There's more to the new Panasonic PX0270 than was at first apparent from Panasonic's economically worded press release
Panasonic have released a new camera to replace their HPX250 and not only does it allow you to record to the older P2 cards and the new micro P2 cards but it can also record to SDHC cards at up to 50Mbps! The camera also supports Panasonic's new 10bit 4:2:2 long GOP codecs including AVCLongG50 so you can try and cram as much data as possible into that 50Mbps!
Of course if you want something more edit friendly it also supports AVCIntra100 and AVCIntra50 but as you might expect, but the latter is 50Mbps and so suitable for recording to the SDHC cards. It is also a thin raster format (Anamorphic Video at 1440x1080 instead of 1920x1080) so AVCLongG50 seems the way to go for recording on SDHC cards.
I was told that AVCIntra200 will be available for the camera too as an optional extra you can buy at a later date.
The long GOP formats that are supported are: AVCLongG50, AVCLongG25, AVCLongG12 and AVCLongG6. The latter two codecs are 8bit 4:2:0 based. AVCLongG6 has a bitrate of only 6Mbps and is intended for recording proxies for transmission to “the cloud” (uploading to the internet basically), so that a remote editor can get cutting as fast as possible and you can perhaps then do a conform to the higher quality version at a later date. I was told by a Panasonic rep that you can even record the proxies to the ordinary SD card slot (used for scene files and software updates) at the same time as recording to an SDHC card or a Micro P2 card in the micro P2 card slots or at the same time as recording to a P2 card in the older style P2 card slot. The camera supports simultaneous recording too so that you can make a backup copy while shooting and you can record to more than one codec at the same time.
Proxies, internet, etc
Speaking of uploading proxies to the internet, apparently the camera will support a dongle to communicate over 3G, 4G and LTE networks. There will also be a dongle for working with wifi networks.
The camera also supports quite a few legacy codecs too: DVCProHD, DVCPro50 & good old DV. Theres is no firewire port this time though, so you won’t be using it with a FS-100 firestore.
There is a fantastic video from Panasonic about the camera which I feel could only be improved by some spaceships and planets at the beginning. Sadly this is the english dub. The japansese version is loads better but there are no subs so I felt I had to go with the dubbed version here:
I suspect Panasonic are pitching this new camera against the Canon XF305 which is the standard for “self shooting” in TV land at present. Of course if something is already the standard then it can be difficult to get your alternative considered but the Panasonic HPX250 was probably held back a fair bit by the cost of the P2 media as well. The HPX250 was better in low light and a lot cheaper but the Canon XF305 could record to fast compact flash cards instead of proprietary media. Maybe things could be different this time around given that the PX-270 can record to SDHC cards at 50Mbps.
What about 4K?
Aside from applications in broadcast TV, everyone is very focused on the new world of 4K, so I suspect this could slip by unnoticed. It is a bit of a shame as this camera seems to be a very practical offering from Panasonic.
List price for the new camera is $6,495.00 or € 5.840,00 + VAT.
You can read more about the camera in our earlier article here.