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Sony announced that it will be introducing 11 hard disk drive and flash memory-based camcorders in Canada this coming spring including seven HD models.

Sony's top-of-the-line camcorders will include the HDR-XR550V, with 240GB hard drive and the HDR-CX550V, with 64 GB of embedded flash memory.

These camcorders add the following features over the base models: Wide angle G lens (29.8mm for video and 26.3mm for still images); 12-megapixel still photos; assignable dial for manual control (Iris/Shutter/Exposure/WB/Focus); colour Electronic View Finder; 3.5" LCD display (921K resolution); and dedicated microphone/headphone inputs.

The HDR-XR550V, HDR-CX550V and HDR-XR350V will be available in March for about $1500 and $1300 respectively.

Sony says all of its 2010 HD camcorders will offer its back-illuminated "Exmor R" CMOS sensor which the company claims offers improved image quality and auto focusing capabilities in low light situation.

Other features include 1920 x 1080 high-definition video recording at up to 24Mbps in the AVCHD format, improved image stabilization, face recognition, 60p output, a new user interface and the ability to down-convert from AVCHD to MPEG2 in order to burn to a DVD.

For wide angle videographers, some of the new camcorders will also include a wide angle G lens that captures approximately 2x larger shooting area than previous models, enabling users to make sure nobody is left out of the picture indoors or to capture more of the scenery outdoors.
 
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