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Blu-Ray camcorders from Hitachi

Dennis Hissink
PMA 2010 Report
Monday 6th, August 2007
Posted by: Dennis Hissink

With the introduction of not just one, but two versions of the world’s first Blu-ray disc camcorder, Hitachi continues its long-standing tradition of being first to market with landscape-changing consumer electronics products. The new Hitachi DZ-BD70A Blu-Ray camcorder is a single drive camcorder that can record approximately one hour of FullHD 1920x1080 high definition video on an 8cm single-sided Blu-ray disc (BD-R and BD-RE). Lifelike image reproduction and rich, immersive color are a result of Hitachi’s 5.3 mega pixel CMOS image sensor and HD quality 12-element lens system. Both Blu-Ray camcorders come with an Interactive Guide built-in so that people who have never used a camcorder can quickly begin.

Blu-Ray camcorders

Hitachi DZ-BD70A Blu-Ray camcorder
Not only can the Hitachi DZ-BD70A Blu-Ray camcorder record high definition video to Blu-ray discs, it also comes with an SD card slot for storing digital still photos at 4.32 mega pixel max resolution. A unique Hitachi feature called Photo Capture allows users to search though recordings on a Blu-ray disc, grab any still frame of video and save it as a photo to the SD card slot in 2.1 mega pixel resolution. For even more recording flexibility, the DZ-BD70A Blu-Ray camcorder also allows video to be recorded in standard definition quality to DVD discs (DVD-R/-RW/-RAM).

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Hitachi Blu-Ray camcorder
Adding to the excitement for consumers will be the flagship Hitachi DZ-BD7HA camcorder, a Hybrid model. This means it provides the Blu-ray disc recording capability along with a 30 gigabyte (GB) built-in Hard Disk Drive (HDD) that can record approximately four hours of 1920x1080 high definition video (HX mode) or up to eight hours of 1440x1080 high definition video (HS mode). Also, with the simple push of a button, it can copy the contents from HDD to BD within the camcorder itself, a major convenience feature for on-the-go consumers who can now bypass external devices (PCs, etc.) altogether to quickly dub a highlight reel. Easy editing functions such as split, delete and connect can also be made right in the camcorder before using the 1-touch dubbing function to burn Blu-ray disc copies.

Blu-ray disc camcorder - High definition video
Beyond the ability to transfer high definition video from the HDD to Blu-ray discs, there is also a new Transcoding feature that allows users to select high definition video stored on the HDD to be transferred to standard definition DVD copies using the 1-touch dubbing feature. This provides users with the choice and flexibility to burn either high definition (Blu-ray) copies or standard definition (DVD) copies, so it is fast and simple - everything is done within the camcorder itself - to share home movie memories with friends and family members who may not yet own a Blu-ray playback device.

Hitachi Blu-ray disc technology
“It was important for us to be the first to offer consumers the impressive benefits of Blu-ray disc technology. To be the first manufacturer to create two models of the world’s first Blu-ray disc camcorders that shoot, playback and store HD video is a huge milestone for us and something we are exceptionally proud of.” said Hitachi America product manager Jeff Fochtman. “Hitachi is well known for having introduced the world’s first DVD camcorder in 2000, and last year we introduced the world’s first Hybrid camcorder with a DVD drive and a Hard Disk Drive. These products have been hugely popular and award winning. Blu-ray Disc Camcorders certainly demonstrate our ability to innovate and consumers have a new premium format choice on the market because of these efforts.”

Blu-Ray camcorders

Blu-ray Camcorder Features
Building upon its legacy of technology breakthroughs, Hitachi offers the following state-of-the-art features in its new BD camcorders:

8cm BD/DVD Drive
Hitachi developed a compact, low-power consuming, quiet and highly reliable 8cm BD/DVD drive which is compatible with five types of industry standard discs: BD-RE/-R, DVD-RAM/-RW/-R. The drive has two optical pick-ups for BD and DVD and a flat pick-up with compact aberration correction function for BD.

Blu-Ray camcorder - 30 Gigabytes of HDD Capacity
With its high capacity 30GB HDD, the Hybrid BD camcorder can record up to four hours of 1920x1080 video or eight hours of 1440x1080 video.

High Definition Lens
The camcorders features a 10x zoom, non-spherical lens that helps keep the form factor especially compact. The lens is multi-coated to prevent reflection, flare or ghost images, and it has gradation ND (neutral density) filter to prevent degrading of resolution caused by the aperture of the iris.

Blu-Ray camcorder CMOS Image Sensor
The Hitachi camcorders feature a 5.3 mega pixel CMOS (Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor) image sensor capable of capturing the true nature of an object by reading the pixel area at a very rapid speed. This is essential for HD video imaging. Approximately 4.32 mega pixel still photos can be recorded on a SD memory card.

Simple and Innovative Designs
The new BD camcorders are also distinguished from conventional camcorders by a smooth-flowing, elegant and innovative design. The large-aperture lens expresses the camcorders’ high quality. The sleek, round body is a unique Hitachi motif that is particularly eye catching, especially for consumers with an appreciation of artful aesthetics. A portion of the camcorder is UV coated to protect the body from scratches and to maintain its luster. The operation buttons provide intuitive, easy use. HDMI and component video output is provided for direct-from-camcorder video playback.

Hitachi Blu-Ray camcorder Price & Availability
The Hitachi model DZBD70A Blu-ray camcorder will be offered at a Manufacturers Advertised Price (MAP) of $1,299. The Hitachi DZBD7HA model Blu-ray Hybrid with built-in 30GB hard disk drive (HDD) is priced at a MAP of $1,499. Both camcorders will be available in North America in October 2007.

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The PMA show, or Photo Marketing Association, continues its yearly tradition of maintaining a network of photo imaging as well as the experience and know-how of the industry. The PMA represents 20,000 members from over 100 countries, who are all active within the imaging industry. As a reflection of the changes in the market, the PMA organization has also changed and has become more diverse. Nowadays, the member group consists of representatives coming from photo retail, manufacturers, commercial photo labs, professional sports and news photography, in addition to small album print suppliers and photo processing centers. The PMA 2012 Trade show focuses on an industry which is heavily affected by the unstable situation of the global financial economy. However, whether the latter will also stand in the way of the innovation and product introductions, remains to be revealed by the PMA International Convention & Trade Show in Anaheim Convention Center (California, US).