I'm still getting over the announcement of the XF100 today....okay, it's not like the world completely changed, but in this day of rumors and leaks, it's a little shocking to see something like this appear without any prior hint.
So what are the XF100 and XF105, and how do they compare with the XF300 and XF305? There's some information still missing (i.e. price) but comparing the available specs, you can see that the XF100/XF105 models are quite a bit smaller in size and probably lighter, with a shorter zoom (10x instead of 18x.) The cameras appear to use similar CMOS chips (at least the resolution is identical) with an approximate total number of pixels on the chip of .37 megapixels (2044 x 1160 pixels.) Obviously only 1920 x 1080 are actually used.
The other significant difference is that the XF100 & XF105 have a single sensor, while the XF300 & XF305 have three. Sensitivity seems a little lower too, though this could be due to the slightly slower lenses (f/1.8 vs f/1.6) on the XF100/105.
Frame rates, compression (4:2:2!) media support, image stabilization and focusing systems seem to be the same, but the resolution on the LCD and especially the viewfinder on the XF100 is lower than the XF300.
The chart below compares the features of the XF100 and XF300. Note that the XF105 (like the XF305) adds Genlock and an HD/SDI terminal
XF100 seems to have a SINGLE 1/3" CMOS chip, whereas the XF300 has three. Resolution is the same.
XF100: Canon 10x HD Zoom Lens, 4.25-42.5mm (35mm equivalent 30.4-304mm), f/1.8-2.8
XF300: Canon 18x HD L Series Zoom, 4.1-73.8mm (35mm equivalent 29.3 - 527.4mm), f/1.6-2.8
XF100: 0.24-inch color widescreen, approx. 260,000 dots, approx. 100% field of view
XF300: 0.52-inch color widescreen, approx. 1,555,000 dots, approx. 100% field of view
XF100: 3.5-inch color widescreen LCD, approx. 920,000 dots, approx. 100% field of view
XF300: 4.0-inch color widescreen LCD, approx. 1,230,000 dots, approx. 100% field of view
XF100: Full AUTO mode: 4.5 lux (Shutter speed 1/60, Gain +24dB); Manual mode: 1.6 lux (shutter speed 1/4, Gain +33dB)
XF300: Full AUTO mode: 4.5 lux (Shutter speed 1/60, Gain +21dB); Manual mode: 08 lux (Shutter speed 1/4, Gain +33dB), (when 60i is selected)
XF100: Approx. 4.8 x 5.8 x 9.8 in. (121 x 148 x 250mm) (not including lens hood, mic holder unit, grip strap)
XF300: Approx. 6.0 x 9.3 x 15.0 in. (153 x 236 x 382mm) (not including lens hood, eyecup, grip belt)
Both offer: 60i, 60p, 30p, 24p (50i and 25p optional upgrade available through Canon Factory Service Center). Though the XF300 lists 50p (as part of optional upgrade) while the XF100 does not. This could just be an error in the spec sheet.
Both support 16bit audio, and have twin XLR jacks
Both have dual Compact Flash slots
Image Stabilization and Focusing System appear to be identical.