Panasonic’s New 2/3-inch, 3 CCD Camcorder Ships

Panasonic Solutions Company is shipping the new AJ-HPX3100 master quality 1080p P2 HD camcorder, what the company calls its most compact and lowest-price 2/3-inch 1080p 3-CCD camcorder. The AJ-HPX3100 is available at a suggested list price of $19,950.

Featuring three 2/3-inch high-density 2.2 million pixel CCDs, the HPX3100 acquires full-raster 1920 x 1080 resolution imaging with 4:2:2 10-bit sampling using the advanced AVC-Intra codec. The camcorder records in multiple worldwide formats, in HD in AVC-Intra and in DVCPRO HD at 1080 in 24p, 25p, 30p, 50i and 60i, and in SD (480i/586i) in DVCPRO50, DVCPRO and DV.

Designed for scripted programming, documentary, nature, cinema and commercial production, the master-quality HPX3100 delivers new features including 24-bit audio in AVC-Intra 100/50, wireless metadata input capability via wireless LAN and high-quality proxy recording. The proxy board also provides uncompressed audio, which can enhance editing, especially for projects with a large amount of content, like reality TV and long-form projects.

The two-P2-slot HPX3100 is equipped with seven advanced gamma settings, including Film-Rec 600% mode (made popular by the VariCam), to capture increased dynamic range. It also features a built-in reverse scan that allows unique setups such as mounting the camera upside down or usage of an ultra prime lens or an anamorphic lens adapter to create a 2.35:1 aspect image.   Offering a new slim-line size (similar to the AG-HPX370)for added mobility, the HPX3100 sports a low center of gravity and weighs 8.6 pounds.

The P2 HD camcorder’s superb performance is enhanced with advanced 14-bit A/D conversion and a 12-pole matrix color correction function. Additional high-end features include a Chromatic Aberration Compensation (CAC) function that corrects for lateral chromatic aberration in lenses, and a three-level Dynamic Range Stretch (DRS) function that reduces blocked shadows and blown highlights in scenes where bright and dark objects coexist.

The HPX3100 has a sensitivity of F11 at 2,000 lux in 1080i, and an S/N ratio of 59 dB (with Digital Noise Reduction turned On). Power consumption is about 34 watts. The camcorder records on high data transfer speed E-Series P2 cards (capacity up to 64GB). The HPX3100 has dual optical filter wheels for separate control of ND and CC, and a flip-out, 3.5-inch color LCD monitor for easy viewing.

There is also an option for a color or black-and-white type viewfinder. Standard interfaces include an HD-SDI input for external line recording, IEEE 1394A in/out, USB 2.0 in/out, genlock in with HD Tri-Level Sync or VBS in, and SMPTE time code in/out.

The HPX3100 supports full 48-kHz/24-bit audio recording on all four channels (in AVC-Intra 100/50), and supports the optional AJ-RC10G and AJ-EC4 remote control units for superb image and control adjustment.

Other features include Digital Zoom and Digital Super Gain, and a One-clip REC function that records up to 99 consecutive cuts as a single clip, greatly facilitating editing. The HPX3100 also supports optional camera studio systems.

To lower total ownership costs, Panasonic offers a five-year limited warranty (the company’s normal 1-year basic warranty plus an extended warranty for years two through five upon registration).

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