Panasonic Introduces AJ-HD1800, New DVCPRO HD Studio VTR
Posted Oct 10, 2007

Panasonic Broadcast unveiled the AJ-HD1800, a new full-size DVCPRO HD Studio VTR for broadcast, post production, and mobile production uses. The versatile VTR offers all of the popular features of its predecessor, the AJ-HD1700, plus new enhancements including 720/50 recording, a built-in up-converter, UMID/VANC metadata recording/playback, and expanded IEEE 1394 interface capabilities.

The multi-format HD1800 records for 126 minutes at 100Mbps with 4:2:2 sampling and intra-frame compression on a single XL DVCPRO HD cassette in both 1080i and 720p, including 720/50p, covering all the world's HD broadcast formats. In addition, the VTR features a built-in up/down/cross converter for easy conversion between 1080i and 720p, for down-converting 1080i or 720p to 480i or 480p, and for up-converting pre-recorded DV, DVCAM, DVCPRO, DVCPRO50 tapes to 1080i or 720p HD. It plays back all DVCPRO HD sources, including 1080/23.98p over 59.94i, as well as all existing 1/4" DV-based compression formats including DVCPRO50, DVCPRO, DVCAM, and DV.

An outstanding feature of the HD1800 is its ability to convert 720/23.98p (over 59.94p) and 720/25p (over 60p) footage acquired by Panasonic AJ-HDC27 VariCam® HD Cinema cameras to 1080/24p or 1080/25psf, which allows the VTR to act as a source deck in a 1080p-based linear or non-linear editing bay.

The HD1800 VTR performs frame-accurate insert/assemble and audio split editing, and offers continuous variable HD slow motion playback of –1.0 to +2.0 normal speed (–1.0 to + 1.1 for DVCPRO50 and DVCPRO play). It comes standard with HD-SDI input/output and SD-SDI output for line recording and in-studio production and RS-422 remote operation. In addition to utilizing its built-in IEEE 1394 interface for transfer of HD and SD data without quality loss to an NLE system, this interface also allows the VTR to down-convert the HD-SDI input for uses including offline editing.

The VTR is equipped with extensive front panel editing controls, a numeric key pad and a high-resolution, built-in 3" LCD monitor that can eliminate the requirement for external monitoring. Other key features include jog and shuttle dial with up to 32X normal speed in forward/reverse, SD analog composite output, RS-232C and encoder remote controls, four user settings, and up to 60 cue points.

It also offers eight channels of high-quality, discrete digital audio (with 16-bit quantization and 48-kHz sampling) to fulfill requirements for 5.1 surround sound and SAP or multi-language programming.

The VTR is a 4U-size and fits into a 19" rack. The AJ-HD1800 is available now at a suggested list price of $49,999.