Review Price £233.76
Recording Formats and Manual Controls
The WA10 isn't wanting for manual functions, either. However, these are accessed via a D-pad and a couple of extra buttons found beneath the fold-out LCD. There are plenty of shooting modes available, although no 25 frames per second options are included. The WA10 will output at 25 frames/sec over its AV connections, although virtually all modern HDTVs would be fine with 30p or 60i. You can capture video in Full HD at 30 progressive frames per second or 60 interlaced fields, or 720p at 30 or 60 progressive frames per second. Mac-compatible iFrame (960 x 540) and VGA are also available at 30 frames per second, and there's an audio-only option. But Panasonic hasn't included any time lapse or high speed shooting.
Still images can be captured at up to 16Mpixels. Footage is not captured as AVCHD, but AVC H.264-based MPEG-4. The top data rate is 17Mbits/sec, and SD memory used for recording. So a 16GB card will be enough for a little over two hours of footage. With support for SDXC memory, cards with 48GB and 64GB capacity are also supported.
Manual focusing is a little buried, alongside the macro mode. We doubt you'd want to use manual focus very often anyway, as it's extremely hard to operate with the D-pad. You might not want to bother with macro mode either, as the camcorder seems to do a decent job of detecting very close objects and invoking macro itself when set to Intelligent Auto. You can also call up one of the comprehensive selection of scene modes using the D-pad menu, with the usual options available, ranging from sports to portrait. But it's also possible adjust both aperture and shutter directly, either via priority modes, or you can set both entirely independently. The range of apertures is not great, stretching from F3.5 to just F8, and you can't add video gain on top of a fully open iris, unlike most Panasonic camcorders. The shutter speed also spans slightly unusually from 1/1000th to two seconds, with the latter only really useful when taking photos.