GS500 is a Downgrade from GS400? at DVinfo.net

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Old January 5th, 2006, 11:21 AM   #1
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GS500 is a Downgrade from GS400?

Not sure about all of the specs yet, but if you are contemplating buying a GS400, you might want to get one before they are all gone. Production stopped a long time ago on that model, and it's looking like the new GS500 is somewhat of a DOWNGRADE from the 400 model (a couple of new features, but a couple of other arguably more important one have been removed).
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Old January 5th, 2006, 02:25 PM   #2
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If you are interested in manual control, picture adjustments, zebras, and all the other stuff that made the GS400 pretty much the bargain camera of all time for making films on super-low-budget, then the GS500 is a major downgrade. GS500 does have a true 16:9 LCD display, a joystick, and its cheaper, but loses all of the above, and probably more we haven't realized yet.

A PAL GS400 can shoot ProCinema frame mode (which is pretty freaking awesome) for a pseudo-25p look, is a pretty awesome budget filmmaking tool.
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Old January 5th, 2006, 10:04 PM   #3
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I guess that they want to promote hvx200.
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Old January 6th, 2006, 02:29 PM   #4
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I think that's really unacceptable...
The manual controls (and frame mode) were the strongest points about the GS400... why change that?
Who cares about the 16/9 lcd and a joystick if you even't got manual controls?
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Old January 6th, 2006, 02:45 PM   #5
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Some, but not all of the manual controls are available through the menus, but the GS400 was all about conveniently located manual controls, and lots of them.

Right now there is a big gap in the Panasonic consumer line. The SD cameras top out at $999 and there are no consumer HD cameras from them yet. The pro line starts with the DVX100B at ~$4000 for SD and HVX200 at ~$6000 for HD.

My thought is that they are making space in the price scale for consumer HD cameras between $1000-2000. Just haven't announced any yet.
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Old January 7th, 2006, 01:38 AM   #6
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Not to mention the fact that the 500 doesn't even have a headphones audio out jack. Doh!
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Old January 7th, 2006, 04:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Binder
Not to mention the fact that the 500 doesn't even have a headphones audio out jack. Doh!
I can't find any link to gs500. Can anyone post the url? When was gs500 release? I never read anyone mentioned except this post.

TIA

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Old January 8th, 2006, 12:16 AM   #8
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This downgrading of the GS400 into the GS500 is really frustrating. I don't think I've ever seen a cam without a headphone jack before. And why, on a cam that supposedly sports adjustable audio inputs, and has a mic input...does Pana really think we do not care to hear what we are recording???? Kinda basic.
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Old January 8th, 2006, 12:42 AM   #9
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Wow. If all of this is true it is an astounding step backward. I hope this isn't part of an industrywide shift.
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Old January 8th, 2006, 03:09 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marco Leavitt
Wow. If all of this is true it is an astounding step backward. I hope this isn't part of an industrywide shift.
Well, at least Panasonic reduced the price along with the features. Sony's been removing features and increasing prices for a couple of years now :)

Seriously though, I can understand some of the changes to get the price down.. but removing the headphone jack?? They should have removed the manual audio while they were at it and knocked another 50 bucks off. I can't imagine setting manual audio levels without monitoring through headphones. Removing the frame mode was pretty bad too. I think Panasonic may have just boosted Optura 60 sales with this update.

I really can't wait to see what they offer in the $1500-2000 range though. The HC1 has absolutely no competition in this range, I just can't imagine that Panasonic won't come out with a nice low end HD cam very soon.
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Old January 9th, 2006, 12:04 AM   #11
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Yes, Panasonic has surrendered the GS400's throne to the Sony HC1, and maybe the Pana DVC 30. But since they Pana are not involved with hDV, it does not look goood.
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Old January 9th, 2006, 11:56 AM   #12
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Wow! What a waste...

They should save their company some money and NOT release the GS500. Keep making GS400s. Why bother pushing out an inferior product?

The "R" in R&D stands for RESEARCH. The "D" stands for DEVELOPEMENT. Neither of these words apply to the GS500 if it doesn't have a headphone jack. I cackle like a madman at the very idea.

I hope someone merges with Panasonic to keep them from wasting money.
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Old January 9th, 2006, 12:41 PM   #13
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As the owner of the GS400 predecessor, the 953, I am surprised at Panasonic if these things about the GS500 are true. After all, the 953 was the trendsetter being the first 3 chip to come in at less than 2K dollars with almost all of the features of the GS400.

-gb-
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Old January 9th, 2006, 12:55 PM   #14
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"The PV-GS400 is a great camcorder and, in my opinion, offers the best value of any camcorder Iíve ever reviewed" -- Robin Liss

Remember that? How could Panasonic take a review like that and decide to start cutting features. I can't help but think that some executive decided that they made the GS400 too good. The funny part is that nobody who could afford a DVX would ever go for the GS400 instead. I'll bet Canon lost out on a lot of GL2 sales to the GS400 though. Ironic.
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Old January 9th, 2006, 01:11 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marco Leavitt
<snip>How could Panasonic take a review like that and decide to start cutting features. I can't help but think that some executive decided that they made the GS400 too good.<snip>
I really think the problem is 2006 and 2007 will see the introduction of HD cams at all sorts of price points. An SD cam MSRPing for $1500 isn't likely to see a lot of action by next year. Now unfortunately for Panasonic, I doubt that knocking a couple hundred bucks off the cam is going to make much difference in the long run anyway (especially since an Optura 60 offers more features for less money now). I really think the best course would have been to continue selling the GS400 until a like priced HD version was ready. The R&D that was spent on the GS500 should have been put towards the HD version.
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