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back to article Panasonic zooms in on HD camcorder market

If you're already besotted with high definition content and have the whole technical set-up, including an HD TV with Sky subscription, then your next step could be an HD camcorder. At least that's what Panasonic is hoping, as it has unveiled two new tiny models. The HDC-SD5 measures 6.6 x 6.6 x 13.4cm and the HDC-SX5 is only a …

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First available?

"available in Europe in September". Does that mean you folks will get it first, or that you guys, like the iPhone and the Xbox 360, will be trailing behind? Are those "real" prices (announced by Panasonic as MSRP) or are they converted from one price?

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Prices

What's the betting the prices will turn out to be $1000/£1000/€1000... :/

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Anonymous Coward

digital zoom

For god's sake, why do camcorder makers always have to toss in totally ludicrous digital zoom specs? 700x? What's that equivalent to, a 12,000mm lens? Are there people swayed by a claim to zoom better than the largest land telescopes?

And just for the record, a 700x digital zoom, even at 1920x1080, will get you somewhere around a whopping THREE BY TWO PIXEL IMAGE. Wow. That's... really high definition. They could just call this the "show me the color in the center of the frame" feature!

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Anonymous Coward

Digital zoom.. (2)

Errrmmm... no, David, you divide each of 1920 and 1080 by the square root of 700, or else it would be 490000x zoom...

So that's a 72x40 image, which could just be called "show me the malfunctioning CGA display in the centre [UK!] of the frame" feature... :-)

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RE: digital zoom

While I agree that digital zoom in pretty much any form is virtually pointless, could they have got that 700x using the 10x optical zoom as a factor? So it might be 10x optical plus 70x digital zoom, making an overall effective zoom of 700x? I know my camera zooms optically as far as it will go, and only then does the digital zoom come in.

I dunno, I could be wrong and it could just show you the colour in the middle of the frame.

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Anonymous Coward

RE: Digital zoom

The unfortunate truth is that the average consumer is technically challenged. When marketing teams ask Mr and Mrs Joe Soap what features they most want in new digital camcorder they will specify digital zoom, yes they actually specify digital zoom. If they're too thick to really know what they're talking about and it costs the manufacturer nothing then why not give it to them.

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I fail to be impressed!

Meh, 10x optical? I personally wouldn't touch anything less than 20x optical. The digital zoom is just marketing BS. Realistically is translates of massive camera shake and pixellation.

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