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Dennis Hissink : May 14th 2004 - 01:00 CET

Canon launches new MVX20 Series camcorders

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CanonCanon announces its 2.2 Megapixel MVX20i (12x zoom) and MVX25i (14x zoom) camcorders. The MVX20 Series delivers high quality movies, and can also be used to take still photographs, with digital still specifications and functionality comparable to that of many 2 Megapixel digital still cameras. Canon's DIGIC DV processor provides split path video and still image processing while an RGB Primary Colour Filter ensures warm, vivid colour reproduction. The camcorders have a stylish new robust design, with a highly polished, sculptured exterior. Their curved, easy holding grip and one touch operation afford users unprecedented ease of use. The MVX20i and MVX25i will be available from the end of June 2004.
Canon launches new MVX20 Series camcordersCCD sensor and DIGIC DV processing
The MVX20 Series' 2.2 Megapixel 1/3.4" CCD sensor utilises 1.77 effective Megapixels when recording movies to DV tape and 2.0 effective Megapixels when recording still images to SD or MMC memory cards, ensuring sharp, crisp images in either mode.

The DIGIC DV processor combines all key processing and memory requirements on a single chip. Two separate paths are used for movie and still images, allowing for the unique processing algorithms required to optimise quality for each output. This eliminates any image quality compromise during simultaneous video/still capture.

'Emotional' colours, improved audio
With its RGB Primary Colour Filter, the MVX20 Series avoids the colour conversion necessary with conventional CMYG filter camcorders, ensuring the reproduction of rich, warm, 'emotional' colours.

A new Digital Audio LSI (Large Scale Integrated Circuit) removes tape mechanism noise with the Adaptive Noise Reduction function, while the new Auto Wind Cut function removes wind noise, both without compromising overall audio recording. Manual Audio Level Control allows users to adjust audio input levels.

Digital Still Camera functions
Both models offer all the functions users would expect from a high quality digital still camera. The Progressive Photo System ensures still images are superb quality with minimal blurring, and the built-in flash provides shooting in limited light to a distance of 2m. The frame is split into three individually selectable auto-focus regions, while a manual Focus Ring offers a high level of creative control.

Drive modes include single shot, high speed continuous (up to 5 fps), normal speed continuous (up to 3 fps) and Auto Exposure Bracketing (AEB). AEB helps users in difficult lighting situations by taking three consecutive shots at slightly different exposure settings. Still images can be recorded to SD or MMC memory cards while simultaneously recording video to tape. Photos can be reviewed on the 2.5" LCD monitor by simply holding down the shutter button.

Users can print up to 15x21cm photo quality images direct to any PictBridge enabled printer, no PC required. When connected to a printer in this way vertical and horizontal trimming functions are available through the in-camera menu, enabling the user to optimise their image for printing. The Print/Share button allows easy direct printing and Windows PC uploading with a USB connection. The MVX20 Series supports Exif 2.2/Exif print, which records camera setting information to automatically optimise photo print output.

Internet sharing of clips and footage is simple, Motion-JPEG files can be recorded direct to the SD or MMC memory cards. In-camera conversion of tape footage into Motion-JPEG and transfer to SD or MMC cards is also possible. Depending on memory card size, up to 60 minutes of either QVGA or QQVGA formats can be recorded straight to card.

Powerful, high quality lenses
Canon's 60-year precision optics heritage has enabled the provision of high magnification 14x/280x optical/combined zoom on the MVX25i and 12x/240x zoom on the MVX20i. Lenses employ Super Spectral coatings to suppress ghosting and flare caused by untreated light reflecting off lens elements and digital sensor surfaces. Canon's patent-protected Gradation ND (Neutral Density) system prevents the decreased resolution of inferior neutral density systems in strong light conditions.

Full range of modes
Seven auto-exposure shooting modes are featured on the MVX20i, while the MVX25i additionally features Super Night mode, with an LED for shooting in zero-light conditions, and Night+ mode, which enables manual control of the LED. These modes help users to get the most from their camera when shooting difficult scenes. A wide range of digital effects and fade modes allow for creative video capture. A skin detail mode softens skin tones for flattering warm reproduction. Image Stabilization limits image shake, forgoing the need for a tripod in most situations. Both normal and High Resolution 16:9 wide screen modes are available. Canon's new High Resolution 16:9 mode offers more effective pixels, enabling users to record true 16:9 footage.

DV Messenger 2.0
Two-way communication software, DV Messenger 2.0, provides peer-to-peer communication while also enabling the exchange of audio and video data, live or recorded, over the Internet. It allows the camcorder to be used as a web cam for video chat, and enables the user to adjust their view by controlling the remote camera using their keyboard. Four other applications are also included with the MVX20 Series: PhotoStitch, PhotoRecord, ZoomBrowser EX and ImageBrowser EX.

The camcorders are equipped with both DV and USB terminals. The DV terminal allows high quality dubbing with no loss of resolution, connection to a PC's IEEE1394 port for nonlinear editing and retouching. The USB terminal is used for transfer of images and video files from the SD or MMC memory card.

MVX20 models feature an Analogue-In port and Analogue/Digital converter. Analogue devices such as VHS players can be plugged in for conversion of signals to digital, which can then be stored direct to the camcorder or output to a PC for saving to DVD or HD.

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