Eight seems to be Canon's lucky number as it is launching not just eight new compact cameras but also eight new LEGRIA camcorders. Included in the launch are the flagship HF G10, the higher-end HF S30, two compact HF M models, the M41 and M400, two entry-level R models, the HF R28 and R26, and two standard definition FS models, the FS46 and FS406.
What's of particular interest is the new HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor found in the LEGRIA HF G10, M41 and M400 models. It promises high video resolution, outstanding low-light performance and an expanded dynamic range.
Also of interest is the 30.4mm wide-angle video lens on the HF G10 which has a fast aperture of F1.8. This flagship model also includes a manual-focus ring for dedicated control, 32GB of internal flash memory and dual SDXC-compatible card slots for expanded memory and instant back-up.
What really caught our eye was the XA10, a brand-new portable professional camcorder series which brings the power of professional imaging and controls into a compact consumer camcorder body.
Designed for videographers looking for outstanding performance in a mobile body, the XA10 records full 1080p HD video, the DIGIC DV III Image Processor, a professional-grade 1/3" 2.37MP HD CMOS Pro image sensor and a Canon HD Video Lens which produces "supremely sharp" HD images. It brings 10x optical zoom, a 30.4mm wide-angle and maximum F1.8 aperture, with a 2x digital extender for additional reach. The XA10 also works with the new WD-H58W wide adapter, existing 58mm adapters and filters.
It records AVCHD at up to 24Mbps, the maximum bit-rate now possible with the standard. The 8.8cm. 922k-dot LCD is touch-screen, and embedded in the detachable handle are XLR terminal inputs, audio switches, an infrared (IR) lamp for night-time footage, tally lamp, removable microphone holder, zoom and record switches and a 'cold' shoe, giving videographers more to work with than a traditional consumer camcorder body.
There's 64GB of internal memory on the XA10, and it has two SDXC-compatible memory card slots to expand memory. Relay Recording automatically switches between memory cards when one is full, while Double Slot Recording writes the same footage to two cards at the same time.
The Canon XA10 will be available from April onwards, with pricing to be announced.