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Canon FS300

Standard-definition camcorder (Blue)

8 Reviews

Item # 280FS300L

This item is no longer available.

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Our take on the Canon FS300

This handy little camcorder records vibrant, colorful home movies, and it won't weigh you down when you're shooting on the go.


This handy little camcorder records vibrant, colorful home movies, and it won't weigh you down when you're shooting on the go.

The quick start feature on the Canon FS300 lets you start recording in less than a second simply by flipping open the LCD panel. Quick charge allows you to refresh the battery for an hour of recording time in just 20 minutes, so you'll have a better chance of catching memorable moments. Connect the camcorder to your computer's high-speed USB port to transfer videos to your PC for editing, archiving, or uploading to the web.

This cam has no internal flash memory, so you'll need to add SD or SDHC memory cards to record your footage.

Product Highlights:

    Storage and Formats:
    • 32GB memory card (not included) holds approximately 7 to 20 hours of footage, depending on the video settings
    • shoots standard-definition video
    Inputs and Dimensions:
    • 680,000 pixel image sensor (450,000 effective pixels in 16:9)
    • 37X optical zoom lens (2000X digital zoom)
    • 2-11/16" widescreen LCD
    • video snapshot mode allows you to assemble a highlight reel
    • electronic image stabilization
    Connections and Dimensions:
    • high-speed USB interface
    • audio/video output for connection to a TV
    • 2-1/2"W x 2-5/16"H x 4-13/16"D
    • weight: 9.5 oz. with battery
    • warranty: 1 year
    • Our 60-day money-back guarantee
    Supplied Accessories:
    • AC adapter/charger
    • rechargeable lithium ion battery (BP-808)
    • A/V and USB cables

    This is a pretty cool and affordable camcorder with lots of basic features that every first time camcorder buyer would be looking for. Good clarity and a nice 41x optical zoom combined with long battery life fancies me and its a good buy for me.

    Kunal S, Rochester NY

    What's in the Box:

    • Flash memory camcorder (blue/black)
    • BP-808 Lithium-Ion battery (7.4/890mAh)
    • CA-570S Power adapter with attached 5.5' DC output cord (DC output: 8.4V/1.5A)
    • 5' AC cord
    • 59" A/V cable with 3.5mm mini-jack plug on one end and RCA composite and stereo audio plugs on the other end
    • 47" USB cable with Mini USB Ver.2.0 connector on one end and Type-A USB connector on other end
    • 2 Pixela Application Discs Ver.1.5
    • Instruction Manual/Music Data Disc
    • Quick Guide (En/Fr/Sp)
    • ImageMixer 3 SE Installation Guide (En/Fr/Sp)
    • Register Now card
    • Limited Warranty card
    • Notice for installing USB driver

    Canon FS300 Reviews

    Average Customer Review(s):

    (8 Reviews)

    Love it !!!

    Love from MS on 4/15/2011

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    I have considered buying a SD camcorder to replace my mini-dv ones and so far I love it! I record dance recitals where the lighting is FAR from perfect and this thing handles the low light very well. And since dance recitals have a tendency to go on for hours, it was a real pain to change tapes over and over again. I bought the 16GB SD card which will record for hours and hours at the cameras best quality which is perfect. Now I can focus on getting the shot instead of changing the tapes and hoping they work. And, oh by the way, I bought 4 of them to cover all the angles.



    Neat little camera

    Ohedron42 from Westminster, CO on 3/21/2011

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    I got this camera because my old camera wasn't cutting it anymore. This is a very easy camera to use! Easy to learn. Easy to use. I am still learning the finer details, however I really like this camera. Small enough to be out of the way at a school concert, big enough to get good clear pictures. Even from quite a way away. Like 50-75 ft. The zoom make it look like your in the front row!!



    Still figuring it out

    JW from Santa Rosa, Ca on 3/15/2011

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    So far the camera has been what we expected. Still trying to figure out all the settings for the different lighting and how to cancel out the sound of wind but the picture and sound are higher quality than our digital camera that we have been using for family videos. The software that comes with it for editing is very basic, you have to choose on the camera if you want fading or any transitions between video clips and can not really edit any of the clips using the software - at least that i have found. I will be using movie maker to make dvd's i think. But for the price you can not beat it. Watch out for HD cameras, the format they record in can only be ready by blue ray players after you put the videos on a dvd. That is why we stuck with standard definition. So far so good, but it has only been a couple of weeks.



    Canon FS300

    DavidN from San Diego Ca on 3/15/2011

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    I like the fact that the canon fs300 is very comact and lilght. It would be nice if the camera had a view finder because in sunlight it is sometimes hard to see want your shooting. If youuse a repacement battery that is not a canon battery, the camera will not give you any information on battery status. also you can not charge the battery in the camera; you must use the charger the battery came with. One more plus , it uses memory cards instead of cassete tapes.



    Canon FS300

    Vicki from St. Louis, MO on 2/10/2011

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    So far so good. I really like the camera, perfect for recording my daughters volleyball games. Kept reading reviews about hearing a whirling noise in background but I havent come across that yet. I guess it's easy to load to the computer because my daughter did it right away and made a DVD. The price was right and the service from Crutchfield is outstanding. Would difinately purchase from them again.



    Canon FS300

    Kunal S from Rochester NY on 2/5/2011

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    This is a pretty cool and affordable camcorder with lots of basic features that every first time camcorder buyer would be looking for. Good clarity and a nice 41x optical zoom combined with long battery life fancies me and its a good buy for me.



    Good product, great for the price!

    Julie from Milwaukee, WI on 1/29/2011

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    Ordered this for Christmas, so we haven't had it very long, but it seems like a great product so far. Very easy to use, good battery life so far (still on the first charge). We've used it for Christmas gift-opening and baby firsts. Works great - starts up quickly, starts recording quickly, focuses automatically without any problems, deals well with low light, browsing through previous videos is easy, picture stays steady even with movement. The sound is really pretty good too. You can hear the faint tinkle of the baby toys being whacked. We love the compact size and ease of use. Haven't downloaded any movies yet, so can't speak on that. The buttons on the moveable LCD panel seem a bit cheap, but work well so far. We're pretty happy all in all with our purchase.



    Good Camcorder for Beginners

    Anit from Secaucus, NJ on 1/17/2011

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    The Canon FS300 brings all the nice things about digital camera recording.




    Hands-on research

    Product Research

    General Features
    Video Camcorder Features
    Digital Still Camera Features
    Battery Information
    Inputs And Outputs
    Software Requirements

    General Features

    2.7" Widescreen LCD Screen: The FS300 features a 2.7" TFT, color widescreen LCD screen (123,000 pixels) to make it easy to compose and review your shots. The bright screen lets you see exactly what your camcorder is recording, and what your widescreen TV will display later. You can rotate the LCD screen 90-degrees downward and 180-degrees toward the lens allowing the subject to monitor the LCD screen. The LCD screen also features an adjustable brightness control. The LCD Screen's frame contains zoom, playback and menu controls for added convenience.

    Note: This camcorder does not feature a separate viewfinder.

    SD/SDHC Memory Card Recording: The Canon FS300 camcorder captures video and still-images onto an SD or SDHC Memory card (not included). Flash memory offers quick response time for recording and playback. By recording onto flash memory, the camcorder's power consumption rate is reduced, allowing the battery to last longer. In addition, by using flash memory, the camcorder is more shock resistant and is less likely to lose data because there are no moving parts. A Class 2 or higher SD card (64MB-2 GB) or SDHC card (4 GB to 32 GB) is recommended. Movie recordings require cards with 128 MB of memory or more.

    Image Sensor: The FS300 features a 1/6" (3mm) CCD imager with 680,000 gross pixels for excellent detail and clarity when recording video and exceptional digital still photography performance. The zoom setting effects the effective pixel count in 16:9 and 4:3 mode:

    • 16:9 Movie Mode:
      • Advanced Zoom: 360,000 (telephoto) and 450,000 (wide-angle) pixels
      • Optical Zoom: 360,000 pixels
    • 4:3 Movie Mode:
      • Optical Zoom: 340,000 pixels
    • Still Images (4:3): 450,000 pixels

    DIGIC DV II: DIGIC DV II ensures optimal video image quality. It also ensures optimal image quality for still images, even though video and still images have different color requirements. The DIGIC DV II image processing produces video with improved color reproduction; especially in skin tones, and dark and light scenes. It also uses a hybrid noise reduction system that employs two types of noise reduction for high definition images that are crystal clear. Plus, DIGIC DV II features faster processing of your images to your memory card, and helps lower power consumption for longer battery life.

    Genuine Canon Video Lens: The FS300 comes with a Genuine Canon video lens with a 37x Optical zoom and 2000x total digital zoom. The camcorder offer three types of zoom:

    • 37x Optical Zoom: The zoom range is limited to the optical magnification ratio of the lens which is 37x.
    • 41x Advanced Zoom: In addition to the optical zoom range, the camcorder processes the image digitally to obtain a larger zoom range without any deterioration in image quality. 41x Advanced Zoom is used for 16:9 aspect ratio images.
    • 2000x Digital Zoom: When this option is selected, the camcorder will switch to digital zoom. With digital zoom, the image is processed digitally so image quality will deteriorated the more you zoom in.

    Note: The zoom speed can be set to variable or one of three fixed speeds. In the variable position, the zoom speed depends on how far you push the lever. The purpose of the three fixed zoom speeds is a smoother zoom transition, at your choice of speeds.

    Electronic Image Stabilizer: A high quality electronic image stabilization system corrects camera shake instantly, giving you smooth, stable pictures. It enables you to record shake-free images, even on long telephoto shots without a tripod.

    16:9 High Resolution: This Canon FS300 uses the entire width of its image sensor to record video in true 16:9 format. By capturing more pixels, you get better image quality. If you generally play your camcorder footage on a widescreen TV, use the WideScreen mode to record video in the 16:9 aspect ratio. When playing widescreen footage with the camcorder output set for a 4:3 screen, black bars will appear on the top and bottom of the screen.

    Focus Modes: The Canon FS300 features a Manual, Auto and Infinity Focus modes:

    • Manual Focus: With manual focus, you can manually adjust the focus of the camcorder using the touch panel. Manual focusing also allows you to control the focus in difficult situations where either the environment or the subject does not allow the camcorder's auto focus to perform optimally, such as when shooting through a window or in a crowded environment.
    • Auto Focus: Auto Intelligent Auto Focus ensures sharp images and gives creative flexibility. Even when your subject isn't in the center of the frame, the FS300's 9 Point AiAF will bring it into sharp focus.
    • Infinity Focus: Use this function when you wish to focus on far away subject such as mountains or fireworks.

    Exposure Mode: The Canon FS300 allows you to select from the following exposure modes:

    • Manual Exposure Adjustment: At times, backlit subjects may appear too dark (underexposed) or subjects under very strong lights may appear too bright or glaring (overexposed). To correct this, you can manually adjust the exposure from neutral (±0) to +11 or -11.
    • Easy Recording: The camcorder will adjust focus, exposure and other settings, leaving you free to point and shoot
    • Program AE: The camcorder automatically adjust the aperture and shutter speed to obtain the optimal exposure for the subject
    • Shutter-Priority AE: The camcorder automatically sets the appropriate aperture value while you set the shutter speed:
      • Video Mode: 1/8, 1/15, 1/30, 1/60, 1/100, 1/250, 1/500, 1/1000, and 1/2000
      • Photo Mode: 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/15, 1/30, 1/60, 1/100, 1/250, and 1/500
    • Special Scene Recording Modes: The FS300 features the following Preset Scene Recording Modes to match special conditions:
      • Portrait: camcorder uses a large aperture, achieving a focus on the subject while blurring other distracting details
      • Sports: use this mode to record sports scenes or fast moving events
      • Night:use this mode to record in low-light conditions
      • Snow: use this mode to record in bright ski resorts, it prevents the subject from being underexposed
      • Beach: use this mode to record on a sunny beach, it prevent the subject from being underexposed
      • Sunset: use this mode to record sunsets in vibrant colors
      • Spotlight:use this mode to record spotlight scenes
      • Fireworks: use this mode to record fireworks

    Auto Backlight Correction: With this feature turned on, you can have the camcorder automatically correct for the backlight with the press of a single button when shooting subject with a strong light source behind them.

    Auto Slow Shutter: In this mode, the camcorder automatically uses slow shutter speeds to obtain brighter recordings in places with insufficient lighting.

    White Balance: The camcorder's auto white balance system compensates for a wide range of lighting conditions. Additionally the white balance can be set manually or using one of the two preset modes, Daylight (recording outdoors on a bright day) or Tungsten (recording under tungsten and tungsten type 3-wavelength fluorescent lighting).

    Image Effects: The FS300 allows you to record with the following saturation and contrast color effects:

    • Vivid: emphasizes the contrast and color saturation to record in crisp colors
    • Neutral: tones down the contrast and color saturation to record in neutral hues
    • Soft Skin Detail: softens the details in the skin tone area for a more complimentary appearance

    Mini Video Light: You can turn on the camcorder's built-in mini video light to shoot video or take photos in dark places.

    Self-Timer: This feature allows the camcorder to start recording after a 10-second countdown.

    Level And Grid Markers: Capturing level, well-composed shots is simple with the FS300. Line up the horizon or other horizontal lines with the Level Marker in the viewfinder for level landscapes. Or, use the Grid Marker to help compose the perfect shot. Both markers can be set to white or gray for enhanced visibility, no matter what the background.

    Menu Languages: You can set the menu language to English, German, Spanish, French, Italian, Polish, Russian, Chinese, or Japanese.

    Video Camcorder Features

    Compatible Media: The FS300 captures MPEG-2 video with 2ch Dolby Digital audio onto an SD or SDHC memory card (sold separately). The camcorder supports SD cards up to 2GB and SDHC memory cards up to 32GB. A 128MB or larger SD card is required for recording video content.

    Recording Modes: The camcorder offers three video recording modes. Changing the recording mode will change the recording time available on the memory card. Select the XP mode for better movie quality, SP mode for standard quality, and LP mode for longer recording times. You can capture the following video recording times using these modes:

    Memory TypeRecording Mode
    1 GB SD card10 min20 min35 min
    2 GB SD card25 min40 min1 hr 15 min
    4GB SDHC card55 min1 hr 20 min2 hrs35 min

    Note: When recording exceeds 4GB, it will be divided and saved as scenes smaller than 4GB.

    Faders: You can select one of the following faders:

    • Fade Trigger: When you start recording, the scene gradually fades in from a black screen. When you stop recording, it gradually fades out.
    • Wipe: When you start recording, the picture begins as a thin vertical line in the center of the screen which gradually expands sideways until it fills the whole of the screen. When you end a scene, the image is wiped from both sides of the screen.

    Wind Screen: The camcorder automatically reduces the background sound of wind when recording outdoors when Wind Screen is turned "On".

    Built-in Speaker: The camcorder has a built-in speaker so you can review the soundtrack alongside the picture when you're using the LCD screen to playback a recording. The built-in speaker is monaural.

    Playback Functions: The camera uses the following special playback modes - Fast Playback, Reverse Playback, Frame-by-Frame Playback, Slow Playback and Scene Skip. During these playback modes there is no sound.

    Date Search: You can locate video on the inserted SD memory card by searching changes in the date and time.

    Video Snapshot: You can record a series of short scenes (approximately 4 seconds) and combine them with music to feature your videos in a new way. You can also add to the playlist just the scenes you want to watch and change their order. The music files are found on one of the included CD-ROM discs.

    Movie Timeline: You can display a timeline of the scene and select where to begin the playback. This is very convenient when you want to play back a long scene from a specific point.

    Playlists: You can create a playlist to play back only the scenes you prefer and in the order of your choice. Moving or deleting scenes in the playlist will not affect the original recordings.

    Digital Still Camera Features

    Still Image Recording: The flash memory camcorder is also a high performance digital camera capable of capturing stunning 4:3 JPEG still images on an SD/SDHC Memory Card (sold separately). You can record in the following still image sizes - Large (L): 1024 x 768, or Small (S): 640 x 480. There are three Photo Quality (compression) settings for each image size: Super Fine, Fine, and Normal. The number of still images that can be recorded on a memory card are as follows:

    Image SizeImage QualityNumber of Images
    128MB SD Card 512MB SD Card1GB SD Card
    1024 x 768
    Super Fine 235 940 1885
    Fine 345 1370 2745
    Normal 695 2740 5490
    640 x 480
    Super Fine 585 2320 4645
    Fine 850 3350 6710
    Normal 1530 6035 12085

    Note: The maximum number of remaining still images displayed on the screen is 9999.

    Automatic Focus Priority: When the focus priority is activated, the camcorder records a still image only after the focus has been adjusted automatically. You select from the following Auto-Focus Priority modes.

    • AiAF: depending on the shooting conditions, one or more AF frames out of the nine frames available are automatically selected and the focus is fixed on them
    • Center: a single focusing frame appears in the center of the screen and the focus is automatically fixed on it; this is convenient for making sure the focus is exactly where you want it
    • Off: select this option if you wish to record a still image as soon as you press Record without Auto-Focus

    Digital Effects: You can select from the following effects:

    • Black and White: makes the image black and white
    • Sepia: makes a monochrome image with a brownish tint

    Histogram Display: The FS300 comes with a Histogram Display. The display allows you to see the brightness information of your still images, so you can adjust your exposures as you shoot.

    Review: You can select the time to display a still image after it has been recorded to Off, 2 seconds, 4 seconds, 6 seconds, 8 seconds or 10 seconds.

    Viewing Still Images: There are 3 ways to view still images: Single image, Slide show (one after the other automatically in order of recording), or Index screen showing six images at once.

    Magnify Playback: During playback still images can be magnified up to 5 times. You can also select the area of the screen to be magnified.

    Image Jump: You can jump ahead to a specific image without having to browse all images one by one. You can jump ahead 10 or 100 images.

    Protect Still Images: You can protect still images from accidental erasure.

    Print and Share Button: Print & Share allows you to simply connect your camcorder directly to select Canon printers or any PictBridge-compatible printer with the supplied USB cable. Then, with a simple touch of the Print & Share button, print directly from your FS300 without going through a computer. Print & Share also makes it easy to transfer your still images to your computer. Simply connect your FS300 and your computer, press the Print & Share button and your photos are downloaded to your computer.

    PictBridge Printing Capability: PictBridge is a standard that allows you to connect a PictBridge compliant camera directly to a PictBridge-compliant printer and make prints, regardless of brand.

    Exif Print (Exif 2.2): The Canon FS300 conforms to "Exif Print", a worldwide standard. Vital camera settings (such as: exposure mode, white balance, exposure time) and scene data are recorded to the image file when it is captured. Printers compatible with "Exif Print" are able to use this information to produce high quality photographs, exactly the way they were intended at the time of capture. This intelligent communication process also allows the printer to correct for poor lighting or mistakes, resulting in photos which can be even better than the originals.

    DPOF (Digital Print Order Format) Settings: On the memory card, you can select which image or images you want to print and how many copies you want. This is convenient for printing images all at once on a Canon Direct Print function compliant printer or printing at participating photo labs. You can set print orders for up to 998 still images.

    Battery Information

    Li-ion Battery Pack: The Canon FS300 comes supplied with a rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery Pack (BP-808). The camcorder also comes supplied with an AC power adapter and charger (CA-570 S). The battery recording and playback times are as follows:

    Usage TimeRecording Mode
    Maximum Recording Time205 min210 min205 min
    Typical Recording Time100 min105 min105 min
    Playback time285 min290 min290 min

    Note: The supplied BP-808 battery pack requires 140 minutes to fully charge the battery in the camcorder using the supplied charger.

    Auto Power Off: After 5 minutes without any operation when powered by the battery, the camcorder automatically powers off. Approximately 30 seconds before the camcorder automatically turns itself off, a warning message appears in the display.

    Quick Start: When you press the Quick Start button on the side of the camcorder, the camcorder powers up and gets ready to record within approximately 1 second. The Quick Start function helps prevent you from missing out on fleeting opportunities to take a video or picture.

    Inputs And Outputs

    AV Output: The camcorder features an AV output to playback audio and video on your television using the supplied composite video/stereo audio RCA cable. You can select between a 4:3 aspect ratio or a 16:9 aspect ratio for the video out based on your television's aspect ratio.

    USB 2.0 Connection: The camcorder features a USB 2.0 High Speed terminal for fast transfer of photos.

    SD Card Slot: The FS300 records still images and video onto SD and SDHC memory cards.

    Software Requirements

    Included Software: The Canon FS300 camcorder comes supplied with three CD-ROM application discs: PIXELA Application Discs 1 and 2, and the Instruction Manual/Music Data disc.

    PIXELA Application Disc Ver.1.5 (2 Discs):

    • Disc One:
      • ImageMixer 3 SE Transfer Utility: Software for saving and transferring movies
      • Music Transfer Utility: Software for transferring music for Video Snapshot playback to the camcorder
    • Disc Two:
      • ImageMixer 3 SE Video Tools: Software for saving, managing, editing, and playing back movies

    Instruction Manual/Music Data Disc: This CD-ROM contains the full-version Instruction Manual of the camcorder and music data for Video Snapshot and Slideshow playback.

    Compatible Windows Systems:

    • Microsoft Windows XP (Home Edition or Professional, 32-bit), Service Pack 2 or 3
    • Microsoft Windows Vista (Home Basic, Home Premium, Ultimate, Business, or Enterprise Edition, 32- or 64-bit), Service Pack 1 or 2
    • Microsoft Windows 7 (Home Premium, Professional, Ultimate, or Enterprise Edition, 32- or 64-bit)

    Windows System Requirements:

    Operating SystemWindows XP SP2
    Windows Vista
    Windows 7
    CPUWindows XP: Intel Pentium 4 1.49 GHz, Intel Celeron 1.7 GHz
    Windows Vista / Windows 7: Intel Pentium 4 2.4 GHz, Intel Celeron 3.0 GHz
    RAMWindows XP: 512 MB
    Windows Vista / Windows 7 (32-bit): 1 GB
    Windows 7 (64-bit): 2 GB
    Available Hard Disk SpaceFor Disc 1: 30 MB
    For Disc 1 & 2: 130 MB
    Disc Authoring  At least 3 times the amount of data to be written on the disc
    Transferring Music: At least the same amount on the C: drive as the music files to be transferred
    Display1024 x 768 resolution, 16-bit color (High Color)
    SoundSound card compatible with DirectSound
    OthersPreinstalled USB 2.0 (Hi-speed USB) port
    Card reader/writer
    For the software on Disc 2: Internet connection (during installation), system that can run DirectX 9.0c, preinstalled DVD drive with writing capabilities, logged on as Administrator

    Our Product Research Team

    At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.