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Den Lennie talks to Nigel
Wilkes from Panasonic
the format itself, it should be bought
because of budget, sensitivity, size
and everything else. So when the
PX270 comes out in March 2014
you’ll be able to shoot exactly the
same format as its bigger brother,
So it’s the perfect companion
camera. And where do you see
this being used?
Everything from news organisations
who need something that’s smaller
and they don’t want a shoulder
camera out there in the front line, to
documentaries, to Natural History,
and even the guy at home who has
a lot of budget and wants to get out
there and shoot something.
Den hosted a half-hour live show from our studio at IBC
in Amsterdam where he talked to Nigel about the latest
developments from Panasonic. You can find the full show
on our website at http://broadcastshow.com/live
Tell me what’s new at Panasonic
O kay, when we talked last, we spoke about a new camera called the
PX5000. That camera has been launched and we start to ship it at the
end of October. This camera is very significant for us as it’s the next
big step in our AVC-Intra story. We’ve also now taken P2 as a format to 200
megabits and as AVC-Ultra is now here we’re ready to go with it. But to add to
it, we’ve also got things like AVC-LongG (or LongGOP as the industry knows it)
so basically going from 6 megabit up to 50 megabit and everything in between.
So that camera is out there and there’s lots of interest. But we’ve also launched
its little brother the PX270. This new handheld has three 1/3-inch MOS blocks,
AVCUltra offering 200meg
So what does that mean in reality? We had 100 megabits
which is pretty good, what is the significance of 200 megabits?
It means now that we can start to diversify. Obviously you’re getting better
quality, still running at HD resolution but you’re getting less compression onto
the cards. We also now have Micro P2. We’ve talked about this at various
shows and it looks like an SD card - but on the back it has a dual gold
connection. With the PX270, you can either put it into the adapter or straight
into the MicroP2 card slot. This allows us to record 200 megabits as well. The
restriction we’ve had with SD cards is 50 megabit – we couldn’t do it. What
we’re seeing now instead is a shrunk down P2 card.
So it might look like an SD card but it’s the engine inside – which was always
the case with P2. It looked like a PCMCIA card, but actually it was what was
happening on the chip that made the difference.
Exactly, our biggest thing has always been to supply the same format on every
camera. Panasonic believe that you should never buy the camera because of
54 | TV-BAY MAGAZINE: ISSUE 82 OCTOBER 2013
You’ve got a big legacy with
Natural History – that’s
obviously something that’s very
important to Panasonic. How
is this camera going to benefit
those kinds of guys?
I think it’s taking them to the next
step. They currently use PX250’s
and allowing them to shoot less
compressed obviously helps them
because the footage that they
gather is there for history – they use
it for a lot of archive footage. So the
quality is getting better.
In Natural History - they might be
out in the jungle somewhere, see a
unique bird and it’s a one-time shot.
So presumably, having the highest
possible quality means there’s no
compromise – it’s going to sit in the
archive for a long time.
One of the big things about it is
sensitivity. There is a famous shot in
Planet Earth where there is a black
bird of paradise hopping around
on the floor of the jungle. When he
turns around and opens his wings
up there is an electric blue strip that
goes right the way through and they
couldn’t capture it before because
film wasn’t sensitive enough to do it.
If you remember, with our VariCam
the sensitivity was so high that they
came away with footage that had
never been caught.