Panasonic Sets Industry Agenda with Major Product Announcements at IBC
  • Launch of ING news gathering system. At IBC, Panasonic unveiled a complete range of news gathering products based on its solid state memory cards using the DVCPRO compression scheme. Called ING for IT News Gathering, its introduction is set to have a major impact on the news gathering and broadcasting industry which to date has been dominated by tape based systems. "ING is redefining the whole acquisition process and workflow, providing a true IT "front end" to the production process" said Robert Pascher, Manager, European Broadcast Marketing, Panasonic Broadcast Europe. "It is a fundamental technology shift that is also going to deliver significant savings to broadcasters and news organisations in terms of operational efficiency, reduction in consumable media and overall total cost of ownership."

  • Major European broadcasters support P2 development. Panasonic announced development partnerships with seven leading European broadcasters and news organisations at IBC on the development of its DVCPRO P2 Series of solid state acquisition technology and ING news system. The broadcasters include: ZDF and MDR in Germany, TF1 in France, the BBC, ITN and Reuters in the UK and the Sogecable Group (including CNN+, Canal+) in Spain.

  • Matsushita prepares to ship hundreds of camcorders and VTRs for Olympics. Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Osaka, Japan announced at IBC that it is in the middle of discussions with the Athens Olympic Broadcasting S.A.(AOB), the game's host broadcaster on the mix of equipment for the Games. Matsushita is expecting to ship substantial Panasonic DVCPRO50 VTRs and camcorders for the Games. The final equipment order follows AOB's decision to select Panasonic's DVCPRO50 4:2:2 component digital format as the Official Video Recording Format for the ATHENS 2004 Olympic Games.

  • BBC chooses Varicam HD cameras for Planet Earth. The BBC has chosen to use a number of Panasonic Varicam HD cameras (AJ-HDC27FE) for a major new natural history series being co-produced with the Discovery Channel. Not only will this be the most expensive natural history series ever made, but it will break new ground in the use of High Definition cameras for the filming of all footage. For all topside filming (as opposed to underwater) Varicam was the BBC's camera of choice. Varicam offers a choice of picture record speeds from 4fps to 60-fps in single-frame increments to achieve the "overcranked" and "undercranked" speed effects in camera a real must for Natural History shooting "as animals do not only move at 25P" said Producer Alastair Fothergill.

  • Powerful new HD VTR links SD to HD production. Panasonic showed for the first time in Europe at IBC a new DVCPRO HD VTR, the AJ-HD1700. This powerful, cost effective VTR with a new long play capability up to 126 minutes is designed for the expansion of the global HD production market with multi-format capabilities including support of high definition and standard definition markets. The VTR supports both progressive and interlaced standards and has been developed as a bridge between 720p and 1080p production and between high definition and standard definition (SD) production.

  • Box cameras for HD production. Panasonic has further expanded its range of HD cameras with the first showing in Europe at IBC of the ultra-compact AK-HC905 of point-of-view HD camera featuring new generation 1.0 M-pixel interlace scan IT CCDs. As part of its camera demonstration at IBC, Panasonic also showed the camera with a new high speed pan and tilt head.

  • Top of the range standard definition camcorder. Panasonic showed for the first time in Europe its new top-of-the-range standard definition camcorder, the AJ-SDX900. The camcorder supports multiple shooting formats including DVCPRO50, DVCPRO and film-style progressive scan which Panasonic has introduced across all key cameras from DV to HD. The AJ-SDX900 features three newly-developed 2/3" 600.000-pixel 3IT CCDs with progressive-scan capability.

  • Long record capability VTR. Panasonic introduced the AJ-SD956 VTR at IBC. The VTR is targeted at archive, long record applications and as a programme delivery format. With Panasonic's new DVCPRO XL cassette, the VTR can record two hours in DVCPRO50 and four hours in DVCPRO.

  • New DV camcorder expands range. As part of Panasonic's expansion of its DV range of products, the company introduced the AG-DVC80, a new professional DV camcorder into the European market at IBC. This 3-CCD DV camcorder features a precision wide-angle Leica Dicomar lens, auto/manual focus, and manual, servo and zoom functions as well as IEEE-1394 interface.

  • DVD-RAM recorder targets broadcast applications. Panasonic launched a new professional DVD-RAM/R recorder at IBC, the LQ-DRM200. The product has a range of features designed to interface with the professional production environment. Applications include use in edit suites, newsrooms, recording station outputs for regulatory purposes, playout for CATV and small stations, archiving and a wide range of specialised display and training functions.