The rain held off for Panasonic's launch event at the Great Barrier Reef but there was a deluge of another kind: nine new camcorders from Panasonic.
Panasonic seem to have adopted a policy of renewing its high definition camcorder line-up every half year. Again there's an SD card model and a hybrid, although this time the hybrid is of the hard-disk/SD card type not DVD/SD card.
We've bemoaned the fact that manufacturers have, thus far, bundled a maximum of 4GB worth of memory with their memory card-based camcorders. Panasonic has now heeded our calls, shipping the new SD9 with a 32GB SDHC card -- almost as much as entry-level high definition hard-disk camcorders. This gives us hope that one day soon all manufacturers will heed our calls to bundle an HDMI cable with their cameras.
*There's also a kit for the SD9, priced at AU$2,299, which includes a portable DVD burner, Pinnacle video editing software and a mini-HDMI cable.
Standard definition: hard-disk and SD card
There are five new standard-def cameras which record onto SD card -- two of which are SD card only, the other three have built-in hard-disks. The hero model of the new range is the shockproof, waterproof and dustproof , which we're looking forward to putting through its paces.
Standard definition: tape and DVD disc
In addition, Panasonic has announced a new miniDV and a new DVD standard-def camcorder. Both will be available any day now.