IBC: Panasonic Goes Heavy on 4K, HDR

4K is priority No. 1 for both new hardware and new firmware upgrades from the consumer electronics giant
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Complete Coverage: IBC 2016

Panasonic made 4K, high dynamic range (HDR) and virtual reality the centerpieces of its IBC announcements, debuting a new 4K production camcorder, upgrades to its high-end VariCam system, and showing off a prototype 4K, 360-degree real-time camera for VR.

Two new 4K cameras led the way: a premium AG-UX180 model equipped with Ultra High Def (UHD) 60 frames per second recording, optical 20x zoom, and 24mm wide angle. The lower-end AG-UX90 features optical 15x zoom, UHD 30 fps and a wide angle of 24.5mm. The two will be available in November (AG-UX90) and December (AG-UX180), though pricing has not been announced.

Panasonic also announced a firmware update for its professional VariCam LT camera, which promises RAW signal output ability at 4K or UHD 60p.

“VariCam has established a position as the 4K production camera of choice for those seeking the best image quality,” said Andre Meterian, director Panasonic’s professional video systems business, in a statement. "This firmware version for uncompressed RAW recording expands its horizons.”

Panasonic’s prototype 4K 360-degree, virtual reality real-time camera system features four synchronized cameras, creating a 4K “equi-rectangular” image, the company said, and can be used for concerts and sporting events.

Lastly, the company announced the launch of its 4K AK-UB300 camera, box system equipped with a B4 mount, and geared toward sporting events, remote reporting, aerial shots and concerts. It will be available in November.

“In addition to some really exciting product developments, Panasonic is making a commitment to lead the movement towards HDR within the video industry by supplying HDR-ready technology that supports this shift,” Meterian said. “Both the Varicam 35 and Varicam LT for example have 14-plus stops of latitude, which exceeds the dynamic range specifications required for HDR content delivery.”

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