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which cam is better XL2 or DVX100 for film-look ?


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#1 Danielito

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Posted 27 July 2006 - 04:00 AM

Hi, I have decided now to go for the XL2 or the DVX100B camera for my first film, as there is much more to buy for getting a film look (m2 adapter, mattebox, prime lenses, light, and what not).

So now I just would like to have some advises for which camera I should go for. The DVX100B is supposed to be a good camera as many people work with it. But it has just a poor 10x zoom and the lens is not changable.

The XL2 has a 20x zoom what I real like but I heard it does not really shoot 24p. I heard it shoots on 60i and simulates 24p only. And is the shutter speed as good as the one from DVX100B? Does the cam also have the features to change the gamma curves as the DVX100B?

Thanks a lot for your help!

Danielito
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#2 Paul Wizikowski

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Posted 27 July 2006 - 04:07 PM

You'll probably get more specific help from others regarding technical info but here's how I feel. I'd go with the DVX for its 24P capability, for its viewfinder, and the ability to add a handy follow focus. That and the default lens that comes with the XL2 and its infinite turning focus ring is a pain in the butt. The DVX has earned a lot of praise since its debut and is seemingly used everywhere.

I can't say enough about the M2 adapter, its amazing.

Another thing to consider is some good film effects in post. i.e. "Magic Bullet" or "Nattress Film Effects".
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#3 Danielito

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 03:41 AM

You'll probably get more specific help from others regarding technical info but here's how I feel. I'd go with the DVX for its 24P capability, for its viewfinder, and the ability to add a handy follow focus. That and the default lens that comes with the XL2 and its infinite turning focus ring is a pain in the butt. The DVX has earned a lot of praise since its debut and is seemingly used everywhere.

I can't say enough about the M2 adapter, its amazing.

Another thing to consider is some good film effects in post. i.e. "Magic Bullet" or "Nattress Film Effects".



thanks for the advise Paul, what about the M2 adapter. do I need to buy it after I have buyed the camera or is the m2 adapter a universal size which I can use at any cams ?
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#4 Brian Wells

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 09:05 AM

Truth is you probably won't be satisfied with the images from any camera without years of cinematography experience. At least that's how I feel about my own work. As much as I love the DVX100A, which is the camera I own and prefer over the XL2... I have to say that "28 Days Later" (shot on the original XL-1S) still looks much better than anything I've shot on my newer camera. Guess it all has to do with the experience and talent of the person behind the lens...
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#5 Josh Bass

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 09:13 AM

Dude,

I own an XL2, and have used the DVX. Regardless of HOW it gets its 24fps, it looks the same on both. The big big differences I see between the two are that the DVX will let you push the image farther, to more extremes, in terms of color saturation and contrast. You can make some really ugly stuff. Is this a good thing? Up to you. The XL2 limits how crazy you can get with your "looks", but shouldn't you do that stuff in post anyway? I have the 16x manual lens, and it's very sweet.

The XL2 also has real widescreen.

The iris dial/switch is kinda lame, and the XLR inputs don't have a line in option (you'll have to use the RCAs). Other than that. It's pretty fu**ing nice. Don't believe the silly things you hear. . .try one and see.

I'm sure Ash Greyson will chime in with his thoughts.

PS. I believe 28 days was shot on an XL1, a PAL one. Had a ton of post work done to it.

Edited by Josh Bass, 28 July 2006 - 09:13 AM.

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#6 Josh Bass

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 09:23 AM

Alright, it won't let me edit again.

Here's the other stuff I wanted to add.

Yes, it has knee and black settings you can adjust, as well as separate settings for R,G,B; color saturation, color matrix, gamma settings, etc.

I have the 16x manual lens, and it's very sweet. There's no reason you couldn't add a follow focus to it. I guess the stock lens, yeah, not so much.

The XL2 also has real widescreen.

It does this weird thing, with some of the gamma/black settings, where really underexposed areas of the picture, instead of going black, will become kind of blue/grey and desaturated. It's a lot of dynamic range at the expense of color saturation. You can eliminate this by not having way underexposed areas, or by settings the blacks to "press". I rented one over a weekend before I bought.
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#7 Brian Wells

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 09:32 AM

I believe 28 days was shot on an XL1, a PAL one. Had a ton of post work done to it.

Yeah, mainly it's just lit really well. That's why it looks so good.
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#8 Josh Bass

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 09:35 AM

But in addition, wasn't there a TON of post work? I mean, that wasn't by any means the raw footage look on screen, right? Also, some of it was film, yes? I know the end was, but I thought maybe I heard the night scenes, or some of them, were as well.
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#9 Paul Wizikowski

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 10:24 AM

thanks for the advise Paul, what about the M2 adapter. do I need to buy it after I have buyed the camera or is the m2 adapter a universal size which I can use at any cams ?



Two things about the M2. The website for it has a lot of good information it can just be a little confusing if you don't know what your looking for. The first thing is there is a different adapter for different camera's (the website lists which adapters work for which camera. And secondly you will need to know what kind of lenses you will use with it as it has an adapeter for every different type of lens whether its Canon SLR, Nikon SLR, 35mm, etc. There is no one-size fits all adapter so in knowing what you will use you can limit which ones you buy. Also just be ready to view the image on the shoot upside down. The M2 sends the image to the camera upside down so you will need a workaround. i.e. a monitor mounted to the camera upside down.
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#10 Rik Andino

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 10:59 AM

The XL2 has a 20x zoom what I real like but I heard it does not really shoot 24p.
I heard it shoots on 60i and simulates 24p only.
And is the shutter speed as good as the one from DVX100B?
Does the cam also have the features to change the gamma curves as the DVX100B?

Danielito


You've gotten many really bad misconceptions about the XL2

1) it does shoot 24p and has a real progressive chip just like the DVX100a,b or whatever
These are the only two MiniDV cameras that do 24p...
You might have confused the XL2 for the XL-H1 which only shoots in 1080i and no progressive format.

2) The shutter speed is as good and better than the DVX100a, you can go from 1/24 to 1/15,000

3)And yes you can adjust the gamma curves however the DVX100 has better gamma controls
Although I would probably do this in post with better software than both cameras have.

If you want to use a 20x zoom lens the XL2 is your best choice
If you're shooting with an M2 adapter or another of those film lens add-ons
Then perhaps you don't need to worry about which camera...
You can mount any type of lens onto that adapter.

Both of these cameras yeild pretty much the same image...
So I wouldn't break my neckl trying to figure out which one is better they're pretty much the same.

However I don't know why you don't get a newer HDV camera
Since MiniDV isn't as requested now as it used to be (although still useful).

Eitherways
Good Luck
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#11 Danielito

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Posted 29 July 2006 - 01:27 PM

Alright, it won't let me edit again.

Here's the other stuff I wanted to add.

Yes, it has knee and black settings you can adjust, as well as separate settings for R,G,B; color saturation, color matrix, gamma settings, etc.

I have the 16x manual lens, and it's very sweet. There's no reason you couldn't add a follow focus to it. I guess the stock lens, yeah, not so much.

The XL2 also has real widescreen.

It does this weird thing, with some of the gamma/black settings, where really underexposed areas of the picture, instead of going black, will become kind of blue/grey and desaturated. It's a lot of dynamic range at the expense of color saturation. You can eliminate this by not having way underexposed areas, or by settings the blacks to "press". I rented one over a weekend before I bought.


hi Josh

what about the resolution of xl2 on 24p mode. does it have 800.000 lines in progressive 24p or is it lower ? The DVX has only 470.000 lines which is pretty low and I guess on progressive it does have even less.. anybody nows about that ? many thanks

You've gotten many really bad misconceptions about the XL2

1) it does shoot 24p and has a real progressive chip just like the DVX100a,b or whatever
These are the only two MiniDV cameras that do 24p...
You might have confused the XL2 for the XL-H1 which only shoots in 1080i and no progressive format.

2) The shutter speed is as good and better than the DVX100a, you can go from 1/24 to 1/15,000

3)And yes you can adjust the gamma curves however the DVX100 has better gamma controls
Although I would probably do this in post with better software than both cameras have.

If you want to use a 20x zoom lens the XL2 is your best choice
If you're shooting with an M2 adapter or another of those film lens add-ons
Then perhaps you don't need to worry about which camera...
You can mount any type of lens onto that adapter.

Both of these cameras yeild pretty much the same image...
So I wouldn't break my neckl trying to figure out which one is better they're pretty much the same.

However I don't know why you don't get a newer HDV camera
Since MiniDV isn't as requested now as it used to be (although still useful).

Eitherways
Good Luck



Yo! I don't get HDV as it's too expensive.. HVX200, HD100 or ZE1 costs the double of a DVX100. and a sony fx1 I have rent it for a day and it's more for homevideo I guess.. or do you know any other HDV for a more reasonable price ?

You'll probably get more specific help from others regarding technical info but here's how I feel. I'd go with the DVX for its 24P capability, for its viewfinder, and the ability to add a handy follow focus. That and the default lens that comes with the XL2 and its infinite turning focus ring is a pain in the butt. The DVX has earned a lot of praise since its debut and is seemingly used everywhere.

I can't say enough about the M2 adapter, its amazing.

Another thing to consider is some good film effects in post. i.e. "Magic Bullet" or "Nattress Film Effects".


thanks for info!
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#12 Matt Workman

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Posted 30 July 2006 - 07:01 PM

Was the DVX100 out when they shot 28 Days Later?

I would agree that the DVX100a/b has a better look than the XL2. I have shot with both and the XL2 is a little cumbersome and I like the DVX lens over the XL2, even their manual version.

The XL2 is marketed heavily for sports/events/weddings etc. I think Panasonic is doing a better job for the indie film market. Also the XL2+M2 is huge, almost as bad as the JVC.

The M2 is a great tool but if I had the choice between a real grip/electric package and a lens adapter I would go with the grip/electric.

I see a lot of M2 footage that is basically "not lit" and having shallow depth of field doesn't make up for that.
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#13 Josh Bass

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Posted 30 July 2006 - 08:07 PM

Well, I still disagree.


I guess it's what type of (sigh) film look you're going for. If you want crazy contrasty ultra extreme looks, then yes, the DVX can do that better (but I again say this is better to do in post). If you want something more naturalistic, I say XL2.

As for resolution in progressive vs interlaced, I don't know for sure and don't wanna talk out of my ass. I do know the widescreen has a higher res than the full screen, though.

It's a nice piece of camera ass, I tell ya.

They say (and they might be right) that the DVX is nicer looking out of the box, and the XL2 takes more time to learn, if you want to get a nice image out it. For instance, you pull out your DVX, plug it in, switch it to one of the scene files, and you'll probably have something nice looking. With the XL2, you have to first activate a custom preset, and then tweak the preset away from the default settings, which yield a flat, low contrast, muted color kind of image.

But really, we can just bitch at each other all day here. So that's my piece.
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#14 David Sweetman

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Posted 30 July 2006 - 09:21 PM

I don't dig the DVX much. That camera and I have never really gotten along. I swear next time I use it I'm not going to shoot in 24p. Then blokes at my school will say, "why didn't you shoot in 24p?" and I'll say, "because there's an option not to."

I'd say go with the xl2 because of the extra widescreen resolution - it packs extra resolution onto the sides of the image instead of removing image information from the top and bottom. I've never used the XL2 myself, but I like the XL1 a lot. I do have to mention that I can't stand 28 Days Later...
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#15 Danielito

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Posted 31 July 2006 - 04:03 AM

first many thanks about all your posts.

When I saw 28 days later, I was in Argentina. People there might not be as spoiled watching a film as people might be in other countries. But before I went inside the theater, I saw the people coming out which saw the show before and they had really coincided faces.. after I saw the film I had to add.. that was indeed a better film as a lot of the existing Hollywood crap . - and it was shot with a Canon XL1s.

So:

the DVX has better crazy stuff to do, concerning the image:

the Xl2 does 16:9 better what I heard images are absolutely sharp.

If I can do the film look stuff in post with a good program, so I guess xl2 is the good choice right?

Anybody knows good software for that ?
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#16 Matt Workman

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Posted 31 July 2006 - 09:29 PM

Magic Bullet 2.1 is great and Digital Film Suite 55mm etc. But I'd say learn real color correcting in FCP or Avid first. Use the waveform, rgb parade etc. Just messing with plug-ins is almost counter productive in the long run.

"Film-look" to me means good lighting. Even a Hi-8 60i film looks great if it was light like it were film. I have footage to proove it. :P If you go DVX or XL2 you'll be fine if you light it well.
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#17 Rik Andino

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Posted 31 July 2006 - 10:36 PM

So:

the DVX has better crazy stuff to do, concerning the image:

the Xl2 does 16:9 better what I heard images are absolutely sharp.

If I can do the film look stuff in post with a good program, so I guess xl2 is the good choice right?

Anybody knows good software for that ?


I think you're missing the point...
Both Cameras are really good...and pretty much the same
So whichever one you choose you'll have a good DV camera.

The great images will not be made by the camera ultimately...
But actually by you--it's your skill that matters.
Just like driving a car...
Doesn't matter if you have a ferrari if you can't drive well you'll still suck...

Both cameras do 24p, 30p and 60i shooting...
And they do it well.

Both cameras have gamma controls, and knee and black level adjustment...
Which means you can control the image in-camera...
However like many have stated it's better to control the image in post...
But if you choose to control the image in-camera the DVX100b is slightly better for that...
However it's just a slight improvement not much to write home about.

Both cameras do a version of 16x9--widescreen shooting
The XL2 inches pass the DVX100b in this category...
But again it's only a slight improvement...nothing to write home about (yadda yadd)...

Both cameras have very decent sound systems...
The DVX100 allows for a mix between on camera mic and outside sources
But the XL2 has more controls for audio plug-ins
However they're pretty much the same.

Both cameras have a pretty decent lens
However the XL2's lens does win on the long side...
And there are more lens options for the XL2 but this will cost you $$.

Finally both cameras differ in their design and ergonomics...
So I would suggest you test run both cameras to see which design best fits you..
Their design is the biggest difference between cameras...
So to effectively judge which camera is the best for you
You got to see which one feels good to your hands
And which controls you're more comfortable with...and which menu is more user-friendly to you...

Anyways like I mentioned before your skill will be the deciding factor on how good your image are
So pick the camera that best suits your needs and use it well.


Good Luck
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#18 Chris Keth

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Posted 31 July 2006 - 11:16 PM

"Film-look" to me means good lighting. Even a Hi-8 60i film looks great if it was light like it were film. I have footage to proove it. :P If you go DVX or XL2 you'll be fine if you light it well.


THANK YOU!!!

We really need to put this quote at the top of the "Video Only" forum. :D
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#19 Robert Hughes

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Posted 01 August 2006 - 08:13 PM

"Film-look" to me means good lighting.

We really need to put this quote at the top of the "Video Only" forum.

:huh: Huh?
That's like saying; Mercedes showroom cars are spotless, so my old car will have that "new Mercedes" look if I wash it.
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