It’s the 3D video, however, that matters most, and despite the limitations of shooting in this mode, here the SDT750 delivers commendably. The 3D has depth and clarity, although of course, the quality of the 3D is also affected by the system you use to watch it. We were viewing footage on a Panasonic TX-P50VT20B, but the SDT750 can output video over HDMI to any TV supporting the side-by-side 3D format. It’s also theoretically possible to upload 3D footage to YouTube, although the latter doesn’t automatically recognise the side-by-side AVCHD files created by the SDT750. So in practice this won’t be straightforward.
As we predicted, in 3D mode the SDT750 does not perform as well in low light as other high-end Panasonic HD camcorders. The image is darker, although colours are still quite faithful. But in 2D mode, the performance is exactly the same as the HDC-TM700, which makes it one of the best consumer-grade HD camcorders currently on the market.
Whilst watching 3D footage directly on a 3D TV is easy, editing 3D footage will be more problematic. The supplied HD Writer AE 2.6T can interpret the 3D files and decode their side-by-side format so they appear as 2D onscreen. It can also trim the files and splice them together. However, regular video editing apps aren’t 3D aware, and even professional apps like Adobe Premiere Pro CS5 currently require third-party plugins. Annoyingly, HD Writer AE 2.6T doesn’t have the ability to upload footage to YouTube. Instead, your primary methods of watching the footage will be either directly from the camcorder, or by burning it to AVCHD on DVD or Blu-ray, using a 3D TV.
The Panasonic HDC-SDT750 is the first serious 3D camcorder for consumers, and it performs its job commendably. However, the current price is nearly twice that of a similarly specified 2D-only Panasonic HD camcorder, such as the HDC-TM700. So you’re paying a significant premium for the 3D lens and shooting abilities. If you’re a die-hard early adopter with deep pockets, this is a real semi-professional 3D camcorder. But the rest of us will have to wait for the prices to go down.
Score in detail