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Panasonic Canada Launches 2011 3D-Capable Camcorders

Panasonic Canada announced model details as well as retail pricing and availability for its latest HD and 3D-capable camcorders.

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Unedited press release follows:


Mississauga, ON (March 22, 2011) – Panasonic Canada Inc. today announced ten new Full High-Definition (HD) camcorders to its 2011 line-up: the HDC-SD40, HDC-HS80, HDC-SD80, HDC-TM90, HDC-SD90, HDC-TM900, HDC-HS900, HDC-SD800, HM-TA2 and HM-TA20. All models feature 1920 x 1080 resolution. The Panasonic HDC-SD90, HDC-TM90, HDC-TM900, HDC-HS900 and HDC-SD800 are capable of shooting Full HD video with 1080/60p recording and can even record 3D video with the optional Panasonic 3D Conversion lens (VW-CLT1).

With the use of the 3D Conversion Lens, 3D images and video can be played back on a VIERA® 3DTV1, a compatible 3D television2, or through an AVCHD-compatible player, such as Panasonic’s Blu-ray DiscTM player3. While 3D video recording is possible, crisp true-to-life video in Full HD 2D video may also be recorded.

“Panasonic’s new line of HD camcorders offers something for everyone, from the ultra-lightweight and affordable SD40, to the wide-angle lens and telephoto zoom of the HS80 and SD80, all the way up to the to the 3D recording capabilities of the TM90 and SD90,” said Sean Clayford, Product Manager, Imaging, Panasonic Canada Inc. “These HD camcorders shoot exceptionally well in low-light, and Panasonic’s image stabilization allows even novice shooters to capture stunning video.”

Leading off the series of new camcorders are the Panasonic 1 MOS HDC-TM90 and HDC-SD90. They feature a compact body and a 28mm4 wide-angle lens with the versatility to record indoors or in tight spaces – while at the same time having the ability to capture stunning panoramic images of landscapes or large groups within the frame. The SD80 and HS80 models include a 33.7mm4 wide-angle lens for versatile shooting at a variety of distances. And the HDC-TM900, HDC-HS900 and HDC-SD800 include a 35mm4 wide-angle lens.

Incorporating the Panasonic 3MOS system – an advanced technology used in professional-level equipment – the HDC-TM900, HDC-HS900 and HDC-SD800 camcorders also feature the large diameter (46mm) F1.5 Leica Dicomar Lens which produces brighter images and helps suppress ghosts and flare, while also minimizing distortion and degradation of contrast and resolution. In addition, its 35mm wide-angle4 capability makes it ideal for many different shooting situations, such as self-portraits and group photos indoors, and landscape shots outdoors.

The new models also feature the Crystal Engine PRO7, which instantly processes the large amount of data that goes into Full HD quality image capture for extremely clear, crisp motion shots. The improved Crystal Engine PRO increases sensitivity and reduces noise by 45 percent compared to Panasonic’s conventional models, resulting in brighter images with minimal noise when shooting under low-light conditions. Intelligent Resolution technology ensures sharp, beautifully coloured motion images, while Intelligent Zoom enables high-powered 20x zooming in the 3MOS cameras, correcting the image degradation that occurs in ordinary digital zooming.

For extra shooting power, the Panasonic HDC-TM90 and HDC-SD90 feature ultra-telephoto 40x Intelligent Zoom, while the HDC-SD80 and HDC-HS80 offer exceptional zooming power with ultra-telephoto 42x Intelligent Zoom.

The HM-TA2 and HM-TA20 are new additions to the ultra-compact line of camcorders offered by Panasonic. With a rectangular shape, both models have a 3-inch touchscreen LCD, can record Full HD video, and offer 8-megapixel still image capabilities. The new models can also double as a Web camera, working with IP-based video chat programs like SkypeTM5. The HM-TA20 is Panasonic’s first ultra-compact camcorder that is waterproof, shockproof and dustproof.

For consumers wanting a lightweight and affordable Full HD camcorder, Panasonic introduces the ultra-compact HDC-SD40. The SD40 is Panasonic’s lightest Full HD camcorder, weighing approximately 0.39lb, making it stylish and easy to carry around for any recording moment. The Full HD camcorder is also extremely energy-efficient, capable of continuous recording up to 135 minutes without needing to recharge the battery.

All models can record to SDXC/SDHC/SD Memory Cards. The HDC-TM90 has 16GB6 of internal memory and the HC-TM900 has 32GB6. The HDC-HS80 has a 120GB6 hard disk drive and the HDC-HS900 has a 2206 GB hard disk drive for additional memory storage.

Advanced touch-screen operation8 with new touch-operation functions allow for extremely smooth shooting and playback, including:
•    Touch Zoom – Swiftly zoom in or out with the touch or swipe of the finger.
•    Touch Shutter – Focus and take a digital photo by touching the subject on the screen9.

Other features of the Panasonic HDC-TM90, HDC-SD90, HDC-SD80 and HDC-HS80 include:
•    New HYBRID OIS (Optical Image Stabilization) – Helps reduce blur due to arm and hand shake with a lens in the optical system and a sensor in the electrical system. Detects blurring caused not only by vertical or horizontal wrist movements, but also the subtle blurring that occurs when the entire arm moves vertically or horizontally. Also achieves powerful correction during high-powered zooming, even on the move.
•    iA (Intelligent Auto) with Face Recognition – Automatically selects the most suitable shooting mode at the press of a button, including Face Recognition, which finds the faces of registered people (up to six faces can be registered) and optimizes the focus and exposure and tracks the subject as it moves anywhere within the LCD frame
•    Eco-Mode10– Automatically turns off the power when the camcorder is not operated for five minutes, reducing wasteful energy use and saving battery power
•    5.1-Channel Surround Sound System (HDC-TM900/HDC-HS900) – Uses five microphones so when sounds recorded from front, right, left and back are played on a 5.1-channel home theatre system, viewers are surrounded by crisp, detailed sound

The HDC-SD40 ($399.99), HDC-HS80 ($649.99), HDC-SD80 ($499.99), HDC-TM90 ($649.99), HDC-SD90 ($599.99), HDC-TM900 ($1,099.99) and HDC-SD800 ($899.99) will all be available in March and the HDC-HS900 ($1,599.99) will be available in April and all models will be available in black. The HM-TA2 will be available in black, white and red with a suggested retail price of $199.99. The HM-TA20 will be available in orange and blue with a suggested retail price of $229.99. The TA models will be available in May.

1 Some VIERA 3DTV models may require a firmware update to play 3D images from an SD card.
2 A TV that is capable of side-by-side method 3D playback, 3D Eyewear, and HDMI cable connection are required to play the recorded 3D images.
3 If the player/recorder is not 3D-compatible, you need to set the 3D mode on the TV manually.
4 35mm camera equivalent.
5 The use of a high-performance CPU is recommended for video conferencing with high-quality images.
6GB = 1,073,741,824 bytes. Usable capacity will be less.
7 Crystal Engine Pro not available on HDC-SD40, TM-A2 and TM-A20.
8 Touch-screen operation not available on HDC-SD40.
9 Cannot be used in video recording.
10 Set to ON when shipped from the factory.

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Panasonic products are marketed in Canada by Panasonic Canada Inc. (PCI). PCI is a subsidiary of Panasonic North America, one of the world’s largest producers of electronic and electric products for consumer, business, and industrial use. Consumers seeking more information on the company’s products can call Panasonic’s Customer Care Centre at 1-800-561-5505 or access Panasonic’s home page at