- Captures and stores video of exceptional quality, 5.1 channel audio
- Compression format means you can't edit video yet, limited included software
The current editing limitations are significant, but once the software catches up, the Panasonic HDC-SD1 will be an excellent camcorder.
Price$ 2,419.00 (AUD)
The Panasonic HDC-SD1 is a camcorder that can capture outstanding footage, but you can't edit the video just yet.
We were originally skeptical about a camcorder that records high-definition video onto an SD Card. What kind of compression is going on behind the scenes to make it fit? However, our doubts soon faded, as the HDC-SD1 captures and stores video of exceptional quality. Unfortunately, for the moment, the compression format it uses introduces a different problem: an inability to edit your video.
At its best quality setting, the HDC-SD1 records 40 minutes of 1080i video to an included 4GB SD Card. This camcorder uses the AVCHD format developed by Panasonic and Sony. When we tested the HDC-SD1, no video editing software supported the format, but Sony says it will offer a free update in the near future to allow its Vegas video editor to import such files. Users of the HDC-SD1 also need a very powerful computer to edit the video once the applications to do so are available, as well as an HD-DVD or Blu-Ray drive if they want to export it from a computer in HD. Forget about using the software included with the camcorder. Athough users can use it to export standard-definition video to a DVD, it's nearly useless beyond that. You are unable to use it to watch your footage in full-screen on a computer.
Since the camcorder has component outputs and an HDMI port, however, you can play back the unedited footage in high-definition on an HDTV. Video we captured in well-lit settings looked gorgeous, and even video taken in relatively dim, indoor rooms looked surprisingly good. Importantly, it was much better than footage from the standard-definition camcorders we've reviewed. The HDC-SD1's microphone captures 5.1-channel audio, too. We weren't able to test it with a surround-sound system, but it sounded quite good through standard television speakers.
Panasonic says the HDC-SD1 is the smallest HD camcorder yet, and it's certainly far more compact than many standard-definition models, despite its larger-than-average, 3in LCD. The tube-shaped body measures roughly 2.5in in diameter and 5.5in long, so it's very comfortable to hold. The HDC-SD1 has some manual controls, though they could be easier to use. To adjust the shutter speed, for example, users must press a tiny joystick on the back once for each step in speed (you can't just hold it down).
Overall, while the current editing limitations are significant, once the software catches up, the Panasonic HDC-SD1 will be an excellent camcorder.
Join the newsletter!
Cartier Calibre de Cartier Diver Watch
Samsung QLED 8K TV
Apple iMac Pro
Ballistix Tactical Tracer RGB 3000
Ballistix Sport AT
Bang and Olufsen Beoplay A9 Speaker
Toys for Boys
ESET Internet Security
Nix Pro Colour Sensor
ESET Smart Security Premium
Little Bits DROID Inventor Kit
Tivoli PAL BT
ESET Cyber Security Pro for Mac
Osmo Coding Awbie Game
Oregon Pro WMR500 Weather Station
Naztech Xtra Drive Mini + 256GB microSD Card
Ultimate Ears Wonderboom Bluetooth Speaker
SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3
Ikea RIGGAD work lamp with wireless charging
TimeFlip Magnet Simple Time Tracking Device
Technology is revolutionising the way we do things and that includes in the kitchen where a wealth of must-have gadgets and appliances are the making life easier for home cooks.
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Samsung Tab S4 review: Freestyle
- 2 Sony WF-SP900 review: One step forward, two steps back
- 3 Plantronics BackBeat Fit 3100 review: Safety first
- 4 Oppo R17 Pro review: Oppo's thriftiest flagship yet drives a hard bargain
- 5 Lenovo Smart Display review: The bigger, better buy
Latest News Articles
- CES 2019: Arlo expand into the smart home, confirm Arlo Ultra pricing
- Arlo announces 4K HDR wire-free security camera system
- Navman introduces the MiVUE dash cam
- Uniden adds Artificial Intelligence functionality to Wired surveillance range
- Logitech announces Logitech Rally
PCW Evaluation Team
Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications
I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)
It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!
The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.
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.
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.
- CES 2019 Round-Up:
- Samsung’s Galaxy S10 will launch on Feb 20, and we only have one question
- Huawei Mate 20 Pro review: Full, in-depth, Australian review
- Everything you need to know about Smart TVs
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?