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    capturing film transfers
    #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gargamel View Post
    My XH-A1s works regularly to capture old Super-8 films transfers.
    A perfect cam for me !
    (And maybe a MRC1K or a DN60 for its future...)
    Gargamel, I have inherited a bunch of old family movies, how do you accomplish a transfer with the A1? I would love to do it myself and save all the cash outlay to have someone else do it.

    Thanks,
    Jon


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    #12
    Senior Member maranfilms's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by payal_choksi View Post
    it's wonderful to know that this camera still find its existence in today's time. i really like its image quality. but now i want to move to tape-less format and am considering to sell this off. i have xh a1s. i am in dilemma whether to sell this off or get myself datavideo dn-60.

    this camera is absolutely wonderful in terms of picture quality and features. besides, i don't find any other camera currently which i feel worth buying. there are some good cameras but they come at a high price.

    i want to stick to my xh a1s but want to have a card recorder. if it can record on cards, there is no need to find another cam.
    There's some good options for you now, here's a few, datavideo dn-60, citidisc has a few flavors, I use the cfr model, you could also go from> component out>component to hdmi convertor> to hdmi recorder.

    and get uncompressed, analog equivalant of 4:2:2 color space. I think the convertors are around 50.00, then the black magic intensity is under 400.00 but it uses ssd cards.

    MY ONLY ADVICE*****STAY AWAY FROM FIRESTORE recorders*******


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    #13
    Junior Member Gargamel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noj View Post
    Gargamel, I have inherited a bunch of old family movies, how do you accomplish a transfer with the A1? I would love to do it myself and save all the cash outlay to have someone else do it.
    Hello Jon,

    I transfer my old Super8 silent films to burn some DVD for my children: those adults now are very happy to see the babies they were ;-)

    In my PAL world:
    - projection at 18 f/s,
    - with a 3W LED light in the projector,
    - through a 70mm lens (from a 16mm projector).

    Concerning the XH-A1s:
    - the cam works in SD 25f, 16:9, with ClearScan;
    - "No-preset", but KNEE = "Low", BLK = "Stretch";
    - AGC = "Off";
    - AWB = "Off" -> WHITE BAL = "PRE" -> WHITE BAL PRESET = "K" (5500 for my LED);
    - GAIN = "L", set to -3dB.

    The captures are recorded on a PC, through a FireWire connexion and the freeware VirtualDub.
    Bad and dubbed frames are deleted, then the clips are stabilized and cleaned using AviSynth scripts (based on those by "videoFred" and "johnmeyer", thanks to them); final projection rate is 25 f/s.

    Finally, that stuff feeds a basic NLE, which adds music etc and burns DVDs.

    If you want, you can see some extracts on Vimeo:
    http://vimeo.com/user3885557/videos
    Last edited by Gargamel; 02-14-2013 at 04:56 AM.


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    #14
    Senior Member Nektonic's Avatar
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    I love my XH-A1 (og model, not the "s"). Thing is I've also now got an Panasonic AC-130. I think it is time to sell my A1 as it is just getting old dealing with tape. I do event videos, mostly weddings right now. This past summer we had some really hot summer weather. I had about three weddings where I had issues with the heat. On one instance it was so hot it affected the CCD's on the A1 and I had like 6-7 dead pixels through major portions of the recordings. I had to go in and use a filter to repair the pixels. Everything worked out pretty well in the end (had long render times). I sent the camera in to Canon, got it fixed just fine. I mention this not to say that other cameras will not also have their image sensors affected by heat, but to illustrate just how freaking hot it was for me on some wedding shoots this last year. Some real scorchers.

    The thing is, with tape I've also had some extremely hot days this past summer where when I went to capture into my editing computer, the tapes had trouble on playback. It was mainly the tapes that I had shot either outdoor stuff with... post ceremony running around Chicago in the afternoon heat, or B-cam (HV20) up in the balcony in a hot church (hot air and humidity rising into the tall ceilings). Then the tapes from those days where I recorded stuff like the reception in a less hot environment, were just fine and dandy. So while it isn't specifically a scientific test, it is pretty apparent that tape can be affected by heat and humidity.

    I'm also moving towards using my GH2 more, and getting a GH3 soon, so I figure it makes sense to go fully tapeless. Otherwise I hate to sell my XH-A1.


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    #15
    Senior Member Allan Black's Avatar
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    Agreed ^ we run A1 and A1s cams, the A1 updated replacement strap support is still available.

    Last November I travelled on a cruise up the Amazon river in Brazil and shot tape on a HV40.

    The outside temp ranged between 30 and 38c. The humidity was the worst I've ever experienced, around 98% for the 11 days.
    We came back from 4hour jungle walks dripping wet.

    With 50years pro tape experience I know about rapid changes in operating temperature but even leaving the camera out on deck for an hour didn't help.

    I got the 'remove tape' and 'moisture detected' warnings more than once and one time the tape wouldn't roll on record at all.

    But in most 'normal' heat/moisture cases, leaving the camera in the operating area for an hour, out of the sun, should help. It's called acclimatizing the tape.
    Ampex used to recommend leaving their new rolls of 2" tape overnight in the control rooms, before use the next day.

    Also before you change tapes, thoroughly clean the top of the camera, to stop dust and grit dropping down into the open transport.
    On the HV20/30/40 cams run a damp cotton bud down that groove on the top of your cam. Then you'll see how dirty it is.

    That's one of the major causes of tape dropouts.

    Cheers.
    35yrs with our own a/v production company and studios.


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    #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by payal_choksi View Post
    it's wonderful to know that this camera still find its existence in today's time. i really like its image quality. but now i want to move to tape-less format and am considering to sell this off. i have xh a1s. i am in dilemma whether to sell this off or get myself datavideo dn-60.

    this camera is absolutely wonderful in terms of picture quality and features. besides, i don't find any other camera currently which i feel worth buying. there are some good cameras but they come at a high price.

    i want to stick to my xh a1s but want to have a card recorder. if it can record on cards, there is no need to find another cam.
    http://www.usedav.com/17668/canon-xh...d-hd-camcorder
    I guess this is about the going rate for a XHA1s

    I picked up a DN60 last year for my XHA1s and had no problems. You can find a DN60 at a great great price. I like my XHA1s - I have 2 of them, but they give me problems in low light situations and I work more in dark places. Better to sell off now that you can still get something for it. Cameras have come a long way in 4 years. But a tapeless recorder will buy you some time.

    I am currently in the process of replacing my cameras. I will probably include my DN60 with one of the XHA1s as a kit for sale
    Last edited by percoplus; 03-08-2013 at 09:17 PM. Reason: Updated information. The dropped frames were caused by tapes, not the camera


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    #17
    Senior Member Studio595's Avatar
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    Using my XH-A1 with a Focus FS-H200Pro tonight for a job. That one recorder added 5 years of life back into my cam. I love it to death.
    H.Peterson
    Director/DP for hire in LA county/San Diego.

    Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, Set of Nikon Primes (24mm, 35mm, 50mm 1.4/1.8, 55mm Macro, 85mm, and 135mm), Nikon 80-200 f/2.8, Tokina 11-16 f/2.8, Shoot35 Mattebox and Follow Focus, Cineroid Retina EVF, GoPro 3+ Black.


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    #18
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    I have an XH-A1s, and it still works well for me. I use it exclusively for short films. Feel free to check out my Vimeo link at the bottom of this post to get an idea of what it's capable of.

    The fact that it's tape-based doesn't bother me much. But then again, I'm not shooting on a daily or even weekly basis. If I was, capturing footage from the tape would likely get old fast. That's really the cam's only major downfall, and it again, it's really just a matter of putting a little extra effort into getting the footage onto your PC. I mean, you have to review all of your footage anyway, right? Might as well do it while you're capturing.

    Image quality is great, especially if you plan on exhibiting your work mostly online. If you plan on projecting in film festivals it's great too. Theatrically released feature length films have been shot with the XHA1 (Crank 2, The Signal, several others). If you know how to use it, it's got what it takes.

    Looks like you can find them used for around 1500 bucks these days. That's a great deal. I wouldn't buy one used without handling it and testing it out, though. Unlike many other tape based prsumer cams, there's no way to track how many hours have been put onto an XHA1.

    Hope this helps.

    http://vimeo.com/channels/jasonhabel


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    #19
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    I still own two XHA1s's that have served me pretty well, but I am ready for a step up. Actually want to shoot stills and more cinematic style video, so I am considering a 5D mk III DSLR. Maybe sell the camcorders to pay for it, and then get a newer camcorder. I know the DSLR is not exactly a step up, but a lateral into something totally different.

    Depending on the type of shoots you do, the XHA1 is still very capable. The last of the great tape-based cameras. I have always liked the look, but low light has been a slight problem and I'm doing more work in the dark. You should keep it and invest in a DN-60, and use tape for backup. However, if you have the means, you should sell it off while you can still get something for it. And I will make two XHA1s's available.
    Last edited by percoplus; 03-08-2013 at 09:10 PM. Reason: omission


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    #20
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    I own one and will probably buy two more now that you can find them in the $1k range. I'm primarily running mine through a NewTek Tricaster via Component Out to a BM Analog to SDI converter. The Tricaster accepts component in but the SDI is a better connection when doing chromakey in the Tricaster. The XH-G1 would be better for my purposes because it has HD-SDI out but they're hard to find and tend to be far more expensive.

    The good news is since I'm bypassing tape altogether, the number of hours on the heads is irrelevant. While it would be nice to have the ability to record to SD cards, the 'modern' equivalent would cost $5,000 or so.


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