Thursday, January 21, 2016

Panasonic unveiling a new camera module for Varicam on February 10th?

Is this.....
...a new version of this?
Panasonic has announced the rollout of a new member of the Varicam family on February 10th at the DGA Theater in Los Angeles.

The tease is "Mobile cinema acquisition is about to change....forever. Join us for the unveiling of the newest addition to the Panasonic Varicam lineup of cinema cameras."

Well, from the outline of the box "concealed" by the tarp in the image, it's pretty clear this is a new camera module - but the question is - what's the sensor size and resolution? And, more importantly, what's the price point?

Hopefully, it's a lower-spec Super 35 camera module at a lower price point than the $29,000 AU-V35C1 Super 35 4K camera head.

Sadly, though, no matter how inexpensive the camera head is, with the current Varicam configuration you still need a $17,000 recording module to make it work.

What Panasonic really needs to do in order to "change mobile digital cinema acquisition...forever" is develop a Super 35 camera with a total price that is competitive with the sub $10,000 FS7/Raven/URSA Mini 4.6K class cameras that currently dominate the low end cinema camcorder market.

Even better would be a Super 35, interchangeable lens camera in the sub $6000 FS5/LS300/URSA Mini 4K class (the fixed lens, micro 4/3 DVX200 doesn't count).

That said, a less expensive front end for Varicam would be a good start - I just hope they don't try putting a micro 4/3 sensor or mount on it.

Looking forward to February 10th to see what Panasonic comes up with.

What do you think it is?  Please post your thoughts in the comments section below.

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