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Panasonic SDR-SW21
Panasonic HDC-SX5
Panasonic VDR-D210
Panasonic VDR-D310
Panasonic HDC-DX1
Panasonic SDRSW21S Sport SD Card Standard Definition Camcorder - Silver
Panasonic HDC-SX5 DVD Camcorder
Panasonic VDR-D210 Camcorder
Panasonic VDR-D310 DVD Camcorder
Panasonic HDC-DX1 DVD Camcorder
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Release Date
Jan 2009
Sep 2007
Apr 2007
Mar 2007
Feb 2007
Recording Format
DVD
DVD, Flash Media
DVD
DVD
DVD
Optical Zoom
10.0 x
10.0 x
32.0 x
10.0 x
12.0 x
CCD Quantity
1.0
3.0
1.0
3.0
3.0
Memory Still Resolution
0.31 MegaPixels
2.07 MegaPixels
0.31 MegaPixels
3.1 MegaPixels
1.7 MegaPixels
  • Rating Unavailable

    - The camcorder has an extremely fast off to recording speed of 0.6 seconds and comes with the VideoCam Suite of software to help the consumer stay on top of their video.


  • Despite its low light limitations, it's hard not to like the Panasonic SDR-SW21. We were already impressed by its predecessor, and the new model has noticeably improved underwater protection, better looks, and slightly superior image quality. However, the most significant downside is the price. Consumer electronics have been getting more expensive across the board, thanks to the economic situation, but at over £100 more than its predecessor, the SW21 is close to HD camcorder territory.


  • You should really only consider the SDR-SW21 if you're constantly subjecting yourself (and gadgets) to water or small falls. Its standard definition video quality is fine enough, and its optical zoom holds up better than most in the shake department, but the cumbersome design makes the SW21 harder to use than it should be.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - Other perks on the HDC-SD5 include a thick, chunky zoom slider and a giant mode dial that will scare away small children.
    - If you could care less about DVDs, then the HDC-SD5 is definitely the way to go.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - Records full HD to SD cards and DVDs.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - The SX5 is quite cleverly designed, if a tad bulky for those users looking for a cam that can be slipped into a pocket or bag.
    - A fair share of the SX5's features are accessible from buttons placed around the body, but it's when you dig down into the well-designed menu system that you discover many more useful options.
    - The provision of Colour Bars is equally useful in helping to visually calibrate playback devices.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - Low-light performance in the normal shooting mode isn't very impressive, and the night mode doesn't really help to bring out any detail in the murky footage.
    - This DVD camcorder has no JPEG still-image capture.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - If you're looking for a no-frills home-video camcorder and have no desire to export still images from it, the VDR-D210 is a good choice.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - DC terminals inside the battery chamber, forcing you to remove the battery in order to use external power.
    - Beneath the cannon-like lens barrel lies the built-in stereo microphone, conveniently placed to avoid sound muffling due to a large hand.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - Playback on the built-in monitor is fairly easy to control.
    - A delete button on the front of the unit is convenient for disposing of unwanted scenes and stills, and the remote control permits access to all basic functions, including still photos, zooming, and file management.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - Panasonic's MagicPix mode enhances indoor and low-light footage, making video more viewable, but since it slows the shutter speed, it also makes your video quite choppy in dim lighting.
    - The D310 produced very nice footage both indoors and out, with sharp details and saturated, accurate colors.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - The hand strap is identical to the one found on the SD1--thin, cheap, and low strung.
    - The back of the DX1 looks like it was modeled after a practical joke drawing found on the floor of Panasonic's development room.
    - The DX1's 3” LCD screen is devoid of any LCD panel controls, due to the versatile rear-mounted joystick.
    - The port cover is sturdy and pulls out easily via a finger tab on the bottom.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - Design and interface make operation difficult and irritating at times.
    - Battery life is decent, and lasted over 90 minutes in our tests, more than enough considering the 14 minutes of available recording time per DVD when using the highest quality mode.
    - Colour reproduction is excellent, thanks largely to the 3CCD sensor.

  • Rating Unavailable

    - LCD pictures are bright and well-resolved, even in bright light (thanks to a physical screen brightness switch) and no problems were experienced when viewing the screen during a wide variety of shooting positions.
    - Another handy feature is the built-in lens shutter, which activates automatically when the camera is switched into Recording mode, and which returns to protect the lens when switching off or into Play mode.