With a 1-inch sensor, 4K capture at 305Mbps and a 24-240mm equivalent lens, could the Canon XC10 be the perfect all-rounder for run-and-gun videographers?
The XC10 has been well developed to fit in with the workflow of existing Canon users, and as such there are number of different picture styles that can be applied. Although the options available may not be quite as sophisticated at the Picture Profile settings found in recent Sony cameras, including the 4K compatible A7R II and Cyber-Shot RX10 II, the options certainly offer enough for videographers to have plenty of detail available when it comes to post-capture editing.
As well as a standard mode, there are Wide Dynamic Range, Cinema EOS and Canon LOG modes, with the Cinema EOS mode linking nicely to the existing C100, C300 and C500 users. However it is in the Canon LOG mode that best footage is to be found. As can be seen in our video, it has a very wide dynamic range and produces flat footage with enough detail in the highlight and shadow areas to colour in post-production. In Canon LOG mode ISO 600 has to be used, but at this sensitivity there is little in the way of noise, particularly with the shadows and midtones often needing to be flattened slightly in post production.
Colours produced by the camera look natural, and we had little problem getting a white balance and colour for skin tones and nice blue skies.
In terms of the lens it is certainly a match for the 4K footage of the sensor, though footage does need a little sharpening. As usual with Canon, straight-out-of-the-box video is a little on the soft side.
Realistically the sensor produces reasonable quality until about ISO 1600, and above this noise will start to become more noticeable and need some reduction. Again, if you plan to shoot a lot of low-light footage there are better options available, especially given that the lens aperture doesn’t stay at f/2.8 for very long. As a reportage camera for fair weather shooting and the occasional bit of low ambient light work it is perfectly useable.