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Re: I keep reading this camera will record onto miniDV?

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Peter DeCrescenzo
Re: I keep reading this camera will record onto miniDV?
on Apr 12, 2005 at 7:02:35 pm

[Vincent Rice] "The short and simple answer is this: Panasonic needs everybody to buy P2 cards so that the profit centre moves, like all modern manufacturing, from the device to the consumable. It also needs the volume to increase so that costs will get down to the sweet spot where the retail price becomes generally acceptable. ..."

Hi Vincent: In general I agree with the gist of what you said, but I don't believe the only result is that Panasonic won't include a DV25 miniDV tape transport in its new P2 palmcorder.

No matter how "affordable" P2 cards are by the time this cam ships later this year, chance are very good P2 cards will be significantly more expensive than equivalent recording-time capacity miniDV cassettes. And that price disparity is likely to continue for quite some time. Sure, P2 costs will decrease, but it may take several months (if not a year or more) until most "pro" and "prosumer" users would say "P2 is now cheap enough" compared to tape.

Meanwhile, the P2 palmcorder they bought in 2005 may be able to use inexpensive miniDV tapes for all the things DV25 is good for. Regardless how many P2 cards they might use & buy, more users will probably use & buy tape than P2 cards (certainly quantity-wise). And many of them will buy Panasonic tape. So either way, Panasonic wins.

I don't think selling a P2 palmcorder without a tape transport will "force" people to buy large numbers of P2 cards. Instead, it may marginalize the cam due and result in low sales. A P2-only palmcorder might be very useful to a certain number of people, but possibly a far smaller number of people compared to how many would've preferred a cam with both P2 and tape.

And, as I said earlier, since including a DV25 miniDV transport in a cam costs Panasonic & the end user essentially nothing, why not include it?

However, I won't think Panasonic would be making a "mistake" if the cam is P2-only. It's All Good(TM) to me. If I have a use for the cam I'll use it; if not I won't.

In a few more days we'll get a better idea of what Panasonic is thinking, too.

All the best,

- Peter

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