* Teams with Apple’s New Final Cut Pro HD to Popularize HD Editing *
* First VTR to Offer HD I/O via IEEE 1394 *
LAS VEGAS, NV (April 18, 2004) – Here at NAB 2004, Panasonic has introduced the AJ-HD1200A DVCPRO HD AC/DC-powered, multi-purpose VTR, the first recorder* to offer an IEEE 1394 interface operating at 100Mbps data rate with DV High Definition video streams. The AJ-HD1200A is a key component in the company’s collaboration with Apple to bring real-time professional quality, native HD editing to Power Mac and PowerBook customers, at a fraction of the cost of other systems.
This compact, versatile VTR plays all standard definition DVCPRO formats (NTSC and PAL), as well as DVCPRO HD, and can downconvert HD recorded cassettes for HD/SD simulcast or standard definition monitoring. With the AJ-HD1200A, 720p material shot with a Panasonic’s AJ-HDC27 VariCam® HD Cinema camera and DVCPRO HD 1080i material can be transferred via the VTR’s IEEE 1394 interface directly to the hard disk drive of an Apple Power Mac G5 or PowerBook G4 equipped with Final Cut Pro HD. Editing of VariCam footage is at the camera original quality, because the IEEE 1394 interface transfers the native digital HD files originally recorded by VariCam without any additional video compression steps.
“Just as Panasonic’s AG-DVX100 24p mini-DV camcorder has democratized independent filmmaking by lowering the cost of entry, teaming the AJ-HD1200A with a Power Mac G5 or PowerBook G4 and Final Cut Pro HD will deliver unmatched capabilities and price points to High Definition. This technical collaboration will be a catalyst to rapidly expanding HD usage in field production, post-production and even in distribution,” said Stuart English, Vice President, Marketing, Panasonic Broadcast.
The AJ-HD1200A can record up to 92 minutes of HD footage on a single, compact _” cassette. The VTR can play the entire family of DVCPRO tapes—DVCPRO HD and HD-LP, DVCPRO P, DVCPRO50 and standard DVCPRO, as well as DV and DVCAM tapes. Its universal design also allows playback of both NTSC (480i) and PAL (576i) sources.
In addition to 1080/60i and 1080/50i, the AJ-HD1200A supports variable frame rates over 720/60p recordings acquired with VariCam. When playing back content shot at 24fps on the VariCam, the VTR can convert the output to 1080/24p in real time with a simultaneous downconvert to 525 NTSC. When material is shot at 25fps on the VariCam, the AJ-HD1200A can convert that content to 1080/50i or a simultaneous downconvert to 625 PAL.
With its built-in HD/SD converter, the AJ-HD1200A can downconvert video from a pre-recorded HD tape to SD (480i or 576i), and then output it as SD composite video, or SDI (with an optional AJ-YA120AG board). This downconversion makes for easy viewing of HD images on an NTSC monitor. HD and SD signals can also be output for simultaneous transmission. The AJ-HD1200A can also change the image’s aspect ratio, with a selection of widescreen, squeeze or side cut conversion modes.
Its optional AJ-YA120AG HD-SDI in/out and SD-SDI out board enables the VTR to provide HD recording (1080/60i, 1080/50i or 720/60p) from an HD-SDI input. It can provide an HD-SDI and SD-SDI output (downconverted or SD playback). The unit also incorporates an HD format converter that allows conversion on playback between 1080i and 720p output in either direction.
Only _ rack-width wide and 18 pounds, the AJ-HD1200A is the smallest broadcast grade HD recorder and a space-saver on the desktop or in production vehicles. A convenient handle makes for easy carrying. Operation is either AC or DC (12V).
Other key features include: eight channels of 16 bit/48-Khz digital audio allowing multilingual, or stereo plus discrete 5.1 channel surround sound recordings; four-channel analog audio in/out (channels 3 and 4 can be switched for L/R monitor output use); built-in SMPTE time code generator/reader and time code in/out; auto rewind, auto repeat and memory stop functions; auto back function for seamless recording; rec inhibit switch; tape/EE output selection; and headphone output with volume control. An optional AJ-A95 remote control that permits shuttle search up to 50 times is also available.
The AJ-HD1200A will be available in May at a suggested list price of $21,000. The AJ-YA120AG HD-SDI in/SDI out board is available in May at a suggested list price of $6,000. The AJ-YAD120AG IEEE 1394 interface is available in May at a suggested list of $4,000, and the AJ-A95 remote controller is available at a suggested list price of $1,035.

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 Matsushita Electric Corporation of America, the principal North America subsidiary of Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. (NYSE: MC), one of the world's leading producers of electronic and electric products for consumer, business and industrial use. For more information on Panasonic Broadcast products, access the company’s web site at

* Functions as a recorder when an optional input board is installed.