New P2 HD Portable Brings Full Resolution, 10-Bit Master-Quality Recording to the Field

Panasonic introduced the solid-state AG-HPG20 P2 Portable recorder/player with AVC-Intra recording capabilities here at the DV Expo conference. Supporting the 10-bit AVC-Intra codec as well as formats ranging from DVCPRO HD to DV, the P2 Portable will serve as a master quality deck for fast, file-based recording – bridging content to and from older tape based systems and HD-SDI infrastructures.
With 10-bit AVC-Intra compatibility, the HPG20 P2 Portable brings master-quality recording – formerly only available in higher cost, full sized decks – to the field. This extraordinary workflow tool allows users to playback and review P2 cards on its 3.5-inch LCD screen, manage clip files and metadata, record content from a wide range of cameras via its HD-SDI input, and backup data onto hard disk drives. Featuring two P2 card slots, the P2 Portable’s solid-state design holds up to the demands of field operation, yet it is small and light enough (2.5 lbs) for easy transportation.

The HPG20 supports a wide range of high definition and standard definition recording formats. Recording and playback formats include 1080/60i, 1080/50i, 720/60p, 720/50p in the AVC-Intra and DVCPRO HD 4:2:2, independent frame codecs; and 480/60i, 576/50i in DVCPRO50, DVCPRO and DV. The unit plays back content automatically (no need to change settings) and can operate in 50Hz or 60Hz. For added versatility, the P2 Portable supports up-, down- and cross-conversion for HD or SD transmission. Additionally, it allows “confidence playback” from P2 files stored on a hard disk drive.

A key benefit of the P2 Portable is that it can be paired with a wide range of tape-based and solid-state cameras as well as camcorders from different manufacturers. The unit’s HD/SD-SDI and IEEE 1394 input interfaces open the door for endless applications in HD or SD production. The P2 Portable can be connected to DVCPRO HD, DVCPRO50, DVCPRO and DV tape-based camcorders via IEEE 1394 for solid-state back-up recording in the field. It also accepts and records signals (with metadata) from any camera with an HD-SDI output, making it an essential tool for broadcast field applications such as news crew pool feeds.

The P2 Portable can playback to large HD production monitors or transfer uncompressed content to HD-SDI equipped decks, post production systems and storage networks. When connected to a laptop’s IEEE 1394 output, the portable recorder serves as a transcoder to HD-SDI-equipped monitors, for full real-time playback from the timeline. Using the HPG20’s USB slot (in Host mode), users can easily transfer content to a low-cost USB hard drive for a seamless, IT-based deliverable for clients.

The HPG20 P2 Portable features a host of time-saving P2 clip management functions. In addition to viewing recorded files in clip thumbnail view, users can copy or transfer select clips from one P2 card to another, copy selected clips from a hard disk drive onto a P2 card, shot mark specific clips, edit a clip’s metadata (support for multiple languages included), or save a text memo to individual clips when recording or previewing. P2 cards can also be “hot-swapped” for continuous recording. Additional features include an SD card slot, for loading metadata or saving user files, and helpful recording functions like a waveform/vectorscope display, loop record and auto record commands that accompany the HD-SDI signal. Internal speaker and headphone (M3 mini) jacks are also included.

When using two 64GB P2 cards (available in December) in the P2 Portable’s two card slots, the unit can record for 128 minutes in AVC-Intra 100 or DVCPRO HD, 256 minutes in AVC-Intra 50 or DVCPRO50, or 512 minutes in DVCPRO.

The AG-HPG20 P2 Portable will be available early 2009 and will offer a 5-year limited warranty program.*