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Old September 28th, 2011, 05:07 AM   #1
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panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

sorry if this has been asked before, but I cannot seem to decide which one to buy, to use next to my Canon 5dmk2, mainly for narratives

I've watched countless videos of both and here is what I think

the TM900 is considerably sharper, and noticeably so...it's not just a minor thing: the video is crispier and jumps out of the screen.
also, the TM900 has a full 50p mode which allows for great slow-mo. The TM900 has the option to record 3D. takes better stills (for whoever cares)

What the G10 has a slightly larger LCD screen, better low light performance, although I haven't seen a big evidence of that, but I am sure it's the case. the G10 supposedly also has more complete manual controls, ND filters (that the TM900 doesn't have) - still clips I've seen look somewhat soft, or at least softer than the panasonic.

the Canon is quite more expensive than the panny, almost 45% more here in the UK (750 for the TM900 and around 1100 for the Canon)/

I used to own a Panasonic TM300 a few years ago and I hated it when light conditions were less than ideal but I think the 900 must be on a different league.

for some reason I am sure the Canon IS a better camcorder, but still when I look at clips the TM900 looks....nicer

it would be great if someone here who owns both commented

any help appreciated

Fed

Last edited by Federico Perale; September 28th, 2011 at 06:16 AM.
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Old September 28th, 2011, 06:15 AM   #2
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

I have a TM700 and can clear up a couple points assuming it's the same or better in the TM900. Here's the B&H page:
Panasonic HDC-TM900 High Definition Camcorder HDC-TM900K B&H

There is peaking. Panasonic calls it "manual focus assist".
There are zebras.
The ND filters are automatic and kick in as you change iris.

I found the TM700 a nice one handed POV camera (and still have basic manual control) for hanging out the side of a vehicle, shooting down low or whatever. The design of the zoom control and lens ring let you run the camera in auto focus and with one hand, hold the camera, operate the zoom and control the iris with the zebras and histogram giving you a warm feeling that you have the shot even tho you may have only a limited view of the screen (where peaking and zebras are useless). I don't have any experience with the G10. YMMV.

Last edited by Les Wilson; September 28th, 2011 at 06:16 AM. Reason: added caveat
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Old September 28th, 2011, 06:16 AM   #3
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

If your narrative is excellent nobody will care about your acquisition format except you. So go with your gut. Just my opinion.
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Old September 28th, 2011, 06:18 AM   #4
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

thanks Les
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Old September 28th, 2011, 06:20 AM   #5
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

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Originally Posted by Mike Peter Reed View Post
If your narrative is excellent nobody will care about your acquisition format except you. So go with your gut. Just my opinion.
but the point here is to understand which is the best tool, not format

I initially thought I would go for the Canon, but low light is already covered with the 5D and the TM900 seems to do everything else better...
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Old September 28th, 2011, 07:08 AM   #6
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

How are you capturing audio? Neither TM900 or 5DM2 have XLRs.
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Old September 28th, 2011, 07:18 AM   #7
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

if it's for narrative I'd get 60D, I'm guessing you have more than one EF lens, if it's for narrative and everything else - XA/HF G10 is the best in it's class,
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Old September 28th, 2011, 08:23 AM   #8
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Peter Reed View Post
If your narrative is excellent nobody will care about your acquisition format except you. So go with your gut. Just my opinion.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Les Wilson View Post
How are you capturing audio? Neither TM900 or 5DM2 have XLRs.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buba Kastorski View Post
if it's for narrative I'd get 60D, I'm guessing you have more than one EF lens, if it's for narrative and everything else - XA/HF G10 is the best in it's class,
hi Les. I will be using mainly the Zoom H4N

Buba have you by chance used the XA/G10 and/or the TM900?
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Old September 28th, 2011, 09:39 AM   #9
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

Federico.
I own a TM900, and had the use of an XA10 a few weeks ago. The G10, as you know, is the same camera image wise. Not a lot between the 2 cams, apart from the price.The XA10 has a wide dynamic range, ie, it handles shadows and highlights very well. Colours hold up vey well in low light, and you can safely use a fair ammount of gain before the rubbish sets in. I liked the XA10, but it didnt offer me any great advantage over my TM900, which I use on a regular basis as B cam to my EX1. Mind you the percentage of TM900 footage in the final edit is increasing on every job. The above is of course very subjective. If you get a chance take a couple of cards to a dealer, and grab some footage from both cams, so you can scrutinise it at your leisure.
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Old September 28th, 2011, 09:43 AM   #10
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

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Federico.
I own a TM900, and had the use of an XA10 a few weeks ago. The G10, as you know, is the same camera image wise. Not a lot between the 2 cams, apart from the price.The XA10 has a wide dynamic range, ie, it handles shadows and highlights very well. Colours hold up vey well in low light, and you can safely use a fair ammount of gain before the rubbish sets in. I liked the XA10, but it didnt offer me any great advantage over my TM900, which I use on a regular basis as B cam to my EX1. Mind you the percentage of TM900 footage in the final edit is increasing on every job. The above is of course very subjective. If you get a chance take a couple of cards to a dealer, and grab some footage from both cams, so you can scrutinise it at your leisure.
thanks Colin that's very interesting. did you notice more sharpness in the TM900 footage than the canon? to me it's quite evident.
also I suppose you use the EX1 for low light?
what was your impression in terms of manual controls that one offered versus the other?
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Old September 28th, 2011, 09:56 AM   #11
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

The sharpness of the TM900 needs dialling down quite a lot, as is the case on most HD cameras. I find the TM900 and the EX1 play nicely together in even the dingiest of churches. The EX1 trounces the Panny, and of course most other cams in the low light stakes. As for manual controls, I am obviously used to the TM900, and find everthing I need easily accessable. The XA10 seemed to be far more menu based, It only probably appeared to be so, because I was not familiar with the camera. Both are excellent bits of kit.
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Old September 28th, 2011, 10:04 AM   #12
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

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Originally Posted by Federico Perale View Post
thanks Colin that's very interesting. did you notice more sharpness in the TM900 footage than the canon? to me it's quite evident.
also I suppose you use the EX1 for low light?
what was your impression in terms of manual controls that one offered versus the other?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin Rowe View Post
The sharpness of the TM900 needs dialling down quite a lot, as is the case on most HD cameras. I find the TM900 and the EX1 play nicely together in even the dingiest of churches. The EX1 trounces the Panny, and of course most other cams in the low light stakes. As for manual controls, I am obviously used to the TM900, and find everthing I need easily accessable. The XA10 seemed to be far more menu based, It only probably appeared to be so, because I was not familiar with the camera. Both are excellent bits of kit.
thanks one final question: how did you place the TM900s 50p footage on a 25p timeline? I use a Canon 5dmkII and Vegas 10, and was wondering (if I buy the TM900) how to edit both cam's footage in the same timeline?
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Old September 28th, 2011, 12:14 PM   #13
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

Hi

Vegas 9E (so I'm sure Vegas 10) handles 1080p50 files easily (on a fast i7 Windows 7 box anyway). You can set clip undersampling to 0.5 (i.e 25p if necessay, depending on what you want to do with the footage - normal speed or slow-motion etc.).

Here are a couple of test clips that might help - read the blurb below them on the YouTube pages for more info about what you see. Pausing the videos at certain points in 1080p shows some frame blending with some settings and (obviously) some settings are not suitable for slow motion whilst others are better. These were all done in a Vegas 1080p50 timeline by the way:

Panasonic TM900 (1080p50 Slow Motion Test) - YouTube

Panasonic TM900 (1080p50 Slow Motion - 2nd Test) - YouTube

I'm sure either the Canon or Panny would work fine - both are excellent cams with different strengths. If you're torn why not just buy the cheapest (HS900 then TM900). Many will have agonised over these choices. However, I think you should also consider the excellent Canon 60D suggestion (as that will match so well with your Canon 5DMkII). It should also be available at a good price. 12 min (ish) limit on two cams is a pain for narrative work though!

I have Sony EX3, Canon 7D and Panny TM900 (and a few others). TM900 is much closer in "look" to EX3 but the 7D is a different kind of look completely (I'm talking video sharpness and colour here) so two Canon DSLRs would match up nicely for you.
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Old September 28th, 2011, 01:15 PM   #14
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

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Originally Posted by Andy Wilkinson View Post
Hi

Vegas 9E (so I'm sure Vegas 10) handles 1080p50 files easily (on a fast i7 Windows 7 box anyway). You can set clip undersampling to 0.5 (i.e 25p if necessay, depending on what you want to do with the footage - normal speed or slow-motion etc.).

Here are a couple of test clips that might help - read the blurb below them on the YouTube pages for more info about what you see. Pausing the videos at certain points in 1080p shows some frame blending with some settings and (obviously) some settings are not suitable for slow motion whilst others are better. These were all done in a Vegas 1080p50 timeline by the way:

Panasonic TM900 (1080p50 Slow Motion Test) - YouTube

Panasonic TM900 (1080p50 Slow Motion - 2nd Test) - YouTube

I'm sure either the Canon or Panny would work fine - both are excellent cams with different strengths. If you're torn why not just buy the cheapest (HS900 then TM900). Many will have agonised over these choices. However, I think you should also consider the excellent Canon 60D suggestion (as that will match so well with your Canon 5DMkII). It should also be available at a good price. 12 min (ish) limit on two cams is a pain for narrative work though!

I have Sony EX3, Canon 7D and Panny TM900 (and a few others). TM900 is much closer in "look" to EX3 but the 7D is a different kind of look completely (I'm talking video sharpness and colour here) so two Canon DSLRs would match up nicely for you.
thanks .... I never really considered the 60D or 7D as I wanted a B-cam that allowed me essentially do what the 5D cannot do or doesn't have, like proper optical stabilization, 50p for slow-mo, no time limit and movable lcd (well the 60D has that indeed)
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Old September 28th, 2011, 01:18 PM   #15
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Re: panasonic TM900 vs Canon HF G10

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Hi. If you're torn why not just buy the cheapest (HS900 then TM900). Many will have agonised over these choices. .
I think I might end up doing that... Amazon offers I think 28 day return if I keep it immaculate, and it's quite a lot cheaper than the Canon

I guess I am hesitant as my experience with Panasonic (tm300) has been quite bad (totally unusable if not in full daylight imho) and at the time I swore I would never buy panasonic again, but then again it was quite a while back.
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