At any rate, the company has just launched three new HD camcorders into its 2010 line: the HDC-HS60, HDC-TM55, HDC-SD60. All three feature a 35.7mm wide-angle lens, a 25x optical zoom and support for SD, SDHC and SDXC cards. The latter has the potential to reach 2TB sizes, which should bode well for those who like to shoot and shoot before dumping their memory card.
No prices for these are being shown just yet, but with SDXC support, we doubt they'll be in the bargain bin right away. USB 3.0 is already shipping on select laptops as well, so we guess it's only a matter of time before SDXC becomes commonly supported on readers and associated wares.
"Consumer demand for High Definition camcorders continues to grow, so Panasonic's 2010 line of camcorders introduces some models intended for users new to HD camcorders - so they are small, compact and easy-to-use," said Chuck Kirkman, Senior Product Manager, Imaging, Panasonic Consumer Electronic Company. "The Panasonic HS60, TM55 and SD60 are intuitive camcorders that deliver full High Definition video that users will be proud to show their friends and family, either from a computer or a High Definition television."
All three new models expand Panasonic's iA (Intelligent Auto) with the addition of Face Recognition, a feature that lets the user register up to six faces and the camcorder will then automatically prioritize focus and exposure on the registered face(*1). In addition, the focus continues to track the subject as the person moves anywhere within the LCD frame, making it easy to focus on a specified person in a group. Other iA features include: AF/AE Tracking, Intelligent Scene Selector, Intelligent Contrast Control, Face Detection and POWER O.I.S. POWER O.I.S., new to the 2010 line of HD camcorder is approximately five times the corrective power of previous versions and helps suppress blurring from low-frequency vibration. Also, all models feature Active mode in POWER O.I.S. which minimizes the blurring while the user is moving and walking.
All Panasonic camcorders record content to SDHC/SD Memory Cards and the new SDXC Memory Cards, including Panasonic's newly announced 64 GB(*2) SDXC Memory Card - to enable high capacity content storage and fast data transfer speeds. The hybrid HS60 camcorder can also record data onto its large 120 GB(*2) Hard Disk Drives (HDD) and can copy recorded video from a card to the HDD, or vice versa, with a simple one-touch operation. The Twin Memory version, the HDC-TM55, records to its 8 GB(*2) built-in memory and the SD60, recording to memory card only, is highly resistant to impacts since it has no drive mechanism.
Other features included on the 2010 Panasonic HD Camcorder line:
- Eco Mode(*3): Automatically turns off the power when the camcorder is not operated for five minutes, reducing wasteful energy use and saving battery power.
- Wind Noise Canceller: New feature that automatically detects and suppresses wind noise to help ensure natural sounds with lifelike ambience.
- Touch-Screen Operation: Touch-screen icons displayed on the LCD lets users operate a variety of functions intuitively without taking their eyes off of the subject they are recording.
- Auto Power LCD: Automatically adjusts the brightness of the LCD screen according to the shooting environment. In dark places, the screen brightness is reduced to 1/3 the normal level. In bright outdoor places, the screen brightness is double the normal level.
- VIERA Link(TM): Connect a Panasonic HD Camcorder to a Panasonic VIERA® HDTV via an HDMI mini cable, and operate the camcorder using the TV's remote control and follow on-screen prompts.
Pricing and availability for the Panasonic HDC-HS60, HDC-TM55, HDC-SD60 High Definition camcorders will be announced 30 days prior to shipping date. All models will be available in black. For more information on these models, please visit www.panasonic.com/CES2010.