Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 08:00 PM
"Panasonic today introduced the Panasonic HM-TA1, a new Full High Definition (HD), 1920 x 1080 pixels-capable mobile video camera with pocket-sized dimensions for ultimate portability and ideal for on-the-go shooting opportunities. With an easy-to-use design intended for intuitive operation, the TA1 features an integrated USB terminal and software that allows for easy PC connection and uploading videos to online sharing sites such as YouTubeTM and Facebook®. The TA1 also supports the Apple© iFrame video format (960 x 540/30p), which is optimal for Mac® users to import quickly and maintain small file sizes. When using iMovie®, the iFrame video data in the video camera is the same format as the one that is used to edit."
I have a bit of a funny relationship with small, pocket cameras - I received a Flip Mino HD a couple of years ago at a Mobius event, and I used it exactly once. I simply didn't see the purpose - I could get better quality video from a point-and-shoot video camera, as well as take pictures, so what was the point? Then my wife and I had a kid. Things completely changed - now the Flip Mino gets almost daily use in our house. It's all about the right tools for the right job, and the Panasonic HM-TA1 looks like it would be a very worthy replacement for my Flip Mino HD. It offers 1080p (and the sissy-format iFrame from Apple) recording, can work as a Webcam, electronic image stabilization, and use SD memory cards. The one thing I don't see mentioned is the focal range of the lens; I find that the Flip Mino HD is difficult to use close up - I quite often have to take a step back when I want to use it, which I dislike. I also like that the Panasonic HM-TA1 (awful name!) has physical buttons - I think Flip made a huge mistake with their move to touch sensitive buttons on their new model.
Full press release and more images after the break.