canon XL-1 in low light : LUSENET : Shooting DV Films : One Thread

I am currently in pre-production and have been doing some test shoots with the Canon XL-1 which is supposed to be great in low light situations - but up unitl now we have not found that to be the case! Any ideas on how to open her up in low light situations?



-- angela hughey (, May 26, 1999


When I tested the Canon XL-1, I found that it had ASA equivalant of about 160-200 under Tungsten lights. This surprised me a bit and seemed slower than what I was expecting. Have you tried cranking the gain up? You can also open the shutter speed up to 1/30, 1/15 and (I think) 1/8 of a second. Each step should effectively double your camera's sensitivity. Hope this helps.

David Oulashian

-- David Oulashian (, May 26, 1999.


I just finished DP'ing principal photography on my DV feature "Click" which I shot with the XL-1. I shot some scenes with either a few candles or a single Zippo lighter with amazingly good results by opening up the shutter and f-stop to the max. I didn't find it necessary to bump the gain.

BTW check out my website for info about "Click" and using the XL-1, Premiere 5.1, and the Canopus DV-REX M-1 firewire card to make DV features at


Steven Kahler Admit One

-- Steven Kahler (, August 22, 1999.

Hello Angela, I too have witnesed (directed) the same troubles with the XL-1. My only advice to you (smalltime Canadian filmakker) is learn how to light digital to look like spend less in film stock, so spend more on lighting...a good recent grad from a filmschool should know how to light dv like its film...if he/she can't then the school they attend is not current/ no bs...if this is advice cannot accomodate you then shoot in Can

-- (, January 07, 2000.

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