Channel 5

Canon Legria HFM41

Tuesday 05 April 2011

G-Rating

Rating of 4

The basics

Like a number of camcorders in this price range the Legria HFM41 has a size and weight befitting its plethora of features and quality output. It is not massive at 74mm x 71mm x 137mm (W/H/D), but it is certainly not one that would slip easily into a pocket. The HFM41 features a 35mm lens, 10 X optical zoom, optical image stabilisation, 3” touchscreen, dual SD card slots as well as an impressive 32GB internal flash memory. As you can see the feature list of the HFM41 is impressive and befitting of a camera at this price point.

The good

Using this camera, you feel like a budding Spielberg. The quality of build and feature set is extraordinary and everything works really well. The optical image stabilisation is the best we have seen from any of our recent camera reviews – video feels like it is being filmed on a tripod rather then in hand. The menu system is extensive and easily laid out, and through the touchscreen everything is handily accessed without issue. Though the HFM41 is a sizable camera, it sits naturally in your hand and extended use is not a chore. There has clearly been a lot of thought put into the ergonomics of this device.

The bad

The issues we have found with the Canon Legria HFM41 are minimal, however this is not a perfect camera. Canon have included a viewfinder on the back, which emulates a feature found on higher level pro camcorders. Sadly this viewfinder hosts a tiny low quality LCD screen that makes usage near impossible. The battery bay is sized for a large battery, but the included one only fills half the space, making the camera look off balance.

The bottom line

At a shade under £800, this camera is not to be purchased on a whim, however the multitude of features and manual control settings really set this camcorder apart from the competition. If you are a budding filmmaker or want something more from your home movies, then the Legria HFM41 is for you.
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