Panasonic AG-DVX100B

The Good Great sound, progressive modes, and image control; professional-caliber viewfinder and controls; wide lens; particularly well suited for multicamera projects.

The Bad No high-definition capability; no 16:9-native chips; lens is short for some applications; moderately steep learning curve.

The Bottom Line Panasonic has listened. The third incarnation of the AG-DVX100 offers unrivalled bang for the buck in a prosumer standard-definition MiniDV camera.

Editors' Rating
  • Design 9.0
  • Features 8.0
  • Performance 9.0
  • Image quality 8.0
8.4 Overall

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Review

Panasonic AG-DVX100B

Jan 2006

The Panasonic AG-DVX100B may well be the last and best semipro DV camcorder ever built. No, I'm not predicting an imminent apocalypse, but rather the approaching obsolescence of high-end standard-definition (SD) video cameras. Sony, Canon, and JVC have all released HD cameras in the sub-$10,000 price range, and Panasonic has introduced its long-anticipated HD version of the DVX, the HDX200.

So why did Panasonic bother updating the groundbreaking and still category-leading DVX camera? Apparently, new manufacturing regulations dictated a redesign to eliminate lead-containing components; while they were at it, the Panasonic engineers decided to implement about 20 improvements, ultimately earning the redesign its B designation. If you own the earlier AG-DVX100 or AG-DVX100A, you probably won't opt to upgrade to get the relatively modest set of improvements the new model offers. However, if you're looking for a new or additional standard-def camera, the Panasonic AG-DVX100B represents perhaps the greatest value to date. The Panasonic AG-DVX100B looks almost identical to its predecessor; its most noticeable change is its darker Black Sapphire color. That's a good thing, as the AG-DVX100 camera has an extremely well-thought-out design.

In essence, the AG-DVX100 series combines a Handycam-like form factor with the full complement of external professional controls and connections usually found only on bigger, shoulder-mounted cameras. In many respects, the AG-DVX100B offers the best of both worlds: the light weight and easy handling of a home-video camera and the sophisticated controls of a pro rig.

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Specs / Prices

  • Brand Panasonic
  • Type camcorder
  • Weight 3.75 lbs
  • Optical Sensor Type 3CCD
  • Features backlight compensation, built-in speaker, date/time stamp
See full specs

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