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Canon VIXIA HF M500 Full HD 10x Image Stabilized Camcorder with One SDXC Card Slot and 3.0 Touch LCD
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- Genuine Canon HD Video Lens with 10x Advanced Zoom and SuperRange Optical Image Stabilization
- Newly Designed Canon HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor is a professional-level 1/3-inch native 1920x1080 image sensor
- 3.0-inch Flat Touch Panel LCD with a new GUI (graphical user interface) for easy touch control
- AVCHD recording for the highest quality viewing on an HDTV or archiving, or in MP4 format for easy sharing with mobile devices or cloud applications
- Smart AUTO with 38 predefined video capture situations including Auto Tele Macro for close-ups and shallow depth-of-field shots
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|Item Dimensions||2.5 x 2.7 x 4.8 inches|
|Item Weight||0.81 pounds|
|Lithium Battery Weight||4 ounces|
|Media Format Digital Video||SD, SDHC, SDXC|
|Optical Sensor Resolution||2.37 MP|
|Optical Sensor Technology||CMOS|
|Shipping Weight||1.8 pounds|
|Supported Battery Types||Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)|
|Video Capture Format||avchd|
|Video Capture Resolution||1920 x 1080|
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This item Canon VIXIA HF M500 Full HD 10x Image Stabilized Camcorder with One SDXC Card Slot and 3.0 Touch LCD
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|Sold By||Available from these sellers||Blue Sky Co.||Amazon.com||Extreme Electronic||Extreme Electronic||Kaleidoscope Electronics|
|Screen Size||3 in||3 in||3 in||3 in||3 in||3 in|
|Optical Sensor Technology||CMOS||CMOS||CMOS||CMOS||CMOS||CMOS|
|Video Capture Resolution||1920 x 1080||1080p_hd||—||1920 x 1080 pixels, 1280 x 720,1920 x 1080 pixels||—||1080p|
A Genuine Canon 10x HD Video Lens with SuperRange Optical Image Stabilization provides unsurpassed, professional-looking image quality Newly designed Canon HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor is a professional-level 1/3-inch native 1920 x 1080 image sensor which delivers outstanding video resolution, improved low-light performance and a wide dynamic range Record Full HD video directly to a removable SD memory card (SDHC/SDXC compatible) for fast and easy sharing of your memories Choose to record in AVCHD for the highest quality viewing on an HDTV or archiving, or in MP4 format for easy sharing with mobile devices or cloud applications Intelligent IS automatically chooses from four different modes to optimize image stabilization for the shooting condition Audio Scene Select enables easy operation and setup for outstanding audio that matches the pristine image quality 3.0-inch Flat Touch Panel LCD with a new graphical user interface (GUI) offers fast and easy control right at your fingertips Smart AUTO makes shooting great videos easy by intelligently selecting the best settings from 38 predefined situations including Auto Tele Macro that provides spectacular close-ups and the dramatic look of a video shot with shallow depth-of-field Cinema-Look Filter offers nine different built-in filters to create video with a variety of professional cinematic looks and Touch Decoration allows you to superimpose and record a variety of fun and exciting images for a creative flair Story Creator provides a list of suggested scenes that have improved shooting tips to help you produce your own masterpiece 24p Cinema Mode provides the look and feel of a Hollywood movie and 30p Progressive is ideal for clips intended to be posted on the web Microphone terminal with manual audio level control and headphone terminal provide exceptional flexibility
From the Manufacturer
Small and light with a sleek new design, the VIXIA HF M500 camcorder’s image quality is unsurpassed, thanks to the camcorder’s newly designed, professional-level Canon HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor. The high-sensitivity sensor provides outstanding resolution, better low-light performance, and beautiful, natural detail in both shadow and highlight areas. Intelligent IS and SuperRange Optical Image Stabilization designed for the Genuine Canon 10x HD Video Lens make every scene clear and steady, and new built-in features make it easy to give your videos added creativity. Operation is fun and simple with a Flat Touch Panel LCD you’ll control with your fingertips. This camcorder has the flexibility you crave: enjoy the convenience of recording video in either AVCHD or MP4 format or to a removable SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card.
Unsurpassed Canon Optics
Genuine Canon 10x HD Video Lens
Building on Canon’s decades of optical excellence, the VIXIA HF M500’s 10x HD Video Lens
produces extraordinary images. The high-performance Canon HD Video Lens uses low-dispersion glass to suppress chromatic aberration, delivering crystal clear video with excellent resolution, even at the telephoto end of the zoom. Super spectra coating technology lowers flare and ghosting. The lens also features an iris diaphragm. Normally found only on professional-level camcorders, the iris diaphragm produces highly expressive video with sharply focused subjects and beautifully blurred backgrounds.
Newly Designed Canon HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor
Equipped with the same high-powered image sensor found in professional models, the compact VIXIA HF M500 camcorder captures 1080p Full HD video with the rich, vivid quality of a much more upscale camcorder. The professional-level 1/3-inch native 1920 x 1080, HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor has a large pixel size that captures more available light to deliver superb imaging. Technical refinements including a thinner on-chip microlens, improved color filter transmittance and deeper, wider photodiode allow 20% higher light transmittance*. Additional light to the sensor means that video shot in low-light situations is brighter and clearer, with better noise suppression. The newly extended dynamic range is exceptionally wide, producing enhanced gradation and natural, lifelike realism in high-contrast scenes.
*20% improved low-light performance compared to the Canon HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor used in Canon’s 2011 VIXIA Camcorders.
Share Your Videos Quickly and Easily
Record to Internal Flash Drive or SD Memory Card
The VIXIA HF M500 camcorder records Full HD Video directly to a removable SD memory card. Widely available in several capacities, SD memory cards let you share your videos quickly and easily; simply remove the card and insert it into a PC’s SD memory card slot. In addition to SD memory cards, the VIXIA HF M500 lets you use super-high capacity SDXC cards. The same size as a standard SD card, an SDXC card can hold up to 2048 GB, and provides ultra-fast data transfer.
|VIXIA RECORDING TIME CHART |
|Recording Mode |
|1920 x 1080 Recording ||1440 x 1080 Recording |
|Memory Capacity||MXP Approx. 24 Mbps* ||FXP Approx. 17 Mbps* ||XP+ Approx. 12 Mbps* ||SP Approx. 7 Mbps* ||LP Approx. 5 Mbps |
|4 GB ||20 minutes ||30 minutes ||40 minutes ||1 hour 10 minutes ||1 hour 30 minutes |
|6 GB ||30 minutes ||45 minutes ||1 hour 5 minutes ||1 hour 45 minutes ||2 hour 15 minutes |
|8 GB ||40 minutes ||1 hour ||1 hour 25 minutes ||2 hours 20 minutes ||3 hours |
|12 GB ||1 hour 5 minutes ||1 hour 30 minutes ||2 hours 10 minutes ||3 hours 35 minutes ||4 hours 35 minutes |
|16 GB ||1 hour 25 minutes ||2 hours 5 minutes ||2 hours 50 minutes ||4 hours 45 minutes ||6 hours 5 minutes |
|32 GB ||2 hours 55 minutes ||4 hours 10 minutes ||5 hours 45 minutes ||9 hours 35 minutes ||12 hours 15 minutes |
|64 GB ||5 hours 55 minutes ||8 hours 20 minutes ||11 hours 30 minutes ||19 hours 10 minutes ||24 hours 30 minutes|
|* When recording has continued for 12 hours, it will automatically stop and then start automatically.|
|1280 X 720 Recording || |
**The maximum video recording time with the MP4 format is 30 minutes, and the maximum file size is 4GB, and when either of these conditions is met, recording will stop automatically.
|9 Mbps** ||4 Mbps** |
|4 GB ||55 minutes ||2 hours 5 minutes |
|6 GB ||1 hours 25 minutes ||3 hours 10 minutes |
|8 GB ||1 hours 55 minutes ||4 hours 10 minutes |
|12 GB ||2 hours 50 minutes ||6 hours 20 minutes |
|16 GB ||3 hours 50 minutes ||8 hours 25 minutes |
|32 GB ||7 hours 40 minutes ||16 hours 55 minutes |
|64 GB ||15 hours 25 minutes ||33 hours 55 minutes |
Choose the Recording Format to Fit the Situation
Record in AVCHD or MP4 Format
The VIXIA HF M52 camcorder gives you the flexibility of dual codec recording, allowing you to record in AVCHD or MP4 format, so you can pick the format that best suits your needs. AVCHD’s higher bit-rate and finer resolution will yield the highest quality video for viewing on an HDTV or archiving to Blu-ray™. And for use with today’s most typical video applications, the camcorder lets you record in MP4 format, too. MP4 format produces files you can share right away – with no need for conversion. Video is immediately available to upload to social networking sites like Facebook™ or YouTube™, view on an iPhone™, iPad™ or iPod Touch™.
Steady Shooting in Any Situation
Intelligent IS makes it easy to shoot clear, sharply focused video, even in situations that typically cause camera shake. The Intelligent IS system analyzes the shooting situation for you, then automatically switches to the image stabilization method best able to produce sharp, steady video. Four IS systems cover the gamut of shooting situations. Dynamic IS corrects minor movement and the shaking caused by walking while shooting. Macro IS delivers perfectly steady close-up shots. Powered IS comes into play when you’re using the camcorder’s powerful zoom, correcting shake that can occur in telephoto shots. Tripod Mode stops IS when the camcorder is stationary.
Superb Audio in Any Situation
Increased Clarity, Adjustibility
The VIXIA HF M500 camcorder’s audio is an excellent match for its pristine image quality. The microphone has updated elements that increase clarity at medium and low frequencies, so even faint sounds are recorded clearly. Three microphone positions let you adjust recording to suit the position of the zoom or your subjects: front for monaural recording; regular for normal stereo effect; and rear for a wider, more enhanced stereo effect. Frequency response characteristics can be adjusted for the scene with several options. You can balance all frequencies for normal recording, emphasize low frequencies for impactful live music recording, attenuate low frequencies to reduce ambient noise, emphasize mid frequencies to focus on voices, or emphasize low and high frequencies to record live music with balanced lows and highs.
|Normal ||Records with a balance throughout all frequencies. |
|Emphasize Low Frequencies ||Record scenes of live music or the like with impact. |
|Attenuate Low Frequencies ||Reduce ambient noise and sound of traffic outdoors (wind, cars, etc.) |
|Emphasize mid frequencies ||Record focusing on people’s voices |
|Emphasize Low and High Frequencies ||Record live music with balanced lows and highs |
Audio Scene Select
Audio Scene Select offers five modes that automatically optimize settings based on the recording situation, making it easy to record realistic, immersive audio in a range of situations.
Optional Audio Accessories
Canon’s optional WM-V1 Wireless Microphone allows you to record high-quality audio without wires from up to 164 feet away (50m), making it ideal for ceremonies and recitals. For the ultimate home theater experience, the optional 5.1-channel Surround Sound Microphone SM-V1 captures audio quality that matches the stunning realism of your HD video. Five distinct pickup sensors capture sound from all directions, making your home movies look and sound more lifelike than ever before.
Touch and Go
3.0-inch Flat Touch Panel LCD
Big and bright, the VIXIA HF M52’s 3.0-inch Flat Touch Panel LCD provides super intuitive control that feels instantly familiar. With a touch, you can shift focus immediately to any subject. Exposure for any area of the screen can be controlled with a touch as well. And with Touch & Track, you simply place your finger on a moving subject and the focus will follow that subject. “Pressable” buttons are also available for selecting settings and controlling camcorder operations on-screen. A new Home button on the camcorder takes you to the main LCD screen, where clear explanations of shooting modes and recording settings help you make informed choices for an exceptionally simple and enjoyable shooting experience.
Automatically Beautiful Video
Smart AUTO and Auto Tele Macro
Smart AUTO lets you capture clear, bright, well-focused video while the camcorder takes care of all the details. The system recognizes 38 shooting situations based on numerous factors, then automatically chooses the optimal settings for the situation. When you shoot a nearby subject in telephoto zoom mode, Auto Tele Macro gives your video the high-end artistic effect of a well-focused subject against a beautifully blurred background.
Giving your videos more creativity is easy with new Cinema-Look Filters. Cinema Standard subdues brights and enhances darks for the feel of film. Vivid accentuates primary colors for a cheerful effect that’s perfect for kids’ birthday parties. Cool adds a bluish tint for a futuristic feel. Nostalgic recreates the look of 1970s TV shows. Sepia adds a distinctive fade and antique tint. Old Movies imparts the aged look of early cinema. Dynamic B&W creates dramatic high-contrast grayscale. Dream adds a magical look (soft-focus) for dream-like scenes. Memory produces a faded, misty look—great for flashback scenes.
|Cinema Standard||Recreates the warm tones and muted highlights of classic film.|
|Vivid||Accentuates primary colors for a bright, cheerful look.|
|Cool||Adds a bluish tint for cool, futuristic-looking scenes.|
|Nostalgic||Recreates the look of old ‘70s TV programs.|
|Sepia||Applies a sepia tint for an antique, faded look.|
|Old Movie||Gives video the aged look of old cinema.|
|Dramatic B&W||Creates bold black-and-white movies with high contrast and grain.|
|Dream||Adds a magic soft-focus effect for dream-like scenes.|
|Memory ||Produces a faded, misty look—great for flashback scenes.|
Creating a compelling video that truly documents an important event can be challenging, so the VIXIA HF M52 camcorder steps in to help with Story Creator. The feature is even easier to use than ever, so now even beginning videographers can cover an event with confidence. Before shooting, you’ll see a list of scenes you’ll want to be sure to catch for several different types of occasions. And now each scene selection includes specific shooting tips that help with scene structure and composition, including suggestions for wide-shots, close-ups, even recommendations for length of shots. After shooting, you can watch your video in coherent story order based on each scene’s theme, as opposed to the order in which each scene was shot.
24p Cinema and 30p Progressive Modes
The VIXIA HF M52 camcorder’s sophisticated shooting mode options offer superior creativity and functionality. 24p Cinema Mode gives your video a film-like feel, making it look as if it were shot at the same frame rate as movie film, with a frame capture rate of 24p recorded at 60i. The camcorder also gives you the option of recording in 30p Progressive Mode, which is ideal for clips you intend to post online.
Microphone and Headphone Terminals
The VIXIA HF M52 camcorder offers exceptional audio flexibility with microphone and headphone terminals. The microphone terminal allows you to capture professional-quality sound with an external microphone and manual audio level control ensures proper volume for any situation. In addition, you’ll find a dedicated headphone terminal, ideal for remote communication with the optional Wireless Microphone WM-V1 and other applications.
What's in the Box?
- VIXIA HF M500
- Battery Pack BP-718
- Stylus Pen
- Compact Power Adapter CA-110
- USB Cable IFC-300PCU/S
- HDMI Cable HTC-100/S
- Bundled CD-ROMs:
- Pixela Video Browser / Network Utility Software Disc
- ImageBrowser EX / Image Mix /
- Music Data Disc
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Top customer reviews
The build quality is good, classy black with chrome. I bought an extra battery and noticed it wiggled slightly but no big deal. The cam is definitely light. The touch screen has a nice sensitivity to it. Had to turn up the brightness to get it to work okay under bright light.
The menu system will take a little time to get used to. It's not the sort of system you can can just goof around with all the options and figure it out. If you know what functions your looking for you'll have to spend a little time in the manual figuring it out.
Naturally, everyone would be wondering about the image quality. The video quality is very good. I took a little video of a friend of mine doing yard work in fairly strong daylight. I noticed that the lens is quite sharp, rendering lots of detail. Color is good. Image is perhaps just a tad overexposed but I was throwing it into a tough situation with the harsh daylight right out of the box. Zoom is smooth.
The microphone worked well, even with a little bit of wind. Not overly sensitive, but it can pick up some low volume details in the scene.
Bottom line, for the price you'll be happy with this camera. If you want to take some high quality HD without paying an arm and a leg for $1,000 plus professional camcorder, then this is the camcorder for you.
FOLLOW UP (2 MONTHS LATER)
Okay, now I've had lots of experience with this cam. Submitted some footage to the local access television station. So here's the scoop. The image quality, in low light, is superb for a camera of this price. Image quality is very good under normal lighting conditions. The cam tends to overexpose a little, however most people wouldn't notice it. However, if you want to "dial in" a "semi-pro" look, then definitely get acquainted with the exposure compensation. Definitely compensating one or two stops (darker) will make your image look really, really good, coming close to a pro look.
The built in mic is superb. I took some footage of a music performance at the local high school and I was shocked at how good the sound was. I've been using an external shotgun mic for a few events and the cam handles that beautifully, just set the volume level to 50 out of 100 and I'm getting pro sound. Only minor annoyance is the external microphone volume is conveniently placed under the easily accessible "function" menu but the volume for external headphones is buried under another menu. Luckily the headphone level is "set and forget" because I always use the same headphones.
The build quality is good but not top notch. But realistically most people aren't going to use this cam forty hours per week on the job. I'm using it about 10 hours a month videoing various programs for the local access station and I don't have any qualms about the cam standing up to that level of use.
This cam is a serious amateur to semi pro rig for short dollars. If you know how to dial in exposure compensation you can really make the image shine. I was videoing an event beside a pro with a $3,000 camera and quite seriously, the images I was capturing, in my opinion, were very close in quality to the pro's cam.
No camera is perfect, but your getting 90-95 percent the quality of a serious semi pro rig for about 1/4 to 1/6th the price.
ONE YEAR LATER
I've been using this camera about 10-20 hours a month for one year doing local access tv footage. This cam never ceases to amaze me. Really good low light images. We've used other far more expensive cameras than this one (won't mention the make/model) and this one still outshines in the low light department. Canon should have charged WAAAY more money for this cam (lol). I bought it when it first came out at $500 and now the street price is $350 which is an unbelievable deal.
Super nice light rig when I match this cam with the Canon monopod. I use it on a light Velbon tripod as well. The shotgun I mentioned earlier in this article is hanging in there recording some nice sound.
Couldn't be more pleased with this camera. Yah, it overexposes occasionally but no camera is perfect. The low light performance seals the deal.
Overall the camera is very simple to use. The menu navigation is rather intuitive. You can hit the home button on the inside panel to bring up selections for a number of important settings. General camera settings and functions are all accessed from here. On the touchscreen, depending on how the camera is set up, you will see other options available. For instance, choosing the "cinema mode" brings up filter selections on the main screen which you simply scroll through to select. Very easy to use!
The included software isn't much, Pixela Transfer Utility. I can't complain, it gets the job of transferring files from the camera to the PC done. For reference I'm using Windows 7 and had no problems with installing the software or getting files to load.
Video Quality - Excellent for a camera in the sub $600 price range. The colors overall were all very accurate with very good hue and saturation. I filmed a Sandhill Crane in automatic mode and then manually set the white balance using a photo grey card and the compared results were very similar. Many people probably wouldn't even notice the subtle changes. The sharpness and detail of the video is outstanding. Not once under proper lighting conditions did the video appear grainy or lacking in any way. I did notice a bit of degredation in very poor lighting, which is found below as the one con for this model.
Very small and incredibly light weight. The camcorder fits very comfortably in my hand. The controls are easily available for one handed operation.
Battery life is pretty good and better than I expected at a full 120 minutes. I'll end up getting a spare just to have but to start it's nice to know you'll have 2 hours worth of recording time.
10x optical zoom. There's no degredation of the video at full zoom, unlike digital.
Optical Image Stabilization. Like the optical zoom, this is the best option available. It doesn't degrade the picture and produces a very steady shot.
Cinema filters...Ok, so I really didn't think I would like them but it turns out that I do. To my surprise I actually can see myself using a couple of them from time to time. If nothing else, they provide some artistic options without having to edit them in to the video in your software program of choice.
Audio quality. You're essentially getting cd quality audio from the internal microphone.
Available hot shoe. In the event you'd like to add a light or external microphone (5.1 surround mics are available) you simply attach the accessory to the hot shoe and you're ready to go. I know in the future I will be adding these capabilities. This is one of the features that made me choose this model.
Cons - A little lacking in the low light area but nothing that is a deal breaker. I've seen far worse and was generally impressed. It isn't pro quality but if that's what you're looking for, $550 isn't the price range you should be looking in.
From my couple hours of experimenting and using this camera I can without hesitation say that the quality is exactly what I want and need for my own personal use. There are plenty of options for video quality and general aesthetics right in the camera that make it everything I need. If you're looking for a "step up" model with some bells and whistles and excellent overall video quality then take a serious look at the HF M500. I am extremely happy with the purchase.
EDIT: 03/31 - I detailed the video quality and battery life as I have yet to be able to load a short sample clip.
EDIT: 04/01 - I finally got some test footage up and available in 1080p on YouTube. I hope you'll find yourself as happy as I am with the quality of the video this little beauty produces. I am completely satisfied in every way with every aspect of this HD camcorder. Search YouTube for the model number and it should pop up (mine is the "jaysdroid" video), if not here's the address:
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