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Two new 'compact' prosumer HD cams from Canon - XH G1 & XH A1

Matt Burns

Canon has just announced their first prosumer high-def camcorders. These things might not be as small and compact as Sony's consumer lines, but they weren't meant to be ether. Canon basically took their old, but still a goodie, XL H1 (MSRP $9999) and shrunk the size of the camera and price. The two new camcorders both have the same imaging system as the XL H1 with three 1/3-inch 16:9 CCDs that can record 1080i60/24. Well, to be honest, the resolution is really 1440 x 1080 which is still high-def; just, not the 1980 x 1080i that you were expecting. The cams are equipped with a 20x optical HD lens and have the same DIGIC DV II processor as the XL H1. These two models are identical sans one little thing: a jack pack. The XH G1 (pictured with jack pack on the right) retails at $6999 and has an improved SD/HD-SDI that embeds not only the video signal and timecode, but also the audio. There is also a separate SMPTE Timecode in/out (via a toggle) and a Genlock input. If you don't need these jacks, you can save some gas money by picking up the same quality video via the XH A1 at $3999. The XH A1 should be available in October with the big brother coming in late November.

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