By Sarah Falson

DARLING HARBOUR: Canon yesterday entered the high definition camcorder stakes with two models priced at $6,499 and $11,499 for the serious enthusiast market.

The manufacturer announced the duo at the Digital Media Festival in Sydney’s Darling Harbour Convention Centre, with the help of professional Australian cinematographer Toby Oliver, who is responsible for television drama series Love Is A Four Letter Word and feature film Looking For Alibrandi.

“I couldn’t find any situations that the camera couldn’t deal with well,” he said.

“The long, 20x zoom lens is a pretty amazing lens, and I’m happy with the versatility of it. I was able to achieve a very filmic look straight out of the camera.”

Both the XH G1 and XH A1 boast three one third-inch CCDs and 20x optical zooms for “total image control across all forms of lighting,” according to Canon – consumer imaging products group account manager, Paul Stuart.

The two models will be available only from Foto Riesel and John Barry photographic stores, as the market for the two is said to be professional event videographers, independent film-makers and serious amateurs, according to Canon.

The 1080i, true high definition recording allows playback that looks and feels like that in the cinema, according to Stuart.

Canon recommends that the key selling features of the XH G1 and XH A1 are their high definition video capture, Canon ‘L Series’ 20x video lens with optical image stabiliser, ergonomic and compact design with fold-away LCD screen and Canon DiGIC DV II processor developed specifically for high definition.

“Canon is the clear market leader in broad HD lenses,” said Canon – consumer imaging products group marketing manager, Stuart Poignand.