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Canon USA > 
Item#: N82E16830120312

Canon VIXIA HF20 Black 1/4" CMOS 3.31 MP 2.7" 211K 15X Optical Zoom Full HD Dual Flash Memory Camcorder

  • 15X Optical Zoom 300X Digital Zoom
  • 1/4" CMOS
  • 2.7" 211K
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Learn more about the Canon USA VIXIA HF20

General

Brand
Canon
Model
VIXIA HF20
Type
High Definition Dual Flash Memory Camcorder
Color
Black

SPEC

Dimensions (WxHxD) & Weight
2.8" x 2.4" x 4.9" (70 x 62 x 124mm)
14.1 oz. (400g) (fully loaded)

Image Sensor

Image Sensor
1/4" CMOS

SPEC

Still Image Size
16:9: Approx. 2.99 Megapixels (2304 x 1296)
4:3 Approx. 3.31 Megapixels (2100 x 1575)

Lens

Optical Zoom
15X
Digital Zoom
300X

SPEC

Image Stabilization
SuperRange Optical (lens shift)
Viewfinder
N/A
LCD
2.7" 211K

Lens

Filter Diameter
37mm

SPEC

Shutter Speed
Movie: 1/2000, Still image: 1/500
Focusing System
Instant AF, Face Priority AF, TTL (through the lens)
Minimum Focusing Distance: 10mm (wide) / 1m (tele)
Focal Length f=4.1- 61.5mm (35mm equivalent: 39.5 - 592.5mm)
Programmed AE
AUTO, P, Av, Tv, Portrait, Sports, Night, Snow, Beach, Sunset, Spotlight, Fireworks
White Balance
Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H, Manual
Minimum Illumination
0.4 lx (Night mode)

Recording Media

Recording Media
Internal 32GB Hard Disk/ Memory Card
Memory Card Support
SDHC Card

SPEC

Video Recording
Format: MPEG4-AVC / H.264
Frame Rate: 60i, 24p Progressive (records at 60i), 30p Progressive (records at 60i)
Maximum recording time:
32GB internal Flash drive
LP (5 Mbps) 12 hours 15 minutes
SP (7 Mbps) 9 hours 35 minutes
XP+ (12 Mbps) 5 hours 45 minutes
FXP (17 Mbps) 4 hours 10 minutes - Allows 1920 x 1080 Full HD Recording
MXP (24 Mbps) 2 hours 55 minutes - Allows 1920 x 1080 Full HD Recording
Audio Recording
Dolby Digital 2 channels (AC-3 2 ch)
Connectors
USB
Component (output)
Composite (output)
HDMI Mini Connector (output)
3.5 mm stereo mini-jack
3.5 mm 4 pole mini-jack (video/audio output only)

Features

Features
Record up to 12 hours of HD video to a 32GB internal Flash drive
Genuine Canon 15x HD Video Lens
Canon 3.89 Megapixel Full HD CMOS Image Sensor
Canon DIGIC DV III Image Processor
1920 x 1080 Full HD Recording
24Mbps Recording
SuperRange Optical Image Stabilizer / Instant Autofocus
Genuine Canon Face Detection
24p Cinema Mode / 30p Progressive Mode
Video Snapshot Mode

Manufacturer Warranty

Parts
1 year limited
Labor
1 year limited

Quick Info

Warranty

  • Limited Warranty period (parts): 1 year
  • Limited Warranty period (labor): 1 year


Customer Reviews of the Canon USA VIXIA HF20

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  • Nicholas W.
  • 12/26/2009 4:54:42 PM
  • Tech Level: Somewhat High
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggs

Pros: Far improvement since the Beta camcorders. Great resolution with alot of features

Cons: Short battery life. (Bought a non-Canon name brand for $25, though it hangs out from the back, it is a 3500mAH battery). Proprietary video format unless you re-encode it with there software.

Other Thoughts: NOTE: FOR BEST QUALITY VIDEO, SET CAMERA TO CINA MODE! In low light, this mode doesn't suffer from the graininess that the other modes do.

Did you find this review helpful? Yes No

  • Kurt K.
  • 12/13/2009 4:30:59 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month

4 out of 5 eggsGreat camcorder

Pros: Compact and lightweight
Great video quality
Packed with features

Cons: Somewhat poor low-light quality
Proprietary, outrageously expensive battery
Menus are a little confusing
Don't even think of processing HD video without a fast computer

Other Thoughts: I love the features, such as continuous buffered recording. You keep the camera rolling, and when you press the button, it takes the last 4 secs and continues. Browsing and deleting clips is a breeze. The quality of the video is sharp and colorful.
The big downside is the low-light ability. It's not terrible, but my old Panasonic was better. Something more annoying is the game Canon is playing with the battery. A genuine Canon battery costs a fortune. And to make sure you don't want to get a third-party battery, they put a chip into the battery that allows it to interact with the camera. You can still use a third-party battery, but you need an external charger, and it won't report its life to the camera.
I picked up the HF20 on a Black Friday special for less than the HF200. If you are considering the HF20, you should take a look at the HF200 which is functionally identical, but lacks the internal storage. It's a lot cheaper, and you can get fast 32GB storage on sale.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Arthur M.
  • 12/9/2009 4:52:36 AM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year

5 out of 5 eggsFantastic Camera

Pros: This is a great camera.

Image quality is very good.
Colors are spot on
Image stabilization works very well
Lots of ports, mini hdmi, usb, component out, microphone jack, headphones, etc
The AE work okay but you can manually adjust everything you need to.

Very small. Can fit in the palm of my hand.

Almost 3 hours of recording on the built in memory plus the ability to add more with the SD slot.

Cons: None really, maybe just a warning. This is not a beginners camcorder. Editing and playing back HD video is not for the faint hearted.

The only con would be the supplied software. Save yourself the worry and pick up either Adome Premiere elements, Pinnacle Studio HD or Vegas.

Other Thoughts: Great camera for the price. Have not run into any quirks yet.

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  • Arthur M.
  • 12/8/2009 5:49:12 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year

5 out of 5 eggsFantasic Camera

Pros: This is a great camera.

Video quality is unbelievable. True HD, can't go wrong there.

Lots of storage and a card reader too if you need.

It is very easy to copy from the internal memory to a SD card if needed, else USB works just fine.

Image stabilization works very well.

LCD is very crisp.

Lot's of ports, mini hdmi, component out, USB, mic input, headphone output.

Cons: This is not a beginners camcorder. If this is your first camcorder I would suggest looking at a SD DV camcorder or similar. To edit or even playback HD video needs a lot of horsepower and a lot of disk space.

Other Thoughts: Overall I am very impressed with this camcorder. No quircks todate.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • joseph f.
  • 12/3/2009 6:45:09 PM
  • Tech Level: Somewhat High
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week

4 out of 5 eggsExcellent consumer camera

Pros: Excellent video with a decent amount of light, acceptable quality for consumer grade in low lighting. Turns on quickly. Image stabilization works nicely, but I find it easy to keep the camera still in my hand without it on. 1920x1080, not 1440x1080

Cons: Documentation for transferring videos on a Mac could be better. Poor light sensitivity, but bearable. Menus could use a little bit of improvement. Mac software is atrocious. Auto focus is just OK. Built in light gives everything a blue tint.

Other Thoughts: Used Adobe Media Encoder to make files into mp4 format. A few videos turn up errors in Handbrake and Media encoder. Don't know if it's the applications or something on the camera's end that is causing them.

The hour and a half battery life is what I expected from a small battery that is packaged with the camera. Yes, it would be nicer to have a longer battery life.

Bought this camera for $500 from best buy when newegg had it for ~$625. I would still be completely satisfied with this camera for the $625 price, but not the $700 price tag it has at the time of writing this review.

I'd give the camera 4.9 eggs if I could, its performance in low light is really what keeps it from getting a full 5 eggs. If you'll be using the camera indoors or in the dark frequently, I recommend getting one of the higher end Canons.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Jesse E.
  • 7/24/2009 12:50:04 PM
  • Tech Level: Average
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsseems to be a great little camera

Pros: I put my tech understanding in the middle on this one since I know a lot about computers but not so much about cameras. For me, wanting something to record video in decent quality, this is great. I have yet to look at the manual, all the controls seem to be in very logical places.

Cons: I could see some people not being satisfied with the video quality. If you don't have the settings high then there's some grain if the lighting isn't great or you zoom in too much. It's fine for my purposes, but if you're looking for higher quality then you probably want to look at more expensive products.

Other Thoughts: I happen to also have Adobe Production CS4. I went from opening the camera to having a video on my AppleTV in about 20 minutes, which kind of blew my mind. As did the weight. As someone who grew up with VHS camcorders, the notion of video cameras that weight less than a pound is mind asploding.

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Alexander S.
  • 6/10/2009 11:28:15 AM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsnice little camera

Pros: video quality is very good with accurate and rich colors. Photos, surprisingly also come out pretty well. The interface is simple and easy to understand. its small, light and hd. what more do you want? It has a very stylish look and feel to it too.

Cons: Its not really that big of a deal, but the battery life could be better. The default battery lasts about 1.5-2 hours, which for me is not that great. I do a lot of traveling and need some extra juice in my equipment.
Also, the video does get grainy due to higher iso settings in low light settings. However, this does not detract from overall quality too much. Although it is noticeable, it does not detract from overall quality too much.

Other Thoughts: the first unit I received was broken, but got a replacement which works beautifully. I would recommend getting a second battery, possibly a higher capacity one if your going traveling with this camera. Also, I'd recommend getting a protective filter for the camera lens as well. Overall, a great little camera worth the price.

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Eric D.
  • 5/14/2009 4:01:01 PM
  • Tech Level: Average
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsGreat Videos

Pros: Video quality is great. Photo quality is suprisingly very good also.

Cons: None.

2 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

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Item#: N82E16830120312
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