Panasonic HDC-TM700K Hi-Def Camcorder

Panasonic HDC-TM700K Hi-Def Camcorder with Pro Control System & 32GB Internal Flash Memory – Product Description:

Panasonic HDC-TM700K Hi-Def CamcorderThe HDC-TM700 uses the progressive method to record twice as much image data as the interlace method. Whereas interlacing requires two images to produce a complete picture, the progressive method records a single image as a complete picture. Plus, the 60 Progressive Recording of the HDC-TM700 produces 60 images per second. This extremely dense image information creates intricate detail and silky smooth motion. Even when subjects move quickly, afterimages are minimized to create more natural images. The progressive method is most effective when shooting detailed designs where moir patterns tend to occur, or when capturing scenes during sports events where the subjects are intensely moving around. Also, the recorded images are displayed clearly even when they are made into still images, so it is possible to preserve stunning photos when clipping them from videos.

Product Features :

  • 32 GB Internal Flash Memory
  • Full HD 1080p
  • 35mm Wide-Angle Lens
  • 18x Intelligent Zoom

Panasonic HDC-TM700K Hi-Def Camcorder – Review:

POWERHOUSE CAMCORDER FOR POWER USERS

The Panasonic HDC-TM700 is a rare camcorder in that it breaks new ground. The key upside of this camcorder is its 28 Mbps 60P mode — the camera is capable of recording at 1920×1080 resolution in 60 PROGRESSIVE frames per second. This captures TWICE the image information of the interlaced method, resulting in smoother motion. The TM700 also capture more vertical resolution than other consumer camcorders when used in 60P mode.

There are many features of this camera that blur the line between “consumer” and “prosumer.”

Whether you dub the 35mm lens “wide” or not, it’s a hell of a lot more wide than any other consumer cam lens I’ve tried. My $6500 Sony EX1 has a 31.4mm equivalent lens, so the TM700 is in the same ballpark. For me this make a big difference in the practical use of the camera. No longer do I need to carry and constantly attach/detach a wide angle adapter. This also makes me more likely to use the 18X zoom (since there’s no wide angle adapter on the cam).

One nice TM700 feature I haven’t seen discussed elsewhere is peaking. Quite simply, “peaking” means that the camera outlines objects in focus with a color, so as to help the camera operator achieve correct focus. The camera does include a peaking function when switched to manual focus. Panasonic calls it “manual focus assist.” This really helps achieve critical focus with the 260k pixel LCD screen. The peaking color is blue; I prefer yellow, but will gladly settle for blue.

Another upside to the TM700 vis-a-vis other consumer cams is the manual control ring. Panasonic has done a nice job implementing this feature and it’s easy to quickly adjust zoom, focus, shutter speed, & iris using the ring. This is a slam dunk win for the TM700 because the competition doesn’t even offer a control ring (the control wheel is a far less satisfying alternative).

Some have expressed concern over the cooling fan. The fan does generate some noise when it activates, although it’s not always on. The fan has really not been an issue for me so far. I usually use an external mic when I’m serious about capturing quality audio.

I’m a picky camera buyer who usually finds flaws with consumer equipment. But I haven’t found many with the TM700. It has a number of nice features like facial recognition (automatically exposing for certain faces), outstanding low-light performance with minimal noise and strong color reproduction, an almost “instant on” technology (you can power on the camera simply by opening the LCD screen or extending the viewfinder), stellar image stabilization, plenty of menu customization options, all the benefits of tapeless workflow…and I could go on.

If you are shopping for a “flagship” consumer camcorder, when considering the TM700 you must ask yourself whether you really care about 60P. After all, it’s the 60P mode (and resulting high image quality) that sets this camera apart from its Sony & Canon competitors. I believe that the TM700 in 60P mode produces arguably the best image quality you can find in a consumer camcorder. But you need a fast PC with the right software to edit this material. If you intend to edit your footage, do some homework on this point before making a purchase decision.

If you want 60P…and you can handle 60P… then you will love this camcorder.

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