Panasonic delivers handheld HD solid-state storage camera

The AG-HVX200 is equipped with a MiniDV tape drive for shooting 4:3 and 16:9 images onto DV tape in 60i, 30p and 24p.

Panasonic Broadcast has announced delivery of the AG-HVX200, hand-held HD solid-state storage camcorder. Deliveries begin Dec. 29th.

The camcorder captures video in 21 video formats, recording in both 1080i and 720p at 100Mb/s DVCPRO HD. The format offers users cost-effective, intra-frame compression, and full 4:2:2 color sampling. Video is recorded onto P2 cards as IT-friendly MXF files in 1080/60i, 30p and 24p; in 720/60p, 30p and 24p; in 50Mb/s DVCPRO50 and in 25Mb/s DVCPRO or DV.

Using two of Panasonic’s new 8GB P2 cards, the AG-HVX200 provides 64 minutes of record time in DVCPRO or DV, 40 minutes in 720p, 32 minutes in DVCPRO50, and 16 minutes in 1080/60i and 720/60p.

The HD and SD video recorded on the P2 card can be downloaded to a nonlinear editing system or server, or edited virtually instantly from the P2 card through an IEEE 1394 or USB 2.0 interface. The AG-HVX200 is also equipped with a MiniDV tape drive for shooting 4:3 and 16:9 images onto DV tape in 60i, 30p and 24p.

With two P2 card slots, a shooter has hot-swap capability and a loop recording feature. To prevent missing the start of a press conference or event, the camera can be preset to pre-record (up to 7 seconds in DVCPRO and 3 seconds in DVCPRO HD.

The camera captures images at any of 11 rates between 12fps and 60fps. By using the camera to play back the recording at the normal rate, the shooter can preview the off-speed effect right on the spot, without the need for a frame rate converter.

The camera can downconvert off-speed recordings in 720p from a P2 card and copy it to a MiniDV tape. This allows the user to create special off-speed effects during DV production-a technique previously possible only with a complete VariCam system.

The AG-HVX200 offers eight gamma modes including Cine-Like gamma, and for newsgathering, a News gamma curve. This setting assists a news photographer by allowing him to suppress over-saturated highlight areas during sudden contrast changes.

The AG-HVX200 uses native progressive 16:9 1/3in, 3-CCD optical block and a wide-angle, 13X Leica Dicomar HD lens with optical image stabilization. The lens covers a wide range from 4.2mm to 55mm.

In the wide-screen mode, the 3.5in LCD monitor can display images in letterbox, which places vital camera operating information in areas above and below the active image area. In addition, the LCD permits the shooter to view and select thumbnail clips to speed editing, and allows random access to the thumbnail-displayed scenes (from the P2 card) for instant playback and the creation of an in-camera storyboard.

Audio is supported with four-channel non-compressed 48KHz/16-bit digital processing in DVCPRO HD and DVCPRO50 and two channels in DVCPRO and DV. Interfaces include IEEE 1394 and USB 2.0, two XLR audio (with +48 volt phantom power) inputs, a component (D4) output, composite I/O, S-video I/O, audio (RCA) I/O, and headphone.

The camera is a 2005 Broadcast Engineering Pick Hit winner, and was highly anticipated by the production community after its introduction at NAB2005.

Panasonic also announced that Apple’s Final Cut Pro, Avid’s Newscutter XP, Newscutter Adrenaline FX and Xpress HD, and Canopus Edius HD are supporting the camera with complete P2 editing solutions.

For more information on the AG-HVX200, visit