Incredibly sharp video using 1080/60p mode and 3D recording with optional conversion lens.
Panasonic sure knows how to make a solid flagship camcorder with appeal to consumers and semi-pros alike, and, by all means, the new HC-X900M is exactly that-an excellent high-end camcorder. Unfortunately, the product still left us dissatisfied thanks to Panasonic's lack of updates and improvements over last year's HDC-TM900.
Thrilled so far
This camera is a member of the 1080p/60fps club. I expect that in a few years, that spec will be pretty standard as the high end moves to 4K video. Until then, the X900M provides the most detailed and smooth recording available in amateur camcorders. If you plan to shoot it in a lesser video mode, it's advantages over other models diminishes. I plan to do all of my shooting at 60p. It has 32GB on board memory plus a 64GB SD card I have installed. It is sized nicely for my large hands.
Excellent image quality with lens focus ring and comprehensive manual controls.
The last few generations of high-end camcorder from Panasonic have been hard to beat. The HDC-TM900 and HDC-TM700 offered powerful combinations of great image quality and comprehensive features. The HC-X900 continues that tradition, and just about edges our recommendation over Canon's excellent LEGRIA HF G10. The X900 is around £100 cheaper and offers a standard accessory shoe without the need for third-party adapters, plus a marginally easier control system.
Simple interface and menus
The Panasonic HC-X900M is a good example of how camera models today are being released far too quickly to make an impact. Looking at the other Panasonic models that are slightly older or lower down the chain, one might wonder why you would pay for the expensive top-of-the-range model, when there are high-quality, high-performing camcorders for a much cheaper price.
Effective image stabilization
Our conclusion for the HC-X900M is - you guess it - the same as what we said for the HDC-TM900: If you're an advanced user who crave for tons of controls at your fingertips, and the best 1080p video quality possible, the HC-X900M is hard to beat. The launch price of S$2,199 is also slightly cheaper than the launch price of its predecessor a year ago. If you already have a stash of high-capacity, high-speed SDXC cards, you may want to consider the HC-X900 instead.
Best in Class Optical Image Stabilization
This is one of those cameras that you can simply start using, right out of the box. It is that intuitive. I was blown away by its SteadyShot system - the image stabilization is truly best in class. When you view the clip in the comment below, remember that this was shot by a tired and excited parent, whooping like a kid, in indoor stadium lighting, often at full zoom. The focus is sharp, the images are clean, and the microphone clearly captures the videographer's very vocal enthusiasm.
Fan Freaking Tastic!
Great option for videographers on a budget, but has the looks (and the specs) that gives customers the impression they're getting a lot for their money. I've had other pro-sumer cameras in the past from Sony (A1U, NEX-VG10) but this one beats them all. Definitely worth the buy for those with a 2k or less budget! Of course if the funding is there, more manual options would be nice but then you're probably looking to move into a different price bracket.
Generally excellent video quality and a straightforward.
Panasonic's trio of prosumer camcorders, the hard-disk-based HDC-HS900 and flash-based TM900 and SD800, deliver generally excellent video quality and provide the full set of manual controls and features advanced users want. But you have to be willing to baby the white balance a bit. The TM900 is my top pick of the three for its EVF, but if you're on a tight budget the SD800 should suit just fine.
Excellent color and noise results with great motion and sharpness in 60p.
The HDC-TM900 (MSRP $1099) is a great camcorder, that much is clear. It captured excellent video in a variety of record modes, and its performance recording 1080/60p HD video was as good as it gets. It has a ton of controls, a solid body design, and its 3D recording option (with the purchase of an optional conversion lens) makes it a cutting-edge product.
Despite all this, we are still disappointed with the TM900.
Great image quality in most conditions.
Panasonic's HDC-TM900 offers no revolutionary new features, now that 3D shooting has already started its journey to ubiquity. But like its predecessors it blends excellent enthusiast features, headlined by the lens ring, with supreme image quality. There's also no significant premium being charged for this new model compared to the outgoing TM700, if you can still find it. So the TM900 takes over from its predecessor as our videomaking enthusiast camcorder of choice.
Excellent motion and sharpness in 2D
If you are in the market for a high-end 3D camcorder you only have three options at the moment: the JVC GS-TD1, the Sony HDR-TD10, and the Panasonic HDC-SDT750 (and other Panasonic models that can use the VW-CLT1 3D conversion lens). There are also a few ultracompact models that shoot 3D, as well as a number of digital cameras, but the three models mentioned above are the only high-end HD camcorders aimed at consumers that allow 3D recording.
Affordable price point for the featureset
The JVC GS-TD1 is a high-end camcorder, promoted by JVC as the first consumer level camcorder to offer full HD 3D recording. The GS-TD1's full HD 3D capability is owed to the high speed processor that can simultaneously produce two full HD images (1920 x 1080i), recording in both the left and right streams (a process that JVC refers to as LR Independent Format).
Dual-frame Full HD 3D
With the Everio GS-TD1, JVC has produced the first consumer-grade camcorder to shoot two frames of Full HD in 3D mode, using a pair of parallel lenses and CMOS sensors. The resulting MP4 format is proprietary, but JVC’s approach also means better low-light performance even when shooting 3D in AVCHD mode. It’s the first consumer-grade camcorder to offer optical zoom in 3D mode, too. With a range of manual features as well, the GS-TD1 has loads to offer enthusiasts wishing to move into 3D.
It goes without saying, but without the correct TV setup the GS-TD1 is largely pointless. The 3D quality is among the best we've seen from a consumer camcorder, but the proprietary files means playback is limited to a direct TV connect. A decent camcorder, but other forces look set to conspire against it.
Touch GUI works well
We have to give JVC props for taking a huge step forward in home video, leaping from 2D to 3D. If you get the chance to see some sample footage on a quality 3D HDTV you'll be impressed big time as were we. The stills are another story but for us it's a sideshow to a major move in consumer electronics. The Everio GS-TD1 may not be generating the buzz of that other 3D device but you should definitely take notice.
Impressive 3D quality, well featured
It goes without saying, but without the correct TV setup the GS-TD1 is largely pointless. The 3D quality is among the best we've seen from a consumer camcorder, but the proprietary files means playback is limited to a direct TV connect. A decent camcorder, but other forces look set to conspire against it
A masterpiece of compact engineering
The JVC Everio GS-TD1 redefines what we can expect of a 3D camcorder. This shooter may be a tad cumbersome, but compared to a pro-rig it's a masterpiece of compact engineering. We loved the unparalleled creative control on offer, and 3D image quality is excellent. Overall, this is a remarkable piece of kit.
Best non-broadcast class model
Make no mistake; JVC's GS-TD1 is a highly specialised camcorder. I certainly wouldn't advocate buying it unless you have a serious interest in 3D photography. However if 3D is an area you want to be creative in, this is by far and away the best non-broadcast class model I've seen and puts in an excellent performance.
Excellent aperture, shutter speed, and gain controls
If you're a videographer who wants to use an arsenal of different lenses when you want to shoot video, then the NEX-VG20 should definitely be on your radar. It's one of the only interchangeable lens camcorders you can get for under $2000, although we expect to see more in the future.
Excellent image and video quality
Given the price of other large-sensor, interchangeable-lens systems, the NEX-VG20 offers excellent value for anyone who prefers shooting video on a camcorder-style body rather than on a video-enabled SLR. Retailing at a touch under AU$3000 (and even cheaper when shopping online) the VG20 proves that excellent-quality filmmaking is accessible to those who can't quite reach the upper echelons of a RED or Canon C300, or even Sony's own FS100.
This is the one!
This camera is able to record in Quicktime. And it the only Video Camera listed for sale on the Apple website. I use Final Cut Pro X. This thing is perfect when it comes to work flow. Shoot your scene edit you clips (NO RENDERING)! Wow this is the way it should be. This is a point and shoot/ get it right the first time camera. I was so impressed with the speed and smoothness things focus in.
Full manual feature set for video
The Sony Handycam HDR-CX550V fares well compared with the competition, though its video could be a bit sharper and the interface less cumbersome. Unless you absolutely need to store a lot of video on the camcorder--which I don't suggest--or if have large hands that could benefit from the extra grip that the hard drive provides, the CX550V is a better deal than its hard-disk-based sibling.
Powerful tool for professionals
Overall, the HDR-CX550V isn't the best flagship model on the market (that title would currently go to the HDC-TM700 from Panasonic), but it is a rather impressive camcorder that is both easy to use and a powerful tool for professionals. Its major downside is a lack of any alternate frame rates for recording HD video (other than regular 60i). If that's not something you care about, however, then the HDR-CX550V is definitely worth a look.
Huge, bright touch-screen display
With so many 1080p camcorders hitting the market these days for under $500, manufacturers have to work harder to justify a pricey camcorder. Sony mostly does with the CX550V, with a huge, bright touch-screen display, first rate video quality and a wealth of features to keep the avid video-taker busy. The inclusion of GPS does not, in my view, justify its pricey premium (your mileage may vary) and the menu system is not up to par with the rest of the CX550V's other virtues.
A quality product at a reasonable price
The Sony HDR-HC9 camcorder is a rare find: it's a high-definition camera that uses tapes, a preferable option for people who believe that tapes always deliver superior video product compared to SD and hard disc formats. While that opinion may be disputed, there is no doubt this camera delivers a quality product at a reasonable price.
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