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XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?

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Clint Fleckenstein
XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 4, 2006 at 8:06:10 pm

Hi! I'll apologize in advance for cross-posting this from the HDV forum. We're considering moving into HDV to supplement our normal SD workflow. One absolute will be adding another G5 (quad, yay! :-) with the Final Cut Studio suite and a Decklink HD or Aja card. We're leaning toward the XL-H1 since we shoot exclusively on Canon equipment now. But I'm tentative because of a few things.

First, there's the issue of long GOPs and camera movement. I've been scouring the net all day, and haven't really found a lot of definitive information on this. For simple pans and zooms, the type you'd perform in corporate and educational material mostly, have any of you experienced problems? Is it just a bunch of negative hype?

Second, there's workflow. Long GOPs and editing...do I edit native in FCP, or transcode? What are the results? I work heavily in After Effects, so I can't imagine working in MPEG would turn out very well. But transcoding involves time and hard drive space. One's expensive, the other not so much.

Third, I've found only one deck (Sony HVR-M10) available for playback. And everything I read says it's basically the Z1 guts in a little black box for not much less money. So maybe I just skip the idea of a dedicated VTR and play out of the camera, at least until there's a Firestore solution.

On a side note, do any of you XL-H1 users out there capture your footage through its SDI output? Or doesn't it upconvert there, only passing through live video?

Like I said, I've been Googling and foruming and reading my tail off today. Many of the posts and articles I've found are from 2004. Certainly by now someone's come up with a definitive answer to some of these questions. So it's time to beseech my fellow Cowmunity members to share your experiences with the rest of us. If nothing else, some up-to-date answers are better than stale ones.

Thanks in advance!
Clint F
Bismarck, ND


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Don Greening
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 4, 2006 at 8:32:39 pm

Clint,

Go to http://www.dv.com and watch Adam Wilt's webcast from DV Expo East 2005 entitled: Maximizing Success with DV Cameras. Among other things he talks at length about the way HDV cams compress to tape using MPEG2 and 15 frame GOPS, as well as the pitfalls associated with this format. If you're consideriing the Canon XL-H1 Adam Wilt's webcast is a must see. Also keep in mind that the Canon XL-H1 doesn't have a true progressive scan mode, but rather an "F" mode, and this is something that Final Cut Pro can't deal with at the moment. Of course, even HDV shot @60i looks better than DV shot @60i, provided you change the way you shoot. Adam Wilt explains this, too.

- Don


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Bob Buruchian
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 6, 2006 at 4:27:24 am

We just bought two of the H1's and so far we love the camera, our workflow is to shoot in HDV and edit in FCP in the DVC pro HD 100 format 1080i . It looks great. Do not edit in HDV unless you need to.

We have aja kona 2's but the aja LHe card has all the right connectivity for you to get your HDV camera masters in if your using the sony m10u which works very well just not in 24f.

good luck

Bob@ playimage Inc.

Playimage Inc. / FCP 4.5 HD


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nvelis
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 13, 2006 at 4:51:54 am

Hi, I'm editing some footage on Saturday. I have not had a chance to even touch the XL H1 and I'm trying to find out the correct capture/sequence settings for 30F. Can Final Cut handle 30F HD video from the XL H1?

Thanks,



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Don Greening
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 13, 2006 at 6:46:40 am

[nvelis] "Can Final Cut handle 30F HD video from the XL H1?"

Not yet. You need to shoot in 60i for editing in FCP. If you've already shot your footage in 30F I'm at a loss as to what to suggest other than connect the XL H1 to another camera/deck and do a straight transfer using a codec that's already supported by FCP.

- Don



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nvelis
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 13, 2006 at 3:05:26 pm

Hi, Thanks. We are shooting this afternoon so still time to change format. As far as the workflow for 60i, according to a previous post.

"our workflow is to shoot in HDV and edit in FCP in the DVC pro HD 100 format 1080i "

I'm looking through the capture presets and my options are

DVCPRO HD 1080i50
DVCPRO HD 1080i60

any suggestions on which to use?

Thanks,
Neobe



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Don Greening
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 13, 2006 at 11:42:48 pm

DVCPRO HD 1080i50 is for PAL format video and DVCPRO HD 1080i60 is for NTSC video. So, since you live in a NTSC country you'll probably want to use the second option you mentioned.

- Don


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Peter Ralph
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 14, 2006 at 7:30:02 pm

Don - is zooming/panning/cropping the H1 HDV footage in an SD FCP timeline viable? caveats?

There are plans at dvxuser.com to capture and edit their sony/canon/pana/jvc shootout footage on an as-shipped G5.


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Don Greening
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 15, 2006 at 1:37:36 am

[Peter Ralph] "is zooming/panning/cropping the H1 HDV footage in an SD FCP timeline viable? caveats?
"


Sorry, Peter but I don't know. I don't own an XL-H1. But I do read a lot. The cameras that I do own are all standard def. I've decided to hold off on any HD buying decisions for at least another year ro so.

- Don



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Peter Ralph
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 15, 2006 at 4:04:26 pm

thanks Don - I have read conflicting opinions on this issue - no comaprison reviews so far dealing with workflow issues.


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nvelis
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 17, 2006 at 4:16:44 pm

Hi I was able to capture 30F with Final Cut Pro using capture now and edit the footage in a 1080i60 sequence. I was also able to capture 24F using DVXDV and then convert it to Quicktime and use that in a 1080i60 sequence.

The only problem so far is that it needs to render everything. Bringing the clips into the sequence requires a lot of rendering as does just about any change to the clips. Anyone have any ideas on workarounds? The sequence settings do match the capture settings.

Thanks,
Neobe



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Donald Berube
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Sep 10, 2006 at 1:47:05 am

[REPLY Dated September 9, 2006]
FCP v5.1 does not yet natively support the XL H1 in 24F Mode...

This is all changing rapidly because just this week during the IBC Expo in Amsterdam, Apple annouced that FCP version 5.1.2 is coming soon with native 24F support. FCP v5.1.2 will fully support capture and device control (with TimeCode), 24F editing and 24F output over firewire to the XL H1 (in addition to the current native support of 60i Mode).

Release date will most likely be October. This will most likely be a free update - only available to FCP5.1 owners. If v5.1 is installed on your Mac, you'll simply run the software update app from the Apple menu to automatically update FCP 5.1 (or 5.1.1) to 5.1.2. This, of course, when the update is officially released - sometime shortly - in October.

Expect to see more news made available shortly from Canon and Apple.

- don
http://noisybrain.com
http://www.bosfcpug.org
http://fcpugnetwork.org


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Aviator
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Jan 29, 2006 at 8:09:44 pm

Hi All,

I've been shooting Beta-SP for 10 years and recently swithched to DVCam (Ikegami HL DV-5).

I'm getting requests to shoot in HD and took the Sony HD Workshop on the 730. But, as that camera is out of my $ range I've been considering the Canon XL H1. I've checked it out on line and shot a bit with it at a recent demo.

A couple of questions: I see that it is swithable to 4:3 SD. Does that mean that it will record that 4:3 SD on tape or does it output that signal...or both? Also, I've noticed that the Sony Z1 records HDV, DV and DVCam. Does the H1 record in DVCam as well?

I'm looking for a transitional camera package that will allow me to service existing clients in 4:3 SD and be able to move to HDV as needed.

I just stumbled onto the Cow as I was checking out H1 references on Google and it sounds like you folks know the camera.

Thanks in advance!


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Don Greening
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Feb 1, 2006 at 5:05:34 am

[Aviator] "Does that mean that it will record that 4:3 SD on tape or does it output that signal...or both?"

It's both. When you switch to 4:3 the camera will disable the appropriate no. of pixels right on the CCD's to record the full screen aspect ratio.

[Aviator] "Does the H1 record in DVCam as well?"

The Canon XL-H1 doesn't record DV CAM, which runs at a faster tape speed but the image is the same.

- Don



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Miles Johnston
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Dec 10, 2008 at 10:56:40 pm

Very disappointed in the default colorimetry setups. Very dull. Life less.
Could not believe it is mute when using the SD/HD SDI function. Still cant!

Access to setups and pluggery all very good. I have an XL-1 so it was natural to get the HD version. I also have a small JVC Hard Disc camera, and its shaky as hell, and having to haul a PC along to dump down to Hard Drive, shooting and keeping content is a major pain, especially now with airline surcharges on extra weight are so high.
The DVD dump feature, with compressed video is anothger damn box to bring with you.
So I shoot on 1440 mode, and dump to miniDV. So until the Hard Drive cameras can offer a sensible way of getting the media off them, Canons decision to stay with tape is sound.
What is the point of having to run around with PCs and MACs, when a small tape is easy to store/is light and easy to get in different countries, and locations.
having lost an SD card due to slight moisture and sweaty fingers in hot weather, I have very little trust in SD/Solid state storage media.
Love the camera.

Frustrated with getting 4 track audio off it to FCP.



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Todd Terry
Re: XL-H1 users...share your experiences please?
on Dec 10, 2008 at 11:15:25 pm

[Miles Johnston] "Love the camera."

I agree.

I could go on and on about the XLH1, but I have already done so many times on the COW, other forums, magazine articles, etc.

I'm an old Sony guy, but it's simply my favorite camera of any that I have bought or used throughout the years... from a little Hi8 up to 35mm film.

I am a little surprised that you can't pump out analog audio along with the HD-SDI signal... we just don't simply use the camera that way so I've never had need to test that, but I will.

The factory default setting is terrible, but the incredible number of tweakable parameters allow for painting in an absolutely stunning picture. We have a number of presets that emulate my favorite filmstocks and it works like a charm.

I used to shoot a lot of 35mm film for television commercials, but since getting an XLH1 right when they first came out and marrying it with a P+S Technik converter and Leitz-Panavision primes, I haven't even cracked the cases on any of my film cameras... and have even sold off most of the 16mm gear. I've kept the 35mm stuff, but as I said, I honestly never use it.

Anxious to see what Canon has up its sleeve next...


T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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