Panasonic HC-V700 Camcorder Review
Panasonic makes use of the AVCHD compression system on the V700 and the camcorder is compliant with AVCHD 2.0 (progressive) standards. This means the 1080/60p mode on the camcorder makes use of the AVHCD compression system. It's still hard to find compatible editing software to work with 1080/60p clips, though, and certain programs become dysfunctional when you attempt to import 1080/60p clips. We've had success with Adobe Premiere Pro, but Apple's Final Cut software and iMovie are not currently compatible with 1080/60p video shot with the V700.
The camcorder's regular AVCHD recording modes, which make use of 60i frame rates, are compatible with any programs that can import AVCHD clips. The iFrame setting on the V700 is also designed to work smoothly with iMovie, as the compression format was developed by Apple itself.
Read more about the advantages and disadvantages of various high definition compression types.
There are two ways to store your video content using the Panasonic V700. First, there's the camcorder's 16GB of internal flash memory. This memory is built-in, so it's not removable, but it is always there wherever you take the camcorder. Of course, it still fills up pretty quickly, and if that's the case then you have to either delete content or move onto the V700's second media option: memory cards. On the bottom of the camcorder is card slot that works with regular-sized SD/SDHC/SDXC memory cards. Read more about the advantages and disadvantages of various media types.
Resolution & Frame Rates
Most record modes on the V700 capture Full HD video at a 1920 x 1080 resolution. The 1080/60p option is the highest-quality setting on the camcorder (making use of the highest bitrate), but the 60i record modes all make use of a 1920 x 1080 resolution as well. The iFrame mode is the only option that doesn't record Full HD video. It records at a 960 x 540 resolution and uses a 30p frame rate, but it produces video files that are still quite large due to the mode's high bitrate.
The HC-V700 may be loaded with over 15 megapixels on its image sensor, but the camcorder's still image size options only go up to 6 megapixels. This leaves us to wonder why Panasonic decided to make a sensor with so many pixels in the first place. The effective pixel count of the image sensor is just 3.55 megapixels for stills, so even the 6-megapixel photo option is somewhat interpolated. It's just a 3.55-megapixel photo that's stretched to 3024 x 2016 without adding any detail.
But all this talk about photo size options isn't even that important, because if you truly care about image quality, you should be taking photos with a dedicated camera—not the V700 camcorder. Save the camcorder for video, that's what it's good at. This didn't stop Panasonic from including plenty of still features on the HC-V700. There's are three aspect ratio options, a high-speed burst mode, a self-timer, and a built-in flash with red-eye reduction and intensity settings. All of these options are found on the V700's dedicated still image mode, but you can also snap photos in video mode as well (your options are just more limited).