Secaucus, N.J. — Panasonic introduced Monday what it called two of the world’s lightest HD camcorders.
Models HDC-SD10 ($550 suggested retail) and HDC-TM10 ($600) are both slated to ship to dealers in
September. Both weigh in at half a pound and offer FullHD 1080p resolution and 16-times optical zoom magnification.
Both models also use SDHC/SD memory cards to capture recordings, but the step-up HDC-TM10 adds “Twin Memory,” meaning it also has 8GB of internal flash memory.
Panasonic's Advanced Optical Image Stabilizer (OIS) in the zoom function is said to detect and correct for hand shake around 4,000 times per second for clear, stable zoom shots.
A new Active mode extends the hand-shake correction to compensate for bumps and jumps while walking or moving during shooting.
"We recognize that users are looking for camcorders that capture high-quality, high-definition video, but they also want something lightweight that has advanced, yet easy-to-use functions," stated Chuck Kirkman, Panasonic imaging senior product manager. “With the SD10 and TM10, we've made it easier to record HD video with features such as Advanced OIS, face detection, intelligent scene selector and the Pre-Rec function, all which maximize shooting results and minimize common issues like blurring.”
Both models include Panasonic’s iA (Intelligent Auto) function, which automatically sets the most suitable scene mode for shooting conditions.
Automatic setting adjustments include: Advanced OIS; face detection, which adjusts the exposure especially for faces; Intelligent Contrast Control; and Intelligent Scene Selector, which determines the shooting conditions and automatically selects the scene setting for best results.
Both models also include auto focus/auto exposure tracking, which automatically tracks a moving subject to maintain the focus and exposure as the subject moves.
Controls are operated via touchscreen on the LCD panel as well as “Handy Function Buttons.” A 1.9-second power-on feature helps with rapid shooting, by enabling power up and power off by simply opening and closing the flipout LCD panel.
Additionally, a power-saving Eco mode automatically turns the power off when the camcorder is not in use for five minutes.
To avoid missing critical shooting opportunities, the camcorders include a Pre-Rec function that has the camcorder continuously recording three seconds of images into an internal buffer memory. When the record button is actually pressed, the three seconds immediately prior are added to the beginning of the clip.
Both units also include a built-in video light and flash.
Other features include a highlight playback feature to quickly view recorded images as "highlights;” one-touch copy of videos to DVD and easy playback with the BN1 DVD Burner.
The TM10 will be available in black and silver models, with the SD10 in black only.