Want a cam­corder? Take a look at the Pana­sonic W850 twin HD cam­corder

Pana­sonic HC-W850

HWM (Malaysia) - - CONTENTS -

Some­times, a mo­ment is best cap­tured with mo­tion. For this, we need a cam­corder and this month, we take a look at Pana­sonic’s flag­ship cam­corder, the HC-W850. Fit­ted with some of Pana­sonic’s most ad­vanced tech­nol­ogy, this cam­corder prom­ises noth­ing but the best video qual­ity. Does it deliver on this prom­ise? We find out.

One of the first things you’ll no­tice about the W850 is that it has a sec­ondary cam­era. This sec­ondary cam­era can swivel 180 de­grees and can be used to record a unique pic­ture-in-pic­ture video. The sec­ondary win­dow will be able to record ei­ther the per­son be­hind the cam­era or to his/her left.

Apart from hav­ing a twin cam­era sys­tem, the W850 also has a 4-drive lens sys­tem, which is usu­ally found in high-end lens sys­tems. A 4-drive lens sys­tem es­sen­tially al­lows you to zoom fur­ther, with­out sac­ri­fic­ing im­age qual­ity. This is the first con­sumer-level cam­corder to fea­ture this lens ar­ray, so it’s rather ex­cit­ing to see this fea­ture in ac­tion.

Other no­table fea­tures on the W850 in­clude an im­proved Wind Shield Zoom Mi­cro­phone and both Wi-Fi and NFC con­nec­tiv­ity. Sim­i­lar to pre­vi­ous flag­ship cam­corders from Pana­sonic, the Wind Shield Zoom Mi­cro­phone records in 5.1-chan­nel, so you’re re­ally get­ting good direc­tional sound when recorded con­tent is played back on a home the­ater sys­tem.

In terms of the Wi-Fi and NFC con­nec­tiv­ity, the W850 func­tions like most de­vices equipped with the same tech­nol­ogy. When con­nected to a mo­bile de­vice, you’re able to re­motely start record­ing or tak­ing snap­shots. But that’s not all; the W850 can also be used as a baby/ home mon­i­tor. Sim­ply con­nect this cam­corder to your NAS, and you’d be able to re­motely ac­cess the cam­corder when you’re away from home. This func­tion­al­ity is en­hanced with the op­tional VW-CTR1 re­mote pan/tilt cra­dle, which is a cra­dle that al­lows you to re­motely pan and tilt the cam­era.

Per­for­mance-wise, there’s lit­tle to crit­i­cize about this cam­corder. It sim­ply is a marvel to use, giv­ing you great Full HD record­ings in In­tel­li­gent Auto mode. When the need to man­ual fo­cus does arise (es­pe­cially in low-light ar­eas), the in­te­grated multi-func­tion knob gives you quick con­trol over the fo­cus­ing, mak­ing it in­cred­i­bly easy to fo­cus at night. The additional night modes (in­frared and color), fur­ther boosts this cam­era’s ca­pa­bil­i­ties in cap­tur­ing videos at night.

When it comes to im­age qual­ity, this cam­corder is sharp. We used it to record stills and videos and in both in­stances, im­age qual­ity was crisp and sharp, with plenty of de­tails. Speak­ing of crisp and sharp videos, this cam­corder comes with a 5-axis op­ti­cal im­age sta­bi­liza­tion sys­tem, which is much like the one fea­tured in Olym­pus’ OM-D E-M5. Need­less to say, un­wanted cam­era move­ment is greatly min­i­mized with this OIS sys­tem.

Over­all, we re­ally like this cam­corder and have no qualms about rec­om­mend­ing it to oth­ers. Equipped with some of the most ad­vanced video record­ing tech­nol­ogy in the mar­ket to­day, the W850 is a top-notch cam­corder. Additional cre­ative ef­fects like Time Lapse record­ing and 8mm Movie fur­ther add to its charm.

This cam­corder takes great still im­ages as well!

The op­tional VW-CTR1 re­mote pan/tilt cra­dle al­lows you to use the W850 as a home/baby mon­i­tor

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