Combining a compact form factor and professional video features, the Canon XA30 is well-suited for event coverage, wedding videography, independent and documentary filmmaking, and other applications that require a compact, professional camera. It is equipped with a 20x Canon optical zoom lens with a versatile 35mm equivalent range of 26.8 to 576mm, and features a 1/2.84", HD CMOS Pro sensor with enhanced sensitivity for improved low-light performance over the previous model. To fit into your workflow, the camcorders captures up to 1920x1080 video at 23.98p, 29.97p, 59.94p, and 59.94i frame rates, while also offering Slow and Fast Motion recording modes, as well as an interval recording option to capture fast motion of up to 1200x the original speed.
In addition to the standard gamma recording mode, the XA30 offers Wide DR and Highlight Priority Gamma modes. Wide DR compresses high brightness areas to achieve a wider dynamic range of 600%. This not only helps suppress overexposure, but also produces smooth gradations in highlights and shadows, all while maintaining a finalized look that eliminates the need for post-production processing. The Highlight Priority Mode gives an HDR-like quality to your video by reducing the amount of highlight and mid-tone compression on the gamma curve, which helps to maintain highlight exposure. The mode also enhances brightness and saturation for more faithful color reproduction. A View Assist Mode is available to support this mode, enabling you to more accurately monitor what the final images will look like.
The XA30 features both a 3.5" OLED Touch Panel view screen with a 10,000:1 contrast ratio, and a color electronic viewfinder with 1,560,000 dots of resolution. The camera features full manual control and auto modes for exposure, focus, white balance, gain, and shutter speed. The camera provides professional features such as a pre-record buffer, peaking, zebra bars, color bars, and reference tone. The zoom speed is adjustable with variable, constant (with 16 different speed levels), fast, normal and slow settings. The camera features a detachable top handle with zoom toggle, record start/stop, IR emitter, tally light, accessory shoe, external mic holder and two XLR connectors with phantom power and manual audio level controls. The XA30 includes a built-in headphone jack and a mini-HDMI connector, and outputs composite video and audio via a 3.5mm four pole mini jack.
Two built-in SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card slots allow you to record video to available media cards in both slots at the same time. This allows you to create an instant back up copy for archiving and data protection or you can capture high resolution AVCHD or MP4 video files on one card while creating a lower data rate MP4 more suitable for the web on the other card. When using two media cards and the camera is in Relay mode, there is no need to stop shooting to swap out a full media card. When one card becomes full, recording seamlessly switches to the other card. Built-in dual-band Wi-Fi allows you FTP video files directly from the camera, or playback footage from the memory cards to Wi-Fi enabled TVs and Computers. You can also remotely control select camera functions from a smart phone or tablet over Wi-Fi, freeing you from remote cables.
HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor
The XA30 features a new 1/2.84-inch HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor that captures approximately 2136x1362 pixels. It features a +3dB improvement in signal-to-noise ratio compared to the previous model, allowing it to camera clearer and sharper images in low light conditions.
20x Canon Optical Zoom Lens
The Canon 20x HD Zoom Lens provides a zoom range with a 35mm equivalent of 26.8 to 576mm, and a minimum object distance of just 23.6". The lens features an eight blade iris design providing a more natural look, out of focus areas are smoother and more appealing. The lens features an endless-type manual focus/zoom ring and the built-in power zoom control includes user-programmable direction and sensitivity modes. Zoom speed can be set to variable, constant (with 16 levels), with fast, normal, or slow speeds.
1920x1080 Video Recording
The XA30 offers multiple recording modes, resolutions, and frames rates, giving you the ability to adapt to a variety of workflows and applications. It can record in Full HD 1920x1080 resolution up to 59.94p in both AVCHD and MP4 recording codecs, at multiple bit rates, and even simultaneously to dual SD cards. For documentary and independent film work, 23.98p frame rates are available.
Slow and Fast Motion and Interval Recording
Slow and Fast Motion Modes allow the XA30 to record a different frame rate than the playback frame rate in MP4 recording modes, for a fast or slow motion effect during playback. Additionally, an interval recording option allows you to record frames at specified intervals, providing time-lapse recording from 2x to 1200x of the original speed.
Dual-band Wi-Fi (5 GHz and 2.4 GHz) support is built into the camera, allowing FTP file transfer of MP4 video to Cloud-based servers for convenient backups or situations where a relay station, such as a news truck, is unavailable. It is also possible to connect to compatible networks, wireless hotspots, and compatible iOS mobile devices using the free Canon Movie Uploader app, or play back video on the camcorder's memory cards to Wi-Fi enabled TVs and computers. Wi-Fi also allows remote control of key camcorder controls, such as recording start/stop, zoom, aperture, shutter speed, gain, white balance, and focus via your mobile device.
Wide DR Gamma (600%)
Wide DR Gamma, an option found on Canon's professional CINEMA EOS cameras, compresses high brightness areas to achieve a wider dynamic range of 600%. By suppressing overexposure in high brightness areas of the composition, this mode helps achieve a wide dynamic range of 600% to produce seamless tone gradations, resulting in smooth detail, accurate color, and helps suppress overexposure and blown-out highlights.
Highlight Priority Mode
The Highlight Priority Mode is a gamma setting that gives an HDR-like quality to your video. By reducing the mid- to high-brightness compression of the standard gamma mode, the Highlight Priority mode helps to prevent loss of detail in high brightness areas. Designed for display on a bright LCD TV, videos captured in Highlight Priority mode should be shown at a high brightness setting to help ensure accurate portrayal of the effect.
Video Assist Function
To support the Highlight Priority Mode, the camcorder has a View Assist function that increases brightness and medium tone gamma in the camera's viewfinder or OLED panel. This allows images to be displayed with the brightness and gradation with which they are being recorded or reviewed, helping to ensure the subjects look natural and realistic.
3.5" OLED Touch Panel View Screen and 0.24" EVF
The 3.5-inch, 1,230,000-dot equivalent OLED display provides vivid color and a 10,000:1 contrast ratio. The screen has a viewing angle of over 80 degrees in all directions, which allows you to see a usable image even when viewing at extreme angles. The Color EVF is a 0.24 inch with 1,560,000 dots of resolution, and tilts up to 45° to accommodate different shooting positions. A joystick located to the right of the viewfinder, where the thumb rests, enables control of camera settings without having to use touch panel controls.
The XA30 offers optical image stabilization (IS) useful for reducing image blur in a wide variety of shooting situations. Additional IS modes can be manually selected to enhance the optical image stabilization, or you can select Intelligent IS and allow the camera to identify the appropriate stabilization mode for the situation.
Dynamic IS: Improves on standard on translational IS (up-down/left-right) stabilization, by adding three additional corrections - roll axis correction (tilting/rocking of the camera forward and back), horizontal roll correction and vertical roll correction for five-axis correction when shooting on the wide end of the lens.
Macro IS: Corrects angular and shift-type shake in wide-angle shots.
Powered IS: Corrects for low-frequency camcorder shake when shooting at the long (telephoto) end of the lens
Dual SD Card Slots
Two SD/SDHC/SDXC card slots are built into the camera allowing you varied recording options
Dual Recording: Allows you to simultaneously record the same footage to different media cards using different codecs and bit rates
Double-Slot Recording: Allows you to record simultaneously to each of the two SD memory card slots, providing an instant backup for your footage
Relay Recording: The XA30 automatically switches video recording from one memory card to the other when the first memory card becomes full.
Manual Camera Control
The XA30 features selectable manual/automatic control on the camera functions, allowing you to choose the best settings for the situation. Functions include: Exposure, Shutter Speed, Iris, Gain, Exposure Lock, AGC Limit.
White Balance features 6 presets (Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent H, and Fluorescent), as well as two manual white balance settings. Additionally when specific adjustment of the color temperature is desired, the color temperature may be adjusted in 100K increments from 2,000 to 15,000K.
The cameras body features five user assignable buttons so you can customize the camera to access features without having to enter the menu system.
XLR Audio Inputs with Manual Gain Control
The XA30 features an integrated mic, and the detachable handle houses two XLR Line/Mic level inputs with +48V phantom power for connecting external mics. The detachable handle also houses the manual audio level controls. Should you choose, the built-in mic and an XLR input can be used simultaneously. For audio monitoring, there is a 3.5mm headphone jack with 16 volume settings provides for accurate audio monitoring.
Detachable Top Handle
The detachable top handle contains the audio controls and external XLR audio inputs, as well as a zoom control rocker, record start/stop button, accessory cold shoe, tally light, and an infrared emitter. You can remove the top handle from the camera to create an even smaller shooting package.
Infrared Shooting Mode
The XA30 features an Infrared Mode that allows the capture of video in conditions with little to no ambient light by removing the infrared cutoff filter from the optical path. The camcorder's specially designed lens coating allows the infrared light to pass through to the image sensor. Thanks to the improved sensor sensitivity, it can shoot at brightness levels that are approximately 1.4 times more sensitive than the previous model. For more flattering IR imagery, the detachable handle features a diffuser along with the infrared emitter. The camcorder gives the option of recording in white or green modes.
Optional Bluetooth Mic with Two-Way Intercom
The XA30 is compatible with the optional Canon WM-V1 Wireless Bluetooth Microphone. This feature allows high-quality audio to be recorded from up to 164' away (50m), making it ideal for events, ceremonies, nature recording and other situations that call for unobtrusive sound recording. With optional earphones attached, the WM-V1 Wireless Microphone can also be used as a two-way intercom.
To assist with manual focusing, the XA30 provides Focus Assist features, including 2x magnification of your subject, which is automatically cancelled when you start recording, and color peaking, which outlines the shooting object's focused areas in colored lines.
Zebra bars selectable between 70 and 100% are available to help you judge exposure. The camera can display and record color bars or color bars with reference tone. The color bars comply with the SMPTE standards. Reference tone levels can be set at -12 dB, -18 dB or -20 dB.