Canon Camcorders Embrace 3D

Canon, with the help of a small bit of firmware upgrades, is making the big leap to 3D as its XF300–series camcorders now include Canon’s 3D Assist and Scan Reverse Functions. The built-in features facilitating the use of two units to work in tandem to capture 3D HD video.

The new firmware allows OIS Lens Shift to be used in optically aligning two XF305 or XF300 camcorders and a Focal Length Guide to display the zoom position of each camera in relation to each other and calibrate zoom settings. It also supports double slot recording for instantaneous backup and the option to disable relay recording for more control over dual memory card management.

Canon also has its new ultra compact XA10 Professional camcorder on display, ideal for situations where mobility while shooting is critical. The feature-rich professional model records Full HD 1080p video using an AVCHD codec and includes a detachable handle for low-angle shooting and portability. With the handle attached, the XA10’s functionality is further enhanced with the addition of XLR inputs and an external microphone holder.

The new XA10 provides the option of recording to a 64GB internal flash drive or two SDXC-compatible card slots, as well as Relay Recording and the ability to record simultaneously to two cards for instant backup.

Also on display are a full line of professional HD camcorders including the complete XF-series lineup of Canon XF305, XF300, XF105 and XF100 models. The Canon XF305 and XF300 Professional Camcorders include a Genuine Canon 18x HD L-series lens providing documentary filmmakers and news camera operators with the focal-range versatility required in the field. Each model includes three Canon developed and designed native 1920 x 1080 CMOS image sensors, and Canon’s proprietary XF codec that delivers the exceptional color detail required for accurate chroma-keying, color-grading and compositing for digital filmmaking.

All XF-series models record to Compact Flash (CF) cards and feature hot-swappable card slots for maximum performance. Canon’s XF305 and XF105 models feature industry-standard HD-SDI output, genlock, and SMPTE time code (in/out) terminals for multi-camera or 3D productions.

The Canon XF codec is an MPEG-2 4:2:2 50Mbps codec used for exceptional high-definition image quality, full non-linear editing (NLE) systems compatibility and efficient, robust workflow.  The Canon XF codec is currently compatible with leading software programs widely used within the video production and broadcast industries including those available from Adobe, Apple, Avid, and Grass Valley.

Now, with the new firmware announcement for the XF305 and XF300 models, all four Canon XF-series camcorders will include in-camera features to enable the easy set-up and capture of high-definition 3D video when two camcorders are paired.

Canon 3D Solutions for Broadcast Lenses

Canon’s new 3D Bridge Cable, together with the Company’s new ergonomic Digital Drive Unit and 3D Lens Adjustment Software, will provide exceptional interoperability and precision in synchronization of zoom, focus and iris positions of the lens pairs. The Company’s new ergonomic Digital Drive Unit incorporates Canon-developed, ultra-compact rotary encoders capable of 0.1um position detection which produces 16-bit resolution of the positions of zoom, iris, and focus controls.

Most of Canon’s HDTV Zoom Lenses are equipped with 16-bit resolution Rotary Encoder Devices, which provide precise synchronous lens control by simply connecting the two lenses with a 20pin-20pin single cable. This 3D Bridge Cable will allow simultaneous control of a pair of lenses from one zoom and focus controllers.

The “3D Lens Adjustment Software” is intended to make stereoscopic tracking of the zoom, focus and iris even more precise, and allow appropriate offsets to be easily made using the Digital Drive Unit’s display to compensate for minor zoom and focus tracking differences between any two lens pairs. Together with the 3D Bridge Cable, the software will also make it possible to use standard lens controllers. The software can be installed to the conventional lenses at Canon service centers for the customers who purchased the 3D Bridge Cable.