to sizing changes. Can only suggest you try it on another better definition monitor.

Barry Goyette August 31st, 2004 01:34 PM


LCD's generally produce a sharper looking image than standard crt televisions...so it is possible that this is what you are seeing...you may be able to turn the sharpness down on the monitor, or your next step would be to decrease the sharpness of your footage...either in camera or by adjusting the sharpness, or adding some blur in your NLE.

The Gl2's default sharpness runs a little high for my taste...typically I have it turned down a couple of notches...As always, its best to test for your intended output so that your settings match (or work with) the intended output device.

Lars Siden September 3rd, 2004 05:09 AM


Also remember that a flat LCD screen is basically built from small-squares. A LCD screen is bult with ONE screensize in mind, a big screeen like 20" I'd is made for showing 1280x1024 or more like 1420x1280. All other sizes you try to show on the screen will be quantized thus producing a "ugly" picture... this is one of the the main reasons going DVI-I instead of analogue when you hook up a LCD screen to the computer.

More info on lcd/flats:


Best regards,


David Ennis September 6th, 2004 04:26 PM

Do Frame Mode and OIS degrade resolution?
Is it true that Frame mode and/or Opitical Image Stabliliztion operate at the expense of image resolution?


Ken Tanaka September 6th, 2004 04:32 PM

OIS: No.

Frame mode: to a degree.

Do a Search "frame mode" as this is a well-trodden subject here. Hundreds of threads and posts on it.

Tony Hall December 4th, 2004 01:50 PM

GL2 frame movie mode
I just TRIED to read an article at videosystems.com about progressive scanning and I'm not sure that I got the jist of it. I'm pretty sure I understand 24P, but I'm not sure that I know how the GL2's frame movie mode works.

First, here's my interpretation of the rather confusing explaination in the article that I just read. Since an NTSC camcorder can only store 240 lines per frame and CCD's have 480 lines, what happens when you use frame movie mode on a camera like the GL2 is: The camera takes every two sensor rows and combines them into one NTSC line. To reduce flicker in NTSC lines, they slightly overlap part of the RGB signal from line 1 with line 2 and so on. These 240 NTSC lines are then written to the 480 lines in field 1 and field 2.

If anyone has a clearer explaination, I'd love to hear it. Here's the article that I'm referring to: http://videosystems.com/images/archive/209vsshexp.pdf

The article says that using frame movie reduces vertical resolution to about 320 lines. I think I've also heard that 30P is much more difficult to convert to 24P than 60i.

Rob Lohman December 6th, 2004 03:33 AM

Both are hard to convert to 24p, however 60i will probably look
better indeed.

May I be so bold to ask why you care about the resolution (loss)?

Canon's frame mode has been discussed often and there once
was a great article explaining it in great detail on the internet,
but has since been removed unforunately.

Exact resolution "loss" is not really known, and may very well
vary depending on scene content etc. as well. I believe the
general consensus was that the loss is somewhere inbetween
25 - 50% range.

Personally I don't really care. It looks good enough for me or it
doesn't. I could care less how many actualy pixels I have left...

Mathieu Ghekiere December 6th, 2004 04:55 AM

Rob is right, the resolution loss is hardly noticable. It's only a little softer (you can see it in close-ups if you look very careful) but I heard deinterlacing in post also gives you resolution loss, so, if you don't want much work afterwards, just go for the Frame Mode.

Offcourse if you want to keep your options open, shoot in 60i and look then what you want to do.

Good luck.

Rob Lohman December 6th, 2004 05:12 AM

Most people seem to agree that the resolution loss is probably
more in post with de-interlacing software because of the pixel
shift technology etc. employed by Canon on the GL2/XL1 series
to get frame mode.

Tony Hall December 6th, 2004 12:40 PM

While resolution isn't everything, it's still important. I don't know how someone could argue that resolution doesn't matter.

Marco Leavitt December 6th, 2004 01:38 PM

I don't think that anyone is arguing that it flat out doesn't matter. It's just that people seem to obsess over it in a way that doesn't take into account the limitations of the delivery system on which the end product will eventually be viewed. That's my take anyway. There's sort of a law of diminishing returns. I believe that the new Optura series camcorders are supposed to be much sharper than the 3 chip prosumer cams of just a few years ago, but that isn't enough to make people abandon their PD150s, for example. As I've posted in here previously, frame mode may theoretically degrade vertical resolution 25 percent or so (or whatever the figures is supposed to be), but the perceived difference is nowhere near as much. In fact, on a typical television there's no difference whatsoever. The degradation is clearly visible on a genuine production monitor, but nobody is going to see that but you.

Tony Hall December 6th, 2004 01:46 PM

Oh I totally agree that resolution is over rated. I'd rather have a GL2 than the new Optura any day. What good is resolution if you have a camera that isn't very useful.

That said I want to record all the detail I can. The more information you record the more you can retain after post processing.

Mathieu Ghekiere December 7th, 2004 10:15 AM

I offcourse don't know what your end product is (movie, wedding, documentary) but I too think resolution isn't THAT important.
Okay, if you are going to a blowup, offcourse it's important.

But we can't forget DV is still 720x576 (or something, here in PAL land :-p).
I think controls, colors, motion, ... is much more important with a camera.
Maybe it is an cliché example, but look at 28 days later. They used the XL1 (isn't that cam from 1998??) and they did a blowup.
Ofcourse, they used big lenses, and professional lightning and spend many many dollars to preserve the quality in postproduction, but they still did a blowup.
And ofcourse you could see it wasn't 35mm quality, but I think many people didn't care, because colors were beautiful (many people who didn't know a lot about video and film, including me at that time, didn't even realise that!)
That's just because they were so intrigued by the story and how it was filmed. I think having a great steady dolly movement for example, looks much more professional than a handycam amateur with a 10 minute 35mm piece.

That said :-p, I wish you very much luck with your project, and I hope you can still shoot all the detail you want :-)

Bob Benkosky December 11th, 2004 04:02 PM

Well, I've found out this about Frame Mode.

Looks great "while" filming it, but adds too much smearing or strobing if you convert it to 24p. Maybe it's not meant to go to 24p, who knows.

Normal mode looks like garbage when filming, or more amatuer-like, but looks far better when put into 24p.

The thing I'm more confused about is what settings to use in Vegas for each way of shooting.

For example.

If you shoot everything normally, no FM or Widescreen, what's the optimal settings in Vegas?

NTSC DV - Field Order upper or lower, and when would you use progressive? Only if you shoot in Frame Mode or what? Then you can change the frame rate in the project settings which I believe just alters the way the footage looks in the window. Then what about the de-interlace method? None, Blend or interpolate?

I think I messed with these settings recently and rendered to quicktime and found massive artifacts in the name of interlacing. Usually I don't see the lines like that at all. I did select de-iterlace blend fields and it was shot 60i, not frame mode, at least I think it was. I was not filming most time so I forget.

All I know is that there are so many choices including if you do some post work in after effects as well.

Hope someone knows the best way to get the best footage because I'm all ears.

Mathieu Ghekiere December 11th, 2004 04:07 PM

Bob, Frame mode indeed is not intended to convert to 24P :-)
It's on his own already a method to look like (a little bit) 24P.
They always tell you: if you want to go to 24P, shoot 60i, and if you don't want lots of render work, go Frame Mode.
Well not everyone agrees offcourse, but you can find thousands of topics, so you'll better do a search if you're interested.

On the rest of your questions I don't really have many answers, because I don't really know, but maybe do a search.
9/10 somebody already asked such a question.

Good luck.

Guest December 21st, 2004 12:05 PM

I've only ever shot in frame mode, import it into FCP and roll. No rendering and it looks like film. I don't really know how it all works technically, but I know what my results are:


Jared Teter January 4th, 2005 03:36 PM

Frame mode or Interlaced?
Hi Everyone,
I have had my GL2 for about a year now and I love it and I have been visiting this site daily since I bought it, but for some reason I fear putting the camera in full frame mode because I use it exclusively for wildlife videography. I am mostly afraid of messing up a good shot because most of the time you only have a minute or two to get that awesome shot and there is no way to get it back if it looks crappy afterwards. I understand the difference between interlaced and full frame mode but what mode do you all recommend I keep the camera in. By the way I have gotten good results in the interlaced mode but maybe I could get even better results in full frame mode. Also, does either mode affect how well the camera does in low light situations? I appreciate all of your help. Thanks Jared

Frank Ladner January 4th, 2005 04:13 PM

Hi Jared!

As you may know, Frame Mode doesn't capture a full progressive frame, but creates a frame that supposedly loses 25% resolution.
The differences really show up in moving shots. If you were shooting, say, still life stuff, then interlaced would actually give you a -slightly- sharper image.

If you have the time and tools to process the footage in post, then I'd say to capture interlaced - that way you have more information and more options for later, like converting to 30p with some of the avialable deinterlace plugins(at best, you'll still be losing around 25% resolution - at least on non-static shots), or converting to 60p (which can be further stretched in Twixtor, ReTimer, etc...giving nice overcranked footage).

However, if you do not have the time and tools, you may want to just shoot in Frame Mode. It looks good. (Yeah, nowadays you can't just say something looks "good" because it's all subjective and what not. How about...it looks "different" and since it's non-interlaced, closer to film.) I have done a lot of tests comparing footage shot interlaced and in Frame Mode, and as far as resolution, I don't think anyone will notice. (Maybe on diagonal lines you'll see that Frame Mode is a bit more blocky.)

Plus, it's easier to get framegrabs for print, web, etc if it was shot in Frame Mode.

I don't think there is a difference between interlaced and frame mode when as far as low-light shooting is concerned.

Jared Teter January 4th, 2005 04:43 PM

Thanks Frank,
I do have some time to put into post, but I think I will keep the camera in interlaced mode in order to avoid resolution loss because often my shots are in full telephoto and I want to keep the resolution as high as possible in order to keep the detail to a max. Thanks again for your reply. Jared

Rob Lyons January 20th, 2005 10:39 PM

If you want a film look it's not all about 24p. I recently shot a snowboarding event on a gl2 in frame mode and my business partner shot on a dvx100a in 24p. With colour correcting I found that the gl2 footage had a "cinematic" look. It was the first time I filmed action sports in frame mode( I usually use it for dramatic and non sports shoots like music vids) and I was amazingly surprised at the results. I actually preferred the gl2 footage. It appears to have the 24 frame look but the colour was a little more saturated than the dvx100a so it had a sort of half video/ half film look that was very unique and pleasing to me. I don't think De-interlacing and frame mode should be compared too much as frame mode gives footage a motion effect that resembles 24fps. Technically it provides the same function and both have their advantages. De interlacing and converting your footage will not make your footage look identical to frame mode. Frame mode provides a unique aesthetic. As far as resolution loss goes I find it negligable. If you want to make gl2 footage look like film chances are your lookin at mini-35 and a few weeks rendering with magic bullet because colour and the amount of time lighting film are a major factor in why it looks so good, not just the frame rate. In my experience I find it's best to acheive as much of the film effect as you can before editing. If your not transferring your video to film try shooting frame mode with a good cstm preset and using a bit of filtering and colour correction in post. Less headache, less rendering and less artifacts and other issues that can arise from de interlacing and software frame rate changes. If you have a lot of time to spend on post or your transferring to film you probably want to shoot interlaced footage and make it look like film with software. This is only one mans opinion I don't really buy into numbers and stats concerning frame mode I just go with what my peepers tell me.

Dave Ferdinand January 21st, 2005 12:46 PM

I had heard a lot about frame mode on the XL1 and when I purchased my GL2 I found it to be really pleasing and VERY film-like.

I was actually surprised with such good results. Of course it still looks a bit like video, but with colour correcting in post I've been able to give it a strong film look.

I also did a test shooting in 60i and then de-interlacing in post but for some reason it wasn't so convincing, still had somewhat a video look. Granted, I only used Premiere for this, but still the difference seems quite evident.

You can also add a bit of motion blur to 30p to make it look more like 24p.

Donovan Kruger March 10th, 2005 08:56 PM

Canon GL-2 Frame Mode: Special FCP Settings?
Hello all,

If I am shooting in Frame-Mode on the Canon GL-2, is there a special non-interlaced setting I should be using in FCP for my Sequences?

The default "DV NTSC 48kHz" setting has a Lower (Even) Field Dominance setting. Is this going to mess things up with Frame Mode footage because it isn't exactly interlaced?

This thread is NOT intended to start a Frame-mode vs. Normal-mode debate. I am only wondering if any adjustments need to be made in Final Cut Pro when using Frame-mode.


Rob Lohman March 12th, 2005 08:54 AM

Yes, the lower (even) setting is incorrect. You need to select none
or progressive or something along those lines. I'm not on Mac/FCP,
so I don't know what the setting is called. But a setting with that
name (or alike) should be in that list or on that screen.

Dennis Parker March 14th, 2005 05:50 AM

Donovan, I posted your question over here too: xxxxx hopefully someone knows the answer to this....


moderator note: cross-posting is not allowed at DVinfo. Sorry, I removed your link. If you would like this thread moved to the Mac forum I'll be happy to do so, but why not give it a chance here first? Please see our policy here: http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/announcem...?s=&forumid=20

Thanks for your cooperation,


Dennis Parker March 14th, 2005 08:42 AM

<<<-- Originally posted by Dennis Parker : Donovan, I posted your question over here too: xxxxx hopefully someone knows the answer to this....


moderator note: cross-posting is not allowed at DVinfo. Sorry, I removed your link. If you would like this thread moved to the Mac forum I'll be happy to do so, but why not give it a chance here first? Please see our policy here: http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/announcem...?s=&forumid=20

Thanks for your cooperation,


No problem!

Brian Neuls April 5th, 2005 09:30 PM

GL2 interlaced or frame mode?
Hey, guys...another question here...I've been shooting interlaced and frame mode on my GL2 and I've been wondering what anyone's views are on how each one looks and what you think looks better with the projects you've been doing. I think what would be best would be to shoot interlaced and give it the film look in post with magic bullet. I don't know which will look better, though, as I don't have a lot of experience seeing it. Whatever, I just want to know what some of your ideas are and what you've found, what you shoot in. The colors seem stronger in interlaced and even maybe a little...should I say it?...softer? Anyway...let me know what any of you think, please...

Rob Lohman April 6th, 2005 04:31 AM

This is a very personal thing. In the end it all boils down to what
looks good for you and works with your workflow. Magic Bullet
takes a lot of time to process everything for example. I personally
like the frame modes on the Canon, but that is a very personal thing.

Guest April 6th, 2005 07:33 AM

frame mode for me all the way.

there seems to be such a noticeable difference between the two when looking at footage thru a monitor - im surprised that anyone would prefer the way interlaced looks when comparing the two on a tv monitor

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