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Panasonic HDC-TM10 - Panasonic HDC-TM10

By James Morris



Our Score:


Strangely, Panasonic hides its scene modes within the full menu, so you’re less likely to use them than the TM10’s other settings. The nine options include the usual portrait, sports, beach and snow. Manual audio level control is available, too, despite the inability to attach an external microphone. There are also Digital Cinema and Digital Cinema Colour options. The former provides a more cinematic colour gamut along with progressive shooting, whilst the latter enables x.v.Colour, which will only be visible when the video is viewed on a compatible TV. We’re also pleased to see that there are controls for toggling record and zooming located on the LCD – a virtual necessity with tiny camcorders such as the TM10, which can be uncomfortable to use Handycam style.

As the basic optics and sensor features are identical to the SD20 and HS20, the TM10 provides very similar image quality. In good light, colour is faithful but a little dark, particularly in areas of blue. There is plenty of detail, with little sign of noise, although the image is not as sharp as top-end models such as Panasonic’s own HDC-HS300. In low light, the TM10 manages to better the SD20 and HS20, but not by much, and it is marginally behind JVC’s Everio GZ-HD300. Fortunately, an LED video light is built in, which manages to improve the picture at short ranges.


Whilst Panasonic’s HDC-HS20 and SD20 are good, they didn’t quite have the right combination of features, image quality and value when we first reviewed them. The TM10, however, offers virtually the same abilities in a smaller package for considerably less. Low light performance may not be great, but overall image quality is good for the price, only marginally behind JVC’s great-value but slightly more expensive Everio GZ-HD300. If you’re after a pocket HD camcorder with a little bit more than just point-and-shoot, the HDC-TM10’s more readily accessible manual controls, decent picture and keen price make it worth considering.

Overall Score


Scores In Detail

  • Value 10
  • Image Quality 7
  • Features 7


December 14, 2009, 2:33 pm

I am new to camcorders, but I'll never understand why none of you seem to care about a) wide angle, or b) quoting focal lengths in 35mm terms. It strikes me the only way to get wide angle footage is to splash out a lot for an adaptor, or to buy a video enabled compact or DSLR. Your review quotes the lens's focal length, but this alone is meaningless as different sensors are different sizes. Why is it that camcorder folks don't care about the wider end? Having a camcorder with a 50mm wide end makes it impossible to use, as you have to stand so far back all the time. Great for zooming though, but not when shake starts to appear.

James Morris

December 14, 2009, 4:26 pm

There are actually camcorders on the near horizon which take this into account... but I can't tell you more than that right now! ;^>


December 16, 2009, 3:51 pm

Ooh OK, I'll hold me breath until the new year! I wanted to discuss this issue on your forum but it won't work for me. Where has it gone? I just get an error page. Perhaps if it's gone for good the forum link should be removed from your homepage?


December 17, 2009, 12:54 am


I'm thinking about a HD camcorder at the moment. I think this or the SD only version seem great value at their current prices. I'm wondering how they compare to the Sony HDR-CX105E? I see that the pannys have OIS, whereas the sony has DIS. I found in my Canon (FS100)that it was not as good ( I had a Sanyo for all of a week for the same reason). How do they compare for IS and in low light?


December 17, 2009, 1:01 am

Oh can I also ask if the low light footage would be better with more gain?



December 20, 2009, 3:37 am

The best place to ask those questions would be the forums. Have I missed the announcements from TR as to where the forums have gone?

Dave Cleverley

April 2, 2010, 2:16 pm

I'm a total newcomer to digital video having owned a few analogue video cameras in the past of which I was pretty impressed with at the time and served me well. I purchased the HDC-TM10 on a whim a few weeks back (not at the cheaper end of the price range either!) from a Euronics store. Generally the unit performs quite well in 'iA' mode with image stability and auto focus etc working well. My only disappointment relates to poor colour balance where all reds seem to have a 'pinky' hue and blues are weak plus considering the resolution is supposed to be 'Hi-Def' the images are noisy (even in brightly lit situations). Exposure compensation I find to be a little 'hit or miss' and stills are no better than from my mobile phone!

All in all I'm slightly unimpressed. Maybe I should have spent more time looking around for a better price that would have sweetened my views of this less than impressive piece of kit. I'd give it no more than 7/10 overall.

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