World's First Full HD 1920x1080i Consumer Camcorder
By Mike Hanlon
January 7, 2007
January 8, 2007 Due on shelves in April, JVC’s new HD Everio GZ-HD7 camcorder is the first to offer full HD 1920x1080i video quality combined with hard drive recording. The aim is high def simplicity, with no removable tapes or discs, the simplicity of a point-and-shoot camcorder plus all the features, technology and manual controls that appeal to the serious videographer. The 60GB built-in hard drive records five hours of full HD 1920x1080i at a high 30Mbps(MAX) Mbps, recording through three CCDs and a Fujinon lens.
Other features include optical image stabilization, a full array of manual controls, multiple digital connections, bundled editing and archiving software, and availability of an optional HD Everio SHARE STATION for easily transferring footage to disc.
In addition to its highest quality Full HD recording mode that records five hours of full HD 1920x1080i MPEG2 Transport Stream video with MPEG 1 Layer 2 audio, the HD Everio offers a long seven hour SP mode with a resolution of 1440x1080i, and a 1440CBR mode with a resolution of 1440x1080i and a five-hour capacity. Also, because it records in the MPEG2 Transport Stream video format, HD Everio recordings can be archived onto Blu-ray discs using provided software and a high definition Blu-ray recorder.
For bright, realistic colors the HD Everio uses three 1/5-inch CCDs -- one each for red, green and blue. In addition, to ensure precise prism/CCD registration, JVC has incorporated Fujinon mounting technology used in professional camcorders. Fujinon also supplies the HD Everio's 10x optical zoom lens which provides superior optical performance and nearly the same brightness (F1.8-1.9) throughout its f=3.3mm~33mm zoom range by virtue of its three aspherical lens elements, one made of indexed glass. In addition, the lens surface is coated with a new Electronic Beam Coating (EBC) that greatly reduces degradation caused by light reflecting off the lens surfaces, leading to greater light transmission and reduced flaring and ghosting. To preserve that quality, the HD Everio features optical image stabilization, avoiding the signal degradation caused by electronic image stabilization, which might be particularly noticeable in HD footage. In short, HD Everio matches its high- definition recording capability with a proven HD lens section that has proven its value in the broadcast industry.
While the HD Everio offers fully automated operation for point and shoot simplicity, it also offers a wide range of manual controls. These include a manual focus ring, manual white balance, exposure control, shutter priority mode, aperture priority mode and sharpness control. In addition, a Focus Assist function displays the edge of the in-focus elements in color while the rest of the image is black-and-white, making it easy to check which image elements are in focus. And a Zebra function displays a striped pattern across highlight areas on the image in the LCD monitor, making it easier to manually set the exposure. Also included is a mic input for connecting an external microphone.
The HD Everio is equipped with three digital interfaces -- USB, HDMI and i.LINK. USB is primarily for file saving, HDMI for digital viewing on large screen displays, and iLink streams high definition video in full resolution or 1440CBR mode. HD recorded material is down-converted for output in DV over i.LINK, or in standard definition via the analog component/ S-Video/ Composite output.
The HD Everio camcorder also connects to an optional JVC DVD burner, the HD Everio SHARE STATION CU-VD40, with a USB 2.0 cable and is controlled directly through the camcorder. The SHARE STATION can be used to create HD data discs to archive HD video clip files and writes to both DVD-R and DVD-RW discs. It also allows for the creation of digital stills in a JPEG format. Dual-layer DVD-R is also supported, which means that the combination of the HD Everio and the CU-VD40 provides a PC-less solution to the high-capacity archiving needs of HD content. HD and still files can be played back in ultra-high quality via the CU-VD40's HDMI output without the use of a computer. The HD Everio SHARE STATION also allows easy playback of archived files, without having to use the camcorder. Separately from the HD Everio, the CU-VD40 can be used as a DVD burner for PCs.
For editing and archiving via PC the HD Everio comes with the Cyberlink BD Solution software suite for Windows. This includes PowerDirector for HD video editing, PowerProducer for authoring high definition Blu-ray discs and DVD- Video discs, and PowerCinema for HD file management and playback.
Optional accessories for the HD Everio include a 46mm telephoto and a 46mm wide conversion lens, a battery charger and three additional batteries including standard, high power and extended power. Additional options include a stereo microphone.
The JVC HD Everio GZ-HD7 will be available in the United States in April at a nationally advertised value of US$1,799.95. The HD Everio SHARE STATION CU-VD40 will be available at a nationally advertised value of US$399.95.