Canon 310xl review – Everything You Need to Know (2023)

The Canon 310XL is a versatile super 8 camera. Small and flexible, this camera fits in your pocket and can be used in many different settings: weddings, sports, art projects, holidays, and much more. Suitable for low-light conditions with a very fast zoom-lens. First marketed in 1975, this camera is still a popular option for beginner and advanced filmmakers.

The Canon 310XL has a 8.5 mm. to 25.5 mm. f/1.0 zoom lens with reflex viewfinder but no rangefinder. The plastic body makes it quite light and easy to carry. Filming speeds: 18 fps and single frame with automatic exposure.

It has a f/1.0 XL eXtended Light aperture for extreme low-light conditions.

This super 8 camera is compact and light-weight and enables shooting dark subjects and indoor shooting without extra light.

Canon 310XL

  • Lens: f1.0/8.5-25.5mm / macro / 43mm filter thread
  • Zoom: auto/manual
  • Frame rates: 18 + single frame
  • Exposure: auto / backlight adjustment (2 stops)
  • Film EI setting: (Artificial light) 40, 160, 250 ASA, (Daylight) 25, 100, 160 ASA
  • Shutter degree: 220
  • Viewfinder: diopter correction / Aerial image focussing / Indicators: underexposure, battery check, transport, macro
  • Sound: no
  • Batteries: 2x 1.5V AA
  • Extras: remote socket (mechanical cable release)
  • Year of Production: 1975-1983
  • Weight: 580g with batteries
  • Used value: 20-30 USD
  • Instruction manual: Canon 310XL manual at mondofoto
  • Made in Taiwan ROC
  • Also available refurbished as Rhonda Cam
  • Original Prices:
    • Japan, 1975: 44500 yen
    • Western Germany and Berlin (West), 1976: 498DM (approx. 255 EUR)
  • eBay Prices:
    • USD 22.50 (+ USD 0.00 shipping) in 07/2007

Canon 310xl manual

Want to know more about this camera or are you looking for the instructions? Download here the Canon 310XL manual (pdf).

Sample movies

Watch some Canon 310XL sample movies in different light situations and explanation films here on YouTube.

Review Canon 310xl

This is an excellent all-around Super8 camera; lightweight, easy to use and rather rugged. Additionally, the image quality is impressive and with the macro feature, the 310 XL is very flexible once it comes to your choice of subjects. One of the most memorable features of this camera is the fact that the battery indicator light, macro indicator, light exposure indicator and film rolling indicator are all within the viewfinder. It’s truly amazing how this much information can be displayed in an entirely analog camera.

This camera can correctly expose Ektachrome 64T. For daylight shooting, do the following:

  • attach an external 85B filter to the front threads(43mm).
  • ensure that the red backlight compensation lever is in the “up” position.
  • put the filter switch to the tungsten position (light bulb).
  • Ensure that only 1 asa film speed detection pin is engaged (may have to force it over a bit).

Voila, push the button and start filming.

As vidwerk said, it is possible to expose Ektachrome 64T on the Canon 310XL. But, in my case, even without any add-on filter. December last year I’ve made a test exposure, on a day with sun and clouds (sometimes covered). The only thing I did, was the following:

  • cover up the cut-out on the right side of the film (be sure that both notches inside the camera are being pushed in)
  • use the daylight setting
  • mount an UV-filter (I’ve used the original Canon UV 1x filter)

Again, push the button and start filming! It’s not the most sharp online version, but you’ll get an idea how it looks whilst filming this way. this is my test: note the helicopter, which is quite recognisable

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