October 04, 2012

Panasonic AG-HPX600 camcorder

The new AG-HPX600 is Panasonic’s first upgradeable camera, built to answer customer complaints that every year their cameras were superseded by new technology.

It is “backwards and forwards compatible,” said Nigel Wilkes, UK Group Manager for Broadcast (pictured top). The P2 camcorder comes with AVC-Intra 100 (as well as DV and DVCPRO formats), but users will able to add 50Mbps Long GoP recording and AVC-Ultra at 200Mbps as they become available.

The camera has a newly-developed single 2/3-inch CMOS sensor “with very good low light sensitivity” (F12 at 60Hz or F13 at 50Hz), low noise with an S/N of 59dB, a gigabit Ethernet network connection and will be able to do variable frame rates (1-60 frames per second at 720p and 1-30fps at 1080).

Other features include: Chromatic Aberration Compensation; Dynamic Range Stretch; Advanced Flash Band Compensation (to avoid shots where flash photography causes a flash over half of the screen); various gamma and digital image settings; waveform and vectorscope display; an optional camera extension system (AG-CA300G Camera Adaptor and AG-BS300E Base Station) for studio integration; and a choice of two new colour viewfinders.

“It’s the lightest shoulder-mount camcorder on the market, weighing in at 2.8kg,” he added. Users will also be able to add WiFi to allow mobiles and laptops to view clips, whether live or a previous clip while the cameraman is recording another.

It will also support Panasonic’s new micro P2 card (using the SD card form factor) that will be able to record 200Mbps. It will fit into a P2 card adapter and ship in February.

Panasonic will also introduce a new Remote Edit app that allows users edit and deliver content in-camera. This won’t work with Panasonic’s older cameras, but will with the HPX600 and future models. The camera will export the EDL, which means you can do your rough cuts on location.

Dealers are currently offering the mid-range camera from less than £10,000 (+ VAT) – about €11,000 or $13,500 plus viewfinder.

LiveU support

Panasonic has also got together with cellular uplinks specialist LiveU to integrate the HPX600 with LiveU’s LU40i or its new LU40-S uplinks, which will mean that users get all the information from the LU40 (such as transmission status and video quality) in the viewfinder, making it simpler for a one-person crew to operate.

The LU40 sits behind the battery (picture below) and supports up to four 4G LTE/3G cellular links (which are bonded together to increase the data rate), plus additional WiMAX, WiFi and LAN connections, at once, so that users can transmit live video to their studio or direct to the internet.

For online media, the LU40i version will support major content delivery networks and online video platforms, for end-to-end live video. In Europe, LiveU is now working with Qbrick (www.qbrick.com), linking up to its OVP and CDN, to offer a simplified live streaming service.

The compact new LU40-S no longer uses Aircards (as in the LU40i), but modules with SIM cards, which means it can be lighter, at about 700g. It also has a new proprietary antenna to boost the signal (on WiFi, 3G and 4G) and typically less than two seconds delay, as well as store and forward and ftp capability. It transmits at rates of up to 4Mbps (compared to 12Mbps for LiveU’s high-end LU60 and LU70 models).

Features include: a low latency interview-mode; video and audio indicators; less than one minute boot-up; and control from its touch screen, the server or from any web-enabled device. When used with the External Antenna, the LU40-S can support up to 13 network connections.

LiveU leases the LU40 for about €950 per month, including an unlimited data plan, 24/7 support, and free upgrades of hardware and software.

By David Fox

No comments:

Post a Comment