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Thread: bad quality with my canon, help

  1. #1

    Default bad quality with my canon, help

    im new to these forums and im in need of assistance. i recently received a canon vixia hfs10 Canon VIXIA HF S10 Dual Flash Memory High Definition Camcorder
    for christmas. The picture is rather good but im running into an issue that bothers the crap out of me:
    the black levels are pretty bad, it gets pretty grainy. so i thought ill just film during the day. Well look of this clip i uploaded to show yall. i really dislike how the plants have this like grainy color on them. i was told Hd camcorders have bad color levels, but is there anything i can do to possible fix this? I am going to be filming a post apocalyptic movie and so i will have alot of shots that in over cast and will have darker colors. I want my hd to look crisp.

    please help,

    theres the link, it might not be done converting depending on the time you look. thanks!

  2. #2


    The only advice I can give you is to get use to the manual settings of the camera. See how changing the frame rate changes the image etc. and shood in good light.

    Good luck with your movie.

  3. #3


    Thanks I'll take some time to experiment with that. Could it possibly be the converting process? The camera basically is made for windows so i installed boot camp to get the files from the camera through windows. i think bought iSkysoft video converter for mac to convert the files into a Hd quicktime movie format. Would down sizing the movie resolutions do that? i think my camera films at a three something thousand x i think 1280. the biggest resolution the converter can do is 1920x1080. should i find a way on the camera to film at a smaller size so the converter doesnt have to downsize the resolution?

  4. #4


    When ever you convert a file you will loose some quality. Depending on the codec and the settings you may not even notice this loss for one or two conversions. It's probably best, if you can edit full HD, choose the same resolution that your camera recorded in. I'm not familiar enough with your camera to know what settings it has.

    In HD 1280x720p is a common size or 1920x1080 is another one. As this last one is the best commercial TV's will show there is no point in trying to aim for the sky. It's also best to use an .avi non compressed format if you can this should make it better for quality loss.

    I am not an expert on this type of thing especially as you mentioned using a Mac. It's all just stuff I've picked up on the way.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    East Riding of Yorkshire


    Perhaps the blacks are being crushed by the software you're using to transcode the mts files. Try a few different ones, and see if that is the cause.

    Also, on the camcorder, set the colour settings to -1 contrast. This will expand the dynamic range, meaning that there will be more data in dark and light areas. If it looks too flat for a particular shot, just use a levels filter when you're editing it to give it some punch.

    I also recommend that you shoot in a progressive mode, which would provide a better picture resolution, and give a lovely film-like motion to your footage. If you're using a PAL camcorder, it is a rather simple process, requiring no pulldown removal etc. However, if you're shooting on an NTSC (the format America uses) camcorder, and want to use 24pf, then you'll need to do some converting to remove the pulldown (lots of info can be found on this subject on the web).

    My last suggestion is that you use manual exposure to get the brightness of the scene right. For example, you could be filming a scene where the top two thirds are bright sky, and the camera adjusts the exposure so that your subject (say, a person leaning on a fence) is far too dark. You'd have to use manual exposure to make sure that the subject was bright enough.

    Oh, and one VERY last suggestion make sure that you don't use a super high shutter speed. Your footage shouldn't have any grain in it, considering it's broad daylight.

  6. #6


    Sorry - but you, like most of us - have a consumer grade toy - not a proper camera.

    If you really want to get into making films you have the wrong camera. That is for parties and holidays.

    You also appear to know bugger all about bugger all when it comes to film making. Read books not camera manuals if you are serious.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    East Riding of Yorkshire


    Quote Originally Posted by vertovian View Post
    If you really want to get into making films you have the wrong camera.

    Sorry, but this is rather a large contradiction considering what you said in another thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by vertovian View Post
    Good films are not made by cameras.

    Just thought I'd point that out.

  8. #8


    thanks for all the replies, ill try all of that.

    and yes i know you dont need a good camera to make a good movie, but i would still like a camera that is "HD" to look HD :3

    seriously thanks for all the input, im very appreciative.

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