Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Illinois Videographer's Association Expo

May 20, 2009 - Countryside, Illinois
Ok, here is the scene. Wed. am bright and early near Chicago.

The Event? The Illinois Videographer's Association hosted their 2nd Annual Midwest Expo at the Holiday Inn here in Countryside (a Chicago suburb).
Event kicked off at 8am this morning. They had 75 people attend this all day session. I met most of them and they are dedicated video professionals who are trying to make sense of the changing technologies in a challenging economic environment.

The day was set up with presentations from industry professionals with break outs in the exhibit area. The exhibitors included: Grass Valley with their Edius editing software, Classrooms on demand (makers of great training software), Canon, Weva, Blue Media, Event DV and of course yours truly, representing Panasonic.
Here are a couple of shots of the exhibition table. Since I was the only person here, it was impossible to get my image in the pix, but from the first image you can see the layout of the table.

I had a 17" Panasonic Professional Monitor, and a Panasonic Blu-Ray Player. I put an SDHC card in the Blu-Ray player that contained a high def version of the popular HMC150 DVD. I had Ole Betsy (my trusty HMC150 camera) and lots of literature. I was ready!

Here come the crowds. The second pix I took by stepping away from the table for a minute to show some of the activity. People love the HMC150 camera. Everyone wanted to hold it, to shoot with it. I also had my MacBook Pro laptop so that I could show them how easy it is to edit with Final Cut Pro. If you would like to download a white paper on the FCP AVCHD Workflow that I wrote for Panasonic go to and you can discover for yourself how easy it is to edit AVCHD footage in FCP.

One comment I heard a number of times was how is this camera different from the JVC camera that shoots directly to Quick Time (making editing in Final Cut very fast and easy). That is a great question, and I have a very detailed answer that actually needs it's own posting. So, watch this space. Suffice to say the HMC150 slays the competition.
But, I digress. In addition, to the exhibition, all the vendors were invited to present to the crowd. So, I got up and challenged them immediately, with my personal prediction that in 2-3 years none of them would be shooting anything, anymore on tape, or MPEG 2, for that matter. And that in the same time frame they would all be shooting HD. Needless to say that got their attention. As I say, this is my personal observation, not a Panasonic statement. I challenged them further to say, invite me back in 2 years and I will prove I was right. This definitely started intelligent conversations :-)

The actual focus of my presentation was a Panasonic NAB update. So I talked about the new P2 products including the new E series P2 cards and of course, the hot, new HPX300, (list price $10,700) with interchangeable lenses and the AVC-I codec (only previously available on cameras over $30,000.) Way Cool.

I talked about the new P2 Varicam, the Rapid Reader and then I moved to the new products in the AVCCAM line (near and dear to my heart).

Joining the HMC70 and the HMC150, Panasonic announced a new hand held HMC40 that not only shoots 1080i and 1080p and 720p but also captures 10.6 megapixel still images at the same time!

I had the pleasure to be the first person to shoot with the HMC40 days before NAB. I got a hold of a pre-production engineering sample and shot a number of scenes out in the Nevada Desert, Lake Mead and the Vegas strip at night. Great camera.

Next up was the new HMR-10 a hand-held battery operated, AVCHD recorder player. With this little baby you can record the output of any HD/SDI camera onto AVCHD. And it features a 3.5 inch LCD color monitor so you can instantly play back your SD cards in the field. This is a killer product, I can't wait to get my hands on it.

There is also a new POVCAM the AG-HCK10 that can connect to the hand held recorder. Perfect for helmet cams, wildlife, surveillance, etc.
It is always a rush for me when the audience seems to get the message. In this case the message was simple, AVCCAM provides stunning HD images (now on a every growing family of cameras and a recorder) at affordable pricing, on inexpensive and readily available SDHC cards.
I love talking about this stuff. It is great fun to see the audience get it.
More later
The Road Warrior


  1. Thanks for the unique point of views!

    Say, you mention having shot with the HMC-40. A few of us over at DVX User are wondering whether it has vertical "LCD Flip" like the HMC150 for 35mm adapters. Can you shed any light on this for us?


  2. I only shot with the HMC40 for part of one day. And I didn't notice, so I asked the Panasonic engineers and no, the HMC40 does not have an LCD Flip.

  3. Too bad. Thanks for looking into it!

  4. Just ordered mine for 1995.00 Free Shipping

    Can't wait!!