Equipment - tools of the trade: January 2006 Archives

Adam Wilt reviews four HDV camcorders on (registration required): the Canon XL H1, JVC GY-HD100U, Panasonic AG-HVX200, and the Sony HVR-Z1U:

The Canon XL H1 was the resolution champ amongst the 1/3" cameras, with a crisper, visibly more detailed image than its compatriots. To my eye it showed slightly more noise than the HVX200, with the noise being a fine-grained luma noise compared to the HVX200's slightly softer, more chroma-oriented noise. I preferred the Canon's noise signature as being less video-like, but Barry preferred the HVX's noise for exactly the same reason--you'll want to judge for yourself. In any case, there was potential to reduce the visible noise in the Canon's image that we didn't explore; we'll have to do that in a later test.

The Canon clipped highlights a bit more harshly than the HVX did; it was comparable to the Sony as best I remember. Again, had we set the Canon's knee to "low", we might have eked out a small increment in usable highlight detail; how much so I can't say. Something else to test on another day...

Just when I was about to spend $400 to get the MicroTrack 24/96 despite its many bugs (proprietary lithium-ion battery; 30V phantom power), Roland comes to the rescue with a new model also priced at $400: the Edirol R-09. The various blogs have picked up on it already, so read previews at and Transom.

On first glance it seems ideal: runs on 2 x AA batteries (NiMH ok), uses SD memory cards up to 2 gig, can record 24 bit x 48khz, and can use external mics or line-in as well as its own built-in stereo electrets.

Info: Location sound

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Via Sam Longoria's great blog is a link to Ken Stone's White Paper on Location Sound. This is absolutely necessary reading for all budding filmmakers - documentary or otherwise. While you're on Ken's site, check out his extensive list of articles and reviews on Final Cut Pro and other toys.

This link is making the blog rounds:

Fascinating experiments with a large format camera and a Canon LIDE scanner grafted onto each other. The relatively slow movement of the inexpensive scanner (110 second scans) produces wonderful temporal and motion distortion. His site has gotten hammered because of its popularity, so visit one of the links given on his page.

Link: DVEStore Theatre

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The DVEStore has a product review section that is quite unique -- all of the reviews are QuickTime movies. This of course makes sense since we're talking about video equipment.

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This page is a archive of entries in the Equipment - tools of the trade category from January 2006.

Equipment - tools of the trade: December 2005 is the previous archive.

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