Review of Canon VIXIA HF R10 Camcorder


TestFreaks Data











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Today for review I’ve got the new Canon Vixia HF R10 Camcorder. This camera is nice and small making it very portable, it features built-in 8gb of memory which can be expanded with the use of an SD card if you need more storage. It shoots in HD and comes with a 20X optical lens so you can be sure to get close up to your subject and have it be nice and clear. It is an HD camcorder with three options for video out so you can instantly watch your creation right on your TV, it also features the ability to take stills from the videos right on the camera. So read on to learn more..


We’ll start off with the video unboxing:

So let’s jump into the pictures.

Included with the camera is a few discs, charger, component and composite cables along with battery and manual. You’ll notice there is no HDMI cable even though the camera has an HDMI output.

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The camera itself is small and lightweight and has a strap on the side. It seems well made and it’s comfortable in the hand.

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On the bottom you’ll find battery compartment and tripod hole.

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On the top is the still picture button and the zoom slider.

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On the back you’ll find a large Record button along with with two rubber covers on each side that open to reveal HDMI, USB, A/V,Microphone, Power and component.

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It opens up of course to access the LCD display, it rotates so you can view it from the front, or top.

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To the left of the display is a little joystick for navigation and a function button beneath it.

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To the right of the display, on the camera itself are several more buttons.

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Specifications:

VIXIA HF R10

With the Canon VIXIA HF R10 Dual Flash Memory Camcorder, you’ll find that high definition video has hit new levels of convenience, ease, performance- and value. The VIXIA HF R10 has an 8GB internal flash drive, together with an SD memory card slot, Canon’s Relay Recording and Smart Auto. A Genuine Canon 20x HD Video Lens and Dynamic IS works in combination with our sophisticated Canon HD image processing to deliver the sharp, vivid, lifelike video you want to see on your HDTV. Advanced Video Snapshot lets you create 2-, 4- or 8-second movie clips, with music, that are perfect for sharing And advanced easy-to-operate control features of the VIXIA HF R10 help to make high-quality video that can turn the casual shooter into the family cinematographer, at a very affordable price. For the crowning touch, show your personal style with a choice of three colors- black, silver or red.

Specifications:
Digital Video

Video Recording system: MPEG4-AVC / H.264
Image Sensor
1/5.5-inch CMOS, RGB Primary Color Filter
Total Pixels: Approx. 2.39 Megapixels

Effective Pixels:
Video: Approx. 1.56 Megapixels (1664 x 936)
Dynamic IS ON: Approx. 1.04 Megapixels (1360 x 765)
Photo: 16:9 Approx. 1.56 Megapixels (1664 x 936)
4:3 Approx. 1.73 Megapixels (1520 x 1140)

Maximum recording time8GB internal flash drive:
*Recording time based on internal flash memory only. Greater capacity is possible when SD memory cards are used.
LP (5Mbps) 3 hours
SP (7Mbps) 2 hours 20 minutes
XP+ (12Mbps) 1 hour 25 minutes
FXP (17Mbps) 1 hour – Allows 1920 x 1080 Full HD Recording

Lens: Zoom Ratio 20x Optical/400x Digital
Focal Length: f-3.0 – 60mm (35mm equivalent 40 – 800mm)
Zoom Speed: Variable / 3 Fixed Zoom Speeds
Max. F/Stop: f/1.8-3.6
Focusing System: Instant AF, Face Priority AF, TTL (through the lens)
Manual Exposure: Yes
Programmed AE: Smart Auto, P, Cine*, Portrait, Sports, Snow, Beach, Sunset, Night Scene, Low Light, Spotlight, Fireworks
Max Shutter Speed: Movie: 1/2000, Still image: 1/500
Minimum Focusing Distance :10mm (wide) / 1m (tele)
White Balance: Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent H, Fluorescent, Manual
Frame Rate: 60i, 24p Progressive (records at 60i), 30p Progressive (records at 60i)
Minimum Illumination: 0.4 lx (Low Light mode)
Image Stabilization: Electronic: Dynamic Image Stabilization/Standard Mode (Dynamic OFF)
LCD Screen: 2.7-inch Widescreen color LCD (Approx.112,000 dots)
Recording Media: Internal flash drive (8GB) or SD memory card**
USB Terminal: USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
Video Terminal: component (output), composite (output)
Audio: Dolby Digital 2 channel (AC-3)
Supplied Video Editing Software: Pixela ImageMixer 3SE
HDMI Terminal: HDMI Mini Connector (output), CEC and x.v.Color supported
Microphone Terminal: 3.5 mm stereo mini-jack
AV Mini Terminal/Headphone Terminal: 3.5 mm 4 pole mini-jack (video/audio output only)
Dimensions: (W x H x D) Approx. 2.4 x 2.5 x 4.9in. (60 x 64 x 124mm)
Weight (not including battery pack and memory card): Approx. 9.5 oz. (270g)
Weight (fully loaded): Approx. 11.5 oz. (325g) (including BP-2L5, memory card and grip belt)

Price: $443.95 (From Amazon at time of review)


The Vixia display is not bad, you’ll find a few things on the screen letting you know the settings, battery life etc. You can turn all of this off of course if you want.

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There are several on screen settings you can adjust without actually going into the menus like White Balance, Digital Effect, Resolution, Quality etc:

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Then you can open the menus for even more options, but a lot of these aren’t really related to taking movies, just for the camera settings.

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So let’s take a look at some sample still pictures.  These were taken indoors in a very well lit room with five bulb overhead chandelier and the window blinds open letting sunlight in.

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As you can see they are very grainy, and not exactly focused, these were the best of the bunch, I took about 30 pictures in total of these things. I learned that you’ve really got to hold the camera still for pictures or they will be very much out of focus. The camera does have image stabilization but I not for the still camera I would guess.

Despite being a well lit room the pictures do appear fairly dark, even on a bright white background.

On the other hand, you don’t buy a camcorder to take still pictures, the ability to do that is just an added bonus, though it would be nice if it took semi-decent pictures. It does take good pictures though outside in very bright light, but you won’t be outside all of the time.

So how about the video performance? Here is a  product unboxing using the Vixia, this was taken under the same lighting conditions and the camera was set to the highest resolution:

The video isn’t too bad, but it’s not that great either. It’s a bit grainy like the pictures, it needs a lot of light and it doesn’t like dark objects as you can see from the video. I used a tripod for recording, so the camera was very still.

The microphone seems sensitive, I didn’t have to yell to be heard, and I wasn’t always close to it during the filming. The audio is decent overall I think.

As far as battery life, well there’s nothing I could find in the specs that says what the battery life should be but from what I can tell you should be able to get a couple hours recording out of it.

There is a bunch of software included with the camera, but I never bother with any of it, I’ve found it’s much easier to take the card out or hook it up via USB and transfer the videos and pictures that way instead of using the software to do it. The software is fine for people that don’t know much about cameras, and who might be looking for some basic tools, but I’ve got my own that I use so I have actually never installed the stuff that came with any of my cameras and actually used it.

The Vixia does have a lot of little features like the ability to output via HDMI, component and composite, or the ability to take video snapshots with music for sharing. It comes with 8gb internal memory but you can also use an SD card as well for even larger storage for more shooting time.


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Conclusion:

The Vixia is an easy to use camcorder, it’s not a professional camcorder so don’t expect a multitude of settings to be able to change but there are plenty of them in there. It’s really sort of an entry level camera, it’s one that most people will be able to pick up and just start shooting. Overall the Vixia is a nice little camera for those that want a no fuss, easy to use camcorder.
The video quality is decent if you’ve got enough light for indoor shooting and outdoor quality is very good.
The still picture function leaves a lot to be desired, I’d be carrying my dedicated still camera with me to take stills and not rely on this camera to do it.

8

Pros:
+Simple and easy to use
+Compact and lightweight
+Several output options
+Dual memory
+Decent video

Cons:
-Still pictures not very good
-Not great in low light situations

Grades:
Overall score-8-10
Design score-9-10
Performance score-8-10

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  • http://www.masteringphotography.net/ M.Goodman

    very nice review and post =)

  • Mark

    Also the sound in quiet rooms is very bad!

  • http://www.newbatterycharger.co.uk/ battery charger

    nice post. thank you for share.

  • Nicholas Burneskis

    can you put wide angle and fisheyes on it

  • fairplay

    Just started using my new Vixia Hf R10.
    My battery barely lasts 30 minutes.
    Is this normal ?

  • Nikki Lexie

    helppppppp how do you make it record to my sd card

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