VariCam Creativity and P2 HD Workflow

• High-end HD camera-recorder for cinema production
• High resolution 2.2-megapixel CCD
• Chromatic Aberration Compensation (CAC)
• Dynamic Range Stretch (DRS)
• Seven gamma modes including VariCam Film-Rec




The Panasonic VariCam is well known in the movie industry as a video camera that captures images with an appealing, warm, film-like tone and texture. Now the superior image quality and creativity that characterise this groundbreaking camera have been passed on to two advanced new P2 HD camera-recorders.

The AJ-HPX3700G outputs RGB 4:4:4 images with full-pixel resolution and P-10Log gamma. Adding P2's advanced file-based and tapeless recording to VariCam's world-recognised image quality and expressiveness, these powerful new camera-recorders facilitate the workflow while cutting costs.

For the AJ-HPX3700G, Panasonic developed a high-density 2.2-megapixel 2/3-inch CCD that provides high-resolution full-pixel (1920 x 1080) HD images. The AJ-HPX3700G provides a choice of progressive/interlace HD video formats, supporting native 1080 23.98p/24p/25p/29.97p, as well as 1080 50i and 1080 59.94i. The camera offers a high F10 sensitivity at 2000 lux when operating in 1080i.

This exclusive technology works between lens and camera, allowing for a highly sophisticated algorithm to be deployed that automatically compensates the registration error that is caused mainly by lens chromatic aberration, and minimises the neighbouring blur. By using a CAC-compatible zoom lens, the P2 VariCam Series can obtain images similar to those captured with a prime lens.

In scenes with mixed contrast, such as when panning from indoors to outdoors, the DRS function automatically suppresses blocked shadows and blown highlights. A gamma curve and knee slope is estimated to match the contrast of each pixel, and applied in real time. When dark, bright, and intermediate shades are all contained in the same scene, this produces excellent gradation for each shade and minimises blocked shadows and blown highlights. The images that result are enhanced by a visually wide dynamic range.

The DSP circuit in the P2 VariCam Series has seven selectable gamma modes. These include Film-Rec and Video-Rec gamma for movie production, which are the same modes incorporated in the VariCam. When using HD SDI dual-link output with the AJ-HPX3700G, images recorded in Film-Rec gamma mode can be converted to P-10Log gamma, or "live" P-10 Log content can be recorded to external devices for high-end digital cinema production.

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