updated 10:45 am EST, Wed January 31, 2007
Canon HV20 Camcorder
Canon on Wednesday unveiled the HV20, its second HDV camera for the mainstream. The companion to the earlier HV10 brings features normally reserved for professional cameras, according to the camera designer. The HV20 adds HDMI output, allowing it to display a native 1080i widescreen image with audio on an HDTV through a single cable. Sensitivity has also been increased on the 3-megapixel sensor for low-light shooting, jumping from 5 to 3 lux even with a short 1/30 second shutter speed.
Equally improved over the HV10 is a special 24p recording mode. Rather than shoot at the full 30 frames per second of TV, the HV20 can optionally shoot at 24 frames per second with progressive scan, avoiding the pulldown frame rate conversion needed for most handheld cameras. An optional CINE mode will also reflect the colors and tones expected in professional film, Canon claims. The camera's 10X optical zoom and instant auto-focus are continued from the earlier model. An American launch of the HV20 is set for April at a price of $1,099.