21 Raycom Stations to be Newsgathering with P2 in 2006
LAS VEGAS, NV (April 23, 2006) -- Panasonic announced here at NAB that Raycom Media, Inc. has purchased DVCPRO P2 series camcorders and drives valued at more than $2.2 million to launch phase two of the total conversion of its stations’ news operations to solid-state memory. Raycom’s second purchase of DVCPRO P2 includes 85 hand-held AG-HVX200 camcorders, 40 shoulder-mount DVCPRO P2 camcorders, 125 AJ-PCS060G P2 Store drives and 8GB P2 cards. When installed this year, news operations at 21 Raycom stations will utilize DVCPRO P2.

Raycom Media, Inc. (Montgomery, AL) is one of the nation’s largest broadcasters and currently owns or operates 49 television stations in 22 states. Raycom stations cover more than 12 % of U.S. television households.

Raycom announced its decision to convert to P2 last May and two of its stations converted last year. In addition, with its recently completed purchase of Liberty Corporation, a station group converting to P2, Raycom inherited seven stations that implemented P2 in 2005.

In Raycom’s phase two conversion, the 12 stations that will begin producing news in P2 include: WTOL-TV, Toledo, OH; WAVE-TV, Louisville, KY; KFVS-TV, Cape Girardeau, MO; KOLD-TV, Tucson, AZ; WAFB-TV, Baton Rouge, LA; WDAM-TV, Hattiesburg, MS; WECT-TV, Wilmington, NC; WFLX-TV, West Palm Beach, FL; WMC-TV, Memphis, TN; WTOC-TV, Savannah, GA; WOIO-TV, Cleveland, OH; and KCBD-TV, Lubbock, TX

Raycom’s Vice-President of Technology, Dave Folsom said, “We’ve experienced very favorable results in our initial conversion to P2 and our stations have enjoyed P2’s exceptional reliability and improved image quality. The P2 cameras provide ultra flexibility to our crews with the ability to shoot in 16:9 or 4:3 and in DVCPRO50 or DVCPRO. With the new HVX200 hand-held unit, we now have the option of capturing local content in high definition.”

John Baisley, President, Panasonic Broadcast, said, “We are very pleased that Raycom has the confidence in DVCPRO P2 to accelerate its roll-out to an additional 12 stations. Panasonic is the only manufacturer that can offer a hand-held and shoulder-mount HD/SD acquisition solution that records in the same formats and on the same card, but at different price points. Our flexible P2 HD/SD solution allows stations to not only equip their main location with this advanced technology, but smaller bureaus as well. HD news will proliferate when stations have more cameras on the street, and the Panasonic P2 system can make it happen.”

The shoulder-mount AJ-SPC700 2/3” 3-CCD camera is tailor-made for the gamut of electronic newsgathering assignments with its ability to shoot in 16:9 or 4:3 and in 25Mbps DVCPRO/DV and 50Mbps 4:2:2 DVCPRO50 format on a P2 card. The ultra-versatile, 5-pound HVX200 records in 1080/60i, 30p and 24p; in 720/60p, 30p and 24p; in 50Mbps DVCPRO50 and in 25Mbps DVCPRO or DV. The HVX200 can capture fast or slow action in 720p at various frame rates--the first time this function is available in a hand-held camera. The ruggedized, portable AJ-PCS060 P2 Store 60GB hard disk unit can hold the contents of up to 15 4GB P2 cards, and the entire contents of a 4GB P2 card can be transferred to the internal hard disk drive in about four minutes

About Panasonic Broadcast

Panasonic Broadcast & Television Systems Co. is a leading supplier of broadcast, professional video and presentation products and systems. Panasonic Broadcast is a unit company of Panasonic Corporation of North America. The company is the North American headquarters of Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. (NYSE: MC) of Japan, and the hub of its U.S. marketing, sales, service and R&D operations For more information on Panasonic Broadcast products, access the company’s web site at www.panasonic.com/broadcast.