The SDR-SW20 is a standard-definition Secure Digital camcorder that can be used almost anywhere – including underwater. The durable resin chassis is shockproof, dustproof and waterproof.
If you’re still in the Mini DV camp and want to upgrade your camera, Panasonic hasn’t forgotten about you. New for 2008 is the NV-GS330 – a 3CCD camcorder that records standard-definition video onto Mini DV tapes. By using the included USB cable, the NV-GS330 can also be used as a webcam.
Intelligent Shooting Guide is a brand new feature designed to help inexperienced users take perfect video. Intelligent Shooting Guide detects problems in your video; such as poor lighting conditions, and tells you how to fix it while you’re still shooting. This neat feature is complemented by the Face Detection mode; which automatically locates any faces in the picture and adjusts the exposure, contrast and skin tone to achieve the best results.
A new feature offered by the HDC-HS9 and HDC-SD9 is the burst shooting mode, which allows you to capture 25 consecutive 2.1MB still images per second. This will be a very useful feature for people who want to study their sporting techniques.
In addition to its Secure Digital camcorder range, Panasonic is also releasing three hard disk-based models; the 30GB SDR-H280, the 40GB SDR-H40 and the 60GB SDR-H60 (pictured). All three models record in standard definition and come equipped with SD card slots for an extra memory boost. The SDR-H60 has a massive 50x optical zoom lens.
The HDC-SD9 replaces 2007’s HDC-SD5 as Panasonic’s flagship SD/SDHC camcorder. New features include the ability to record ‘full-HD’ video with 1920x1080p pixel resolution, Face Detection technology and Intelligent Shooting Guide. For more information on this product, check out our full review.
Both the HDC-HS9 and HDC-SD9 are compatible with the VWBN-1E DVD Burner; a portable disc burning device that can be used without a computer. At the press of a button you can record your high-definition footage to DVD. The VWBN-1E DVD Burner will also play your discs when connected to a television – very handy if you don't own a Blu-ray player.
Another SDHC camcorder fresh off the ranks is the SDR-S7. Aimed squarely at the youth and ‘blogger’ market, this stylish and tiny camera can record up to 13 hours of standard-definition video onto a 16GB SD card. The SDR-S7’s ergonomic design and dual-button layout allows you to hold the device in more than one way; offering extra freedom while shooting video.
As the only DVD model in Panasonic’s 2008 line-up, the VDR-D50 is aimed at casual users who want the convenience of fast DVDs. It records standard-definition MPEG2 video onto 8cm DVD-RAM, DVD-RW, DVD-R DL or DVD-R discs. The VDR-D50 comes equipped with a 42x optical zoom lens and advanced optical image stabilisation.
The SDR-SW20 is waterproof by up to 1.5 metres, making it a perfect accompaniment for snorkelling or a day at the pool. It will record up to 13 hours of footage onto one 16GB SD card. (For more information, check out our in-depth review.)
Panasonic has planned an all-out assault on the home camcorder markets, with no fewer than nine new models due to hit stores in 2008. Check out the following slideshow for all the latest tech info, including never-before-seen modes and features.
Headlining the new camcorder range are the HDC-SD9 and HDC-HS9; two high-definition AVCHD camcorders that are both compatible with SD/SDHC memory cards.
The HDC-HS9 is a new hybrid camcorder that can record high-definition video onto both SDHC memory cards and a built-in 60GB hard drive. When equipped with a 16GB memory card, the HDC-HS9 can offer up to 29 hours of continuous HD recording. For added convenience, the HDC-HS9 allows you to transfer video footage from the hard drive to a memory card, and vice-versa.
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