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Steve Douglas

Canon XA-10

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Received a request about my opinion of this cam this morning but I have had no practical experience with the quality of the footage or its ease of use. Any one have any thoughts?

Steve

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I watched Philip Bloom's year old review of it the other day. Also includes the XF100 and XF105. Lots of useful info.

 

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I shoot with a Canon HF-G10, which is the same camera minus the xlr inputs. As far as ease of use in an underwater setting, it is important to note that the functions are heavily touch screen dependent. As long as you have a housing which allows you to easily navigate the menus-either by external monitor and menu buttons ala L&M or By use of the remote ala Gates-it is easy to use. I have the L&M and have no difficulty using white balance, shutter speed, aperture control etc. on the fly.

Footage quality can be quite good if the settings are correct and you feed the camera enough light. I am very happy with the performance of the camera in low light especially. Blacks aren't grainy which was a constant issue with Our old camera. I will link to some footage below.

 

 

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Much thanks and I will pass this information on.

Steve

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Speaking from a bias of "L&M makes a housing for it," I have been really impressed with this little camera. It uses the same CMOS Pro sensor Canon is using in the XF100 and XF300 cameras--a native 1080p sensor. Still a small sensor, so your DOF will be fairly deep, but larger pixels mean it's easy to white balance, and good in low light. 24 mbps AVCHD provides more than enough detail in the motion for almost anything I can throw at it. I like its options of 1080i60, 1080p30, and 1080p24. You can manually set the gain on the camera, or turn off auto-gain entirely, which is great for managing the digital noise that comes with higher gain settings.

 

Underwater-only users should go with its little brother the HF-G10; the XA-10 has twice the internal storage (but both cameras are expandable) and a removable XLR audio handle that doesn't fit in L&M or Gates' housings, and costs $500 more. If you plan to use it as a topside camera for professional use, though, the XLR on the XA10 can come in handy.

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