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All posts for the month April, 2013

Panasonic Announces LUMIX G6 with New Venus Engine  

 Panasonic_Lumix_G6

24th April 2013 – Panasonic has today launched its newest DSLM (Digital Single Lens Mirrorless) camera, the LUMIX DMC-G6, offering a 16.05M Live MOS Sensor, the advanced process noise reduction systems and a ‘Low Light AF’ function enabling serious photographers to take the quality of their pictures even further regardless of low-light situations.

Raising the bar in system camera image quality

 The new powerful Venus Engine coupled with the LUMIX DMC-G6’s 16.05M Live MOS Sensor enable users to demonstrate the true image quality achievable with a DSLM camera.  Furthermore the camera has an improved ISO range from 160 ISO all the way up to 25,600 ISO (extended) allowing photographs to be captured in spite of very little light in some environments.

Boasting a high speed AF system, ‘Accurate AF’ and ‘Low Light AF’ for shooting in low-light conditions, you’ll never miss the perfect moment with the LUMIX DMC-G6. A wide range of AF modes are available, including multiple-area AF, Face Detection, and AF Tracking resulting in the LUMIX DMC-G6 being able to lock onto any subject and keep it in focus even if it moves. Additionally, the LUMIX DMC-G6’s rapid burst shooting capability – at seven Frames per Second (FPS) in full resolution, can capture multiple shots of fast-moving subjects with stunning clarity.

The quality advances of the LUMIX DMC-G6 are not restricted to still images. A 24p video mode has been added enabling users to capture moving images and play them back with a dedicated ‘film like’ appearance. The sensor and Venus Engine enable the camera to record in Full HD 1080/50p, with stereo sound, producing professional movie quality with minimal noise. With outputs in both AVCHD progressive and MP4, the LUMIX DMC-G6 provides wide compression and compatibility options. The long recording times, instant access controls, advanced AF system and LUMIX G lenses specifically designed for movie shooting, means the LUMIX DMC-G6 is the perfect option for capturing beautiful movies with ease.

Giving photographers an enhanced view and faster operation

The LUMIX DMC-G6 benefits from an OLED viewfinder which is not only brighter than a traditional LCD viewfinder but is also faster to display images, offers better visibility outdoors in bright sunlight and increases battery life due to lower power consumption.

With a choice of using either the Electronic Viewfinder (EVF) with eye sensor, or the high resolution, 3.0-inch free-angle monitor to compose your shots and movies, you can capture the moment as the situation demands. Meanwhile, the revolutionary touch control shooting – including full-area touch focusing where the focus can be set immediately to the subject, or to the background, by just one touch of the large monitor even when using the EVF – gives you the control to compose and create stunning images.

Cablefree Connectivity with Wi-Fi and NFC

Introduced into the LUMIX G range with the LUMIX DMC-GF6, the LUMIX DMC-G6 also features integrated Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity offering a more flexible shooting experience and easy image sharing from an interchangeable lens camera.  After the initial setup, tablets and smartphones for remote shooting can be connected with a simple touch without having to re-enter authorisation details every time.

The LUMIX G VARIO 14-140mm: Panasonic’s new Versatile Lens for Shooting Everything from Landscapes to Sports Photos

 

Lumix G Vario 14-140mm lens

Lumix G Vario 14-140mm lens

24th April 2013 – Panasonic has launched the LUMIX G VARIO 14-140mm/F3.5-5.6 ASPH./POWER O.I.S lens, an interchangeable lens suitable for shooting everything from vast, open landscapes to action packed sports photos.

The new lens includes 10x optical zoom, comes in a stylish compact, metal body and is designed specifically for Digital Single Lens Mirrorless LUMIX G cameras and the Micro Four Thirds System standard.  It is also compatible with the sensor drive at max.240 fps to take maximum advantage of cameras with high-speed AF such as the LUMIX DMC-GH3 and the new LUMIX DMC-G6.

The LUMIX G VARIO 14-140mm (35mm equivalent focal length: 28-280mm) is also optimized for HD video recording and is perfect for capturing crisp, blur-free images when shooting sporting events and other distant subjects.

The lens incorporates Panasonic’s POWER O.I.S. optical image stabiliser, which includes a lens shift system enabling stable framing even in a telephoto position.  This effectively compensates for not only small, fast movement but also large, slow one making it easy to shoot super clear shots even in low-lit situations such as in night time or indoors.

The LUMIX G VARIO 14-140mm is the latest addition to Panasonic’s LUMIX G microsystem, which includes the world’s largest range of Micro Four Thirds lenses and accessories, making sure you have the right set-up to capture every moment. The lens range includes the premium lens brand, ‘X’ for LUMIX G – ultra-compact electronic power zoom lenses which utilise the best in advanced optical performance.

Serif PhotoPlus X6 review

Serif, a software company that produces  low-cost alternatives to high-end publishing and graphics packages,  has added – PhotoPlus X6, a new version of their  image editing software. This is a feature-packed application at an entry level price point which should satisfy users at many levels of expertise. Let’s take a look and see what PhotoPlus X6 can do.

PhotoPlus X6 application

What do you want to do?

What do you want to do?

On first launching PhotoPlus you are presented with a “To Do” window, from here you can select;  Create, Open, Learn, and Organizer.  Under CREATE start a new image, animation, or HDR Merge; under OPEN  a list of previously edited images is displayed. Use the LEARN section to show you how to use the application.  Use the ORGANIZER to manage your photos.

PhotoPlus interface

PhotoPlus interface

ThePhotoPlus default interface colour is a light grey, which is maybe a bit too light, a dark grey may have been a better choice. However, using the application’s preferences you can change the colour scheme with a choice of five colours – none of which are ideal as a backdrop for editing.  The Preferences gives you the ability to customize PhotoPlus to your own way of working – you can add or remove tools, menu items or create custom toolbars. Located on the left hand side of the screen is the Toolbar which contains all the editing tools you are likely to need for manipulating and retouching photos. Many of the tools have shortcut keystrokes assigned, but not all!

Below the top Menu bar is the Standard toolbar which contains quick access icons to New, Save, Print, Undo, Redo, Organize etc. Next to this are toolbars that give quick access to features such as the Organizer, PhotoFix, Filter Gallery, Cut out Studio etc. You can also add your own custom toolbars with the features and tools you use frequently. The Workspace toolbar offers four options for screen display; Default, Designer, Painting and Photo Editing.  The tabs change to display the appropriate tab for the task in hand. Toolbars can be dragged out and docked on any edge, or as a floating panel. Directly below is the Context sensitive toolbar, this changes to display the settings for the current tool in use.

PhotoPlus includes an excellent How To tab, this provides information on the application and how to use the various tools. Right hand side tabs include; Layers, Channels, Histogram, Colour, History, Macros etc. All tabs can be turned On or Off or collapsed to provide more workspace area.

The Organizer

PhotoPlus X6 organizer

PhotoPlus X6 organizer

The PhotoPlus X6 organizer enables you to manage image collections.  By default the My Pictures folder is selected but you can add other folders by clicking on the Include Folder icon and then browse for your image folder(s). Thumbnails are created for all supported image types and displayed in the right side window. It’s good to see that Serif also include native Adobe Photoshop PSD and Corel PaintShop PSP files as well as many other popular file formats. Photoshop files which contain layers and adjustment layers can also be imported with all their layers in place.  The organizer uses the date stamp from the camera’s Metadata to organize files into date and time taken. From here you can select photos to be edited in the full PhotoPlus application or use the PhotoFix button for making quick adjustments. One annoying aspect is that when you select an image to Edit in PhotoPlus nothing appears to happen, but if you switch windows then you will see the image has been opened, the Organizer stays on as the top window.  I would have liked an automatic switch to the destination application. Other organizer options include upload images to Facebook or Flickr, create a Slide show or Create a Photo Project. The organizer is very easy to use and is a useful addition to PhotoPlus.

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Six Digital Noise reduction applications

Digital noise is the equivalent of film grain, but unlike film grain digital noise can be reduced or virtually eliminated by software. We take a look at six noise reduction applications to see how well they perform.

Neat image – $39.90 

Neat Image interface

Neat Image interface

Neat image is available as both a standalone application or as a Photoshop plug-in. On launching, the interface is minimal in appearance, but clicking on the Auto profile will place a rectangle  over an area containing noise. From here click on the Noise Filter Settings tab to make all the necessary Noise Level adjustments, Noise Reduction Amounts and Sharpening. Different values can be applied for High, Mid and Low frequencies for full control on all areas of the image.

Neatimage3

View each channel to quickly see which has the most noise

 

This plug-in is very fast in operation, noise reductions can be quickly previewed on the whole image or you can view the colour channels as separate windows. Settings can be saved and applied to other images. It features an impressive noise reduction filter.

http://www.neatimage.com/

4-stars

 

 

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Broadstairs Beach

 

 

Another photograph taken at my recent visit to Broadstairs, Kent.

The photograph is of a single person walking on a deserted beach, this sums up our British weather so far this year.

Shot was taken with the Panasonic GH3 camera with the 12 – 35mm lens. The image has been manipulated using Nik Color Effex 4,  these filters have saved many images from ending up in the Recycle Bin

Broadstairs

 

Today’s photo of the day was taken this week at Broadstairs on the Kent coast. It was a dull but bright day with a very flat looking sky. I added a graduated filter effect from within Camera RAW and boosted the contrast to produce the picture above.

Camera Panasonic GH3 with a 7 – 14mm zoom lens, set to 7mm (15mm equivalent on a 35mm camera). I have been using the Panasonic for a couple of weeks now and it is producing some great shots. Will be posting a full review of this camera shortly.

Lightroom-5

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 Public Beta Now Available

 

Adobe today announced the availability of Adobe® Photoshop® Lightroom® 5 beta for Windows® and Mac. Adobe Lightroom is the essential photography workflow application allowing photography enthusiasts and professionals to enhance, organise and share photos. The Lightroom 5 beta offers a free, public preview of new features and tools that will be offered in the final release, expected later this year.

 

A new clone tool lets you paint over the subject shape rather than use the round brush shape.

A new clone tool lets you paint over the subject shape rather than use the round brush shape.

“Lightroom is the essential tool for busy professional and discerning amateur photographers, who are uncompromising in the pursuit for image quality or searching for artistic expression, “ said Winston Hendrickson, vice president of digital imaging products, Adobe. “The Lightroom 5 beta is highly valuable in ensuring the new features support and address the needs of our customers and we look forward to hearing feedback.”

Lightroom 5 beta offers photographers and enthusiasts many new features including:

  • Advanced Healing Brush allows users to heal imperfections and remove distracting elements
  • Upright tool analyses an image to automatically level horizons and straighten objects like buildings to correct a keystone effect
  • Radial Gradient tool creates off-centre or multiple vignette effects
  • Smart Previews allow customers to edit images without needing the original raw file
  • Video slideshow enables customers to combine still images, video clips and music in a creative HD slideshow
  • Upgrades to the Book module enhancing the ability to create, customise and order elegant photo books using a variety of tailored templates

 

The new Upright tool give greater control on distortions.

The new Upright tool give greater control on distortions.

The new Upright tool in Auto mode

The new Upright tool in Auto mode

Lightroom 5 beta marks the fifth consecutive version Adobe has offered the software for public preview and testing prior to the final release. Adobe encourages customers to provide comments through its community forums on both new and legacy features. Feedback offered may be integrated into updates added before the final version of the software is released.

 

Pricing and Availability

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 beta is available immediately as a free download on both Windows and Mac athttp://labs.adobe.com/technologies/lightroom5/. Customers can submit feedback on the community powered feedback site:http://feedback.photoshop.com. Customers can also connect with the Lightroom team directly on Facebook (www.facebook.com/lightroom), via Twitter (www.twitter.com/lightroom) or on the Adobe Lightroom blog (http://blogs.adobe.com/lightroomjournal). For Lightroom how-to videos, visit http://www.youtube.com/lightroom.

 

Panasonic-GF6

Panasonic  LUMIX GF6

 

DIS, Vienna 9th April 2013 – Panasonic’s new Digital Single Lens Mirrorless LUMIX DMC-GF6 is the latest camera to join the compact series of Panasonic’s LUMIX G category.

The camera boasts a new Live MOS Sensor, newly developed Venus Engine and high precision, ‘Light Speed AF’ which all contribute to excellent image quality for photographers used to taking creative images with their smartphones but who are looking for a much more sophisticated and professional result by being able to have more control over manual settings such as aperture, shutter speed or lens selection.

With 19 filter effects the DMC-GF6 is not just an interchangeable camera but a creative tool for any user looking to explore and change their photography habits from an amateur point-and-shoot photographer to a step-up user looking to take their photography more seriously.  Wi-Fi connectivity and NFC (Near Field Communication) make it easier than ever to remotely shoot from a tablet or smartphone, transfer images and share their pictures with friends, family and the online world.

Furthermore the DMC-GF6 has a dedicated video record button on the top so you can record full-HD video (1920×1080, 50i) in AVCHD with stereo sound. Contrary to its stylish appearance the camera is robust with a built-in flash (GN6.3 ISO160ï½¥m / GN5.0 ISO100ï½¥m), has a 3.0 inch,approx. 180 degree tiltable monitor and comes with a fashionable black or white body.

True Picture Quality with New 16.00 Megapixel Live MOS Sensor and Venus Engine

The new Live MOS Sensor enables high resolution and high sensitivity image recording while minimizing the generation of noise. The Venus Engine image processor is also newly developed to feature its advanced noise reduction systems.  The controllable area of noise has been expanded by approx.64x in size. This makes it possible to remove large block of noise which were formally hard to detect and helps produce clear, smooth image especially for night time scenery.  The combination of the new Live MOS Sensor and the Venus Engine achieve ISO3200 (Auto) and max. ISO 25600 (Extended).

An Advanced Photographic Tool for Creative Users

With its wide variety of shooting options such as ‘Self Shot’ mode; ‘Creative Control’ providing 19 filters; and Stop Motion Animation function the DMC-GF6 is not just a high quality camera.

Users can shoot their own portraits by stretching an arm to hold the camera with the monitor flipped approx.180 degrees vertically allowing them to fit perfectly into the frame.

The popular ‘Creative Control’ mode has been upgraded by increasing the number of filters from the 14 of the DMC-GF5 to 19 for the DMC-GF6, adding new Old Days, Sunshine*, Bleach Bypass, Toy Pop, Fantasy in addition to the conventional Expressive, Retro, High Key, Sepia, High Dynamic, Soft Focus*, Dynamic Monochrome, Impressive Art, One Point Color, Cross Process, Low Key, Toy Effect and Star Filter* and Miniature Effect** mode[1]. A number of these filters can also be a pplied on the self-portrait taken in ‘Self Shot’ mode.

Cablefree Connectivity with Wi-Fi and NFC

For the first time integrated Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity offer a more flexible shooting experience and easy image sharing from an interchangeable lens camera.  After the initial setup, tablets and smartphones for remote shooting can be connected with a simple touch without having to re-enter authorisation details every time.

Evolving LUMIX G AF System Speed and Accuracy 

All cameras in the LUMIX G category feature Contrast AF for their focus system. Compared with the Phase difference AF system, the Contrast AF boasts higher accuracy especially in shooting with a bright lens and small ‘F’ (focal ratio) value.

Light Speed AF makes it possible to capture fast-moving subjects clearly. Additionally, AF Tracking enables consecutive shooting to capture moving subject in sharp focus.

More Details About Key Features

Creative Features:

  • Creative Panorama function: Shoot a horizontal or vertical panoramic image with consequent shots taken by overlaying the previous picture. One of the ‘Creative Control’ effects can also be added.***[2].
  • Stop Motion Animation function: Enables producing a stop motion (stop frame) video in camera with the pictures that are sequentially shot while moving the object by degrees. This effect makes the object appear as if it is moving by itself.
  • Clear Retouch: Makes it is possible to erase unwanted objects or figures in an image by just tracing over them on the camera monitor with a fingertip. They naturally disappear without destroying the image.

Wireless Connectivity:

  • Remote Shooting: Remote shooting of both photo and video* is available by using the smartphone/tablet for a remote shutter with a monitor which displayed live at smooth 30 fps. Not only releasing the shutter but zooming[3], focusing and settings of shutter speed, aperture and exposure compensation can all be controlled with the smartphone or tablet and start/stop recording when used in video mode.
  • Instant Transfer function: Allows the camera to transfer the photo data to the designated electronic device automatically whenever the shutter is released. In playback mode, users can also touch the image displayed on the camera to transfer it directly to a smartphone or tablet right on the spot. In addition, it is possible to tag the location information to the image by utilizing the GPS (Global Positioning System) log of a smartphone or tablet. All these flexible shooting/browsing/sharing styles are made possible with the DMC-GF6 and Panasonic’s dedicated application software “Panasonic Image App” for iOS / Android smartphones and tablets.
  • Cloud Service: Panasonic’s exclusive cloud service “LUMIX CLUB” allows users to store images in a dedicated folder which they can transfer the image to Facebook, Flickr, Picasa, Twitter, YouTube or any other social networking platform.
  • The Wi-Fi Direct function: Allows direct playback of images on any DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance) compliant VIERA HDTV[4].

Focusing:

  • Full-area Touch AF: Enables focus to be set on any point in the field of view which realizes quick and intuitive focusing operation allowing free frame composition.ã��In addition, the newly adopted Touch AE (Auto Exposure) function enables setting focus and exposure at a single touch on the subject displayed on the monitor.
  • Function Lever For One-hand Control: The newly added function lever allows direct adjustment of the allocated function such as zoom[5], exposure or aperture[6] control.ã��This lever works for magnification in playback mode and page flip in menu.

Advanced iA+ (Intelligent Auto Plus Mode) and Scene Guide for Beginners:

  • For beginners of digital interchangeable lens system cameras, iA (Intelligent Auto) mode supports taking beautiful pictures with a variety of shooting-assist functions including AF Tracking, Intelligent D-range Control, Intelligent Scene Selector, Face Recognition and Intelligent ISO Control.
  • The Intelligent Scene Control now integrates Food Recognition mode.
  • The iA Plus mode lets users adjust defocusing area in the background, exposure compensation and white balance for more flexible control.
  • The Scene Guide[7] offers 23 sample pictures shot by professional photographers. Users can choose the one closer to the situation they are going to shoot and optimum parameters for shooting the scene will be automatically set. Furthermore, shooting procedure, technical advice and recommended interchangeable lens for the scene can be shown for users to improve their photography skills.

Display:

  • 1040K resolution approx. 180 degree Tiltable Touch Monitor: The new large, 1040K-dot high resolution monitor boasts around 100 per cent of field of view, and tilts up to approx. 180°. The front panel is directly attached to the new In Cell Touch monitor without containing an air layer in between. The result is that the reflection of external light is dramatically suppressed. Together with the increased resolution by around 13 per cent and improved colour reproduction by around 20 per cent, the monitor for DMC-GF6 secures higher visibility than ever. Plus, attenuation of transmitting backlight is minimized to achieve a wide angle view and 25 per cent power saving.

About Panasonic
Panasonic Corporation is a worldwide leader in the development and manufacture of electronic products in three business fields, consumer, components & devices, and solutions.  Based in Osaka, Japan, the company recorded consolidated net sales of about 72 billion Euros for the year ended March 31, 2012. Panasonic’s stock is listed on the Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya and New York (NYSE:PC) Stock Exchanges. The company has the vision of becoming the No. 1 Green Innovation Company in the Electronics Industry by the 100th year of its founding in 2018. For more information on Panasonic, its brand and commitment to sustainability, visit the company’s website at http://panasonic.net/.


[1] *For photo only

**Sound will not be recorded with [MINIATURE EFFECT] in Creative Control Mode and approximately 1/10 of the time period is recorded. (If you record for 10 minutes, the resulting motion picture recording will be approximately 1 minute long)

[2] ***Some filters of Creative Control cannot be used in Creative Panorama mode.

4 With LUMIX G Power Zoom Lens H-PS14042 or H-PS45175

[4] Using [Playback on TV] of the Wi-Fi function, you can display images on a TV that supports the Digital Media Renderer (DMR) function of the DLNA standard. Please check the following website about the compatible devices for details. http://panasonic.jp/support/global/cs/dsc/

[5] When used with Power Zoom lenses H-PS14042 or H-PS45175.

[6] In M (Manual) mode

[7] Video recording using Scene Guise is not possible in some scenes.

 

 

Here are the full GF6 specs:
– Same 16 megapixel sensor as the current
– New Venus engine
– New two-dimensional noise reduction, new multi-process noise reduction
– Low Light AF that can be focusing in the dark
– New detail reproduction filter
– Faster start-up time
– 1.04 million dot tilting 180-degree touchscreen LCD
– new mode dial on the top of the camera
– Function lever
– Function for Use with the smart phone with Wi-Fi
– Supports remote shooting touch shutter, manual operation, movie shooting, the automatic transfer
– 160-12800 ISO sensitivity (25600 extended)
– Shutter speed 60-1/4000 seconds
– Continuous shooting 4.2 frames / second
– Video (30 frames / second sensor output) 1920×1080 60i
– SD / SDHC / SDXC media (UHS-I compatible)
– (Including battery, media) 64.8 x 111.2 x 38.4mm size, 323g Weight
– first interchangeable lens camera to include Near Field Communications (NFC)
– Built-in WiFi
– Price £449 (around US$680 / AU$652) with the new 14-42mm kit lens.
– New 14-42mm smaller kit lens.
– New White version of the Power OIS PZ 14-42mm lens
– Coming in White, Red, Black.
– On sale from April 24th.

As a freelance photographer/videographer you cover a wide variety of work, from easy to shoot stage productions, corporate videos, stock library footage/stills, DVD production,  etc., through to something more exciting, such as travelling to exotic places.

One such project came out of the blue, On a cold November morning I received a phone call from a client I had never had any contact with before. Would I like to go to Kenya to produce a promotional DVD for Africa House Safaris? The project would start at the beginning of December and run through to 22 December. Needless to say, I didn’t have to think too hard about accepting this offer.

We started filming within one hour of landing at Nairobi, this is one of the few times that I have relied on the cameras autofocus, my eyes were too jet lagged to be of any real use.  The video shows the accommodation and destinations that you can expect to see when you book an Africa House Safari.

We spent a couple of days staying just outside Nairobi staying at Giraffe Manor, these clips can be seen near the end of the video. Giraffe Manor was featured in movies such as White Mischief and Out of Africa. It is a spectacular manor house and as long as you don’t mind sharing your breakfast with Giraffes, it was great fun.

The assignment involved travelling several hundreds of miles around Kenya taking in some spectacular scenery in the Rift Valley to Lake Victoria as well as the Game reserves. David Sugden the CEO of Africa House Safaris lives in Kenya and knows the locations that would be of interest to any photographer or video production crew. He also has the eyes of an eagle and can spot most wildlife within minutes of arriving at any location, a real bonus for anyone wanting to capture spectacular wildlife shots.

The video was shot over a period of 18. days using a Sony EX3 video camera, supplemented with a range of Nikon lenses from 75 to 300mm. The video was captures at Full HD 1920 x 1080 with a frame rate of 30fps, this allows for BluRay production and easy downsampling to Standard Definition DVD. The video above has been reduced in size for YouTube publishing so it may have lost some of the fine detail. I also had a Nikon D90 which I had intended to do some video footage with, but as it turned out I only used this camera to capture stills.

2013_range

United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, 3 April 2013 – Canon has today expanded its handheld video camera range with the launch of three class-leading compact models for professionals and video enthusiasts.  Two new professional X-series models, XA25 and XA20, combine a powerful, all-new imaging system with professional audio and Wi-Fi connectivity in a versatile, compact package that fits neatly in the palm of a hand. The newLEGRIA HF G30 benefits from the same advanced imaging system in a package optimised for enthusiast videographers, such as hobbyists or film students.

Developed using Canon’s industry-leading imaging technologies, these models include a powerful specification that delivers outstanding quality and operability. The Canon HD Video system has been completely redesigned – from the lens through to the image sensor and processor – providing new levels of imaging performance. A range of advanced shooting features and connectivity options make these cameras ideal for either professional or amateur use, and are suitable for shooting everything from news and documentaries to weddings.

Advanced Canon HD video system, first-class optics

The XA25, XA20 and LEGRIA HF G30 all benefit from a completely new imaging system, which has been engineered to provide outstanding image quality and versatility. A ground-breaking 20x zoom wide-angle lens offers a 26.8–576mm focal range[i], employing optical technology found in Canon’s top-of-the-range XF305 camcorder. An enhanced 3-mode Optical Image Stabilizer (IS) system[ii] incorporates a Dynamic OIS mode to further reduce the effects of camera movement during shooting. The 8-blade circular aperture also provides enhanced ‘bokeh’, using Canon’s unique Electro Magnetic Diaphragm technology – developed for the company’s EF lens range – to ensure beautiful background blur in shots with a shallow depth of field.

A newly-designed 1/2.84-type 2.91 Megapixel HD CMOS Pro sensor provides outstanding dynamic range and low-light performance. The increased sensor size maximises photosite area, combining with a highly sophisticated image processing system to reduce image noise and increase sensitivity in low light environments.

The outstanding processing capability provided by DIGIC DV 4 provides enhanced image reproduction, supplementing the strengths of the DIGIC DV family – such as smooth gradation and faithful colour reproduction – with support for recording at higher data rates. The sensor and processor work together to eliminate more camera shake, augmenting a highly-effective optical IS system with electronic stabilisation that detects and compensates for movement in a larger number of directions.

Complete creative control

Designed to provide maximum flexibility, all the new models support multiple recording formats. AVCHD (up to 28Mbps) and MP4 (up to 35Mbps) provide high bitrates suitable for many professional applications. Video is recorded to dual SD[iii] card slots in a range of resolutions and frame rates up to 1080/50p, with slow and fast motion options supported in MP4 mode – providing greater freedom to choose an appropriate setting according to creative requirements.

All models also support simultaneous recording of different formats to each card – giving users the ability to capture high-quality Full HD footage in the desired format, and smaller MP4 files at the same time[iv].  Delivered by the power of DIGIC DV 4, the smaller files can be shared more quickly and easily for time-critical applications, such as reporting breaking news, whilst the high-quality copies are retained for later use.

Professionally-optimised features

The XA25 and XA20 feature the same removable handle concept launched with the popular Canon XA10. Easily attached or removed to suit the shooting situation, the top-mounted handle houses a range of additional controls, including XLR inputs for capturing professional quality audio from external microphones. The handle also integrates an IR lamp to enhance the shooting capabilities of the infrared mode available in XA25 and XA20 – ideal for recording night-time documentaries or nocturnal wildlife.

All three models offer a compact, ergonomically designed body that offers outstanding handling and control during use.  A new 8.77cm (3.5”) 1.23million-dot Organic LED (OLED) touch screen panel provides greater resolution, contrast and improved colour reproduction during recording and playback. Users have full manual control over exposure: a combination of the touch screen and a customisable control dial allows for adjustment of aperture, shutter speed, iris, gain and exposure.

Zoom or focus can be adjusted via a switchable ring at the front of the camera lens. Additionally, a new zoom rocker integrated into the camera body is ideal for shooting when handheld or tripod mounted, offering the fine control and convenience typically found on larger professional cameras. An improved 1.56 million-dot 0.61cm (0.24”) electronic viewfinder (EVF) can be tilted up to approximately 45°, providing outstanding detail and comfort for effective handheld or tripod shooting.

Studio connectivity and wireless support

The new XA25, XA20 and LEGRIA HF G30 offer an advanced selection of interfaces, with physical inputs conveniently grouped together and designed to keep connections in place during handheld use. All include integrated HDMI, microphone, USB and headphone terminals, while the XA25 also includes HD-SDI output – offering the high capacity, uncompressed connectivity useful for many broadcast applications.

Each camera also features newly-integrated dual band Wi-Fi support (2.4GHz and 5GHz), providing a range of capabilities for use during or after shooting. Camera Remote support allows wireless adjustment of settings via a web browser[v], and Remote Browser allows users to review recorded footage from the camera in smartphone or tablet browsers – with no need for playback software.

FTP File Transfer allows users to transfer footage to FTP servers at up to 150Mbps via a wireless access point, and with Media Server, Wi-Fi can be used to play back videos stored on a camera on supported TVs or computers, without the need for cables[vi]. Direct movie uploading is also supported for iOS devices using Canon’s Movie Uploader application, allowing the upload of videos directly to YouTube or Facebook at bitrates of up to 24Mbps.

 

XA25 – key features:

  • 26.8mm, f/1.8-2.8 lens, 20x zoom, Dynamic OIS
  • 1/2.84” HD CMOS PRO sensor
  • 8.77cm (3.5”) OLED touchscreen
  • Dual-format recording; DIGIC DV 4
  • HD-SDI output
  • 1.56m dot EVF, 45° tilt
  • Fast/slow motion
  • Built-in IR lamp
  • 2x XLR inputs
  • Built-in Wi-Fi

XA20 – key features:

  • 26.8mm, f/1.8-2.8 lens, 20x zoom, Dynamic OIS
  • 1/2.84” HD CMOS PRO sensor
  • 8.77cm (3.5”) OLED touchscreen
  • Dual-format recording; DIGIC DV 4
  • 1.56m dot EVF, 45° tilt
  • Fast/slow motion
  • Built-in IR lamp
  • 2x XLR inputs
  • Built-in Wi-Fi

LEGRIA HF G30 – key features:

  • 20x zoom, 26.8mm wide-angle lens; 8 blade circular aperture
  • Control settings remotely and share with Wi-Fi
  • Simultaneous recording of AVCHD and MP4
  • Canon HD CMOS PRO sensor, DIGIC DV
  • Optical Intelligent IS
  • Full manual control
  • Instant AF; Face Detection
  • 8.8cm OLED touch screen

Pricing and availability:

The XA25 is available in the UK and Ireland from June with an SRP price of £2099/€2799

The XA20 is available in the UK and Ireland from June with an SRP price of £1699/€2199

LEGRIA HF G30 is available in the UK and Ireland from June with an SRP price of £1299/€1699