Panasonic at CES 2013: 4K OLED, action cam and compacts
Panasonic's stand at CES 2013 has glittered with AV and imaging debutantes as ever. In all the bright lights and camera flashes, of course, it can be hard to take stock of everything that the Japanese company has launched. Not to mention it's all brought forth in something of the tech launch equivalent of a ram raid.
If you'd like to see everything that Panasonic has been up to at CES 2013, then we've put it all down here to digest at your leisure. Are you feeling leisurely? Good. Digest.
Panasonic plasma TVs: ZT60, VT60 & ST60
Panasonic has announced its 2013 range of TVs, and there’s some interesting technology here. As ever, the company has been championing plasma and the flagship model for 2013 is the Panasonic ZT60. This is the TV for people who really care about quality and has “beyond the reference” picture quality according to the Japanese giant. It comes with a new Touch Pen to modify images on the screen and all the usual apps and connectivity.
One grade down is the VT60 range certified by THX . They come in 55, 60 and 65 inches and have built-in, side-mounted speakers and a built-in camera. This is used for “recognising” users, and logging them in to use the My Home Screen function, which puts all their favourite smart TV content on a single homepage. Presumably, it will also be used for Skype video calls.
Last of the big plasma TVs is the ST60 series which come in 50, 55, 60 and 65-inches and have Full HD 3D, with two pairs of active shutter 3D glasses in the box. Beyond those are the entry-level S60 and X60 ranges. More on all of the Panasonic plasma TVs at CES 2013 here.
Panasonic LED TVs: WT60
Panasonic’s relatively newfound interest in LCD TVs meant that, at first, it didn’t offer the best screens. After all, it was keen to sell plasmas, a technology in which it has invested heavily over the years. Now though, its full steam ahead with LCD, with magnificent IPS screens and all-LED backlights. The WT60 is the one to watch out for and is a Ful -HD 3D set that comes with 47 and 55-inch screens.
There’s a built-in webcam for using Skype and other Viera Connect apps and, as with the plasma range, you also get the MyHome Screen system with voice guidance and voice control. The DT60 is the step down which comes with 55 and 60-inch screens and has a Full HD picture and Wi-Fi. Beyond that is the ET60, E60 and EM60 ranges. More details on the Panasonic LED TVs for 2013 here.
Panasonic prototypes: 4K OLED TV and 4K tablets
Developed along with Sony is the quite staggering sounding combination of panel technologies that is the 56-inch 4K OLED TV that Panasonic proudly showed off at CES 2013. Made using printing technology, it is insanely thin, low powered and now has the kind of colours and resolution that will set your eyes on fire. Don't think for a minute that the company isn't serious about this one too. Panasonic will be closing its LCD plant to make room for 4K OLED TV production.
Not content with a TV to blow you mind, Panasonic thought it may as well have a crack at a 4K resolution Windows 8 tablet too. The new, giant, 20-inch tablet (18.7 x 13.1 x .4-inches and 5.3lbs) is aimed at the professional market of architects, photographers, movie-makers and even showrooms, a Panasonic spokesman told Pocket-lint, rather than the consumer looking to surf the internet on the sofa. If 4K isn't right for you, then there was also the Panasonic Toughpads - FZ-G1 for Windows and JT-B1 for Android.
Panasonic compact cameras: TZ40 and friends
Panasonic did a fair bit with the compact camera range in time for CES 2013, not least of which was updating the popular TZ series of all-round power cameras. The Panasonic TZ40 is now equipped with both Wi-Fi and NFC for quick picture sharing. There's still the 20x zoom, 18.1-megapixel sensor and 10fps shooting to enjoy.
For the mid-range, Panasonic has announced two new "ready to shoot cameras for everyone" at CES in Las Vegas and Pocket-lint has already had a play. The new models, the Lumix DMC-SZ9 and Lumix DMC SZ3 build on the company's previous SZ range and update key features such as the sensor and processor to offer the latest advancements Panasonic has to offer. Wi-Fi and GPS are included.
The sexy wee newbie for 2013 is the Panasonic Lumix XS1. It's a tiny compact camera that should make the perfect accessory for a women's clutch bag or, if we gents are going stylish, the breast pocket of a suit jacket. The key show-off detail is that the camera is just 14mm thick (17.6mm including lens), but still comes with a half-decent 2.7-inch LCD screen. Yes, it really is that thin, and overall measurements make it smaller than most phones too. More details and pictures of the Lumix XS1 over here.
Finally, the tough guys showed up in the shape of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT5 and Lumix DMC-FT25 (the TS6 and TS25 in the US) - available in the UK shortly. No one has quite managed to master the compact toughcam just yet but it's Pani that has come closest. We look forward to how these 16MP, Wi-Fi-enabled models for 2013 work out.
Panasonic camcorders: HX-A100 action cam & more
Panasonic has always made good, solid and high-quality camcorders. and now it's taking on GoPro with the Panasonic HX-A100. The camera has no built-in recorder. Instead, it's connected via a cable to a separate recorder. The battery and microSD card are located in here and it's designed to be worn somewhere else on your body, or slung in a pocket. There's Wi-Fi, 160-degree vision and it can record at 1080p at 60fps, 720p at 120fps and 640p at 240fps.
Panasonic's 9 series camcorders, somewhat predictably, also had their yearly refresh. The HC-X920 will replace the HC-X900 and have many of the same terrific features. But there are some new bits too, and these should make this camera a much more attractive proposition for semi-pro users. Full details with the Panasonic HC-X920 preview here.
Last of all, let's not forget the classic pistol-grip camcorder. Panasonic didn't. The three models for 2013 are the HX-WA30, HX-WA3 and HX-DC3, and each offers some element of rugged design, along with Full HD, 1080p video shooting. The WA30 is the most interesting but you can read about all of them here.