'Living in High Definition' placed great importance on high definition camcorders and Panasonic had plenty of new ones to show the gathered throngs.

Starting with the HD capable, Panasonic announced two new Full HD 3CCD camcorders: the HD-SD9 and the HDC-HS9 (above). Both record to the AVCHD format, with SD9 utilising SD and SDHC memory cards, while the HS9 is a hybrid model capable of recording to both SD/SDHC and its own integrated 60GB HDD. They can record to 1080p at 24fps and feature face detection, optical image stabilisation, five microphones and a 0.6 second start-up time.

Propping up the standard definition range are four new camcorders. Most interesting was the SDR-H60 (above), which features a generous 50x optical zoom along with optical image stabilisation and a 60GB HDD. Slotting in alongside is the SDR-H40, which sports a 42x optical zoom and a 40GB HDD. Both also have SDHC support. Also new is a DVD based camcorder, the VDR-D50 and a miniDV based PV-GS90, with both boasting the same 42x optical zoom as found in the SDR-H40.

Finally there were two further new camcorders aimed at those who require a more compact video camera. One, the SDR-W20 (below), is ruggedized, being waterproof in salt water down to five feet, shock proof from drops of up to four feet and dust proof. Meanwhile, the SDR-S7 is a stylish lightweight example. Both feature 10x optical zoom and 2.7in LCD screens, stereo microphones and record to SD and SDHC memory cards.

A point that leads us nicely onto a smaller but no less significant announcement of the aforementioned 32GB SDHC memory card. Indeed, though it's only a memory card it's actually quite an exciting development, making recording HD content to an SD card all the more plausible. Unfortunately it was only a prototype and there's no info on when we might actually be able to buy one of these capacious little cards.


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