- bulletproof autofocus,
- 1080 24p and 60p,
- manual audio gain,
- mic and headphone jacks,
- 180 degree (forward facing) flip-out LCD,
- power zoom and
- high quality stills.
My wife's Panasonic FZ150 does almost everything I wanted a camcorder to do, and I really like the quality of its images, but it didn't have a headphone jack, manual audio gain or 24p - so I started looking for a standard small sensor camcorder that did.
I wasn't locked in to Panasonic, but, once again, a Panasonic camera was close to being the best in its category, met all of my requirements - and cost a lot less than the VG20.
Here are a couple of pictures of my new (refurbished) TM900 with the Azden SMX10 Stereo Mic (used with the GH2 before I went wireless), 46mm-58mm step-up ring, UV filter from an inexpensive 58mm 3-filter set, and Mennon DV-s 58mm lens hood that I already had. 12.1MP JPEGs taken with the FZ150:
And here is a 14.2 MP JPEG of the FZ150 taken with the TM900:
First impressions? The camera produces great stills and video - like most other Panasonic hybrid cameras. One challenge that I consider major (others may not) -- the still flash is inside the lens ring and creates blinding glare when there is a filter on the lens. I had to remove my UV filter to take the picture above. Horrible design decision. And a minor challenge -- the TM900 is my only Panasonic hybrid without the ability to shoot RAW. But these are minor nits, given the overall performance of the camera.
I will compare video from the TM900 with the FZ150 in a future post.
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