With Canon HF10 being considered the best in AVCHD format, it comes as no surprise that the HF11 is an upgrade to the one of the better performers like the HF10 to cater to the needs of the HF10’s buyers. To improve the drawbacks of the HF10 like its 16GB memory, the Canon HF11 has provided 32 GB of memory to its users.
It is still a high definition camcorder that uses AVCHD format to record in 1920 x 1080 but has gained importance by being the first consumer camcorder to record at AVCHD’s spec ceiling of 24mbps. It caters to a wide range of user experience from the novice to the professional. Beginners can use it in easy mode where all the adjustments like light and sharpness are done by the camcorder itself automatically. Though the menu is a little complex, an easy layout of controls makes navigation easier for the user.
For the professionals, it offers a joystick for manual controls along with an option for automatic controls. But this joystick is not satisfactory for many. Consumers would prefer better controls like the Sony HDR-CX12 or the Panasonic HDC-SD100 which offer a full lens ring for the same purpose. Therefore, even though a slew of manual controls have been provided, a proper interaction and orientation would have been better for the adaptability of consumers.
The best feature is the 32GB of internal memory which is still expandable. Unlike the HF10, which offers a 16 GB memory, the HF11 comes as a good deal for people who would like to vacation and have fun as well with the newbie. If required they always have the option of expanding the memory with optional SD/SDHC memory cards. The solid state memory has no moving parts too. Thus, it is resistant to breakage from falls.
The HF11 also produced excellent results with its 12X optical zoom lens, the 1/ 3.2 inch CMOS sensor, a focal length of 4.8mm – 57mm and a gross pixel count of 3,310,000. It is best in the range of AVCHD camcorders providing the best image quality and video which is almost indistinguishable from the quality of the tape based and high performance HV20.
It also possesses the distinction of having a 24 Mbps bit rate which provides image quality that is indiscernible to the early users but under a trained eye, you can see the image getting clearer and crisper. To the untrained eye however, this is hardly an advantage.
Still, there is no match for HF11 in terms of video performance which has already given its rivals a run for their money and thus, this camcorder is the best Canon has to offer for now.