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New miniDV, DVD, hard drive, and SD camcorders from Panasonic

Panasonic announced several new standard-definition camcorders in a variety of media formats.

Panasonic SDC-S7

Besides its high-def and waterproof camcorders, Panasonic has unveiled five more models ranging from simple miniDV to hybrid SD/hard drive.

The Panasonic SDR-S7 is a new ultracompact camcorder that records its footage to SD and SDHC cards. The slim shooter looks similar to the rugged SW20, though it lacks any waterproof, shockproof, or dustproof attributes. It features a 10x optical zoom lens and a 2.7-inch flip-out LCD screen, and a Quick Start feature Panasonic claims lets it start recording just 0.6 second after opening it. The SDR-S7 ships in May, with a suggested retail price of $300.

Described by Panasonic as "hybrid" camcorders, the SDR-H40 and SDR-H60 can record video to either SD/SDHC cards or to their respective 40 GB and 60 GB hard drives. According to Panasonic, the H40 can record up to 36 hours of footage to its hard drive, while the H60 can store up to 56 hours. The H40 sports a 42x optical zoom and the H60 uses a 50x zoom lens, and both use Panasonic's Advanced Mega Optical Image Stabilization system. They both also feature an Anti Shock Shield, which Panasonic claims helps protect their hard drives from bumps and drops. The SDR-H40 ships later this month with a suggested retail price of $450, and the SDR-H60 ships in May with a $550 price tag.

Though not quite as flashy, the Panasonic VDR-D50 and PV-GS90 are the company's respective DVD and miniDV camcorder offerings. Like the SDR-H40, both models feature 42x optical zoom lenses with Panasonic's Advanced Mega O.I.S. The VDR-D50 ships later this month and will retail for about $350, while the PV-GS90 ships in February with a suggested price of $280.