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Video Cameras

Panasonic gets size-wise

Panasonic announce a bunch of size-focused products: teeny camcorders and the world's first 32GB SDHC memory card.

Panasonic didn't unveil its rumoured 150-inch plasma TV this morning -- talk says that will happen tomorrow at the first official day of CES -- but the company did announce a bunch of size-focused products: teeny camcorders and the world's first 32GB SDHC memory card.

Panasonic HDC-HS9

Joining Panasonic's line-up this year are two high-def 3CCD camcorders: the HDC-HS9, and the HDC-SD9. The HS9 is a hybrid model that supports SD cards and packs a 60GB hard disk, while the SD9 ditches the disk and focuses on SD storage. At 275 grams, this second model is being billed as the world's smallest and lightest SD card HD camcorder.

Features of both camcorders, hot off the press (release):

  • Face detection, which adjusts exposure, contrast and skin tone as you record
  • High-def (1920 x 1080p) recording at 24 frames per second
  • 0.6-second start-up time
  • 5.1-channel surround sound captured by five microphones
  • high-speed burst shooting: take up to 24 consecutive 2.1 megapixel resolution still images in one second or up to 72 consecutive shots in three seconds
Panasonic HDC-SD9

The HS9 and SD9 are both compatible with SDHC cards, including Panasonic's newly announced 32GB version. Labelled a prototype with a release date not yet set, the 32GB card doubles the capacity of the company's current highest offering, a 16GB version that retails locally for AU$498. The card will store around eight hours of 1440 x 1080i HD video and just over five hours of 1920 x 1080i footage.

The camcorders will be available in the US in March 2008; we'll suss out local pricing and availability when we drop by Panasonic's booth tomorrow.