Canon GL2 MiniDV 3CCD Camcorder

BH #RBCGL2 • MFR #7920A003AA
Key Features
  • Refurbished Products Have a 90-Day B&H Refurbished Warranty
  • Standard Definition 480i Recording
  • 1/4" 3CCD Sensor
  • Canon L-Series 20x Zoom
Setting a performance benchmark for a prosumer-level standard-def camcorder, the Canon GL2 offers high-quality digital video with up to 530 lines of resolution. Building on Canon's expertise in 35mm photographic and broadcast TV lenses, the GL2 is equipped with Canon's exclusive L-Series Fluorite optical technology for outstanding imaging power and shooting versatility in a lightweight, portable design.
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Canon GL2 Overview

  • 1Description
  • 2Achieve Super High Resolution
  • 3L-Series Fluorite Lens
  • 4Image Stabilization
  • 5Pixel Shift
  • 6Direction Accurate Microphone
  • 7Top Grip with Recording Controls
  • 8Photo Search
  • 9Special Effects
  • 10Manual Audio Level Control with VU Meters
  • 11Clear Scan
  • 12Character Recording
  • 13Analog to Digital Conversion with Pass-Through
  • 14Interval Recording
  • 15Advanced Accessory Shoe
  • 16Power Save
  • 17LANC

Setting a performance benchmark for a prosumer-level standard-def camcorder, the Canon GL2 offers high-quality digital video with up to 530 lines of resolution. Building on Canon's expertise in 35mm photographic and broadcast TV lenses, the GL2 is equipped with Canon's exclusive L-Series Fluorite optical technology for outstanding imaging power and shooting versatility in a lightweight, portable design.

The camcorder's 3 CCDs deliver outstanding picture quality, accurate color reproduction and a wide dynamic range with virtually no color noise. Canon has improved a broadcast technology to create a new form of Pixel Shift technology, producing higher picture quality than that of camcorders using CCDs with almost twice the number of pixels. In addition to its enhanced quality, the camera incorporates a built-in digital photo mode for capturing crisp photos up to 1488 x 1128 pixels.

Achieve Super High Resolution

The camcorder maximizes the capability of the DV format by using a 3 CCD system, assigning a separate CCD to each primary color (red, green, blue). A beam-splitting prism precisely separates the light passing through the lens into individual color components, and each is sent to its own CCD. This process achieves outstanding detail with highly accurate color reproduction, suitable for the demands of the high-end production field - wide dynamic range, low color noise, natural color resolution and low aliasing.

L-Series Fluorite Lens

Canon has satisfied the demands of experienced image makers for years through the power, design and quality of their 35mm and broadcast TV lenses. The professional L-Series lenses utilize Fluorite, a material which provides outstanding resolution, contrast and color reproduction, especially in lightweight, high-magnification lenses. Now incorporated into the lens on the GL-2, Fluorite delivers the ultimate clarity and image quality. The Fluorite element inside of the lens defeats color aberration - the effect when components of light stray from one another within a lens, causing a reduction in sharpness, contrast and color. The Fluorite lens precisely controls components of light, providing an excellent balance of these three critical ingredients of picture quality. This is unobtainable with conventional optical glass.

Image Stabilization

Canon's superb optical stabilization system eliminates image shake due to a wide range of movement and/or high wind conditions. It corrects camera shake instantly. Even hand-held shots at full telephoto, and shots taken from a moving car, are smooth and steady. And since it is optical, there is no loss of image quality as with electronic image stabilizers.

Pixel Shift

This feature solves common shooting dilemmas by using a signal processing technique called Pixel Shift, which has been used in professional grade video cameras for many years. It achieves wider dynamic range, reduced vertical smearing and sharper digital still images. The green component of a video signal contains 60% of the picture detail, and the red and blue components comprise only 40%. The green CCD in the camcorder is shifted vertically and horizontally the equivalent distance of 1/2 pixel from the red and blue CCD. The green signal is then sampled more frequently to extract the maximum picture detail from the video signal. This allows the camcorder to achieve resolution equal to camcorders with nearly twice as many pixels in video recording.

Direction Accurate Microphone

This camcorder's built-in microphone incorporates two pairs of pick-up elements each for left and right. This arrangement realizes a superior directional ability and fuller, richer stereo sound. Also, you can change the microphone frequency characteristics to match the recording condition (normal, voice, windscreen).

Top Grip with Recording Controls

In addition to the side hand grip, the GL2 features a top carrying handle, complete with a duplicate set of recording and zoom controls. Now you can accommodate your individual shooting style, as well as make mid to low angle shooting comfortable and easy.

Photo Search

Remember that you can put hundreds of still images on a DV tape when using the GL2 in Photo Mode. So having a way to find a particular image is a necessity. Using the GL2's Remote Control, Easy Photo Search lets you scan through the still pictures, even if they're recorded between sections of moving footage.

Special Effects

This feature offers you a variety of scene transition effects, producing smooth, professional-looking dissolve and wipe transitions between scenes as you record. Effects include: Black & White, which removes color from the video images; Sepia, Art, Mirror, Trail and Strobe, for a stop-and-go type of motion effect.

Manual Audio Level Control with VU Meters

For complete control, the GL2 offers 2-channel manual audio adjustment (2 mechanical, dedicated controls). The audio level can be monitored by an external illuminated VU meter or in the viewfinder/LCD view screen.

Clear Scan

When shooting the display screen of a personal computer or a TV, a noticeable rolling black bar or flickering may appear. This can be eliminated by adjusting the scanning frequency setting on the camcorder.

Character Recording

Some video applications (such as law enforcement, including interrogations, crime scene documentation, depositions and court room proceedings) require identification of date, time and time code of each recording. To accommodate this, the GL2 can be set to permanently record this information by superimposing it over the video image.

Analog to Digital Conversion with Pass-Through

For instant editing, simply connect your TV, VCR, or analog camcorder to the camcorder, and send the analog signal directly to your computer's IEEE-1394 terminal, without recording to tape. If you choose, you may first record the analog signal to DV tape, allowing you to create a high-quality master of your original.

Interval Recording

Continuous recording with intervals is possible for users who are seeking to capture a compressed version of real time (such as sunsets, flowers blooming), or create animation. Users may select a recording time of 0.5, 1.5, or 2 seconds, which will be recorded at an interval of 30 seconds, one, five, or 10 minutes.

Advanced Accessory Shoe

The shoe transmits power directly from the GL2. You can choose to attach the optional DM-50 Directional Stereo Microphone, shotgun mic with high sensitivity and super directional pick-up. Use when recording or dubbing audio. Or, attach the optional VL-3 Video Light, which can either stay on continuously or turn on/off automatically, in response to changes in the brightness of the shooting situation.

Power Save

This feature allows you to turn the recorder section off, leaving the camera section turned on, so you can adjust the camera section without worrying about the automatic shut-off (5-minute timer).


The LANC terminal on the GL2 permits easy connection of compatible edit controllers.

Canon GL2 Specs

FormatMini DV
CCD1/4" 3CCD, 410,000 Gross Pixels, 380,000 Effective Pixels, using Pixel Shift Technology
AudioPCM Digital Stereo
Zoom20x Optical
40/100x Digital (for 35mm conversion 39.5-790mm)
Lens4.2-84mm, f/1.6-2.9 (L-Series Fluorite Lens)
Image StabilizationYes, Optical Image Stabilization (OIS)
Lux6 Lux, 0.37 Lux (Slow Shutter at 1/8)
A/V DubbingYes
Line In RecordingYes, Analog/Digital
Input/Output InterfaceA/V input/output: 3.5 mm mini-jack(x1 Input, x1 Output)
S-Video: 4-Pin MINI DIN
Analog Audio L/R: RCA (x1 Input, x1 Output)
FireWire: IEEE-1394 4-Pin
Headphones: Mini Stereo
Microphone: Mini Stereo
LANC Terminal
Card Slot SD (Secure Digital)/MM (MultiMedia)
Special EffectsB/W, Sepia, Art, Mirror, Trail and Strobe
Fade ResistanceYes
Accessory ShoeYes, Advanced Shoe (Hot Shoe)
Built-in LightNo, Optional VL-3 Light
Tape LoadingSide Top Loading
Power Requirements110-240 VAC, 50/60 Hz
7.2 VDC
Power ConsumptionWith Viewfinder: 4.8W
With LCD: 5.7W
Dimensions4.6 x 5.4 x 12" (11.8 x 13.6 x 30.6 cm)
Weight2.5 lb (1.13 kg)
Packaging Info
Package Weight8.2 lb
Box Dimensions (LxWxH)14.5 x 10 x 10"

Canon GL2 Reviews

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