While filmakers have gone gaga over huge sensor'd video cameras, there's still a need for smaller chips and pro features -- to that end, Panasonic has just announced the AG-AC90 AVCCAM. Destined for event and corporate users, it features three smallish 1/4.7-inch CMOS sensors ("3MOS" in company-speak), a 12X zoom, native 1,920 x 1,080 at 60p, 60i, 30p and 24p, and a five-axis image stabilizer. As for video quality, there's a new "premium professional" recording mode with 28 Mbps throughput at 60p, on top of 24 Mbps and 17 Mbps modes. With two memory card slots, the camcorder supports Panasonic's proprietary UHS-1 cards, and fortunately works with SDXC and SDHC to boot. It's slated to arrive in "late fall 2012," according to the company, and will ring the register at $2,250. So, if the first thing that pops into your mind is not DOF, but zebras, timecode and XLR inputs, check the PR for all those specs.
Panasonic Introduces AG-AC90 AVCAM HD Handheld Camcorder With 3MOS Sensor, HD and SD Image Capture, and Manual Controls
At $2250, a Full-Featured Model Redefines Professional Entry-Level Acquisition
Secaucus, New Jersey--August 14, 2012 Panasonic has announced a new professional AVCCAM® HD handheld camcorder, the AG-AC90, equipped with high-sensitivity 1/4.7", full-HD 2.19 megapixel 3-MOS imagers to capture native 1920 x 1080 resolution images. Targeted at the wedding and event, sports and corporate AV markets, the AC90 records in 1080/60p, 60i, 30p and 24p, as well as in standard definition (480/60i) in 60Hz.
Its 12X zoom lens with three independent adjustable rings for zoom, focus and iris offers a wide 29.8mm to 357.6 mm (35mm equivalent) viewing angle, and Panasonic's exclusive Nano Surface Lens Coating reduces ghosting and flares.Key AC90 features include two SD Memory Card slots for simultaneous recording; a five-axis image stabilizer that dramatically improves stabilization for hand-held shooting; 4X pixel shifting technology for a sharper image; and an intelligent Auto (iA) Zoom 25X super-resolution function for automatic adjustments of edge, gradation and detail.
The AC90 debuts a premium professional AVCCAM HD recording mode, the PS mode (28 Mbps, 60p only), and also records video in the PH mode (average 21 Mbps/Max 24Mbps), the HA mode (approx.17 Mbps), and the extended recording HE mode (approx. 6 Mbps).
The AC90 is compatible with Panasonic's ultra high-speed UHS-1 Memory Card series (in addition to providing SDXC and SDHC card support), with transfer rates of 90MBs, four-and-a-half times as fast as the previous generation of SDHC media. The two slots can also be utilized for simultaneous back-up recording.
The AC90 includes such desirable professional features as time code/UB recording; time/date stamp, and two wired remote control terminals (for zoom, focus, iris, REC start/stop controls). Standard professional interfaces include an HDMI output, USB 2.0 (mini B-type), Multi-AV output, and a built-in stereo microphone. The camcorder features two locking XLR inputs with switches for mic/line, two RCA audio outputs, and records two channels of Dolby Digital.
For editing or playback, professionals can transfer content by inserting the SD Memory Card into Mac or PC computers or by connecting the camera directly via its USB 2.0 interface. Panasonic's AVCCAM Importer software, a QuickTime plug-in component that eliminates the need to convert AVCHD files to ProRES422 files before editing in Final Cut Pro, is available as a free download from the company's web site.
For easy HD viewing, the camcorders are equipped with a widescreen LCOS color viewfinder and a widescreen, 1.15-million pixel 3.5-inch LCD color monitor. The LCD monitor rotates 270 degrees for easy low-angle, high-angle and self-interview shooting.
The AG-AC90 will be available late fall 2012, with a targeted suggested list price of $2,250. Panasonic will support the AC90 with a three-year limited warranty (one year plus two extra years upon registration).
Panasonic's AVCCAM® series brings the benefits of solid-state HD recording to budget-conscious professionals with a range of affordable camera and recorder products that record with inexpensive, widely-available SD Memory Cards. The professional AVCCAM line includes the AG-3DA1 Full HD 3D camcorder, the AG-AF100 large imager HD cinema camera, the AG-AC160A, AG-AC130A, AG-HMC40, AG-HMC150 compact handhelds, the AG-HMC80 shoulder-mount, the AG-HMR10 AVCCAM recorder and its optional AG-HCK10 camera head. AVCHD is supported by a wide range of editing options, including the latest versions from Apple (Final Cut Pro X), Adobe (Premier Pro CS6), Grass Valley-Canopus (EDIUS Pro 6/6.5,, EDIUS Neo3), and Avid (Media Composer 5/5.5). For more information, visitwww.panasonic.com/AVCCAM.
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