It will use a variety of camcorders at its O&Os, CNBC and Telemundo, including the new AG-HPX-300 which lists for $10,000.
NBC Universal has “standardized” on the Panasonic P2 camcorder format for the NBC O&Os, CNBC and Telemundo, according to Panasonic executives at a New York press conference today.
The purchase includes a variety of camcorders, including the AG-HPX-300, which is a new unit aimed at the hard-pressed TV station market.
The camera, with one-third inch, 2.2 megapixel, HD 3MOS progressive imagers, lists for $10,000, including a Fujinon lens, and is expected to be widely available starting next month.
“That price range is pretty sweet for stations,” said Joe Facchini, Panasonic director of product marketing.
Panasonic execs said that the buy likely will also include other low-cost Panasonic P2 cameras, the AG-HPX-170 and the AG-HVX-200 as well as the high-end AJ-HPX-2000.
Facchini called the AG-HPX-300 “the new benchmark” for $10,000 cameras. “It’s a real camera,” he said, “it’s not a modified consumer camera.”
The AG-HPX-300 can shoot in various HD formats, including 1080i/p and 720p as well as SD; can accept a full range of lenses; and can be configured for studio use.
“Anything you want to shoot with this camera, you can shoot with this camera,” Facchini added. “This is what the station market has been looking for,” he said. “The days of the $30,000 or $40,000 news camera are way behind us.”
According to Jan Crittenden, the product manager for the AG-HPX-300, the camera is meant to compete with mid-priced cameras from Sony (XDCam EX3) and JVC (HD250). “In form function alone this feels like a real camera because it rests on your shoulder,” Crittenden said, and added that configured for studio use with cable, remote, monitor and power supply, the camera will list for around $23,000.
Panasonic would not reveal the financial terms of the NBC deal.