Panasonic Varicam LT Team Beverly Boy Review
The Varicam video camera sells itself exactly as it means to be, a camera that is adaptable to any shoot. It is a marvelous, highly personalized camera that a lot of thought has gone into. It is light as a feather, ergonomic, with many features aimed at pleasing even the stingiest camera buff. In the hands of a professional, it becomes a veritable DP’s multitool.
One of the most notable features here is the addition of a sliding baseplate. The camera is actually able to slide back and forth on the baseplate, meaning you can now adjust it for a range of different preferences. It is extremely useful for those tricky center of gravity adjustments needed on the fly. The provided off-board display is actually quite large and information-heavy. It can be positioned on almost any part of the device, allowing for a wide range of shooting and observation options. Provided is the Canon EF mount, which offers the ability to use many different lenses with the camera right out of the box. The viewfinder port is based on HD SDI, which also means when it comes to your viewfinder options, really you’re looking at anything under the sun. The viewfinder provided sports an optical zoom functionality, which is something really unique for products in this market. You are given the ability to zoom into picture directly from the viewfinder, instead of manually via the camera. Panasonic really listened to the customers when it comes down to these features, I mean they are all aimed at provided personalization around any corner. There are also provided function buttons on the camera allowing for quick adjustment to different settings for differing conditions. There is a single 5-pin XLR audio input as well as two 3-pin XLR inputs provided on the rear. There is your standard DCIN power port and a nifty LAN ethernet port hidden under a flap near the bottom 3-pin XLR port.
With the Panasonic Varicam LT cinema camera you are going to get 14+ stops of dynamic range with V-Log. There is in fact dal native ISO 800/5000 and formats are 4K, UHD, 2K and HD. Support is also available for Apple ProRes 4444 (up to 30p), ProRes 422 HQ (up to 60p), HD, and also for Panasonic’s AVC-ULTRA family of video codecs. Another option is the available Academy Color Encoding System or ACES support. The ND filters provided are CLEAR, 0.6, 1.2, and 1.8. The camera has IR functionality for those super dark shoots and a hot-swap for power. There is provided IP control via Panasonic’s AK-HRP200 camera remote controller, an on-board GPS system and the impressive Optional OLED EVF comes standard with optical zoom.
The camera really shines when it is in an on-the-go environment. The lightweight magnesium body and focus on ergonomics really shines during long shoots. The zoom on the VF is a godsend in getting exact images without multiple takes, and the high ISO options work wonderfully in low light conditions. The images are a little more noisey at the higher So ranges but not so much that it is of detriment to the desired image. This higher dynamic ranges and ISO really pay off when the need to shoot at higher shutter speeds arise as well, or when there is a bunch of movement. Setting up on a mount is simple given the baseplate allows for speedy COG adjustments. Truly, anytime the camera is needed to go, it is ready. In all, there is just so much personalization and functionality for a camera at this price.