If you don't feel nostalgic seeing some new camcorders on the market, then you probably just graduated college. Some of the NFS team cut their teeth on old Canon camcorders, such as the Canon GL-2 and Canon XL-2. 

Now Canon has unveiled five new 4K camcorders—the XA65, XA60, XA75, XA70, and the Canon VIXIA HF G70 camcorder—to prove that if it ain't broke, don't fix it. All of these new cams are compact and lightweight, making them ideal for documentaries, weddings, corporate, and, yes, even content creators.

Canon XA75Canon XA75Credit: Canon

Before we dive into the features of all five 4K cameras, let's talk about how these cameras can be used.

With their versatility, they can be used in controlled situations, like filming corporate videos, interviews of all kinds, and even weddings. But they also shine in run-and-gun and ENG-type situations thanks to their size and all-in-one camera package. All you need is media! 

For filmmakers and content creators, these Canon cameras can act as an excellent B-camera option for guerilla filmmaking. They're also great for quick setups in bad outdoor conditions or when you wouldn't want to risk a more expensive camera.

The Camcorder Lineup

The new Canon XA75 and XA70 both have a 1-inch type CMOS sensor, while the Canon XA65 and XA60 camcorders feature a 1/2.3-inch type CMOS sensor. All of the cameras are powered by a DIGIC DV 6 image processor ensuring clean 4K video that's wrapped in a nice MP4 container. These cameras will also keep your footage steady while going handheld, thanks to the 5-axis image stabilization.

While they don't have the crazy depth of field that larger sensors provide, the smaller sensors can still deliver fantastic footage. Just look at Danny Boyle's 28 Days Later, which was shot on DV tapes with a Canon XL-2. Granted, they had the benefit of a DOF Adapter. 

Canon XA70Canon XA70Credit: Canon

Some of the key features found in the Canon XA75 and XA70 include:

  • A 15x zoom lens with 40x digital zoom
  • DUAL pixel CMOS AF and face tracking
  • Dual XLR audio input with 4-channel audio recording
  • OSD recording (On-Screen Display; time, date, timecode, etc., are embedded in the camera files)
  • Infra-red support
  • USB video class (UVC) support
  • 3G-SDI (XA75 only) and HDMI output

The prices of the XA75 and XA70 are $2,999 and $2,499, respectively, and will be available in November 2022.

Canon XA70 & XA75

New Release!
  • 1" CMOS Sensor, DIG!C DV 6 Processor
  • Up to UHD 4K30 Video Recording
  • Mini-HDMI Output (3G-SDI Output w/ XA75)
  • Integrated 15x Optical Zoom Lens
  • Dual XLR and Mic/Line Audio Input
  • USB Type-C Output with UVC Support
  • 5-Axis Optical Image Stabilization
  • Dual-Pixel CMOS Autofocus Feature
  • Dual SD Relay and Simultaneous Recording
  • 3.5" Touchscreen LCD, Tiltable OLED EVF

The Canon XA65 and XA60 features are very similar with:

  • A 20x zoom lens and 40x digital zoom
  • Dual XLR audio input with 4-channel audio recording
  • OSD recording
  • Infra-red support
  • USB video class (UVC) support
  • 3G-SDI (XA65 only) and HDMI output

Neither camera features DUAL pixel CMOS AF and face tracking, but there is hybrid AF technology. The XA65 costs $2,299, while the XA60 will set you back $1,799, both shipping in October 2022.

Canon XA60 & XA65

New Release!
  • 1/2.3" CMOS Sensor, DIG!C DV 6 Processor
  • Up to UHD 4K30 Video Recording
  • Mini-HDMI Output (3G-SDI Output w/ XA65)
  • Integrated 20x Optical Zoom Lens
  • USB Type-C Output with UVC Support
  • Infrared, Optical Image Stabilization
  • 3.5" Touchscreen LCD, Tiltable OLED EVF
  • Record 4K in XF-AVC and MP4 Formats
  • Dual SD Relay and Simultaneous Recording
  • Dual XLR and Mic/Line Audio Input

All four of the XA cameras can connect via USB-C to a compatible computer to stream the video in UVC (USB video class), perfect for live events and houses of worship. You can match the camera's image settings for a multi-cam setup.

Canon VIXIA HF G70Canon VIXIA HF G70Credit: Canon
  • A 1/2.3-inch type CMOS sensor
  • 20x zoom
  • OSD recording
  • USB-C output for streaming (and can be turned into a webcam)
  • Hybrid AF
  • Oversampled HD recording
  • UVC support

The VIXIA HF G70 costs $1,249 and is available in October 2022. That price makes it very attractive for those looking for a very compact 4K camera or a B-camera for interviews and general filming.

Canon Vixia HF G70

New Release!
  • 1/2.3" UHD 4K CMOS Sensor
  • Record up to UHD 4K30 Video
  • DIGIC DV 6 Image Processor
  • 29.3 to 627mm, 20x Optical Zoom in 4K
  • Dual SD Card Slots, 5-Axis Stabilization
  • USB Type-C for Livestreaming with UVC
  • 3.5" Touchscreen LCD, Tiltable 0.36" EVF
  • Slow- & Fast-Motion, Interval Recording
HF G70

The new Canon cameras have fixed zoom lenses and harken back to the "early days" of content creation, even going back to the analog days of Hi-8 up to DV and early affordable HD cameras. You won't easily get bokeh (if at all) with these cameras, but they are still an important tool for content creators that need to move fast and can't really stop, reset, and do another take. What they sacrifice in bokeh, they make up in speed and reliability.  

Our Thoughts

Compact, fixed lens cameras like the new Canon XA75, XA70, XA65, XA60, and VIXIA HF G70 still play an important role in the world of production, including general video, event, documentary, film, and more. They don't need to be built out and can shoot right out of the box. We're talking full audio and video that's ready for editing as soon as you offload your media. But this time, you won't have to log and capture your footage!

Often, a camcorder is just the right tool for the job. Sometimes a cinema camera with prime cine lenses isn't going to cut it at a wedding or a run-and-gun documentary. If much of your business includes corporate and event production, these new Canon cameras are worth consideration.

Learn more at Canon's site, and let us know in the comments if you plan on getting any of these cameras for your toolkit! If you think this is old tech that needs to just fade into history, we'd love to argue about it!

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