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Panasonic HC-Z10000 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £2891
inc VAT

It shoots high-quality 2D and 3D footage, with a full 1080p frame per eye, but the laggy electronic zoom control and touchscreen reliance detract slightly


3x 1/4.1in CMOS sensor, 1,920×1,080, 12.0x zoom, 1.6kg

3D video cameras have traditionally fallen into two broad ranges: low-budget models that you can use for a bit of fun, such as the Sony Bloggie 3D, and high-end professional models for film and TV. With its Z10000 Panasonic has taken a different tack, producing a high-end 3D model with plenty of control that’s designed for enthusiasts.

At just shy of £3,000, the Z10000 can’t be described as cheap, but for the level of control, range of inputs and quality there’s simply nothing else at this price that’s even remotely similar. You also have to take into account that this model is a proper 3D camera, using dual 3MOS sensors (six 1/4.1in sensors in total). That means there’s a one 3MOS sensor for each eye’s image, so you can shoot Full HD progressive video in 3D, rather than using a compromise, such as the side-by-side system budget models use, where each eye’s image gets half of a 1080p resolution.

Panasonic HC-Z10000 XLR inputs
Dual XLR inputs let you attach high-quality microphones for better sound recording.

From the outside, the HDC-Z1000 is an impressive-looking bit of kit. Its large body houses the lens assembly at the front for the dual 3D lenses, plus there are two XLR microphone inputs (with phantom power) for audio, so you can use proper microphones and capture better-quality audio than by using the built-in Dolby Digital 5.1 microphone array.

As this model’s aimed at the enthusiast market, there are also three lens rings for zoom, focus and iris control. Zoom controls also sit on rocker switchers on the side, when using the camera in a traditional hand-held grip, and on the carry handle. Dual XDHC memory card slots are nice to see and you can configure them so that the second card’s for overflow shooting or for a backup, so you can protect any precious footage from memory card failure.

Panasonic HC-Z10000 side
Discrete controls for most commonly-used features, let you take full control of the video you’re shooting.

The side of the camera consists of a set of dedicated buttons for most of the common controls, letting you quickly switch between automatic and manual modes for iris and focus, toggle the optical image stabilisation and switch between the white balance modes (auto, 3200K, 5600K, two user modes and a lock on the current automatically detected setting). There are also three programmable user buttons, but it’s a shame that there’s no quick method to adjust the shutter speed.

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Basic Specifications

Rating ****


Optical zoom 12.0x
Digital zoom N/A
Sensor 3x 1/4.1in CMOS
Sensor pixels 3,050,000
Widescreen mode native
LCD screen size 3.5in
Viewfinder type colour touchscreen
Video lamp No
Video recording format AVCHD 2.0
Video recording media SDXC
Sound Dolby Digital 5.1
Video resolutions 1,920×1,080
Maximum image resolution N/A
Memory slot 2x SDXC
Mermory supplied none
Flash no


Digital inputs/outputs USB, HDMI out
Analogue inputs/outputs AV out, 2x XLR in
Other connections charge jack, hotshoe
Battery type Li-ion
Battery life 6h 32m
Battery charging position camcorder or charger
Size 145x195x350mm
Weight 1.6kg

Buying Information

Warranty one year RTB
Price £2,891

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