by Seth Emmons. Photos by Max Skrein. Additional photos by Seth Emmons.
Last night we joined hundreds of industry professionals at the Directors Guild of America LA building for a well-run presentation of the VariCam LT. After a nice sizzle reel of VariCam 35 projects and testimonials from filmmakers, Mr. Miyagi, Director of Panasonic’s Professional Video Business Unit, unveiled the new camera with unmistakable enthusiasm.
The new VariCam LT is based on the existing VariCam 35 sensor but repackages it in a smaller, lighter, more movement-friendly body with easily removable accessories. And following the trend of other smaller, lighter, less expensive cameras, the Varicam LT has the option to use either an EF lens mount or a PL lens mount. Unfortunately, lens design and manufacturing doesn’t lend itself to Moore’s Law in the way that cameras and electronics do—lenses take longer. Offering less expensive EF lens options will broaden the market for this new camera.
To illustrate the difference, Panasonic had multiple cameras setup around the lobby of the DGA in various configurations, including handheld, cine, studio and the obligatory gimbal. The cameras were outfitted with a range of lenses from Leica cine lenses to Canon EF and a large Fujinon zoom in studio mode. Codex was also there showing the RAW recording and workflow.
The presentation was nearly perfect in length, balance of footage to talking, low number of slides. It was a great mix of people, with ASC cinematographers, camera operators, assistants, rental houses, resellers and product partners. It was a wonderful welcome for this newest member of the Panasonic VariCam family.