The "Official" Canon HFM31 / HFM30 / HFM300 Owner's Thread - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 146 Old 05-12-2010, 12:03 AM - Thread Starter
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ok, this looks like the first thread for the new HFM3* line. Mainly the HFM31, HFM30, HFM300.

To get things started:

Reviews:
Canon Vixia HF M31 HD Camcorder Review @ ADS-Links.com - Hands on review with video sample
Canon Vixia HF M31 Camcorder Review @ Camcorderinfo.com

Video Samples:
The HF M31 was put through its paces of zooming, panning and touchscreen focusing
Test Shoot - Night Time
HD Downtown Sarasota

Let the discussion begin!
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post #2 of 146 Old 05-12-2010, 09:36 AM
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Hi,
I just bought my HFM300 yesterday.
Glad to see a forum on this camcorder.
So far my observation has been - use 24p or 30p to avoid horizontal lines.
I am relatively new to camcorders.
Can you suggest me good software for video editing to get started.
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post #3 of 146 Old 05-12-2010, 06:10 PM
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Just got my HF M300 last Friday. Haven't had time to play with it too much, but I like it so far. Hooked it up to my HDTV to watch some footage and it looked very nice IMO.

Just need to find some time to mess around with it some more.
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post #4 of 146 Old 05-12-2010, 10:54 PM - Thread Starter
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I have tested shooting at FXP @ 60i. On a large LCD TV, it's not that great in my opinion. I thought this would be a large step up from miniDV. Will do some more testing tomorrow on MXP (max) setting. We shall see.

1. How do you format the internal storage? After downloading, I would like to erase all data and it seems there are files in a few folders so a format function would be best.

2. What are the differences among 60i, 24p and 30p?
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post #5 of 146 Old 05-13-2010, 09:18 AM
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1. After transferring the files, there is an option on the camcorder to "select all" and then click "delete"
2. "i" refers to interlacing which does a single capture and 14 "interpolations" for each 15 frames a sec. That's the reason why you see the horizontal lines and blurry edges. "p" refers to "progressive" which means each frame is captured. Though this occupies more space, you wont run into the problems mentioned. However, the resolution and crispiness is partly compromised.

Hope this helps!
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post #6 of 146 Old 05-13-2010, 10:00 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vchivuku View Post

1. After transferring the files, there is an option on the camcorder to "select all" and then click "delete"
2. "i" refers to interlacing which does a single capture and 14 "interpolations" for each 15 frames a sec. That's the reason why you see the horizontal lines and blurry edges. "p" refers to "progressive" which means each frame is captured. Though this occupies more space, you wont run into the problems mentioned. However, the resolution and crispiness is partly compromised.

Hope this helps!

Thanks for the delete all tip. I wonder if videos and photos can be separately deleted? Will have to try.

At 60i on a large LCD screen, I don't see any horizontal lines, at least not glaring ones that look out of the ordinary. I guess this is what adds to the "bluriness" during panning scenes?

So besides the space issue, why would we just not shoot at 24p then?
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post #7 of 146 Old 05-15-2010, 10:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Noticed 2 odd things with the M31.

1. When powered off and you shake it, you can hear clanking / rattling inside. Is this the image stabilization system banging away?

2. When the unit is powered on, I hear a grind, for the lack of a better term, as if a harddrive is spinning up, but for a very short amount of time. Is this also the image stabilization kicking in?

Anyone have the above? I wonder if this is normal.
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post #8 of 146 Old 05-16-2010, 11:19 AM
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bowmah,
I have an M31 and hadn't noticed it until you mentioned it but I can hear something loose inside the camera, when it is turned off. I don't, however, hear any grinding when it is turned on.
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post #9 of 146 Old 05-16-2010, 11:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vandu View Post

bowmah,
I have an M31 and hadn't noticed it until you mentioned it but I can hear something loose inside the camera, when it is turned off. I don't, however, hear any grinding when it is turned on.

It's not so much a grinding noise. Sounds like electronics powering up and gears moving. Look at the lens when you power up, you will see the doors open, then lens move forward. I think this is normal but thought to see if anyone else hears this. I cannot believe something rattles inside when the power is turned off. Shaking causes it obviously but you also hear kind of a metal ball rolling around as you rotate the camcorder?

So when you turn your camera on, do you hear anything or is it silent?
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post #10 of 146 Old 05-16-2010, 12:35 PM
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The camera was shipped with "Notification Sounds" turned on. If I turn this off I can hear gears turning, when I turn the camera on. It sounds similar to a camera shutter. With the "Notification Sounds" turned on the gear sound is masked. It's my wife's camera and she prefers the sounds turned on.
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post #11 of 146 Old 05-18-2010, 09:07 PM
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I just got my M30 today and noticed significant rattling when the camera is turned off. I bought it online without having looked at it first in local stores. This is not a subtle rattle and I am concerned about the camera's durability. I am tempted to send it back for an exchange but want to see if I will simply get another camera that does the same thing.
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post #12 of 146 Old 05-18-2010, 09:56 PM - Thread Starter
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That rattling is the piece of glass inside the powered image stabilization system. Don't shake the camera, especially when it's turned off. Nothing is holding that piece of glass in place when the power is off. I wonder if the HFS200 also has this "rattling" system? Anyone know?
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post #13 of 146 Old 05-22-2010, 11:44 AM - Thread Starter
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New review and video sample has been added in the original post. If you find any good reviews or video samples, send the link in a PM and I will add them as well.
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post #14 of 146 Old 05-24-2010, 11:27 PM
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I haven't had any experience with any HD cameras, only SD ones, and a plenty different kinds, so I'm not up to date on brand new technology with camcorders, but damn, I really love my M300. It's fantastic. Beautiful picture quality, especially outdoors. Indoors is even good.

I do notice a slight noise on the playback when the zoom is used. I don't always notice it, though, which is odd, but it's there sometimes.

If I wasn't into home theater, I'd have a whole lotta money.
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post #15 of 146 Old 05-28-2010, 11:04 AM
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I was thinking of getting an HF M31. The HF M30/31 have been out for a month or so now. Does anyone have any hands-on experience of the on-camcorder HD to SD downconversion between the onboard memory and the SDHC flash card ?

Is it stable, or does it crash with larger files ?

How long would it take to downconvert your average DVD length video, say 90 minutes of video ?

Is the downconversion quality similar to using Pixela software on the computer ?
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post #16 of 146 Old 06-02-2010, 10:19 AM
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There is a distressing lack of commentary in this thread. I am thinking about buying one (I always have bought Canon for camcorders, and in the $550-$700 range I can't find a better option), but the only comments here have been pretty negative....
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post #17 of 146 Old 06-02-2010, 10:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonandabby View Post

There is a distressing lack of commentary in this thread. I am thinking about buying one (I always have bought Canon for camcorders, and in the $550-$700 range I can't find a better option), but the only comments here have been pretty negative....

Did you see the 2 review links at the top of this thread? I don't see those as negative at all. The only "bad" thing is the low light noise but it may not be a big issue with many. See the night video example from the first post. Especially if you use night mode or shoot in the fake 24p mode, noise is not a big issue. Can low light be better in camcorders? Yes but it also means you need to go up to the next price level at $1K. That is my opinion, hope it helps.
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post #18 of 146 Old 06-03-2010, 12:44 AM
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It looks like someone on this thread may be able to help me.
I'm wondering if one of you could tell me the file format
used for the video on this camcorder.

I use a Mac, and I don't like iMovie, and so I would rather
just use some format that Quicktime understands natively,
like .mp4 or .mov.

Thanks.
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post #19 of 146 Old 06-22-2010, 10:04 PM
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Im here playing with it, i got it for its small size .

Im more into taking pictures and screwed on a wide angle lens to it but noticed i have to turn off the camera's flash since the lens is in the way of the light and leaves a dark spot on pictures.

Does anybody know if all wide angle lenses will do this or if mine is just extremely mal proportioned?
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post #20 of 146 Old 06-24-2010, 05:01 PM
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I am a new owner of the HFM30 I picked one up locally for 520 dollars with a case for 10 bucks! Anyone can point me to a place where I can buy my accessories for the camera at a good price?
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post #21 of 146 Old 07-07-2010, 04:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newjacksm View Post

I am a new owner of the HFM30 I picked one up locally for 520 dollars with a case for 10 bucks! Anyone can point me to a place where I can buy my accessories for the camera at a good price?

I would suggest either Amazon or Ebay..

I just placed an order for HF M300 for $468.99 on Amazon and will be looking to buy other accessories once the camera arrives.
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post #22 of 146 Old 07-10-2010, 06:42 PM
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I received the camera today.

here is my quick feedback after playing with it for an hour.

Pros:
1. Size - Its smaller(not much though) for mid-priced consumer camcorders.
2. Looks stylish.
3. 15x zoom looks good!

Cons:
1. Video looks grainy in low-level lighting(definitely needs more light on the subject)
2. HOT - the underneath of the camera(right below the battery) gets hot and its quite unbearable and this is only after keeping it ON straight for about 25 mins.
I wonder if I got a defective unit ? Anybody else have this issue?

3. I can't seem to transfer files using the USB cable. Does this require HDMI or the component cables? If so, that would be terrible...
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post #23 of 146 Old 07-13-2010, 02:05 PM
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Hello, I just got a HFM300 over the weekend. So far I really like it but have not taken it through it's full paces.

Useful Topic: I would like to know what memory cards have been proven to capable in supporting the full HD mode of the camera? This would be MXP - 1920x1080. From reading comments it is evident that not all cards that meet the basic spec work well with Canon's products. Canon states in the manual that they have tested with Toshiba, panasonic and sandisk memory cards.

Use this format for sharing what cards work:

SDHC

NOTE: I found this helpful explaination on a amazon discussion page:
Canon has created some confusion, they use a speed unit in megabits/s while SDHC cards are rated in megabytes/s. Let's recap:
- The minimum requirements for the Vixia HF200 is class 4: 26x, 4MB/s
- The maximum video quality "MXP" actually requires 24mbps (bits, not bytes), i.e. 20x, 3MB/s
- The read/write speed of the Transcend class 6 cards ($41/16GB) is 150x (22.5MB/s)
- The read/write speed of the Sandisk Extreme III cards ($94/16GB) is 200x (for the "30MB/s Edition")
- The Extreme IV cards ($177/16GB) are rated at 300x (45MB/s)
All these cards far exceed the minimum requirements of the MXP maximum video quality.
The difference in speed between these cards do not affect camcorder operations, it only makes it faster to transfer the videos to a computer using a SDHC card reader.

"Too late, had your chance..muffed it"
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post #24 of 146 Old 07-14-2010, 09:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt_G View Post

Hello, I just got a HFM300 over the weekend. So far I really like it but have not taken it through it's full paces.

Let me know if your camcorder does feel HOT after using continuously for an extended period of time(say 20-30 mins)?
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post #25 of 146 Old 07-14-2010, 09:25 AM
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Amazon is throwing in an additional $50 off on the camcorder.

Once you add the HF M300 camcorder in the cart, just add the promotional coupon O3Y475QJ this should bring the price down to $418ish...

This offer is valid through July 19, 2010, or while supplies last, applies only to purchases of products sold by Amazon.com, and does not apply to products sold by third-party merchants and other sellers through the Amazon.com site
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post #26 of 146 Old 07-15-2010, 11:18 AM
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I just purchased my first ever camcorder, the HFM31. We have a baby due in two weeks, so I'd like to set the camera up in the delivery room on a stand to capture video of our girl being placed on her mom for the first time. Should I be concerned about the lighting in the delivery room?

I plan to pick up a tripod, a UV filter and now the mini-HDMI to HDMI cable. Any other accessories I should consider?
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post #27 of 146 Old 07-18-2010, 04:51 AM
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Hi all, my first post.
I have a HFM31 and it has a loud rattling noise when switched off.
The rattle disappears when the camera is switched on.
It is rather annoying and I am wondering if I should take it back to the store.
Any ideas?
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post #28 of 146 Old 07-18-2010, 09:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbysix View Post

Hi all, my first post.
I have a HFM31 and it has a loud rattling noise when switched off.
The rattle disappears when the camera is switched on.
It is rather annoying and I am wondering if I should take it back to the store.
Any ideas?

Bobby, if you read the entire thread, you will see a response that the rattling is the image stabilization system.
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post #29 of 146 Old 07-18-2010, 03:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sinebubble View Post

Bobby, if you read the entire thread, you will see a response that the rattling is the image stabilization system.

Yes, I see that now. I also found this on another website:

"Lastly, when the camcorder is powered off, there is no locking mechanism for the image stabilization system. You should never shake sensitive equipment like a camcorder but even more so with this unit. You will hear the rattling of something loose inside. That is actually the image stabilization system! I am surprised that there is no way to park the mechanical parts of this system when the power is turned off on the unit. Once power is turned on, there is no more rattling as the stabilization system is activated and locked down."

It is a bit worrying to hear though!

As far as accessories go, I would get an extra battery and separate battery charger.
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post #30 of 146 Old 07-22-2010, 08:26 AM
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SDHC Kingston Class 4 Works fine even when taking photos while recording at MXP 60i
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