Originally featured on
Aug 14

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8/14/2007 8:51 AM  RssIcon

Compact, Rugged AG-HVX200 Camera-Recorder Enables Flexible Documentation of Natural Gas-Powered 45,000-km Road Trip Around the World

WIESBADEN, Germany -- 14 Aug. 2007 -- Panasonic's AG-HVX200E P2 HD handheld camera was used by cameraman Falk Gunold to document the six-month EcoFuel World Tour, in which a Volkswagen running on natural gas was driven 45,788 kilometres through 40 countries on five continents. The Panasonic camera's compact design and solid-state technology allowed Gunold to shoot comfortably from the car and easily download daily footage from P2 cards directly to the drive on an editing platform.

"The HVX200 was appropriate for this journey because it requires little space, is easily managed within a small vehicle, and is far less conspicuous and cumbersome than large shoulder-mount cameras," said Gunold, an integral member of the team who documented the journey for broadcasters and sponsors. "With its permanent lens, the camera is not susceptible to dirt, humidity, or fluctuations in temperature. Because key functional controls are located much as they are on other familiar camera models, I needed only to adjust to the light weight of the camera. We encountered a wide range of environments, and the performance of the HVX200 was outstanding -- just fabulous."

The intention of the EcoFuel World Tour, led by Rainer Zietlow, was to show that this alternative fuel concept is a feasible and globally available technology. This journey around the world was undertaken to demonstrate that natural gas as a fuel constitutes a full substitute and ecological alternative for petrol and diesel.

Throughout the tour, Gunold shot in DVCPro 50, using six 4-GB P2 cards to capture 48 minutes of broadcast-quality footage each day. A microphone bracket on the camera allowed him to attach a Sennheiser ME 66 professional shot gun microphone head for audio, as well as a top-light. Each night, in the car or at the hotel, he downloaded data from the P2 cards to a Panasonic Toughbook CF73 equipped with an AVID editing platform. He then stored daily footage to individual folders on two separate drives and, after each segment of the tour, used the data within the editing platform to create an Internet clip, stored on a CompactFlash® card. In this way, Gunold preserved all his daily footage on external drives, provided material for satellite feeds and updates on the project's Internet site, and recycled space on the editing system for each new stage of the journey.

Panasonic's AG-HVX200 cameras represent the first P2 camera-recorder series. As P2-based products, they provide superior reliability with solid-state memory that is inherently resistant to impact, vibration, and temperature change. AG-HVX200 cameras offer a variable frame-rate function that responds well to slow- and fast-paced action. True 25p/50p progressive video, along with cine-like gamma curves and colour matrix, enables operators such as Gunold to get a film-like feel while shooting with a flexible, rugged, and highly portable P2-based camera-recorder.

The AG-HVX200 features a cam-driven manual zoom, focus ring, and aperture dial. The camera supports up to four channels of uncompressed digital audio, accepting XLR audio inputs and outputting via a D4 terminal or FireWire®/USB2.0 PC interface.

More information on this and any other Panasonic product is available at or by phone at +49 611 235 410.

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About the EcoFuel World Tour

During the EcoFuel World Tour, Rainer Zietlow and his expedition team drove around the world in a Volkswagen Caddy EcoFuel running on natural gas. Their journey around the world, the ultimate test for vehicles, was intended to prove that this alternative fuel, natural gas, constitutes a full substitute and ecological alternative for petrol and diesel. During a six-month period, the team drove a distance of 45,000 kilometres across five continents. The record tour started on 23 October, 2006, in Hanover, Germany, and took the team to 75 cities in 40 countries all over the world. The EcoFuel World Tour officially finished in Leipzig, Germany, on 13 April, 2007, at the AMI trade fair, the motor show for Central Europe. More information is available at

About Panasonic

Panasonic is a brand name for Matsushita Electric Industrial Co Ltd. of Japan (MEI), one of the world's largest manufacturers of consumer electronics and ranked third on the Fortune 500 Electronics & Electrical Equipment Index. The company was founded in 1918 in Osaka, Japan, by Konosuke Matsushita and has grown from just three employees to more than 260,000 people worldwide. Panasonic has been operating in Europe since 1962, when it established its first sales office in Hamburg, Germany. The company's presence has increased throughout Europe following major investment programmes in manufacturing and sales operations.

All trademarks appearing herein are the property of their respective owners.

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