Greg Olson - March 11th, 2013
As technology makes the components for camcorders smaller and smaller, the overall form factor has shrunk considerably. In many forms of technology, smaller is definitely better, but I think camcorders are an exception to the rule. Give me a big, shoulder mountable beast of a camera, and I'll give you some stellar hand-held footage.
With that in mind, JVC just announced the GY-HM70, which aims to bring a shoulder mounted camcorder with some standout features to consumers for $1,995. So, what do you get for your money? A 29.5mm f1.2-5.6 wide angle lens with 16x dynamic zoom, and a ½.3” 12 megapixel CMOS sensor should make low light shoots, and run and gun scenarios a breeze. Plus it captures 1920x1080 video in AVCHD at 60p (@28Mbps) to two SDHC/SDXC memory cards for glass smooth slow motion. However, there is currently no option to shoot at 24p (60i is an option). If you're willing to downsize to 720x480 footage, you can capture high speed footage at 300fps. Shutter speed options range from ½ to 1/4000, and with manual focus, iris, and white balance, JVC aims to keep the control in the hands of the shooter. If you're shooting long events, you'll appreciate the hot swappable dual battery system, which will essentially allow you to shoot uninterrupted while swapping a battery. Of course, the GY-HM70 is a true shoulder mount design so it includes a .24” LCOS color viewfinder along with a 3” LCD flip-out touch screen for easy menu navigation. Notably missing are XLR mic inputs, but it does have a 3.5mm mic input.