Not only is the Panasonic AG-AC160A camera capable of recording in high quality, it has the latest electronics that provides a number of great functions. Modern technology and remarkable new features make this camera a great piece of equipment for video production.
Besides being incredibly powerful, the camera is compact and ergonomic in design. The hand grip and LCD have been positioned towards the lens improving weight balance and visibility (giving a wider view). The chassis of the camera has been designed out of a magnesium alloy imparting sturdiness and long life.
The AG-AC160A features a 22x zoom lens capable of capturing high resolution imagery with a wide angle without having to change lenses. Settings for zoom, focus and iris of the lens can be changed manually by means of three ring dials. Digital zoom capable of 2x, 5x and 10x zoom levels can be used in conjunction with the optical zoom. The camera also features an Optical Image Stabilizer that cancels out any camera shakes.
A high quality 0.45 inch viewfinder and a 3.45 inch LCD for highly detailed image have been provided. On the side of the LCD monitor body are three user buttons to which the user can assign any function from a list of 16 different frequently used functions. Options like marker/grid and mode check can be used to view different settings on the LCD/view finder. A bar indicating level of focus and an area in red showing the area in focus in the LCD monitor display aid in quick setup of the focus. Face detection, area auto focus and area auto iris functions are some other features present.
Besides these, the camera also has numerous others features like Dynamic Range Stretch, three position Gain Selector, ULT image sensor, seven different Gamma modes, white balance and chroma level adjustment.
The video is recorded directly in digital format. The camera has two slots for memory cards compatible with SD, SDXC and SDHC types. High quality videos are data hungry and require significant amount of memory space, reducing the hours of filming. The AG-AC160A supports high-image-quality PH mode and the AVCHD mode. The AVCHD employs the latest MPEG-4 format that achieves better data compression at high video quality, making efficient usage of the available memory. When quality of video is the priority, the video can be filmed in full HD using the PH mode.
There is also an option to change the frame rate of the recording to get slow motion or fast motion effects, that too at high resolutions. The camera can be switched between both PAL and NTSC, making it compatible with systems across the globe. Taking advantage of two memory cards, Panasonic have incorporated two different modes of recording, the relay and the simultaneous modes. In relay mode, data is automatically recorded on the second memory card after the first has become full without having to pause and insert a fresh card. In simultaneous mode, the same data is recorded on both cards, thereby creating a duplicate for data security.
For filming low shots, buttons for record, start and stop and lens zoom controls have been provided in the hand grip.
The memory cards can be used to transfer the data onto a computer using a card reader. The camera can also be connected to a computer via a USB 2.0 port. The high resolution recording can be downgraded to SD format and the aspect ratio changed from wide screen 16:9 ratio to the standard 4:3. The video can also be viewed on external monitors by connecting to the HDMI terminals provided in the camera.
Image Device: 3x 1/3-type progressive 2.2 Mp CMOS; Prism color separation
Lens: 22x optical zoom; 2x, 5x, 10x digital zoom; 3.9-86mm (28-616mm 35mm equivalent); f/1.6-3.2; 18 elements in 12 groups
Minimum Object Distance: Approx. 3.3′ (1 m)
Filter Diameter: 72mm
Minimum Illumination: 0.4 lux (f/1.6, gain +30 dB, shutter speed 1/30 second)
Signal System: NTSC, PAL
Built-in Filters: ND filter: OFF, 1/4, 1/16, 1/64
LCD Monitor: 3.45″ (87.63mm) color LCD monitor with approx. 921K dots (16:9)
Viewfinder: 0.45″ (11.43mm) color LCoS monitor with approx. 1226K dots (16:9)
Memory Card Slot: 2x SD/SDHC/SDXC slots
Frame Rates: 24, 30, 60 fps
Gain Selection: 0/+3/+6/+9/+12/+15/+18/+24/+30 dB (+24 dB, +30 dB: USER button S.GAIN only)
Recording Media: SD memory card (FAT12, FAT16 formats supported): 512 MB, 1 GB, up to 2 GB
SDHC memory card (FAT32 format supported): 4 GB, 6 GB, 8 GB, 12 GB, 16 GB, 32 GB
SDXC memory card (exFAT format supported): 48 GB, 64 GB (up to 2 TB)
Recording Formats: AVCHD standard (MPEG-4 AVC/H.264), DV standard (AVI Type2)
Video Compression: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 (AVCHD)
Dimensions (WxHxD): 7 x 7.69 x 17.25″ (180 x 195 x 438mm) excluding protrusions
Weight: Approx. 5.3 lb (2.4 kg) excluding battery and accessories