World's First 3D Camcorder Will Cost $21,000 This Fall

Earlier this year, Panasonic shared a dual-lensed 3D camcorder concept with the world. Today, they showed off a new iteration, which will be available...sometime, they promised. UPDATE

World's First 3D Camcorder Will Cost $21,000 This Fall

More info reveals that the system is "full HD" (1920x1080) and uses simple SDHC/SD cards for recording...a medium that seems like such underkill for the price, but then again, SD cards are basically the most plentiful, cost-effective storage in existence.

But in terms of nitty gritty details like codecs? We'll have to wait.

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Panasonic Unveils World's First Integrated Full HD 3D Camcorder at CES 2010

Available In Fall 2010 - Solid-State Recording System Will Offer Highly-Efficient Full HD 3D Video Production

LAS VEGAS, Nev., Jan. 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Panasonic Corporation (NYSE: PC) will release the world's first* professional, fully-integrated Full HD 3D camcorder in Fall 2010. The company will begin taking orders in April. Engineering samples of the professional Full HD 3D solid-state camcorder will be exhibited at the Panasonic booth (Las Vegas Convention Center, Main Hall, #9405) at the 2010 International CES in Las Vegas, USA, from January 7-10.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20100106/NY33307)

This Full HD 3D camcorder will offer the following core benefits:

Easier to Use

Current 3D systems are large-scale setups in which two cameras are fitted to a rig in parallel, or vertically intersect across a half-mirror. Separate recorders are also required. In Panasonic's new Full HD 3D camcorder, the lenses, camera head, and a dual Memory Card recorder are integrated into a single, lightweight body. The camcorder also incorporates stereoscopic adjustment controls making it easier to use and operate.

The twin-lens system adopted in the camcorder's optical section allows the convergence point** to be adjusted. Functions for automatically correcting horizontal and vertical displacement are also provided. Conventional 3D camera systems require these adjustments to be made by means of a PC or an external video processor. This new camcorder, however, will automatically recalibrate without any need for external equipment, allowing immediate 3D image capture.

More Flexible

The solid-state memory file-based recording system offers greater flexibility to produce Full HD 3D videos in more challenging shooting environments. The camcorder is lighter weight and smaller than current 3D rigs, while providing the flexibility of handheld-style shooting. Setup and transportation is simplified, making it ideal for sports, documentary and filmmaking projects.

Solid-State Reliability and Workflow

Right and left Full HD video streams of the twin-lens 3D camcorder can be recorded as files on SDHC/SD Memory Cards, ensuring higher reliability than on other tape, optical disc, HDD or other mechanical-based recording systems. This solid-state, no-moving-parts design will help significantly reduce maintenance costs, and the 3D camcorder will be better able to perform in extreme environments and be more resistant to temperature extremes, shock, and vibration.

And users will enjoy a fast, highly-productive file-based workflow, with instant, random access to recorded content; easy plug-in to both Mac and PC-based platforms; and longer recording capacity.

More Affordable

Using a standardized, fully integrated design, the Full HD 3D camcorder will be offered at a much lower price than traditional 3D rigs. Transportation expenses for this handheld unit will be less and faster setup times reduce labor costs. Using standard, re-recordable SDHC/SD Memory Cards available already everywhere, media costs become almost insignificant.

In addition to a camcorder, Panasonic also plans to offer a professional-quality 3D Full HD LCD monitor for field use as well as a professional HD digital AV mixer for live event production. Panasonic will offer professional production equipment to allow video professionals to efficiently create 3D content, so consumers can enjoy 3D video using Panasonic 3D home theater systems.

Major Specifications (tentative)

* Product Name: Twin-lens Full HD 3D camcorder (made-to-order)
* Suggested Retail Price for Main Unit: $21,000
* Available: Fall 2010 (made to order)
* Power Consumption: Under 19 W (main unit only)
* Weight: Under 3 kg (main unit only)
* Recording Media: SDHC/SD Memory Card

* As an integrated twin-lens Full HD 3D camcorder capable of recording Full HD 3D video to Memory Cards. As of January 2010 (based on our investigation)

** The point at which the left and right-camera lenses' optical axes converge