Canon has announced – rather mild – updates to its popular pair of ultra-compact camcorders, the XA20 and XA25: they’re called the XA30 and XA35.
No huge changes here; the biggest is probably the sensor which despite still being fairly tiny at 1/2.8 inches has been given a sensitivity upgrade thereby improving the signal to noise ratio, according to the manufacturer.
Additionally, two software settings have been introduced as found on the larger XF200/205 camcorders and some of Canon’s other gear. The “Wide DR” mode is supposed to enable better control of highlights to give better dynamic range whilst the “Highlight Priority” mode is said to be suitable for bright scenes such as skies.
Slow and fast recording is also introduced, up to 1200x
Other than that everything seems to be pretty much identical to the older models which although very capable are now rather long in the tooth.
You can read our review of them here; despite our critique we actually bought an XA20 and liked it very much for a long time.
For anyone who’s not obsessed with having the latest and greatest specification, these new cams are perfectly good for everyday acquisition. Whether it’s worth paying the undoubted premium for them over the outgoing model is a different question!