July 28, 2006 7:49 AM PDT

New Canon HD camcorders target professionals

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July 10, 2006
Canon has released two new handheld high-definition camcorders priced under $7,000 and aimed at broadcasters and cinematographers.

The XH A1 and the XH G1 HD camcorders each have three image sensors (also known as charge coupled devices, or CCDs) that record at 1,440 pixels by 1,080 pixels, capturing video images at 1080i HD resolution. Both models also feature a Canon 20x HD zoom lens, image stabilization and adjustable frame rates. (To see a CNET Review, click here.)

Canon HD camcorders

The XH A1, due out in October, will retail for about $3,999. The XH G1, planned for release in November for about $6,999, also features HD-SDI output (SDI stands for serial digital interface, a digitized video interface for broadcast-quality video) with embedded audio and time code, generator-lock synchronization for easy switching among multiple cameras, and an "In/Out" feature to synchronize the time codes of those cameras.

The adjustable frame rates featured on both cameras allow the operator to change the look and feel of the captured HD video. The cameras' 30-frame rate is intended for high-speed sports and other high-clarity video, their 24-frame rate for a film-quality look, and their 60i setting (a shutter rate of one 60th of a second) for reality TV-type shooting or YouTube fun.

Canon's announcement follows an unveiling by Sony of its latest models. In early July, Sony announced two camcorders that record to DVDs and hard-disc drives slated for retail release this fall.

See more CNET content tagged:
Canon Inc., HD camcorder, camcorder, camera, Sony Corp.


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16:9 ?
Last time I checked, 1,440 by 1,080 pixels was not full 16:9 HD. That would be 1920 x 1080. Canon must be doing tricks in the processing between the three chips?
Posted by JeffinMD (8 comments )
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Non-Square Pixels
Most current 1080i cameras do this. The CCD is capable of 16:9 but the image is saved as 1440x1080 and stretched using a non-square pixel algorithm which is the same technique used in taking a 720x480 image on a DVD and stretching it to 854x480 for 16:9.
Posted by Captain Bebops (260 comments )
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