Canon’s XA30 and XA35 camcorders coming in December

Small camcorders

Canon's upcoming XA35
Improved low-light shooter: Canon’s upcoming XA35

Canon is updating its range of compact, professional camcorders with two new models, the XA30 and XA35.

The two new cameras are both single chip palm-sized models, with a similar design to Canon’s high-end consumer camcorders, and the earlier, XA20 and XA25.

Like the older camcorders, the XA30 and XA35 record in AVCHD, and they also feature a removable handle with XLR mic inputs, which connects to the camera through an intelligent hot shoe. This allows the cameras to be stripped down for unobtrusive filming, or use in tight spaces.

Canon says, though, that although the camcorder looks similar to older models, it is based around a 1/2.84 inch sensor, delivering 2.91 megapixels. The company claims that low-light performance is improved, with a new wide dynamic range mode, and lower video noise.

The camcorders also feature fast and slow motion, and interval recording in MP4; AVCHD video is recorded at up to 28mbps and MP4 video, at up to 35mbps. With dual SD card slots, the camcorders can capture using two different formats at the same time. Recording is up to 50p.

The camera’s lens is a 20x zoom with a widest aperture of f1.8, ramping up to f2.8 at the long end. The camcorders also feature five-axis image stablisation.

Canon has, though, continued its approach of launching two broadly similar cameras, with different features. Film makers opting for the XA35 gain an HD-SDI output, which includes embedded audio and timecode. This makes the camera suitable for live broadcasting and multi-camera shoots.

The XA30 drops the HD-SDI out but is otherwise identical; both cameras feature HDMI output, and dual-band WiFi for file transfer and camera control.

Canon expects the new cameras to go on sale in December.