NEWARK, N.J. –Panasonic announced a new professional AVCCAM HD handheld camcorder, the AG-AC90A, with significant improvements over its predecessor, the AG-AC90. Advances include two new recording options – a PM mode (1,280 x 720-pixels, 8 Mbps) supporting sports analysis applications and a CS mode (720 x 480-pixels, 3.5 Mbps) for bandwidth-friendly streaming.
Other enhancements include the ability to copy content from one SD card to another, a date/time superimpose function ideal for law enforcement and legal depositions, freeze frame (still picture) on video out during shooting position change, Eye-Fi card support, a variable white balance function, additional marker displays, and a digital range stretch on/off user button. Current AC90 owners can access these new features via a free firmware upgrade available at http://pro-av.panasonic.net/en/index.html.
Features inherited from the AC90 include a high-quality 3MOS/BSI sensor; a 12X zoom lens with three independent adjustable rings for zoom, focus and iris, and a 29.8mm to 357.6 mm (35mm equivalent) focal length. In addition, Panasonic’s Nano Surface Lens Coating reduces ghosting and flares. Other key features include two SD Memory Card slots; a five-axis image stabilizer that improves stabilization for hand-held shooting; 4X pixel shifting technology for a sharper image; and an intelligent Auto (iA) Zoom 25X super-resolution function for automatic adjustments of edge, gradation and detail.
In addition to the new PM and CS modes, the AC90A records in premium PS mode (28 Mbps, 60p only), in PH mode (average 21 Mbps/Max 24Mbps), in HA mode (approx.17 Mbps), in SA mode (approx. 9 Mbps), and in HE mode (approx. 6 Mbps) for extended recordings.
The AC90A is compatible with Panasonic’s ultra high-speed Class 10 UHS-1 Memory Card series (in addition to providing SDXC and SDHC card support), with transfer rates of 90 MB. The two slots can also be used for simultaneous back-up recording.
The AC90A also includes timecode/user-bits recording, two wired remote control terminals (for zoom, focus, iris, REC start/stop controls), and a built-in 5.1 channel surround microphone. Standard professional interfaces encompass an HDMI output, USB 2.0 (mini B-type), Multi-AV output, and a 3.5 mm stereo headphone out.
The camcorder features two locking XLR inputs with switches for mic/line and two RCA audio outputs. The unit records two channels of audio with Dolby Digital processing.
The camcorder is equipped with an LCOS eyepiece color viewfinder as well as a widescreen 1.15-million pixel 3.5-inch LCD flip-out color monitor. The LCD monitor rotates 270 degrees for easy low-angle, high-angle and self-interview shooting.
The Panasonic AG-AC90A is available at a suggested list price of $2,250.