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Old October 31st, 2007, 09:44 AM   #1
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Panasonic announces AG-HMC70 Shoulder Mount AVCHD Camcorder

Panasonic Expands Professional AVCHD Product Line
with the new AG-HMC70 shoulder-mount camcorder

* Affordable, Point-and-Shoot HD Camcorder Offers Benefits of SD Card
Solid-State Recording with Professional Audio Flexibility *


SECAUCUS, NJ (October 31, 2007) – Panasonic announced the expansion of its professional AVCHD product line with the introduction of the AG-HMC70 AVCHD camcorder. As the industry’s first shoulder-mount AVCHD camcorder, the HMC70 records high-quality 1080i images onto readily available SD/SDHC memory cards.

Like Panasonic’s full production quality solid-state P2 HD recording system, this AVCHD camcorder eliminates the need for and cost of a special deck, as well as the time required to transfer content from a tape or optical disc to a PC for editing or content distribution. Since it uses a standard SD or SDHC card, the HMC70’s recording capacity will increase and media cost decrease as the industry announces new higher capacity cards.

Joining the small hand-held AG-HSC1U in Panasonic’s AVCHD camcorder line-up, the HMC70 utilizes the industry standard H.264-based Advanced Video Codec High Definition (AVCHD) video format to deliver crisp HD images. AVCHD delivers twice the recording efficiency of older MPEG-2 codec technologies like HDV, and it is supported by a growing number of nonlinear editing packages including Apple’s Final Cut Pro Version 6.0.1 and i-Movie, Grass Valley EDIUS Software Version 4.5, Pinnacle Studio Plus 11, Nero 7 Premium Reloaded, Ulead Video Studio 11 Plus and Ulead DVD Movie Factory 6 Plus.

The HMC70 features three native16:9 progressive ¼” CCDs to record, or provide a live feed of, widescreen 1440 x 1080 HD resolution images of weddings, sports, concerts, or other events. It can be used by law enforcement agencies for training or surveillance, by schools for use in video production, live staging and documentation, or by broadcasters and newspapers for web journalism. The camcorder is equipped with a 12X 38.5mm to 462mm* Leica wide-angle zoom lens, one-push auto focus, and integrated Optical Image Stabilization (O.I.S.) that ensures stable images, which are most critical when displaying high definition video. The camera also provides excellent color reproduction and inherits the exceptional color rendition of Panasonic’s other professional HD cameras.

The camcorder brings the benefits of solid-state recording to budget-conscious professionals. Like digital still photography, recording onto an SD/SDHC card offers a fast and simple IT-compatible workflow, and ensures ultra-reliable performance because the HMC70 uses no moving parts (unlike tape or disc-based camcorders) in the recording process. The HMC70 is resistant to shock, vibration, temperature change and extreme weather conditions and because it is solid-state, users have instant access to the recorded footage without the need to ingest or digitize. In addition, SD and SDHC memory cards are inexpensive, widely available, and can be reused repeatedly. Since AVCHD records video as digital data files, content can be transferred and stored on affordable, high-capacity hard disk drives(HDD) and optical storage media and transferred to new ones as advanced technology is introduced in the future.

The flexible camcorder provides professionals with continuous record time for long-form HD video production. With just the touch of a button, users can choose to shoot in one of the camera’s three recording modes – 6Mbps, 9Mbps or 13Mbps. Using the new 16GB SDHC memory card (available in November 2007), the HMC70 can record for up to 360 minutes at 6Mbps quality and up to 160 minutes at 13Mbps, the camera’s highest quality mode.

The HMC70’s lightweight, shoulder-mount design facilitates stable shooting and better balance during long recording sessions. The camcorder’s 3-inch 16:9 LCD monitor offers thumbnail display of recorded images so videographers can monitor or delete clips. Professionals can also capture 2.1 Megapixel still images with the camcorder onto the SDHC memory card – even during video recording. The SD card content can be played back directly on a growing number of large HD flat screen displays, front and rear-screen projectors, and PCs that offer an SD card slot with AVCHD decoder software. AVCHD content also can be played back on the Panasonic DMP-BD10AK Blu-ray Disc™ Player and on the PlayStation 3 game system. Using NLE software, content can also be rendered in various formats and delivered on a wide range of media.

Unlike entry-level cameras, the HMC70 offers professional audio capabilities including two XLR Mic/Line switchable inputs with attenuation, +48V Phantom Power, and both Auto & Manual level with Rec level dials. This allows flexible, high quality audio recording using a wide range of wired and wireless microphones and mixers.

Professionals can instantly transfer content from the HMC70 camcorder to Mac or PC computers with an SD/SDHC card reader or by connecting the camcorder directly via its USB 2.0 interface. Other connectors that provide even greater flexibility include HD/SD component and composite (BNCs), HDMI and RCA audio jacks.

The HMC70 will be available in April 2008. Options will include a VW-VBG6 5,800-mAH Battery, VW-W4307H Wide Conversion Lens, and VW-T4314H Tele Conversion Lens.

* 35mm Lens equivalent

About Panasonic Broadcast

Panasonic Broadcast & Television Systems Co. is a leading supplier of broadcast and professional video products and systems. Panasonic Broadcast is a unit company of Panasonic Corporation of North America. The company is the North American headquarters of Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. (NYSE: MC) of Japan, and the hub of its U.S. marketing, sales, service and R&D operations. For more information on Panasonic Broadcast products, access the company’s web site at www.panasonic.com/broadcast.
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Old October 31st, 2007, 09:59 AM   #2
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Two views of the Panasonic AG-HMC70 camcorder. Click the thumbnail images to see 'em big.
Attached Thumbnails
Panasonic announces AG-HMC70 Shoulder Mount AVCHD Camcorder-ag-hmc70avchd1.jpg   Panasonic announces AG-HMC70 Shoulder Mount AVCHD Camcorder-ag-hmc70avchd2.jpg  

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Old October 31st, 2007, 10:08 AM   #3
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Wow this camera looks and feels like a severe let down. What's with all the borderline consumer cams being repackaged in big empty shells?
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Old October 31st, 2007, 10:12 AM   #4
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Well to my eye they're targeting the exact same market as the forthcoming Sony HD1000. I have no doubt it will sell very well in that area. This is the tapeless, HD version of the DVC60 and the like.
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Old October 31st, 2007, 10:20 AM   #5
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I know, but when I read pro I got excited and thought that AVCHD was finally ready for prime time. But then again I should have realized that Panasonic would never name something that was gonna be a flagship camera like that.
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Old October 31st, 2007, 11:39 AM   #6
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The is one ugly camera!

It has the look of "old technology" to me, like the consumer VHS cameras of yesteryear.
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Old October 31st, 2007, 11:49 AM   #7
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Cameras like this and the sony are just reflections of the fact that many of the small 'borderline consumer' HD cameras shoot high enough quality now to satisfy the production needs of large portions of the market. Unfortunately clients still expect to see the video crew show up with something that looks more 'professional' than the camcorder they have at home - so put the camera in a big shell, add some better audio inputs, and you've got a product that will sell well regardless of what the higher end of the market thinks of it.

Maybe there's a business opportunity there - build housings that look like big professional cameras, but have a compartment in the 'lens' to insert the latest, greatest handheld consumer hd camera. As long as the finished video looks good...
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Old October 31st, 2007, 11:56 AM   #8
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Ok Sony, Panasonic, whomever else, if you're going to make a full sized camera, at lease give it full manual control. Hell, this panny looks like it has less manual control than the new Sony. I see no rings of any kind on the lens. I just dont get it.

Let's take a prosumer cam (which I tend to love, dont get me wrong) and put it in an old style housing that takes away the portability advantages of the smaller camera and not give it any type of manual control. I mean come on, where's the focus ring for goodness sake?

Tapeless is good, but a single card slot? Someone correct me if you see more than one.
Why repackage an existing camera if it's just window dressing? At lease give it some expanded functionality. Jeesh.
*shakes his head*

**EDIT**
Quote:
Using the new 16GB SDHC memory card (available in November 2007), the HMC70 can record for up to 360 minutes at 6Mbps quality and up to 160 minutes at 13Mbps, the camera’s highest quality mode.
Ok, I see the reason for having only one card slot now, but what about 2 slots for redundant backup? That could be handy in a tapeless environment, especially if you are targeting event guys and entry level pros.
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Old October 31st, 2007, 12:40 PM   #9
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this is an SD1 with a different mic jack. Plus an even bigger "3CCD" logo.
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Old October 31st, 2007, 12:42 PM   #10
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Agreed; it seems to be a shoulder-mount version of their SD1.
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Old October 31st, 2007, 01:06 PM   #11
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What I donīt understand is that when you can get 16GB cards now, why the low bitrate 13 Mbps ?
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Old October 31st, 2007, 03:13 PM   #12
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Quote:
Ok Sony, Panasonic, whomever else, if you're going to make a full sized camera, at lease give it full manual control.
AFAIK the Sony can use the 1/3" lenses like those for the JVC100. All the manual control you could ever need.
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Old October 31st, 2007, 03:31 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon Wyndham View Post
AFAIK the Sony can use the 1/3" lenses like those for the JVC100.
Well there are several new Sonys afoot, so it might be important to clarify which ones we're talking about here for the purpose of this particular discussion. There are two with 1/3rd-inch interchangeable lenses:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=103098

However it's the fixed-lens HVR-HD1000 to which this new Panasonic is being directly compared:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=101903
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Old November 1st, 2007, 08:34 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Hans Ledel View Post
What I don´t understand is that when you can get 16GB cards now, why the low bitrate 13 Mbps ?
Actually 13 Mbps isn't low. It's the best of all recording settings that Panasonic uses throughout their AVCHD line (the others being 9 Mbps and 6 Mbps). Remember, this camcorder is an addition to their AVCHD camcorder family, not a departure. That means you can't reasonably expect them to make a radical change to their established AVCHD recording bitrates.

The format spec allows up to 24 Mbps; most likely we'll see that in an AVC Intra codec on a later, higher-end Panasonic camcorder. For now, there's nothing wrong with 13 Mbps as the best recording setting for this and other Panasonic AVCHD camcorders. It's right in line with 15 Mbps on some HDD-based AVCHD camcorders and 12 Mbps on some disc-based AVCHD camcorders. Hope this helps,
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Old November 1st, 2007, 01:49 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Hurd View Post
Actually 13 Mbps isn't low. It's the best of all recording settings that Panasonic uses throughout their AVCHD line (the others being 9 Mbps and 6 Mbps). Remember, this camcorder is an addition to their AVCHD camcorder family, not a departure. That means you can't reasonably expect them to make a radical change to their established AVCHD recording bitrates.

The format spec allows up to 24 Mbps; most likely we'll see that in an AVC Intra codec on a later, higher-end Panasonic camcorder. For now, there's nothing wrong with 13 Mbps as the best recording setting for this and other Panasonic AVCHD camcorders. It's right in line with 15 Mbps on some HDD-based AVCHD camcorders and 12 Mbps on some disc-based AVCHD camcorders. Hope this helps,

Thanks Cris.

I must say Iīm a bit confused.
I thought that the codec was the same be it Sony or Pana or Canon but I guess itīs not.

So you canīt just compare the bitrates from different companys as I did?

Cheers

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