[Eric Addison]"I read this in the press release for the camera and wondered if anyone knew anymore about this - native 1080p recording."
Important things to note as I understand it are:
-the Panasonic chip is 540 pixels
-Panasonic uses CCD chips which are difficult and expensive to manufacture
-Panasonic uses spatial offset to achieve better image quality.
-On the backside of the chip is a maze of circuitry that processes the captured image of light falling on the front into a 1080p file. This Digital Signal Processing (DSP) is as important as the chips used.
[Eric Addison]"how does it compare to say the EX1 or EX3?"
-the Sony chip is 1080 pixels
-Sony uses CMOS chips which are cheap to produce and easy to manufacture.
-not so much sophisticated DSP going on behind the surface or needed to create the 1080 file allowing Sony to put a lot of effort in reducing the high noise ratio inherent with CMOS chips and making them workable.
It's always difficult to compare two different things like this but it boils down to how each one works for you. How does it feel in your hands, how do you like the controls, lenses, video formats etc., how do you like the finished image on your viewing monitor and finally the price does factor in for most of us.
At the suggested price level and with all it's features the HPX-170 will be a real contender. The EX3 is priced up there with 2/3" chip cameras so unless you want a small form factor camera and don't mind investing in a 1/2" lens arsenal it is in a different bracket.