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October 15, 2010
Posted in news

Panasonic AG-AF100 will start shipping on December 27th.

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The Panasonic AG-AF100 will start shipping on December 27th. Reminder: BHphoto is the only shop accepting preorders (Click here).

PANASONIC PRESS RELEASE:

SECAUCUS, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Panasonic Solutions Company today announced that the AG-AF100, the industry’s first professional micro 4/3-inch video camcorder optimized for high-definition video recording, will start shipping on December 27th at a suggested list price of $4,995. Highly anticipated since its introduction at NAB earlier this year, the AF100 is poised to set new benchmarks in digital cinematography.

“The design of the AF100’s best-in-class 4/3-inch sensor affords depth of field and field of view similar to that of 35mm movie cameras in a more affordable camera body”

Targeted at the video and film production communities, the AF100 delivers the shallow depth of field and wider field of view of a large imager, with the flexibility and cost advantages of a growing line of professional quality, industry-standard micro 4/3-inch lenses, filters, and adapters. The full HD 1080 and 720 production camera offers superior video handling, native 1080/24p recording, variable frame rates, professional audio capabilities, and compatibility with SDHC and SDXC media.

“The design of the AF100’s best-in-class 4/3-inch sensor affords depth of field and field of view similar to that of 35mm movie cameras in a more affordable camera body,” said Jan Crittenden Livingston, Product Line Business Manager, Panasonic Solutions Company. “What’s more, Panasonic engineering ingenuity has resolved the aliasing and moiré that has haunted the DSLR shooter. Indeed, the proof of concept of the AF100 was based on what we heard from and saw customers doing: purchasing DSLR cameras because they liked the look of the image, but then agonized over all of the workarounds required to come out with an acceptable high definition recording.”

The AF100 incorporates a large 4/3-inch,16:9 MOS imager that minimizes skew with fast imager scanning, and incorporates low pass filters for elimination of aliasing and moiré. Additionally, it has a built-in optical ND filter. The camcorder records 1080 at 60i, 50i, 30P, 25P (Native) and 24P (Native), and 720 at 60p, 50p, 30p, 25p and 24p native,in AVCHD’s highest-quality PH mode (maximum 24Mbps). The AF100 also records in AVCCAM’s HA (17 Mbps) and HE (6Mbps) modes, 1080i only. Ready for global production standards, the camcorder is 60Hz and 50Hz switchable. Equipped with an interchangeable micro 4/3-inch lens mount, the AF100 can utilize an array of low-cost, widely-available still camera lenses as well as film-style lenses with fixed focal lengths and primes.

Variable frame rates are available in 1080p, selectable in 20 steps from 12p to 60p at 60Hz and 20 steps from 12p to 50p at 50Hz. Standard professional interfaces include uncompressed 4:2:2, 8 Bit HD-SDI out; HDMI out; and USB 2.0. It records SMPTE timecode and is able to perform timecode synchronizing via the video output seeing timecode in. It has a built-in stereo microphone and features two mic/line, switchable XLR inputs with +48V Phantom Power capability. The camera can record 48-kHz/16-bit two-channel digital audio recording (in PH mode only) and supports LPCM/Dolby-AC3 in any of the modes.

This newest Panasonic AVCCAM camcorder is the first to enjoy the benefits of advanced SDXC media card compatibility in addition to existing SDHC card support. SDXC is the newest SD memory card specification that supports memory capacities above 32GB and up to 2TB. With two SD slots for continuous recording, the AF100 can record up to 12 hours on two 64GB SDXC cards in PH mode, with automatic clip spanning across the two cards.

Weighing only 3.5 pounds (without lens or battery), the AF100 is packed with high-end features including Dynamic Range Stretch in all modes and frame rates; six built-in, customizable scene files that are exchangeable for quick and easy matching between multiple cameras; seven built-in gamma curves with four selectable color matrices; Syncro-scan shutter; and a high-resolution LCD and viewfinder.

It also offers a focus assist that can be used while recording, which is color-on peaking and a focus bar; two sets of adjustable zebras; two manual black and white balance choices, and preset White Balance at 3200K, 5600K or variable; a waveform monitor and vectorscope for more accurate monitoring of broadcast safe levels. Other essential features include pre-record; an intervalometer function that can be set for up to 24 hours, programmable User Buttons; a Smart Battery interface for recording up to four hours with a 5400mA battery; metadata recording; and a wireless infrared remote controller.

Panasonic will support the AF100 with a three-year limited warranty (one year plus two extra years upon registration).

Preorder the Panasonic AG-AF100 at BHphoto (Click here).

Via Businesswire

October 14, 2010
Posted in deals

New list of US deals (GF1, GH1, G2, E-P2, and many lenses)

I guess that with the release of the Sony NEX and Samsung NX100 cameras Olympus and Panasonic cannot afford to keep the prices high. I made a check of the current deals at Amazon, Adorama and BHphoto. And I found many price drops on cameras and lenses. Most of the stuff has the lowest price ever!

CAMERA DEALS (As usual click on store names to see visit the relative product page):
1) The Panasonic GF1+ 14-45mm lens is in Stock for $649 at Amazon.
2) The Panasonic GH1 with 14-140mm lens is in Stock for $999 at Amazon, Adorama and BHphoto. A real deal!
3) Olympus E-P2 with 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 Zuiko Digital Zoom Lens and Electronic View Finder for $779.00 at Amazon.
4) The new Panasonic AG-AF100 Micro Four Thirds camccorder is available for preorder at BHphoto.
5) Panasonic G2 for $633 at Amazon.
6) Not a Micro Four Thirds camera but the Panasonic LX5 is in Stock for $442 at Amazon and BHphoto.

LENS DEALS:
1) Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 for $328 at Adorama and BHphoto.
2) Panasonic 7-14mm for $999 at Adorama and BHphoto.
3) The new Panasonic 8mm fisheye is in Stock for $784 at Amazon
4) The Olympus 9-18mm lens is in Stock for $555 at Amazon and BHphoto.
5) Out of Stock but available for preorder: The Panasonic 45mm lens for $819 at Adorama and BHphoto.

October 14, 2010
Posted in reviews

First Panasonic GH2 preview at Quesabesde

Quesabesde tested the new Panasonic GH2 (Click here to read the google english translation). You can download many images taken with the new Panasonic lenses (The 12.5mm 3d lens, the 14mm and the 100-300mm lens).

The most interesting news are:
– The GH2 will be available in December (In Europe)
– The camera has the firmware version 0.2
– Panasonic ensured that the redesign of the circuitry of the sensor and image processor has improved sensor performance over the previous model in regard to noise control.
– The contrast autofocus speed is over four times faster than the contrast AF of the Canon 5D and seven time faster than the Sony NEX-5!

There are three more new GH2 videos on vimeo:
http://vimeo.com/15826890
http://www.vimeo.com/15734423
http://www.vimeo.com/15735420

Preorder the GH2 at:
Amazon US, BHphoto, Amazon UK, Amazon France

Preorder the new 12.5mm 3D lens at:
Amazon US, BHphoto, Amazon Deutschland, Amazon France

Preorder the 14mm f/2.5 lens at:
Amazon US, BHphoto, Amazon Deutschland

Preorder the 100-300mm O.I.S. lens at:
Amazon US, Amazon Deutschland

October 14, 2010
Posted in deals, news

First Voigtländer 25mm f/0.95 to be shipped in less than two weeks!

The german store Bayern-Fotoversand is selling three new Voigtländer 25mm f/0.95 for Micro Four Thirds on eBay (Click here). They told me the lens will be available in “in den nächsten 10-14 Tagen” which means 10-14 days! They only ship to Europe. I didn’t find any bigger online store having the lens available for preorder and usually Germany is one fo the first place where one might get Voigtländer stuff. If you perform a worldwide search for the lens on eBay you will only find germans resellers.

UPDATE: One of our readers just told us that Robert White (UK) is accepting preorders!

The Flickr user “Itemsis” just sent us an email to his latest images samples taken at Photokina using the new Voigtländer 25mm f/0.95 on a Panasonic G1. You can see two more pictures here at Flickr.

We already posted some images few weeks ago (http://www.43rumors.com/voigtlander-nokton-25mm-f0-95-preorders-on-ebay-and-in-australia/)

If you want the new Voigtländer instead of the Noktor you can preorder the lens on:
Bayern-Fotoversand (Click here)
Fotomundus
Robert White (UK)
Mainlinephoto Australia
Cameraquest (one of my favorite shops!)
The classic camera

Let me know if other stores do accept preorders! Thanks!

October 13, 2010
Posted in reviews

First Panasonic AG-AF100 footage!

Panasonic AG AF-100 01/02 evaluation footage by CREWS.TV from Yves Simard on Vimeo.

Finally we have a first AG-AF100 sample footage! The video has been posted by CREWS.TV on vimeo and that’s what they have written:

This is an independent evaluation by members of CREWS.TV of the Panasonic AG AF 101/102 micro 4/3 camera.

This test was done purely as an experiment to evaluate its performance as a Film making /Television production tool. We did not test it against charts or other cameras, we simply took it for a test drive in what we thought would be its optimal conditions. Our goal was not to find its faults or decide its place in the market nor was it to choose sides in the ever political best camera debates. We are cinematographers who love their craft and love the tools that give us this ability.

We only had the camera for a few hours so we decided to keep it simple.

The camera is capable of 35mm lenses, so we used a PL adapter and Zeiss Ultra Primes , choosing from our set as we saw fit on the day. We chose to record on the on-board SD cards with the AVCHD codec at 24 mbs but we also opted to use the HDSDI output, recording at 100 mbs on the AVC Intra HD codec to P2 cards. We opted to do this rather than recording to Nanoflash simply to keep it all Panasonic native.

We chose this work-flow as we simply wanted to see this camera in the very best light possible.

We also had a sound recordist on location who used a dual channel radio link to the camera via its standard XLR inputs.

This is a prototype, so there were some technical issues, Panasonic assured us that it would be rectified in the production model. Our test scenes had to be limited to indoor locations as a consequence. It was a temperature related issue.

This footage is edited from the 100mbs files, ingested and edited natively mainly because it was easy. This footage was not graded, altered or manipulated, straight off the files and exported to Vimeo for your viewing pleasure. In fact we even used the natural sound rather than using music so that you can evaluated the footage for yourself.

A full report on our website crews.tv

Click here to read it AF-100 storm gathers. crews.tv/​blog/​2010/​10/​12/​af100-storm-gathers/

Reminder: BHphoto has an exclusive preorder offer on the AG-AF100 (Click here)!

Via Vimeo

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