Alan Roberts (BBC) tested the Canon XF300/305 – and behold, he saw that it was good.

In the UK, cameras for broadcast use have to be rigorously tested and approved for use especially for the BBC) and Alan Roberts is often the person that does the testing: a fascinating man with an incredible knowledge of the deepest workings of camera technology.

Alan was commissioned by Canon to see whether the camera was suitable for broadcast use. In the words of a colleague at Canon:

“Although this report was commissioned by Canon it was conducted entirely independently, without input or interference from Canon. Any conclusions, measurements, etc contained in the report are entirely Alan’s point of view and in no way represent Canon”

Robert said:

“Chaps, I’ve completed tests on a 305, and it’s rather lovely. It preforms dramatically better than a 1″/3 camera should do. The test was for an independent production (not European) and Canon, with the BBC taking a back seat for a change. So the settings doc does not carry the BBC’s imprint. Nevertheless, the tests and reporting procedure are exactly as for any other test.”

“I think this camera raises the issue of whether 1″/3 is ok for broadcast, certainly it performs as well as, if not better than at least 2 1″/2 cameras that are approved by the BBC, and doesn’t need external recording to achieve that performance. And as for 13 user buttons, well …..”

“the 305 appears to out-perform the EX in all respects, if only marginally, which is entirely the wrong way round, it shouldn’t be so,. Clearly Canon have been doing some very clever things behind the scenes for a while, some of which I still don’t understand.”

“the XF appears to be a little more sensitive than the EX, and to have slightly better noise performance, and the range of usable aperture values is about the same.”

“this camera goes to F/1.6 and is good nearly to F/8, which is significantly better than it should be, the lens is much better than I’d expected.”

“this camera should force a change of broadcasters’ rules. I think that may already have happened in the BBC; although the tests were independent of the BBC this time, they have the report just like anyone else.”

Here is the full PDF with all the Information, Settings and tests
Alan Roberts independent-report-canon-xf300-305

Frank Glencairn


One thought on “Alan Roberts (BBC) tested the Canon XF300/305 – and behold, he saw that it was good.

  1. Fully agree with everything stated. This is indeed an amazing camera – Broadcast spec yes, but there’s a lot on offer here for creative `short` film makers. This camera was designed by the same crew that developed the C300 – in fact much of the tech is shared.

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