Canon has introduced its new XH A1S and XH G1S video camcorders, aimed at the prosumer and videographer market rather than directly at everyday consumers’ pocketbooks. The HD units record video to HDV tapes, offer optical image stabilization, and offer a 20× manual zoom that can operate simultaneously in manual or autofocus mode, giving video creators a high degree of control over their shots.
Both the XH A1S and XH G1S offer a wide range of color and image settings, viewfinder options, and camera control features, including outputting video at multiple frame rates (60i, 30F, 24F, and an optional upgrade for 50i and 25F). The cameras offer 23 custom presets for image quality adjustment, and settings can be stored using an integrated SD/SDHC memory card and transfered to other Canon professional cameras. Both units also offer two channel audio performance, two XLR audio inputs, and optional hard disk recording using Canon’s FS-CV DTE Recorder.
The XH G1S also includes HD-SDI/SD-SDI output, SMTPE timecode input and output, and a Genlock input. HD-SDI connection outputs a 1.485 Gbps digital signal with embedded audio and SMTPE; the Genlock input helps with seamless switching in multi-camera setups.
Both the XH A1S and XH G1S should be available in late December at estimated prices of $3,999 and $6,999…not for the faint of heart, but if you’re going to be shooting video that’s going into real production houses, cameras like these merit consideration.