A year ago I sold my Panasonic HVX 201 after a disappointing relationship. I struggled with the expensive media and was never impressed with the picture quality, low light or atrocious LCD. I sold it to buy a Sony EX1 which as many people know I believe is a fantastic camera. Everything the HVX wasn’t.
Panasonic recently released two new P2 handheld cameras. The HVX200a/201a and the HPX 170/171. I managed to borrow the HPX to test it out to see how much better it was than my old HVX. The review was commissioned by CVP/ Mitcorp and you can see it by clicking on the picture below…
It is a big improvement on the HVX 200 but for me still falls well short of the standard that the EX1 has brought to the market, things like full raster HD, full manual lens controls. The XDCAM codec is more practical for a camera in this class meaning it is far less hungry on cards.
What the HPX has over the EX1 is 4:2:2 colour space, CCDs rather than CMOS so doesn’t suffer from rolling shutter and for some people having a less compressed codec is a plus, but I believe it is wasted on a chip of the quality the HPX has in it. It does shoot very nice pictures and is priced at a pretty affordable price point, but you will need A LOT of cards!!
Edit: It has been pointed out to me in native mode you can get record a lot more on the cards and the iris/focus switch is obviously for 35mm adaptor users for when you lock down focus. Silly me!!