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Canon XL2

alaTest has collected and analyzed 186 reviews of Canon XL2. The average rating for this product is 4.3/5, compared to an average rating of 4.0/5 for other Camcorders for all reviews. Reviewers are impressed by the size and durability. The design and image quality are also mentioned favorably. Some have doubts about the viewfinder and portability, while comments are divided on the reliability.

usability, image quality, design, durability, size

price, portability, viewfinder

We analyzed user and expert ratings, product age and more factors. Compared to other Camcorders the Canon XL2 is awarded an overall alaScore™ of 78/100 = Good quality.

See all Canon Camcorders

Review analysis

(Based on 186 reviews)

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Showing 1 - 65 of 117 Show Reviews: in English | in other languages (66)

Consumer review ( review summary for Canon XL2


alaTest has collected and analyzed 55 user reviews of Canon XL2 from The average user rating for this product is 4.1/5, compared to an average user rating of 3.9/5 for other Camcorders on Comments about the color and image quality are generally positive. The size and design also get good opinions, whereas the reliability and portability get less positive comments.

usability, design, size, image quality, color

price, portability, reliability

78% of the reviews on give this product a positive rating.

This summary is based on the products: Canon XL2 3CCD MiniDV Camcorder w/20x Optical ZoomCanon XL2 3CCD MiniDV Camcorder w/20x Optical Zoom

Feb, 2019

Expert review by (

Canon XL2, Focus FS-4 and Final Cut Pro HD


Power ON the XL2 and choose your favorite exposure mode. Set the AspectRatio switch to 16:9. Set the Frame Rate switch to 24p. Press the XL2Menu button and enter "Camera Setup." Select either 2:3 or 2:3:3:2 Mode(the FS-4 will record either mode). Next,...

Jun, 2005

Expert review by : D. Eric Franks (

Mini DV Camcorder Review: Canon XL2


While the Canon camcorder XL1 was initially designed to be a high-end consumer product, professionals soon found that the camera had the quality to do serious work, even on the big screen. The new XL2 starts with the professional in mind. Reworked from...

Native 16:9 ; Amazingly flexible imaging ; Fine audio inputs, controls

Relatively large, heavy ; Most expensive cam in class

The Canon XL2 takes the Mini DV format to its artistic limits.

Dec, 2004

Expert review by : Dirck Halstead (

The Canon XL2


In early July, Canon video unveiled the long-awaited XL2 to the press in New York. This camera is the successor to the XL1 and the XL1S.

Sep, 2004

Expert review by (

Canon XL2


Canon XL2 3-CCD High Definition MiniDV Camcorder w/20x Optical Zoom.

The XL2 brings a host of performance and convenience features to this class of video camcorder- benefits that can't be found in this combination on other high-end video cameras. They include: Canon Super Range Optical Image Stabilization in the...

Expert review by : Laurence Grayson (

Canon XL2


Once you're over the disappointment that it's not the high-definition model many were predicting, you'll find Canon's XL2 a worthy successor to the su...

20X F1.6 flourite video lens, excellent video quality, a shoulder mount

A little heavy

A suitable model for professionals

Jul, 2005

Expert review by : Ben Wolf (

Canon XL2


A distinctively designed MiniDV camcorder for advanced amateurs and pros.

State-of-the-art DV imagery and controls ; 24P mode ; Interchangeable lenses ; Native 16:9 capture ; Compatible with most XL1 lenses and accessories

Strange ergonomics ; Stock lens is hard to focus manually and stock viewfinder doesn't help ; No flip-out LCD monitor ; Pricier than the competition

Apr, 2005

Expert review by : Neil Bennett (

Canon XL2


XL1 owners have been asking for the XL2 for some years. 2001's XL1s was a comparatively minor upgrade. In the lifetime of the XL1 and XL1s we've seen the arrival of camcorders styled after broadcast rigs, and a multiplicity of features aimed at...

Excellent lens. Better balanced than the XL1/XL1s. Great widescreen capture. Huge range of accessories. High level of manual control. Progressive capture with film-style gamma curve.

Expensive. LCD screen poor. Viewfinder unbalanced. No markings on lens.

Though the connections between the components that make up the XL2 are the same as the XL1 - so all of your old accessories will still work - the ergonomics of the standard set-up are much improved. The XL1 is front-heavy, thanks to the large 16x zoom...

Aug, 2004

Expert review by : CB (

SimplyDV Review: Canon XL2 DV Camcorder


When Canon updated its mega-successful XL1S in 2004, the XL2 caused a sensation among pro and semi-pro users. SimplyDV's Robin Davies-Rollinson took it for a spin

Consumer review (



This is to Newegg, Great fast shipping and product was in org. packing with all acc. you can get this camera here and not worry about getting ripped off.

Great Look, Awesome controls, Awesome Picture, True 16.9, Plenty opps. & I could go on and on

5.5Lux, it should be around at least 3.0, a vew people don't like this camera because it does not have a pop out LCD screen. This is fine with me. because if you use a good glidecam, it's best to add the extra mon., on the harness. so you really don't...

Sep, 2008

Consumer review (

Good camera, but not the best.


I'm a film student and have access to this camera as well as many others. I've used this camera on multiple shoots. Its a good camera, and the interchangeable lenses is a big draw. But the problem lies in the fact that many of the lenses are pretty...

Interchangeable lens system, sturdy camera, 4 audio channels, decent factory lens, native 16:9 ccd's (can bump footage STRAIGHT to film), 24p, ergonomics.

A bit heavy for holding them camera by the handle (just use is shoulder mounted most of the time), interchangeable lens system, expensive, stock lens (20x) is kind of poor for wide angle usage.

Nov, 2007

Product Specifications

The Canon XL2 allows you to capture images closer to the finished product than ever before. Work that previously was limited to post-production can be simply and effectively accomplished in the field, in the camcorder. An Open Architecture philosophy, performance found only in much more expensive video cameras, Total Image Control and the solid foundation of Genuine Canon Optics, interchangeable lens capability and superb Canon image processing quality are united in the XL2. The XL2 brings a host of performance and convenience features to this class of video camcorder- benefits that can't be found in this combination on other high-end video cameras. They include: Canon Super Range Optical Image Stabilization in the standard lens; dual aspect ratios; various frame rate capabilities; image gamma and detail controls; skin detail control and convertible LCD display and among others. Unprecedented image control coordination between two XL2 cameras, remote computer camera control and direct video recording to computer are just a part of the capabilities of the XL2. Never before has so much creative power been put in the hands of the film maker, video artist, and corporate and event videographer.


Built-in Microphone: Yes

Audio Input

Microphone Operation Mode:Stereo
Microphone Technology:Electret condenser


Battery Form Factor:Manufacturer specific
Battery life (max):3.5 / 3.83 / 4
Battery Technology:Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
Battery Type:BP-930 / BP-930, BP-945 / Li-Ion BP-930 BP-945

Camcorder Features

Low Lux / Night Mode: Yes


Minimum illumination:0.8

Camera Flash

Type: None

Dimensions & Weight



Display Diagonal:2
Display Resolution:200000

Display (Projector)

Diagonal Size:2in
Diagonal Size (metric):5.1cm
Display Form Factor:Rotating
Technology:TFT active matrix
Type:LCD display

Exposure Parameters

Shooting Programs:Low light / Spotlight


Packaged Quantity:1
Product Line:Canon XL2

Image Sensor

Optical sensor size:1 / 3 / 1/3
Scan technology:CCD
Sensor Type:CCD / CMOS
Total megapixels:0.8

Lens System

Filter size:2.83
Focal length range (f-f):0.213 - 4.25
Image Stabilizer: Yes
Lens Aperture:F/1.6-3.5
Max Focal Length:108mm
Min Focal Length:5.4mm
Optical Zoom:20
Optical Zoom:20
Type:None/Zoom lens

Optical Sensor

Camcorder Sensor Resolution:680Kpix/800Kpix
Optical Sensor Size:1/3"
Optical Sensor Size (metric):8.5 mm ( 1/3 ) / 8.5 mm ( 1/3" )
Optical Sensor Type:3CCD
Sensor Qty:3CCD

Optical System

Built-in Optical Image Stabilizer: Yes
Image Stabilizer:Optical

Other Features

Auto focus: Yes
I/O ports:AV - in\nAnalogue-in\nLANC / Headphone\n2x Phantom Powered XLR\nAnalogue-in\nAV\nLANC
Lens system:OIS, 5.4 - 108mm, 20x
Manual focus: Yes
Night mode: Yes

Ports & interfaces

DV port: Yes
Microphone in: Yes
PictBridge: No
S-Video in: Yes
S-Video out: Yes


Camera shutter speed:1/16000 - 1/6


Camcorder tape type:Mini-DV
Compatible memory cards: No

Storage Floppy Drive

Type: None

Video Input

Analog Video Format:NTSC/PAL
Media Type:Mini DV


Viewfinder Color Support:Color
Viewfinder Type:LCD

Weight & Dimensions

Depth:19.5 / 8.66
Height:19.5 / 8.66
Weight:39.5 / 5.31