Image2-224x127It's easy to forget with the advent of the HDSLR that there are still many advantages to using a "real" camcorder. If you want autofocus, image stabilization, a legitimate 50mbps codec, and none of the aliasing and CMOS skew problems we associate with DSLRs -- but have little use for shallow depth-of-field -- take a look at the Canon XF305 and X300, Canon's new competitors to the Sony EX1 and EX3.

As for the image above, no, that's not a mirrored picture. While most camcorders only allow you use the LCD screen on the left side (as designed for shooting with the right hand), the XF305 has a screen that flips around to the other side -- one of many features you won't find on a DSLR, which are just now getting articulating LCD screens in the form of the Canon 60D, which just might be the best HDSLR right now.

An overview of the specs:

- 3 Native 1/3" 1920 x 1080 CMOS Sensors
- 50Mbps MPEG-2 Recording
- 4:2:2 Color Sampling
- 60p, 60i, 30p, 24p
- MXF File Format
- Dual CF Card Slots
- 18x HD L-Series Zoom
- Multiple Bit Rates, Resolutions
- Dual XLR Inputs
- HD/SD-SDI, SMPTE Time Code, Genlock (XF305 only)

Some shots with shallow DOF, thanks to the long end of the zoom:

From XDCAM-USER, you can see just how similar the XF305 is to the Sony EX1 (the Canon is on top, the Sony below):


Here's a look at the XF305's ergonomics, which this reviewer found troubling:

If you're interested in this latest camera from Canon, check out ProVideo Coalition's review of the $7,500 camcorder below.

Link: REVIEW: Canon XF305 Camera