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XA50 vs VIXIA HF G70 - Researching New Camcorder


I'm researching new camcorders and would like to know opinions on the Canon XA50 vs. the Canon Vixia HF G70.  I'll be upgrading from a consumer level camcorder, so which ever one I select will be a significant upgrade.  Thanks for your opinions.



First and foremost, what do you plan on filming? Run-and-gun events? Corporate interviews? Other?

The Vixia HF G70 is still a consumer-level cam.  One of the huge drawbacks of it vs the XA50 is that the internal ND filters cannot truly be set manually.  You can only set it once the aperture is at f/4.0

The XA50 has dedicated ND filter buttons (add/subtract), so you have full control on when to use them and can use them with any aperture.

Both units can only internally record 8-bit 4:2:0 footage.  Not an issue in cases where you only need to make minor tweaks in editing.   8-bit 4:2:0 is good for playback, but is quite lacking if you need to do a decent amount of editing.

Both units would require an external recorder to work with 4:2:2 footage.  Though UHD is limited to 8-bit.  HD though can export as 10-bit.

In terms of sensors, the XA50 is larger with it's "1-inch" type.  Note that's definitely not a 1-inch diagonal sensor.  It would be more like 16mm (just over half an inch diagonal).

Again, it will really depend upon what you wish to capture and what expectations you may have (e.g. need to capture in low-light conditions).


Camera: EOS 5D IV, EF 50mm f/1.2L, EF 135mm f/2L
Lighting: Profoto Lights & Modifiers

I'm moving from a Sony HDR-CX430 which is a consumer level camcorder.  I'm looking for a higher level of video and sound and want the camera I choose to last for some time.  As far as what I shoot, it's pretty basic stuff run and gun.  I'm not a professional in short of way, I'm just looking for higher all around quality for my family videos.

I think either of the models you mention would be a step up.   Are you planning to use an external microphone at all?  If so, the XA50 would offer more options for audio.   The top handle can also be very useful when carrying the unit.

If possible, you may want to consider renting (lens rentals carries both) before you buy.  Ensure that they would meet your needs.


Camera: EOS 5D IV, EF 50mm f/1.2L, EF 135mm f/2L
Lighting: Profoto Lights & Modifiers

I've just found out that it appears Canon has discontinued several models.  I believe the XA40 & 45 are included and I'm seeing a few websites that have listed the XA50 as discontinued as well.  I'm a bit concerned about investing in a discontinued model.  I'm now looking at the XA60 but haven't been able to determine the differences between the XA50 and the XA60.  I'm kind of focused on the XA models at this point for some of the reasons you pointed out regarding a microphone and handle.  Thanks so much for your input, it's been very helpful.