Canon Vixia HF11, HG20 and HG21 Camcorders Priced For U.S., Getting Solid Early Reviews

Three new Canon cams including the successor to the HF10, one of last year's best AVCHD 'corders, are now officially bound for the U.S. after details hit in Japan a few weeks back. Camcorderinfo.com has already gotten their hands on an HF11 review unit, and liked what they saw-full HD capture at 1920x1080, dual flash storage options and image stabilization shipping this month for $1,200. The hard disk based HG20 and HG21 round out the new lineup.

Camcorderinfo.com is digging the HF11, but since the HF10 was released only 8 months ago, you can probably save some cash if the updated specs aren't important:

There's little difference between the Canon HF10 and Canon HF11. The big, advertised improvement in the new generation is an increased bitrate, up from 17Mbps to 24Mbps. This makes Canon the first to produce a consumer camcorder to reach the bitrate ceiling on the AVCHD codec. When we tested the camcorders, side-by-side, in the lab and out of the lab, we were hard-pressed to see much of a difference. The average shooter will not notice anything. The HF10's performance was pretty hard to top to begin with.

The second upgrade is internal memory, increasing from 16GB to 32GB of non-removable solid state capacity. This could be a value save if you don't already own a few SD/SDHC cards. If you do, you can probably save money by buying the HF10.

Full Release:

CANON U.S.A. INTRODUCES THREE NEW ADDITIONS TO ITS VIXIA HIGH DEFINITION CAMCORDER LINE-UP
New High-Definition Camcorders Offer Consumers Superb HD Image Quality and Expanded Recording Capacity

LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., August 7, 2008 – Canon U.S.A., Inc, a leader in digital imaging technology, announces the VIXIA HF11 Dual Flash Memory Camcorder, and the VIXIA HG21 and VIXIA HG20 Hard Disk Drive camcorders, providing greater internal storage capacity, enhanced High-Definition image quality and added versatility for preserving life's most precious moments.

The newest members to the VIXIA HD camcorder family incorporate Canon's core expertise in optics and image processing, and further raise the bar of High-Definition image quality by offering 24Mbps bit rate recording - the highest possible bit rate in the AVCHD format. The 24Mbps recording provides consumers enhanced detail, finer tonal gradation and improved reproduction of moving subjects. What's more, the new camcorders have higher internal memory capacity. The VIXIA HF11 Dual Flash Memory camcorder can record up to 12 hours of High-Definition video to a 32GB internal Flash drive, as well as record directly to a removable SDHC card for expanded recording time. The VIXIA HG21 and VIXIA HG20 camcorders feature 120GB and 60GB Hard Disk Drives, respectively, for recording up to 45 or 22 hours of HD video, and also offer the ability to record directly to an SDHC card.

"The upgrade to 24Mbps enables consumers to capture the highest quality of video in the market today, providing the best High-Definition experience on an HDTV" said Yuichi Ishizuka, senior vice president and general manager, Consumer Imaging Group, Canon U.S.A. "This increase, as well as dual recording options on all three VIXIA camcorders, is just another example of Canon's commitment to understanding the marketplace and helping to lay the groundwork to lead the market for the current and next generation of High-Definition camcorders."

VIXIA Core Technologies
All VIXIA camcorders feature Canon core technologies to create HD video that possess the highest level of image quality – a Genuine Canon HD Video Lens incorporates over 70 years of optics experience in professional broadcast and photography; a Canon designed and manufactured HD CMOS Image Sensor for Full HD (1920 x 1080) image capture; the Canon-developed DIGIC DV II Image Processor for superior color and clarity; Instant AutoFocus for fast and accurate auto focusing, which is crucial for HD; and SuperRange Optical Image Stabilization, which corrects a wide range of camcorder vibration for virtually shake-free images.

The ability to shoot video directly to an internal drive or to a removable SDHC memory card allows Canon camcorders to deliver a new level of performance, style and flexibility. Internal memory enables consumers to record video to the camcorder's built-in drive even if they do not have an SDHC card handy. When the internal drive becomes full, footage can be easily transferred to an SDHC memory card, and when it comes time to view their video, the card is simply inserted into a memory card reader in a computer or HDTV for instant viewing. Furthermore, having an SDHC memory card slot allows for expandability, since greater capacity can be added in the future by purchasing additional cards.

Availability and Pricing
Available in September, the Canon VIXIA HF11 Dual Flash Memory Camcorder, and VIXIA HG21 and VIXIA HG20 Hard Disk Drive camcorders will have a suggested selling price of $1199, $1299, and $949, respectively. All models come bundled with Pixela ImageMixer 3SE video editing software, which now supports Blu-Ray disk burning.

About Canon U.S.A., Inc.
Canon U.S.A., Inc. delivers consumer, business-to-business, and industrial imaging solutions. Its parent company, Canon Inc. (NYSE:CAJ), a top patent holder of technology, ranked third overall in the U.S. in 2007†, with global revenues of $39.3 billion, is listed as one of Fortune's Most Admired Companies in America and is on the 2007 BusinessWeek list of "Top 100 Brands." To keep apprised of the latest news from Canon U.S.A., sign up for the Company's RSS news feed by visiting www.usa.canon.com/pressroom.