Although it's price may be pushing your budget, it has a number of features that IMO overcome the higher price.

The number one thing I like is access to its controls. The Canon has a large wheel that is used to select the mode. This appears to be buried in Sony's menus which is a real PIA. Also, the Canon has three adjustments on the lense barrel; focus, zoom, and aperture. Shutter speed is not too far away. The Sony does not have a provision for setting the aperture. If you are knowledgeable about SLRs, you should understand why that is a big problem. With the HV-A1, I can adjust exposure with aperture, shutter speed, and ND. There may be additional controls I haven't discovered yet.

The Canon's low light performance is phenomenal, and it has a 20X lense which reaches, on a 35mm equivalent basis, 685mm.

Like the Sony, it has built-in XLR inputs although I have been very surprised at how good the built-in mic works. When I used it, I could not hear any camera sounds during post. It also seems to be totally customizable.

After using the Canon, I have zero interest in the Sony cameras. They look cumbersome to use, and limited in a number of respects.