The VIXIA HF21 is not only a superb camcorder, but also a terrific 3.3 Megapixel Digital Camera delivering high quality still photos. With many advanced photo features, rivaling other state-of-the-art digital cameras, and recording to an SDHC memory card, you get the best in both video and photos. An example? The VIXIA HF21 boasts Simultaneous Photo Shooting, allowing you to capture crisp 3.0 Megapixel photos and video at the same time.
The same Canon exclusive CMOS image sensor that ensures sharp, vivid HD video also gives you brilliant digital photographs. Like the CMOS image sensors in Canon's EOS Series digital SLR cameras, the VIXIA HF21's image sensor results in outstanding digital photographs. It gives a resolution of 3.3 Megapixels for sharp, crisp still images.
Canon DIGIC DV III Image Processor
Canon's exclusive DIGIC DV III Image Processor features improved continuous shooting of digital photographs with the VIXIA HF21. You can also enjoy faster processing of your images to your memory card (1.4x normal card; 2.5x Hi-Speed card).
Auto Intelligent Auto Focus (AiAF) ensures sharp images and gives you creative flexibility. Even when your subject isn't in the center of the frame, the VIXIA HF21's 9-Point AiAF will automatically select from 9 metering frames on the screen to help bring images into sharp focus.
Auto Exposure Modes
Like any good digital still camera, the VIXIA HF21 lets you choose from a range of exposure modes. Auto mode automatically sets the exposure, letting you concentrate on your subject. AV (aperture priority) mode lets you control the depth of field by letting you choose the aperture. TV (shutter priority) mode lets you select the shutter speed for sharp, action shots. In P (program) mode, the camcorder adjusts camera settings automatically.
Program AE Mode
Your life happens everywhere, so the VIXIA HF21 gives you settings that automatically result in the best exposure settings for different conditions and different subjects.
Portrait mode ensures shallow depth of field for a pleasing background in your shots of friends and family. Sports mode stops the action with faster shutter speeds. Low Light Mode is designed to give you great shots after the sun goes down. Snow and Beach modes compensate for bright surroundings and give you the proper exposure on your subject. Sunset mode results in vibrant, well-exposed colors for one of the toughest subjects to capture properly. Use Spotlight mode when your child is on stage and in the spotlight - literally - and you want to make sure the exposure is right for them. Fireworks mode records brilliant images of another tough subject - the holiday fireworks display. Night Scene Mode reduces video "noise" and helps to prevent overexposure of artificial lighting from buildings and streetlamps while shooting outdoors in the dark. To compensate for the color shift which occurs when shooting underwater when using the optional Canon WP-V1 Waterproof Case, the VIXIA HF21 adjusts the white balance setting when in Underwater Mode. Surface Mode re-adjusts the white balance setting to that normally used in sunlight, after the VIXIA HF21 has been shooting in Underwater Mode.
Selectable Metering Patterns
For optimal exposure, the VIXIA HF21 offers selectable metering patterns. You can choose the options of Evaluative, which in normal shooting conditions will measure the light in all areas of the subject image, Center-Weighted Average, which gives greater importance to the object in the center of the image, and Spot, which adjusts the exposure exactly to the object in the center of the image.
Auto Exposure Bracketing
In challenging lighting situations, such as strong backlight, a dark background or a very sunny or snowy day, it can be tricky to get the right exposure for a photo. The AE Bracketing feature of the VIXIA HF21 automatically takes three versions of the shot, with 'dark,' 'normal' and 'light' settings in ½ exposure steps so you may choose the one that best suits you.
The VIXIA HF21 can capture a rapid succession of photos, just like the motor drive on a still camera. Shoot up to 3 frames per second in the Continuous Mode, or a blazing 5 frames per second in the High Speed Continuous Mode. This feature is ideal for fast action sports or capturing babies on the move. This action is possible in all modes except Fireworks Mode.
Simultaneous Photo Recording
With the VIXIA HF21, you can record HD video and capture a 2.99 Megapixel photo to a memory card - simultaneously. Simply press the photo button and you've got an e-mail ready digital photo to share with friends and family.
For the advanced digital photographer, the VIXIA HF21 comes with a Histogram Display - a feature found in Canon's line of digital SLR cameras. The display allows you to see the brightness information of your still images, so you can adjust your exposures as you shoot.
Level and Grid Markers
With the Level Marker feature, it's easy to keep your camera level for more professional-looking photographs. Line up any horizontal lines in your shot - such as the horizon - to the marker and you can be sure your camcorder is level.
The VIXIA HF21's Grid Marker feature lets you compose your shot accurately, according to the grid in your viewfinder. You can even choose from two different colors for the grid. This ensures that you see the grid, no matter what the background color of your shot is.
Still Capture from Flash Memory
The versatile VIXIA HF21 even lets you capture a still image from an already recorded movie. While playing the movie in your camcorder, simply press the photo button to capture a 1920 x 1080 still frame to an SDHC card or to Built-in Memory. Additionally, the VIXIA HF21 allows you to capture 30 photos from one second of video. Now, better photos filled with action and expressions are easy to grab, print, post and share.
Your VIXIA HF21's built-in flash lets you capture superb photos indoors and in low light conditions. The VIXIA HF21 also features red-eye reduction.
Print/Share turns your VIXIA HF21 into a photo lab in the palm of your hand. Simply connect your camcorder directly to select Canon printers or any PictBridge-compatible printer with the supplied USB cable. Then, with a simple touch of the Print/Share button, print directly from your VIXIA HF21 without going through a computer.
Print/Share also makes it easy to transfer your still images to your computer. Simply connect your VIXIA HF21 to your computer, press the Print/Share button and your photos are downloaded to your computer.
DVD Burner Compatible
You can also easily burn DVDs of your still photos taken with your VIXIA HF21 as it is compatible with Canon's DW-100 DVD Burner. A one-cable connection is all it takes to send the files across and, with the click of a few buttons, your photos are ready to share with all.
Much better cameras out there for price
I was excited to receive this camera finally but i was initially unable to transfer videos because the software is only for PC. Indoors and low light setting this camera preforms awful. There is so much noise and ugly grain in the picture. However the day shots shot in full light are great. The camcorder does not have very many features and the menu is a pain to navigate. My battery stopped working within the first 2 months but i was able to snag another. Overall i am not impressed with this camera and i feel there are better ones out there like DSLR's.
April 8, 2012
Decent Camera Terrible Software & Documentation
I picked the Vixia HF R20 as the lowest priced model that appeared to meet my needs from those available at the retailer where I purchased it. I have owned this camcorder for about six hours - and I have not quite decided if it is going back to the store in the morning.
The camera itself seems ok despite several minor shortfalls (such as poor autoexposure handling of backlit scenes and a failure of the autoexposure to adequately prioritize based on face recognition). My main disappointments with this camcorder are the absolutely terrible software and the incompetently prepared documentation. The quick start guide adequately covered the steps that I had already taken before reading it. Then I tried reading the manual -- I am a Mensa member with a 16+ Reading Grade Level and I was thoroughly confused by the manual that jumps back and forth, refers you to a PDF file that you need to install on a computer for basic information and that never manages to cover any topic completely in any one section of the manual. I still have not found whatever menu setting is supposed to let me set the camcorder to record to the memory cards instead of to its fixed internal memory.
The included software comes on three CDs -- but no matter which order you load them in, it is impossible to load all three CDs on any computer because the video transfer software and video browser software CANNOT BOTH be loaded - although you would need both if you were going to copy files from the camcorder to your pc and save then in any file type that windows software can recognize (although the camera's MTS file format works ok in windows if you rename the filetype to MPG or MP4).
One of the provided CD's is marked as Canon's own software for this camcorder - that software loads OK, but when you are nearly finished it tries to open a browser window to go to the Canon website to register and then tells you the software needs an IMMEDIATE RESTART before it actually gets the browser loaded. Once you do get the Canon software installed and restarted, the Canon software cannot recognize any supported model camera while the camcorder is connected to the pc. The Canon software provided with this camcorder appears to be for Canon digital still cameras only!
The other two CD are marked as Pixela software. A phone call to Canon tech support got the information that you are only supposed to load the Video Transfer software disc, not the Video Browser disc (I had to call Canon for Pixela software support because Pixela's own support was closed already). Another call to Canon tech support got the advice that the camcorder has to be in playback mode to connect to the pc (this is NOT in the manuals - at least not in the part about connecting to the pc and not in the part about troubleshooting the pc not recognizing the camcorder).
May 19, 2011
This has been a great little camera for a variety of uses. It shoot absolutely gorgeous footage. Which is amazing coming from a camera the size of a soda can. It also has a built-in gyroscope and software to stabilize your images without looking strange.
The camera also features a built-in LED light and flash for night-time shooting. As expected, low-light shots are pretty grainy, but that's the trade-off you get with CMOS chips. The HDMI port allows you to output to an HDTV in real time. Furthermore, it is FULL HD 1080p. Not the scaled down HD you see in other cameras.
One major con (and I just learned of this) is that you cannot make money off of your footage without paying royalties for use of the built-in MPEG-4 codec. Most people probably won't run afoul of this... but there it is.
May 2, 2010
BAD SOFTWARE GREAT CAMCORDER
I AM A LONG TIME AND EXCLUSIVE CANON PERSON, BUT THE SOFTWARE USED FOR THIS IS NOT THE EASIEST TO USE. ALSO IT IS TO CONVERT THE VIDEOS FOR AN iPOD/iPHONE BUT IT WILL NOT ALLOW THE FILES TO BE COPIED OR PLAYIED ON THE DEVICE.
ALSO ANOTHER CON IT CAN RECORD AT SO HIGH OF QUALITY THAT IT CANT BE MADE EVEN INTO A BLUERAY DISK TO SAVE AND PLAY.
BUT I WILL SAY THE CAMCORDER ITS SELF IS DESIGNED LIKE ALL CANONS WITH TOP QUALITY, EXCELLENT PICTURE AND EASY TO USE.
I JUST WISH IT WAS EASIER TO WORK WITH THE FILES. AFTER ALL THESE ARE SOME OF THE MOST IMPORTANT MEMORIES OF MY LIFE.
February 11, 2010
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Prices and specifications subject to change without notice. Actual prices are determined by individual dealers and may vary.