Panasonic HDC-DX1

Panasonic  HDC-DX1
  • Panasonic  HDC-DX1
  • Panasonic  HDC-DX1
  • Panasonic  HDC-DX1
  • Expert Rating

    3.50 / 5


  • Sharp and clear images, vibrant colours


  • Design and interface make operation difficult and irritating at times

Bottom Line

An attractive offering from Panasonic, the HDC-DX1 is capable of delivering high definition video once its interface and menus have been mastered.

Would you buy this?

The Panasonic HDC-DX1 is one of the latest in the new wave of high definition digital video cameras. Recording to mini-DVD and utilising the AVCHD format via a 3CCD sensor, the camera is clearly geared towards high level users. However, it still manages to remain fairly competitive in its pricing. Great image quality and vibrant colours are at the top of the list of great features on the DX1, however it does suffer from an awkward design, and bare manual feature-set.

Image quality is the biggest advantage of the DX1 over a non-HD camera. Delivering 1080i resolution images, video shot on the camera looks smooth and sharp with very little blurring or image noise, even in high motion shots. Colour reproduction is excellent, thanks largely to the 3CCD sensor. If anything, we found the colours to be a little oversaturated, but this isn't necessarily a bad thing. It makes video look brighter and more vivid, and is common in most digital video cameras. The camera also has a 12x optical zoom which may be lacking for some, although digital zoom is available up to 700x.

The camera's automatic mode performed fairly well in most of our tests, although the auto-focus did tend to be a little slow to respond at times. However, the automatic settings were sufficient for most scenarios, reacting well to changing conditions and targets. This is fortunate because the manual settings available are quite bare, being limited to shutter speed, ISO and white balance. This isn't a massive concern, but given the camera's high level of performance in other areas, it would have been nice to see some more options available.

Unfortunately, the available features are accessable via a cumbersome and difficult interface. The small, inconveniently placed controls require either incredible dexterity or very long fingers to reach and operate effectively whilst keeping the camera still, and the confusing menu system is difficult and, at times, counter-intuitive to operate. The menus are further complicated by the division of the options into a conventional-style menu and a mini menu. In the mini menu each direction on the navigation joystick correlates to either toggling a setting or moving to the next set of three options, which only tends to make things more confusing still.

Physically, the camera is quite large, with the rear-mounted, elongating the camera's body. The mini-DVD drive sits on the right hand side, whilst the 3in LCD screen folds out from the left hand side. The camera is also slightly heavier than we're used to, but not uncomfortably so, weighing in at around 700g with battery and disc included.

The DX1 also includes still image functionality, although at 2.1MP this is fairly limited in its uses. Still, it's nice to have the option to use it for quick snaps when the need arises.

Battery life is decent, and lasted over 90 minutes in our tests, more than enough considering the 14 minutes of available recording time per DVD when using the highest quality mode. Nevertheless, recording time can be extended to approximately 30 minutes, or 60 on a DVD-DL by using the lowest of the three recording quality modes.

Overall, the HDC-DX1 is a decent offering. Great image quality and vibrant colours are definitely a big selling point, especially at this price, however with its limited feature set and frustrating interface, it's not for everybody.

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill


I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?