Panasonic Upgrades VariCam Cameras With New Features

Panasonic has a free firmware upgrade for the VariCam 35 and LT cinema cameras and VariCam HS high-speed 1080P camera that includes additional ProRes codecs and HD-SDI Monitor output improvements.

“After receiving requests from users on high-end episodic productions, we’re offering broader codec support, which will benefit productions during the upcoming pilot season,” says Steve Cooperman, Senior Product Manager, Broadcast, Cinema and Professional Video Systems, Panasonic. “With an expansion of codecs such as ProRes and AVC LongG, production companies and broadcasters will now be able to simplify their preferred workflows.”varicam-lt-0217

In Ver. 7.0 and Ver. 5.0 firmware upgrades, ProRes 4444 XQ, ProRes 422 and ProRes 422 LT have been added for both 2K and HD for VariCam 35 and LT, and in HD for VariCam HS. The bit depth of Pro Res 4444 has been increased to 12-bit, with 10-bit file playback only in camera. For the VariCam LT, AVC-LongG G50/G25 recording is now supported for the majority of frame rates.

For HD-SDI monitor outputs, users can shorten the delay of the outputs to two frames, greatly enhancing onset monitoring applications. For cinema shooters, there’s new support of 23.98PsF output, which provides native frame rate support without introducing 2:3 pulldown artifacts. There’s also new support for “Letter Box” output in 4K/2K in which the image in MON OUT will be automatically set in “Letter Box” mode.

For the iPad, there’s a new remote control app – VariCam ROP – that has a user display similar to VariCam’s menu display. On the app, you can select whether you want Master control in the app or camera, a lock switch to prevent accidental operation, and dial up/down operation by screen swipe on an iOS device.

Additional features the firmware upgrades include:

  • Focus status can be selected “Meter” notation, even in V-Log recording (VariCam 35/LT/HS)
  • Ability to assign “VFR (ON/OFF)” to USER SW (VariCam 35/LT/HS)
  • MON OUT can be selected “ANAMORPHIC DESQUEEZE” in 2K/HD mode (VariCam 35/LT/HS)
  • For VariCam 35 and HS, “Image Invert” and “Surround View” can be selected independently
  • For VariCam 35 and HS, viewfinder display can be selected “EE (Camera through)” even in Playback
  • For the VariCam LT, “Audio Level Meter” can be selected to display on SDI OUT

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