- Mic and headphone jacks, top loading tape mechanism, Image quality
- No built in lens cap, no built in flash
It’s not a huge step forward, but at this price, it’s exceptional value for money for such good image quality.
Price$ 1,099.00 (AUD)
Panasonic's use of three-CCD (charge-coupled device) technology in consumer-grade camcorders has clearly been a success. The number of models available has been growing steadily. But with so many options now, Panasonic's own range is starting to compete within itself. All offer great video quality, with the main differentiator being the features included.
The NV-GS180 is the successor to the mid-range NV-GS150, and its specifications are remarkably similar. It's still based around a trio of 1/6 inch 0.8 megapixel CCDs, offering true 2.3 megapixel still images at 1,760x1,320. However, it lacks the NV-GS150's, built-in lens cap, relying on a clip-on plastic cap instead. The latter's built-in flash has also been removed, so this model isn't quite as good at doubling as a stills camera.
Despite its budget price tag, the NV-GS180 offers microphone and headphone jacks, with a regular accessory shoe on the top for external add-ons. The tape mechanism is top-loading, so you won't have any trouble changing media when the Panasonic is screwed to a tripod.
The little joystick on the back gives immediate access to various options, including shutter and iris settings and video gain. In Focus mode, the joystick is also used for manual focusing - this is a little fiddly but workable. You'll need to enter the full menu to enable one of the five auto-exposure modes, which include the usual suspects.
As we've come to expect from Panasonic's three-chip consumer range, image quality was a cut above most similarly priced single-chip camcorders. This was particularly noticeable in low light or when shooting indoors. The only down side was that the GS180 uses electronic image stabilisation, which works well in good lighting but isn't so effective in poor illumination - and you can't use it at all in widescreen mode.
The Panasonic NV-GS180 doesn't seem like a huge step forward from its NV-GS150, predecessor; it's a touch shorter and lighter, and misses the flash and integrated lens cap, but otherwise offers very similar features. Nonetheless, assuming street prices match the Panasonic's recommended retail price, this is exceptional value for such good video quality.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Gadgets & Things
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 2 Huawei Nova Plus smartphone review
- 3 Apple iPhone 7 Plus review: including Portrait Mode
- 4 Google Daydream View VR full, in-depth review
- 5 Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: Phones just got smarter
Latest News Articles
- AT&T will acquire Time Warner for US$85.4b in content play
- Facebook adds Apple TV and Chromecast support as video push ramps up
- Remocam review: This security camera can control your home appliances
- Logitech's C922 webcam is the revered C920's vastly upgraded successor
- FBI faces lawsuit because it's stayed mum on iPhone 5c hack
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- The top 10 best and worst tech gadgets and products of 2016
- TV of the year award 2016
- Best phone of the year 2016
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTBrand Marketing Manager - Premium Entertainment BrandNSW
- CCProject/ Operational CoordinatorNSW
- TPProjects Planning ManagerQLD
- FTMicrosoft Dynamics AX Finance ConsultantQLD
- FTMicrosoft Dynamics AX Functional Consultant Advanced Warehouse ManagementSA
- CCTest Automation ArchitectQLD
- CCJava Developer/ Guidewire Developers - Brisbane basedVIC
- CCBusiness Project ManagerNSW
- CCTechnical Business Analyst-DevOpsNSW
- FTBusiness Development Manager - Queensland TerritoryQLD
- CCProject SchedulerNSW
- PTVBA Analyst Programmer - Permanent / Part Time (3 days per week)QLD
- FTDeveloper - Java, Mule ESBNSW
- CCSenior C++ Software EngineerQLD
- CCNetwork Security Specialist - Palo Alto Firewall ExpertVIC
- CCSenior Network ArchitectVIC
- CCWebMethod DeveloperQLD
- FTSecurity Incident / SOC Analyst (Tier 1) - Permanent - North Ryde BasedNSW
- CCReporting AnalystVIC
- FTSenior Java DeveloperNSW
- CC3x DevOps / Integration Developers l AWS- Cloud- Linux- Puppet Ansible- JIRA-DNSW
- TPProject CoordintorVIC
- TPProject Manager with a Development BackgroundQLD
- TPSharePoint SpecialistVIC