April 13, 2015
NAB 2015

Panasonic Reveals Their New Large Sensor 4K Handheld Camera, the AG-DVX200

Panasonic has revealed the 4K predecessor to their popular DVX100 camera, the large-sensor 4/3" handheld AG-DVX200, which is intended to be a companion camera to the 4K VariCam 35. Though this compact camera does not have interchangeable lenses, it does come equipped with a Leica Dicomar 4K zoom lens with F2.8 aperture to offer shallow depth of field and a wide field of view.

Features include:

  • 4K/60p recording
  • 13x optical zoom
  • Leica Dicomar 4K zoom lens with F2.8 aperture
  • V-Log L gamma curve
  • 12 stops of latitude
  • Price: under $5000

The DVX200 is a multi-purpose camera -- small and light -- ideal for documentary and low-budget work, while still providing high image quality and color science. Here's a bit from the press release:

The DVX200 will be optimized for 4K/HD production and shares the esteemed VariCam family characteristics of filmic tonality and colorimetry, with natural, subtle rendering of skin flesh tones. It will offer a V-Log curve emulating the natural grey-scale rendition of the VariCam 35. 

The DVX200 will be available in Fall 2015 with a suggested list price under $5000.


No Film School's complete coverage of NAB 2015 is brought to you by Color Grading Central, Shutterstock, Blackmagic Design, and Bigstock.

No Film School's coverage of NAB is brought to you by Color Grading Central, Shutterstock, Blackmagic Design, and Bigstock

Your Comment

59 Comments

It's a shame they didn't go the interchangeable lens route, as myself and I feel like so many people had such good memories with the DVX100. I feel like that camera started so many careers.

April 13, 2015 at 4:29PM, Edited April 13, 4:29PM

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Ricky Norris
Director/Cinematographer
118

You'd never get it at the price point of below $5,000 without the fixed lens. With the fixed lens Panasonic guru's say they can better fit the lens to the camera for better optic reproduction. We'll have to see when it comes out!

April 15, 2015 at 8:42AM

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Man, I wish this didn't have a lens.

April 13, 2015 at 4:37PM, Edited April 13, 4:37PM

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It might be fixed lens but it's an extremely good fix lens especially at that price point.

April 13, 2015 at 4:46PM

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Neill Jones
Camera, Edit, Colour
160

So this is the standard bar now.

Would you imaging this 5 years ago?

April 13, 2015 at 4:48PM

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Edgar More
All
1246

$5k for a fixed lens when Blackmagic just announced the Ursa Mini for $3k? Seriously Panasonic?

April 13, 2015 at 4:49PM

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treykaiza@gmail.com
Cat Herder
269

The interesting URSA Mini is 5000$, and, IF the lens has good range, this Pana is certainly worth considering, with a good mic, built in ND's and a lot of direct buttons.

April 13, 2015 at 5:02PM

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Álex Montoya
Writer/Director
459

$3K, but without ND Filters, an eyefinder and without lens (and try to find an equivalent quality lens optimized for 4k production under $2K. You already bust the DVX200 maximum price (cause it's an under $5K camera)).

April 13, 2015 at 5:06PM

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David
229

I've read that the lens is a f/2.8-4.5, 28-365mm 35mm equivalent, which isn't very good.

Is it that difficult to do a 20-150, 2,8 lens?

April 13, 2015 at 5:24PM

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Álex Montoya
Writer/Director
459

>>>Is it that difficult to do a 20-150, 2,8 lens?

Not if you are willing to pay Cine Zoom prices, which start around $30,000+ and go up from there. ( with no power zoom or auto-focus )

April 13, 2015 at 8:12PM

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Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer
31513

And those people going the Ursa/Ursa Mini route will quickly find they need to budget at least $4K for the CFast cards. Two being ingested and two in the camera. And of course you need lenses. And a boat load more computer storage and backup. Is it still a compelling choice? For many it will not be.

April 19, 2015 at 7:07PM

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Once you add the required accessories to make the Ursa Mini as fully capable as this is out of the box, it's going to be just as expensive if not more. Also, a lot of doc filmmakers are going to find the built-in lens and ND filters very appealing.

April 13, 2015 at 5:35PM, Edited April 13, 5:35PM

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Jeff Dwyer
Director / Editor
102

"the 4K predecessor to their popular DVX100 camera"
'Predecessor'. . . I do not think that word means what you think it means. :-P
(I know the guy in the video said it, but you don't need to make the same mistake!)

Anyway, the camera looks interesting, though with the changing times and markets, I'm not sure this camera will have nearly the same impact on the industry as the DVX100 did. The DVX200 seems very capable, but at that price point, and without interchangeable lenses, it might miss the enthusiast–indie filmmaker market the DVX100 became popular with. I'm sure ENG-style shooters hoping for a camera with a larger sensor will appreciate it, though.

April 13, 2015 at 4:58PM

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This is going to make more sense for budget doc filmmakers who might also be considering a C100. The low budget indie narrative set have shifted their focus to different types of cameras, and I'm sure Panasonic knows this.

April 13, 2015 at 5:37PM

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Jeff Dwyer
Director / Editor
102

"Successor" is the correct word. "Predecessor" means, "was in place before" which applies to the DVX100. The DVX200 succeeds, or comes after, the DVX100.

April 13, 2015 at 6:07PM

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"Panasonic has revealed the 4K predecessor to their popular DVX100 camera"

Um . . . just a note, but "PREDECESSOR" is something that comes before. Essentially, this sentence states that this new 4K camera was released before the DVX100.

April 13, 2015 at 4:59PM

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Christopher Kou
Production Manager
138

JVC obviously built a timemachine.
Make sure Skynet doesn't acquire that technology :-p

April 14, 2015 at 4:30AM

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WalterBrokx
Director, DOP, Writer, Editor, Producer
8978

Pretty bored by this but I could see it being a popular choice. It seems super simple to use. But why go with a fixed lens?

April 13, 2015 at 5:03PM

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Since I work with interchangeable lenses, I use most of the time a 24-70 2.8 lens anyway. The few times I work with several lenses, it's for medium-big commercial video production and I rent all the stuff. Otherwise, when I film a documentary or a small video production, I prefer to work with a single lens cause it's simple. But a 24-70 is very limited, and I would prefer use this kind of high quality 4k lens.

April 13, 2015 at 5:23PM

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David
229

A few reasons:
- no need to change lenses when no need more or less zoom
- no need to change lenses in dirty and wet environments (or shoot with the lens you wish you didn't attach)
- motorized zoom with a pressure sensitive zoom rocker.
- no need to carry around all kind of glass: all the glass you have is on your cam

It seems you've entered the filmmaking world with a DSLR?
(I could be wrong)

The downside is the F4.5 which is still fast for such a zoom range.

April 14, 2015 at 4:36AM

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WalterBrokx
Director, DOP, Writer, Editor, Producer
8978

Isn't F2.8 on a M43 more like F5.6 on a FF?

April 14, 2015 at 8:52PM

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Not in terms of light transmission, but in terms of depth of field, it depends on how you think of it. If you consider a 24mm f5.6 lens on FF, you get a roughly equivalent field of view and depth of field from a 12mm f2.8 lens on a M43 camera. But, this change in DoF is because you're using a wider lens - not because of the sensor size. Remember, both aperture and focal length have an effect on DoF. If you take an image on a full frame camera with a 22mm f2.8 lens and crop out the middle, you'd get exactly the same image as you'd get from that same lens on a M43 camera.

April 15, 2015 at 5:13AM

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So in other words what they are saying in the interviews about the dvx200 is false? They are claiming "bokeh" and a short depth of field. If it is as you say that an m43 2.8 is equal to f5.6 on a FF, then there will not be a short depth of field.

April 15, 2015 at 9:18AM

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It's not if they're comparing it to the DVX100 which had a tiny chip. I wouldn't call MFT large, but it is comparatively large. A 13x zoom would give you a very shallow depth of field, just not on the wider side.

April 15, 2015 at 11:07PM

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Daniel Mimura
DP, cam op, steadicam op
2318

I am sure it will be a hit. There is a lot of people out there who doesn't want interchangeable lenses and who are happy to buy this kind of camera because it's looking more solid, professional and easy to use. Like small TV channels, video journalist, etc. That's a big market. Everybody is moving to 4k and all the Sony EX1 user are looking for something similar in 4k. Now they have it.

April 13, 2015 at 5:27PM

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AvdS
Filmmaker
93

Looks awesome to me, but the fact that they do not mention codec/bitrate is not good news I think...

April 13, 2015 at 5:36PM, Edited April 13, 5:36PM

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David
229

I don't know, Panasonic are generally pretty solid when it comes to acquisition codecs. The hvx100 (or whatever it was called) that recorded in AVCHD is the only exception I can think of in their recent low-pro history.

April 14, 2015 at 8:06PM

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Brynn Sankey
Filmmaker
382

^ the AF100 was what I meant, not the hvx.

April 14, 2015 at 8:08PM

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Brynn Sankey
Filmmaker
382

I still have good vibes regarding the 100, but that was a decade ago. We've all moved on. This product doesn't fit the enthusiast market so I can't see it being as popular...unless they make a 200b that has a mount rather than a fixed lens.

April 13, 2015 at 5:51PM, Edited April 13, 5:51PM

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If they come out with a "mount" version I could see it being viable alternative to the BlackMagic line up for "narrative" work. Otherwise I think the dude in the video was preety spot on: This camera is going to be something the wedding and low budget documentary productions want to look at.

April 13, 2015 at 6:25PM

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Saskamodie
Filmmaker
397

Yeah, it has value, no doubt. I loved my 100's back in the day.

Still, I've been shooting mirrorless consumer cameras for a few years now and don't feel like I've been slowed down much. (I'm working on a doc at the moment that was shot with the GX7)

When using a lens mount cam the IQ creativity is a lot of fun.

April 13, 2015 at 8:34PM

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Why are so many people busy calling for a "mount"? 28-365 is about as much as you need for most productions unless you are into wildlife / specialised action stuff.
This is a very capable package and I think anyone who needs a "mount" simply doesn't know how capable and easy to use a package like this is. If you are using separate lenses you can't get anything that does more then 24-104 at F4.0, go beyond that and you need a 70-200. It means not only do you need to cary twice the weight, but wasting time on changing lenses, dust, etc. etc. If they produce a camera that has a lens and electronics optimised for each other it should be really nice. The only reason you would need to mount anything is if you want to go beyond 365mm, now you either use that a lot or it doesn't really matter that much.

Having close to 16mm sensor size with a long zoom is perfect for docu and report work. The only thing that has changed is the ability to look beyond what you are used to, a complete package like this is fantastic, nothing has changed, except that shooters now think they are "directors of photography" because thats how a lot of news shooters call themselves. Pretentious rubbish, the only thing I worry about is the bitrate and codec. The joke is we went from camera's like this back to the stoneage because everybody was horny for 35mm DOF, it doesn't change a thing about the usability of a camera like this. It is ok to go back to a camera with fixed lens if it produces the image we want. Interchangeable lenses suck if you are shooting with a small team. In the 35+ years I have been shooting with almost every type of camera the DVX100 was the most perfect package for docu work (except for the shitty iris control)

April 13, 2015 at 6:54PM

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Mark Paterson
Filmmaker
213

Wait, who is spouting the "pretentious rubbish"?

It's a big deal because choosing your lens if just as important as choosing your camera. If you want to look no further than bitrate and codec, more power to you. But the suggestion that those are the only important considerations is terribly ignorant.

April 14, 2015 at 8:21PM

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Brynn Sankey
Filmmaker
382

Exactly right, Mark Peterson. There were sort of two camps who were using the DVX's...those who were doing docs/news/interviews and those who were doing more film style shooting, but couldn't afford 16/super-16 or 35. The progressive frame was the thing that made people decide, well, film is too much, but this is getting good. But anyone doing TV or docs or sports...man, have you ever seen skate videos on a 5D? It's horrible. I can hardly watch low light interviews with 5D's because the depth of field is so shallow. For docs (excluding controllable situations like sit down interviews)...you live on a 10:1 (or a 13:1). Sure, Brynn, choosing your lenses is great...but it's not needed for low budget live events and most doc work. When I've done the odd live concert show or whatever on old EX-1's or Ex-3's...I'm so happy because it's fast, light, and solid and that's kind of what you need in these situations. Sure, you'd want interchangeable lenses when you're getting into Amira territory, but this is great. I'm a RED owner, with PL glass...and I was considering buying a used F-3 for small jobs (because it's kinda silly, not to mention overkill to shoot conferences and whatnot in RED RAW!). A big reason I was looking at an F-3 was b/c of the PL MOUNT...I could use my PL lenses (only a 17-50 RPZ and an 85mm CP super speed so far---which together cover most film making needs when we're not renting better glass)...because shooting movies with sh-tty SLR lenses sucks! But now, I'm thinking this 4k DVX pretty much fits the bill for these corporate gigs and doc work I do, which is between a 1/3rd and a half of my work.

April 15, 2015 at 11:39PM

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Daniel Mimura
DP, cam op, steadicam op
2318

I don't disagree that this lens is going to be plenty adequate for run-and-gun work, live events etc., I'm just saying it's unfortunate that it's fixed to the camera. Making it removable would have made this a much more versatile piece of equipment. Please, ship it with that lens–just let me take it off if I want to!

April 18, 2015 at 4:43PM

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Brynn Sankey
Filmmaker
382

It's funny, lots of boo hoo about the fixed lens, but honestly, its probably the coolest thing about this camera.

13x f/2.8, most likely parfocal. And if its anything like the original DVX, I bet it smash zooms like butter too. There is NO lens like that in the large chip world.

April 13, 2015 at 7:30PM

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I agree with Andrew Reid when he states that the...

DVX200 will be lonely, needs a brother called AF200!
http://www.eoshd.com/2015/04/my-open-letter-to-panasonic-dvx200-will-be-...

This is only half the solution that film-makers want, in that we need an interchangeable lens version of this camera that builds upon all of Panasonic's GH4 technology.

I shot with a Panasonic HMC-150 camera for four years, but I don't want to buy another ENG camera any more. I want suped-up GH4 technology in a proper cine camera body, and I might go with the new Blackmagic Ursa Mini camera instead if Panasonic are not willing to give us what we've been asking for years.

Panasonic, STOP protecting your higher end camera territory, and give us a real competitive ( i.e affordable ) large-sensor cine camera, because we will go elsewhere if you are too blind to see what we've been waiting for.

April 13, 2015 at 8:22PM

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Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer
31513

Totally agree with this statement, I hope that they are secretly prepping the announcement for later in the week. I gotta have interchangeable lenses...

I love Panasonic (Color Science) and am interested in a sub 10k competitor to the C300. I was certain they would announce one at NAB. A Varicam Mini. I was hoping to purchase this year, it looks like a may be getting an URSA Mini... still keeping my fingers crossed for a mid week announcement.

April 13, 2015 at 8:31PM

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If it had been a constant f/2.8 then I would have purchased this instantly. As it stands now, f/4.5 is too slow for most of the event shooting I do these days.

April 13, 2015 at 8:44PM, Edited April 13, 8:44PM

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Jaime Valles
Filmmaker
384

If it had been a constant 2.8 with a 13x zoom, it would've been the size of an RPG launcher, and the price of an Alexa.

April 14, 2015 at 2:25PM

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Nate Ford
editor/filmmaker
81

Did anyone else read the press release? (newsshooter posted the whole thing)
This bit caught my eye:

"The DVX200 also features an enhanced Image Stabilizer, including a five-axis Hybrid Image Stabilizer and 4x correction-area Image Stabilizer"

XD

April 13, 2015 at 9:12PM

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Lucas Ferreira
Cinematographer
469

Which means it should be a great handheld event/wedding camera, and will probably sell well in those markets.

April 13, 2015 at 9:33PM

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Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer
31513

That might be true. But we have become so spoiled, because, this camera could be used for anything, movies, music videos, commercials. Are our standards reaching so high that we will only consider Red 6K (and now 8K confirmed in the Weapon), Arri, Sony, Canon, to be good for those things? The image from this new Panasonic camera is likely better than nearly everything we saw 5 years ago. But now we have become so spoiled we will call this camera a run n gun camera.

April 15, 2015 at 10:09PM

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Gene Nemetz
live streaming
1407

The main problem I have with the DVX200 is wide angle lenses. The DVX200 zoom starts at a 28mm Full Frame equivalent, which is not wide enough for me. I would be a lot happier if it started at 24mm equivalent or wider.

For example, Voightlander is close to introducing a new 10.5mm f/0.95 Micro 4/3 lens that should be amazing. But there's no way I can use a lens like this with the DVX200 camera.

April 19, 2015 at 12:41AM

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Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer
31513

This is the camera. Constant 2.8 did it

April 14, 2015 at 1:36AM

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guest
165

Not a constant aperture. It's f/2.8 - f/4.5, which is OK for an ENG camera, but I agree that a constant f/2.8 would be better.

April 14, 2015 at 4:37AM

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Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer
31513

Yeah but no one knows yet how far the aperture goes before it changes... The lens in this thing is a FF equivalent of 30-395m. If it stays at 2.8 until 120-150, that's enough. Do you know how much a 400m F2.8 lens costs? More than this camera :)

The only thing I'm worried about is bit rates and bit depth which were not mentioned anywhere.

April 14, 2015 at 9:07AM

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Lucas Ferreira
Cinematographer
469

Sorry for reposting but isn't f2.8 on a m43 the same as f5.6 on a FF ???

April 14, 2015 at 8:55PM

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Only in terms of DOF, exposure wise it's still a f/2.8 lens.

April 19, 2015 at 12:43AM

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Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer
31513

We are going to have to wait for the actual product to start shipping, but so far this mockup it is just a pretty prototype (just like a flashy sports car). Spec wise it is like a HC-X1000 with a bigger sensor. This is the competitor to the Sony PXW-Z100. It should work better in low light due to the larger sensor. There is no mention of professional level codecs. I wish they would stop calling this the "4k DVX100" (DVX was taped based). This should be called the "pro" version of the HC-X1000.

There is a market for "run and gun" 4k camcorders, but we are still waiting for the AF100 successor.

April 14, 2015 at 9:14AM

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I like the HC-X1000 actually.
And I wonder why the Leica Dicomar zoom lens of the AG-DVX200 doesn't share the same maximum aperture of f/ 1.8 - f/ 3.6.
Otherwise I appreciate that it still records on SD cards and other things like the V-Log gamma.
Christian D.

April 14, 2015 at 4:50PM

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Christian DeLancie
Director
74

I think this will be a solid camera for panasonic. Ticks off a lot of the marks that I am looking for on the cheap end of production. I am sure it will be very popular for lots of folks.

April 14, 2015 at 11:55AM

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Erm... Predecessor to the DVX? I think you mean successor.

April 14, 2015 at 7:59PM

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Brynn Sankey
Filmmaker
382

No

April 15, 2015 at 5:00PM

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Nostalgic.

April 15, 2015 at 12:54AM

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Dantly Wyatt
Musical Comedy & Content Creator.
629

Will this be 4:2:2? 10 bit? 12 bit?

Leica lenses have always matched well with Panasonic cams. This being under $5000.00 is another standard for other camera companies will have to adjust to.

4K now being affordable is fantastic. But now that the Red Weapon is confirmed to be 8K it makes me want Panasonic at 6K. ;-)

Arri's thunder for their new 6K, 65mm, camera is stolen by Red's 8K: https://vimeo.com/124732922

10K next? 12 K?

April 15, 2015 at 10:03PM

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Gene Nemetz
live streaming
1407

At first glance, I think this camera will fit the bill as a truly compact "multi-purpose" video camera, especially for the 'run & gun', corporate and event markets.
I think Blackmagic missed the mark with their "Studio" cameras for the very reason of not having integrated servo zoom lens options. Live event and TV productions differ significantly from Cinema style productions and as it has often been stated: there is No single camera that can do it all. Although we are constantly "blurring" the lines between the two disciplines and wanting that elusive "perfect" camera.
It looks to me that this camera is not a "cinema" camera, but you could probably do decent cinema style work with it, just as a lot of people did with it's predecessor, the dvx100.
Maybe, just maybe, the DVX200 offers enough versatility for the average videographer to be able to accommodate a lot of the various scenarios he is asked to shoot, without breaking the bank or needing a ton of accessories, for low and no budget productions.

April 21, 2015 at 4:53PM

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Greg Akeson
Executive Producer
154

This reminds me a lot of the HC-X1000 but with a bigger sensor. Of course the lack of an interchangeable lens drew some flack but I can see this being a great ENG/EFP camera.

July 27, 2015 at 2:55AM, Edited July 27, 2:55AM

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Charles Duoto
Studio Floor Director
1300

Just a quick note about your first paragraph. The DVX200 is NOT the predecessor to the DVX100, it's the successor to the DVX100. The DVX100 is the predecessor to the DVX200.

July 28, 2015 at 10:04AM

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Diesel Pfingsten
Founder, Film Cartel Los Angeles
74