Canon Exclusive: 3.89 Megapixel Full HD CMOS Image Sensor
The VIXIA HF21 captures 1920 x 1080 high definition video through its Canon designed and manufactured 3.89 Megapixel HD CMOS Image Sensor, similar to the CMOS image sensors in Canon's EOS Series Digital SLR cameras.
High color resolution and advanced color reproduction is provided by the VIXIA HF21's sophisticated CMOS image sensor. It is also unique in featuring Canon's proprietary noise reduction technologies for crisp, sharp images. Low noise technology also means that even in dimly lit scenes, the signal from each pixel is as pure as possible, with minimal noise or other aberrations. It's the ideal sensor for HD.
The VIXIA HF21 uses an RGB Primary Color Filter with Bayer Placement Pattern that separates light into red, green and blue color components. This results in vibrant images with deep, rich, accurate color and natural-looking tones similar to what you'd obtain from 3CCD camcorders. As an added benefit, the CMOS sensor provides outstanding image capture in low light conditions.
Much better cameras out there for price
I was excited to receive this camera finally but i was initially unable to transfer videos because the software is only for PC. Indoors and low light setting this camera preforms awful. There is so much noise and ugly grain in the picture. However the day shots shot in full light are great. The camcorder does not have very many features and the menu is a pain to navigate. My battery stopped working within the first 2 months but i was able to snag another. Overall i am not impressed with this camera and i feel there are better ones out there like DSLR's.
April 8, 2012
Decent Camera Terrible Software & Documentation
I picked the Vixia HF R20 as the lowest priced model that appeared to meet my needs from those available at the retailer where I purchased it. I have owned this camcorder for about six hours - and I have not quite decided if it is going back to the store in the morning.
The camera itself seems ok despite several minor shortfalls (such as poor autoexposure handling of backlit scenes and a failure of the autoexposure to adequately prioritize based on face recognition). My main disappointments with this camcorder are the absolutely terrible software and the incompetently prepared documentation. The quick start guide adequately covered the steps that I had already taken before reading it. Then I tried reading the manual -- I am a Mensa member with a 16+ Reading Grade Level and I was thoroughly confused by the manual that jumps back and forth, refers you to a PDF file that you need to install on a computer for basic information and that never manages to cover any topic completely in any one section of the manual. I still have not found whatever menu setting is supposed to let me set the camcorder to record to the memory cards instead of to its fixed internal memory.
The included software comes on three CDs -- but no matter which order you load them in, it is impossible to load all three CDs on any computer because the video transfer software and video browser software CANNOT BOTH be loaded - although you would need both if you were going to copy files from the camcorder to your pc and save then in any file type that windows software can recognize (although the camera's MTS file format works ok in windows if you rename the filetype to MPG or MP4).
One of the provided CD's is marked as Canon's own software for this camcorder - that software loads OK, but when you are nearly finished it tries to open a browser window to go to the Canon website to register and then tells you the software needs an IMMEDIATE RESTART before it actually gets the browser loaded. Once you do get the Canon software installed and restarted, the Canon software cannot recognize any supported model camera while the camcorder is connected to the pc. The Canon software provided with this camcorder appears to be for Canon digital still cameras only!
The other two CD are marked as Pixela software. A phone call to Canon tech support got the information that you are only supposed to load the Video Transfer software disc, not the Video Browser disc (I had to call Canon for Pixela software support because Pixela's own support was closed already). Another call to Canon tech support got the advice that the camcorder has to be in playback mode to connect to the pc (this is NOT in the manuals - at least not in the part about connecting to the pc and not in the part about troubleshooting the pc not recognizing the camcorder).
May 19, 2011
This has been a great little camera for a variety of uses. It shoot absolutely gorgeous footage. Which is amazing coming from a camera the size of a soda can. It also has a built-in gyroscope and software to stabilize your images without looking strange.
The camera also features a built-in LED light and flash for night-time shooting. As expected, low-light shots are pretty grainy, but that's the trade-off you get with CMOS chips. The HDMI port allows you to output to an HDTV in real time. Furthermore, it is FULL HD 1080p. Not the scaled down HD you see in other cameras.
One major con (and I just learned of this) is that you cannot make money off of your footage without paying royalties for use of the built-in MPEG-4 codec. Most people probably won't run afoul of this... but there it is.
May 2, 2010
BAD SOFTWARE GREAT CAMCORDER
I AM A LONG TIME AND EXCLUSIVE CANON PERSON, BUT THE SOFTWARE USED FOR THIS IS NOT THE EASIEST TO USE. ALSO IT IS TO CONVERT THE VIDEOS FOR AN iPOD/iPHONE BUT IT WILL NOT ALLOW THE FILES TO BE COPIED OR PLAYIED ON THE DEVICE.
ALSO ANOTHER CON IT CAN RECORD AT SO HIGH OF QUALITY THAT IT CANT BE MADE EVEN INTO A BLUERAY DISK TO SAVE AND PLAY.
BUT I WILL SAY THE CAMCORDER ITS SELF IS DESIGNED LIKE ALL CANONS WITH TOP QUALITY, EXCELLENT PICTURE AND EASY TO USE.
I JUST WISH IT WAS EASIER TO WORK WITH THE FILES. AFTER ALL THESE ARE SOME OF THE MOST IMPORTANT MEMORIES OF MY LIFE.
February 11, 2010
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Prices and specifications subject to change without notice. Actual prices are determined by individual dealers and may vary.