Sunday, January 23, 2011

Canon Camcorder with mic input and headset jack - FINALLY!



Canon VIXIA HF R100 Flash Memory Camcorder, SD/SDHC Memory Card Slot, Eye-Fi SD Memory Card Compatible, 2.39MP HD CMOS Image Sensor, 2.7" Widescreen LCD, Genuine Canon 20x HD Video Lens, Dynamic Image Stabilization, 20x Optical Zoom, 2MP Digital Still Capture, 24p and 30p Frame Modes, Microphone and Headphone Terminals HF R100 Consumer Video Camcorders VIXIA HF R100 Flash Memory Camcorder

Canon has always offered great camcorders with microphone inputs and headset jacks but the last wave of HDD camcorders and flash memory saving options in all brands eliminated that much needed option. I am not sure why, but when I purchased camcorders for my classes 2 years ago, the only reasonably priced camcorder with a microphone input was Canon's miniDV model. Thankfully that's finally changed and the new VIXIA models all have microphone and headset terminals in all ranges of prices. You can get them on Sony and Panasonic models but you have to spend well over $500 which puts you in the semi professional camcorder market.
Why do you need a microphone and headset terminal? Because the built in microphones are fine if you are close to what you are recording, but can't capture good sound from far away. For me as a teacher, a microphone input helps students make sound meaningful and helps them make a complete video and audio piece without worrying their interview won't be loud enough. Technically, if they can record an interview from farther away and zoom in, the depth of field is much better and when they have to be almost on top of the interview subject to get good sound with the built in microphone. We are buying the Vixia HF R20 which isn't out yet, but many of the Canon's in the $300 and up range have the audio ports. Before you buy, check the camera specs for mic input/headset jack or terminal. THANK YOU CANON! Media teachers really appreciate it! The best place to see a wide variety of camcorders and options is B&H Photo.

5 comments:

  1. How difficult is it to transfer the video to the computer and edit using Movie Maker???

    ReplyDelete
  2. Not difficult at all. Windows Movie Maker accepts many video formats. You either capture the video using a firewire cable (videotape) or move the files off your hard drive camcorder or flash memory and then import into Movie Maker. Again, the most difficult issue is whether your camcorder files are compatible with MM.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Are you able to attach an XLR audio adapter, and is it compatible with Final Cut Pro?
    Thanks, Lane

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hello,
    Can you attach an XLR audio adapter to it, and is it compatible with Final Cut Pro? Also can you tether it to a monitor to view the footage while you're shooting?
    Thanks, Lane

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi,

    No, you can't attach XLR audio to camcorders this small. It only has a mini plus for an external mic. You would have to move up to the prosumer type camcorders like the canon XL series which ups your cost several thousand. Yes, Final Cut Pro can handle this footage (assuming you have a newer version). All non linear editing systems have finally caught up with the new AVCHD formats. And no, I don't think you could attach a monitor as you are shooting, other than you might be able to attach your capture software and see it through your computer. Again, all that you asked requires the step up in camcorders and at least another $1500, probably more. I wrote this post in January and this camcorder isn't available anymore, but there are many newer versions of several of the Canon Vixia models.

    ReplyDelete