The VIXIA HF G10 Flash Memory Camcorder is Canon's high-end offering for 2011. Packed with so many mouth-watering features and functions it doesn't seem to right to call this model a 'consumer camcorder'. Yet, still at a consumer price-point the HF G10 brings professional capabilities to those who seek to do more while staying within the means of their budget.It's almost redundant to say that a camcorder at this level shoots 1920 x 1080 high definition video, but we'll say it anyway. The HF G10 records at 60i, in native 24p, and in the 24p Cinema mode and 30p Progressive mode (both at 60i). With the 24p frame rate options you can give your footage a truly cinematic look. Using Cinema-Looks Filters you boost that film look with 9 built-in adjustable filters. Some choices include Cinema Standard, Dramatic B&W, Nostalgic, Old Movie, and Sepia. You can also shoot video that's optimized for the 'net with the 30p Progressive mode. Driving all that stunningly detailed and vivid image capture would be the heart of the HF G10: The Canon HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor. This 1/3" image sensor boasts excellent low light performance and a wide dynamic range, giving you flexibility unseen in most consumer camcorders. Working with the sensor to create each shot would be Canon's DIGIC DV III Image Processor. The image processor reduces noise, corrects color for life-like reproduction, and also powers a number of proprietary Canon features like Smart Auto and the Cinema-Look Filters. Other features of the HF G10 include a generous 3.5" touch panel LCD display, a color viewfinder, optical image stabilization, and a Genuine Canon 10x HD Video Lens. The lens boasts an 8 blade iris, and a 4.25-42.5mm focal length(30.4-305 35mm equivalent). Other important basics include 10x optical zoom, a 58mm filter diameter, and a number of terminals. Connections include USB 2.0, Component and Composite outputs, a mini HDMI, and as one would expect on a model of this caliber, headphone and microphone jacks. Whether you're shooting for a film look and feel or simply recording a family get-together, good audio makes your production. Canon gave the HF G10 multiple ways to achieve high-quality sound recording, including the aforementioned built-in microphone and headphone terminals. Attach external microphones and headphones for audio capture that you can monitor with manual audio level controls. If you're looking to capture 5.1 Channel Surround Sound the G10 lets you do that as well using the optional SM-V1 microphone from Canon. When you'd rather leave the accessories at home the camera features a built-in stereo microphone that features directional adjustments, as well as frequency adjustments. The HF G10 also packs in a number of shooting functions. Among the functions usually found on consumer models, the G10 also boasts professional shooting assist functions to make shooting easier. Custom key and dial, composition aids, and advanced control like manual exposure, aperture priority, and shutter priority, just to name a few. Among the more pedestrian features you'll find face detection, Instant AF, Advanced Video Snapshot, and so on. This camcorder, as one would expect, also comes packaged with Canon's Pixela Video Browser Software. Compatible with Windows XP (SP2 and SP3), Vista, and Windows 7, this software helps you to edit and share all your video in post production.
You'll also have the flexibility of copying video from your VIXIA HF G10's internal drive to the removable SD or SDXC memory cards. That makes it easy to insert the card into your computer or HDTV's card reader and view your recorded footage immediately.
Double Slot Recording allows you to record to two SD cards simultaneously, so you can have an automatic safety backup as you shoot.
The advantages of flash memory go beyond the added recording time. You'll also appreciate the quick response time, because there are no moving parts in the recording process. Press the record button and your VIXIA HF G10 starts recording video faster than you've ever seen before. In addition, when you review, you'll have quick access to your footage
For those situations in which the super quick action of Instant AF might not be desirable, you also have the option of Medium AF, which is softer and smoother than Instant AF, but faster than would be possible with manual focusing
You'll also be able to use the Touch Panel for Touch Decoration. This feature lets you superimpose select decorations onto the images on your LCD and then records the images complete with the additions. You may add animation effects, hand written and stamp messages or insert a still image to give your video a truly individual look
Touch Focus allows the user to pinpoint a specific area to focus on. This function is similar to the Push AF feature found in professional camcorders, but can target a subject anywhere in the frame.
Touch Exposure enables exposure to be locked or compensated for the area touched by the user
The system is in fact so smart that it will recognize faces turned downwards or sideways. In addition, a specific face may be selected as the main subject for continuous tracking. This feature can be used to search for clips featuring that specific subject's face. In search and playback, use of the Face Index will display frames with the chosen face as a thumbnail in each shot in which it appears. The selected face can be linked as a timeline to further identify footage containing that subject.
With the Face Only AF option, the camcorder will automatically track a chosen face. However, should that face leave the scene, it will reset focus to manual mode
Typically only found on expensive external units, the VIXIA HF G10 has a waveform monitor built right into the camera. The waveform monitor shows a detailed view of overall image brightness.
Enhanced zebra pattern (70% or 100%) indicates 'blown out' or high brightness areas to help you set the proper exposure
The Grid Marker helps you compose your shot accurately, by referencing a grid in your viewfinder. Depending on the background color of your shot, you can choose between two different colors for better viewing contrast
Either color bars or color bars and test tone can be selected and recorded using a menu. The color bars comply with the SMPTE standard. -12 dB, -18 dB or -20 dB can be selected as the test tone.
The white balance control has 6 available presets settable through a variety of day and artificial light conditions (Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent H, Fluorescent), as well two manual white balance settings. Color temperature may also be manually set from 2000K to 15,000K in 100K increments for more precise adjustment.
Gain may be manually set from 0dB to 24dB in 1dB increments. Additionally, Auto Gain Control Limit allows you to set the maximum gain limit for the image sensor's sensitivity. With this function, brightness and noise can be balanced as required, and image quality can be maximized in low light situations.
The zoom speed as controlled by the rocker and handle controls is selectable, with a choice of variable or 16 fixed speeds, with fast/normal/slow settings for greater control while zooming in various situations
The VIXIA HF G10 is compatible with the Eye-Fi SD Memory Card. It's possible to wirelessly transfer your video and photos to your computer, or upload them directly to online sharing sites in a few simple steps. Insert an Eye-Fi SD Memory Card into the SD card slot on the camcorder, configure your computer to select the target site (e.g., Facebook, YouTube, Shutterfly, Flickr) and you're ready to share your standard definition files with family, friends, and the world!
Native 24p Mode, a feature generally found only on Canon's professional camcorders, allows 24 frames per second to be captured and recorded (instead of the standard 60i) - a must for serious filmmaking work.
24p Cinema Mode enables all aspiring moviemakers to achieve a professional "film-look." You can change the camcorder's frame capture rate to 24p (recorded at 60i), which provides the appearance of the same frame rate as movie film. In addition, you can use the VIXIA HF G10's Cine setting, which changes the color and tonal characteristics, evoking the look and feel of a movie shown in a theater. For added flexibility, these settings can be used together or independently.
You would normally have to look to professional video cameras in order to have a sophisticated tool like 30p Progressive Mode at your command. In addition to the standard interlaced video frame rate of 60i, you may choose to set the VIXIA HF G10 to capture video in 30p, (30 progressive frames, recorded at 60i) which is particularly useful for footage to be used on the Internet. Excellent for action and sports shots, this setting gives enhanced quality to still images captured after recording
- Cinema Standard: Tones down highlights slightly, boosts shadows slightly and adds warmth for a cinematic look
- Cool: Adds a bluish tint for cool, futuristic-looking scenes
- Dramatic B/W: Creates bold B/W movies with high contrast and grain
- Dream: Adds a magical look (soft focus) for dream-like scenes
- Memory: Adds a faded, misty look to create flashback scenes
- Nostalgic: Recreates the look of old '70s TV programs
- Old Movie: Gives movies the aged look of old cinema
- Sepia: Uses a sepia tint for an antique, faded look
- Vivid: Accentuates primary colors for a bright, cheerful look
When Cinema Standard is selected, color depth, softening, and contrast can also be adjusted
The Mini Advanced Accessory Shoe allows you to attach optional Canon accessories, such as the VL-5 Video Light, DM-100 Directional Stereo Microphone or SM-V1 5.1-Channel Surround Microphone.
The built-in microphone terminal with manual audio level control and headphone terminal provide exceptional audio flexibility.
A built-in remote control terminal (compatible with LANC protocol) provides an easy connection to both Canon and third party wired remote controllers
- Monaural: Single point direction
- Normal (stereo)
- Wide: Provides a more enhanced, separated stereo effect than normal
- Synced with Zoom: Directionality is adjusted to match the zoom position
In addition, the frequency response characteristics of the microphone can be adjusted between low, mid-range and high frequencies
- Normal: Provides a balance throughout all frequencies
- Low-range emphasis: Excellent for recording live music with impact
- Attenuate low frequencies: Reduces ambient noise and the sound of traffic outdoors, such as wind, cars and the like
- Mid-range emphasis: Ideal for capturing people's voices
- Low and high range emphasis: Record live music with balanced lows and highs
The Automatic Attenuator feature prevents high volume distortion and optimizes audio quality in situations when sound levels quickly change, such as when loud music plays in the background. It automatically keeps the audio clean and even.
The built-in microphone terminal with manual audio level control and the headphone terminal provide exceptional audio flexibility.
Canon's new optional WM-V1 Wireless Microphone allows you to record high-quality audio without wires from up to 164 feet away (50m), ideal for ceremonies and recitals.
For the ultimate home theater experience, 5.1 channel surround sound allows you to capture audio quality that matches the stunning realism of your high definition video. The sound is captured from all directions (five different pickup sensors) so your home movies will look and sound more lifelike than ever before
Optional SM-V1 5.1-Channel Surround Microphone is required
The bundled application is compatible with Windows XP (Service Pack 2 and 3), Windows Vista, and Windows 7