REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
PanasonicAG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder
 
4.6

(based on 43 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (32)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (9)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (2)

95%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Zoom range/performance (36)
  • Easy to use (26)
  • Great picture quality (23)
  • Large clear LCD (17)
  • Great sound (16)

Cons

  • Poor in low light (4)

Best Uses

  • HD shooting (20)
  • Documentaries (19)
  • Weddings (16)
  • Movies/short films (15)
  • Low light (11)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Pro videographer (20), Business owner (8), Semi-pro (6), Enthusiast (5), Professional artist (5)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (42)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

This upgrade is more than worth it.

I work with a video production company that provides Western Washington with custom video services and the AG-HPX250 is a phenomenal camera for our business.

My company recently upgraded from the Panasonic...Read complete review

I work with a video production company that provides Western Washington with custom video services and the AG-HPX250 is a phenomenal camera for our business.

My company recently upgraded from the Panasonic AG-HVX200 to a brand new Panasonic AG-HPX250 and we are thoroughly excited about using the 250 in our upcoming productions.

We love being able to record in 10-bit , instead of 8-bit, for a sharper picture and better keying when we shoot on our CYC wall. Another green screen bonus feature in the 250 is the addition of a Wave Form Monitor built in to the camera's monitor which can be turned on and off with the push of one button. It's amazing, and it allows us to get the perfect key every time. The monitor on the AG-HPX250 is one of the sharpest I have ever seen on a camera, it truly is incredible.

Shooting to P2 card is the best way for us to record high-quality uncompressed footage. With the AG-HPX250 there is no tape mechanism to worry about breaking down in the future, making this camera a no-maintenance, worry free tool with years of use ahead. No tape mechanism in the camera also allows it to be lighter that the old 200 despite having a better lens with a much longer 22 to 1 zoom.

I cannot say that this camera has it all, but it does have everything I look for in a HD camera. The only fault that I have beef with so far would be that when the LCD monitor on the camera is closed there is no button to make it pop open, you just kind of have to paw at it until it pops open. So, keep that in mind if you have no thumbs.

To recap, this camera is quite impressive. Upgrading to the AG-HPX250 is a vast improvement for recording in various High Def formats. The weight of the camera is unexpectedly light, the lens is fast, responsive and powerful, and the extra features loaded into this camera and its super-sharp monitor made this purchase more than worth it.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Possible Lemon

It's interesting that there are so many rave reviews of this camera. I bought one locally and took it back the next day. There were numerous problems. Fatal FlawsThere were two problems that...Read complete review

It's interesting that there are so many rave reviews of this camera. I bought one locally and took it back the next day. There were numerous problems. Fatal FlawsThere were two problems that I would consider fatal flaws and others of high nuisance value. The first fatal flaw was that the camera lost manual focus after rolling and cutting. To test this, with the camera rolling and the iris wide open, zoom in and focus on an object that is 6' or farther from camera (avoids macro mode). Zoom wide and pause the camera. Roll again and zoom back in to the focus point. On the 250 I had the focus was then way off. The other fatal flaw was that when shooting wide open on full manual sometimes highlights would flicker. Sometimes it would happen when the camera rolled then it would settle down. Sometimes it would develop in the middle of a shot. Image QualityI did a side-by-side test with an HPX170. At 720 24pn which is my preferred mode the 250's image is softer than the 170's. And it is weirdly softer in the center of the frame than at the edges. This is with the iris wide open. Maybe this is because the lens is no longer the Leica Dicomar. Also, there was terrible lens flare when wide open. In 1080 the 250 was slightly sharper than the 170.SensitivityThe 250 I tested was a full 10 IRE points less sensitive than the 170. The gamma, knee, matrix and shutter all set the same. This was the case both wide open and at f2.8. I checked at f2.8 to rule out possible differences in the lenses f1.6 rating. See note below about shutter speeds before you test this.Video NoiseSlightly worse than the 170Acoustic NoiseThe zoom motor is quite noisy and is picked up on the camera mic.CODEC issuesThe 720 23.98PN mode in AVCINTRA100 is not the PN you might expect. It consumes slightly less than a gig a minute while the 170 in PN gets 2.5 minutes a gig. This is significant when paying for P2 cards.Now this is strange: The manual shows that 720 23.98 PN is available in DVCPROHD, AVCINTRA100 and AVCINTRA50. On the camera I had it was not the case. A quote from Panasonic's page on the 250: "Native recording modes: In addition to 1080/59.94i with the AVC-Intra codec, native recording is supported at 1080/23.98p or 1080/29.97p and 1080/25pN or 720/25pN. In 720p, native recording is possible for both DVCPRO HD and AVC-Intra, making it possible to extend recordinwith pull-down recording." This was not true on the camera I had. 720 24PN was available in one mode only and it used just shy of a gig a minute. Either the 250 I had was defective or this claim is incorrect.A note to those testing this camera: If you are used to the 170 on which the "shutter off" is 1/50th (yes, on the NTSC version), don't be fooled by the "shutter off" on the 250 which is 1/24th. I think this has led some reviewers to think the 250 is faster than the 170.SizeA friend dropped by while I was testing the 250 and asked, "Why is it so big?" Why indeed? For my taste the 250 is just a little too big to be practical in this form factor, and why? OK the lens has an iris ring and a longer zoom (and lower quality?), but why is the body so big?For reference the serial # of the tested 250 was I1TCA0176

Reviewed by 43 customers

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5.0

Great camcorder

By Michael

from Dayton, Ohio

About Me Pro Videographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Good Image Stabilization
  • Great Picture Quality
  • Large Clear LCD

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Documentaries
    • HD Shooting
    • Travel

    Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

    Finally, a true iris ring. Great image quality. Big step-up from the HVX-200a.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

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    5.0

    Amazing Image Quality at Low Price

    By Nick

    from Lebanon, MO

    About Me Pro Videographer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Easy to Use
    • Good in Low Light
    • Great Picture Quality
    • Great Zoom
    • Nice Iris Control

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Documentaries
      • HD Shooting
      • Home Movies
      • Indoors/Low Light
      • Movies/Short Films
      • Travel
      • Weddings/Events

      Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

      We recently purchased the HPX250 to replace our HPX170. The 20x optical has changed everything coming from a 13x. Not to mention that the native 1080p picture with the CMOS chip have amazing color. We now think that we will not have a need to purchase the HPX 370 since this camera also gets a nice depth of field with the new optics. I would defiantly recommend this camera to anyone. You get a lot for your money.

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      • No

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      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      BEST ON THE MARKET

      By TJ

      from CALIFORNIA

      About Me Semi-pro Videographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy to Use

      Cons

      • Poor In Low Light

      Best Uses

      • Documentaries
      • HD Shooting
      • Home Movies

      Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

      LIGHT, GREAT PRICE, AWESOME PRODUCT

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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      5.0

      Great camera.

      By andy

      from north platte, ne

      About Me Video Enthusiast

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy to Use
      • Good in Low Light
      • Great Picture Quality
      • Great Zoom
      • Tons of features

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Documentaries
        • HD Shooting
        • Indoors/Low Light
        • Movies/Short Films
        • Weddings/Events

        Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

        We bought two of these for iMag at church, replacing older non-SDI cameras. So far, they've worked great. Lens reach is nice and long, colors are accurate, and its easy to use. I was worried about sensor size, but it seems that fear was unjustified, as a well lit speaker in a darkened room doesn't really qualify as a 'low light' situation. That said, performance is on par with many 1/2 sensors.

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        • No

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        4.0

        Complex Camera

        By MudMan

        from St. Louis, Mo

        About Me Video Enthusiast

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Great Picture Quality
        • Great Sound
        • Great Zoom
        • Large Clear LCD

        Cons

        • Complex Options

        Best Uses

        • HD Shooting
        • Movies/Short Films
        • Weddings/Events

        Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

        Great shooting, high quality results. Gives you all the options with full control of video and audio quality, iris, shutter speed, focal length, and several convenient areas to control zoom. Great disk storage capability. My only complaint is that there should be a less expensive alternative method for the casual videographer to download P2 disks.

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        • No

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        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Great Camera for Price

        By BitterJester

        from Highland Park, IL

        About Me Pro Videographer

        Pros

        • Easy to Use
        • Good Image Stabilization
        • Good in Low Light
        • Great Picture Quality
        • Great Sound
        • Great Zoom
        • Large Clear LCD
        • Zoom range/performance

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Documentaries
          • Indoors/Low Light
          • Travel
          • Weddings/Events

          Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

          As with many, upgraded from the DVX to the HVX and now the HPX250. Been using it for a year. Beautiful image. Lowlight is very good. 50mb and 100mb option gives you flexibility. Amazing zoom (with the caveat that f3.6 is a big change from f1.8 so you need to keep that in mind). For filming live events, documentary, and run-and-gun, this is your friend. A great compliment as a second camera to a c300 or Af100 type camera when you don't want to be fighting low depth-of-field. Only 4 stars cause the zebra is different from the HVX and I'm not a fan, but we work around it. I would suspect we'll still be using this camera in 3-4 years for web projects, even as the broadcast world starts to move to 4k.

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          • No

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          (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          A Giant Step Forward

          By Tom

          from Erie, PA

          About Me Pro Videographer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Easy to Use
          • Good Image Stabilization
          • Great Picture Quality
          • Great Zoom
          • Zoom range/performance

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Concerts
            • Documentaries
            • HD Shooting
            • Movies/Short Films
            • Travel
            • Weddings/Events

            Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

            I bought a DVX-100 in 2002, and an HVX-200 in 2007, so I have watched this line of cameras evolve from prosumer to fully professional. This camcorder has all the features I have been praying for: Timecode in and out, SDI and HDMI outputs, 1080p recording, the AVC-Intra codec, and an improved zoom lens. I am a documentary and concert videographer, so I mainly use my cameras at fairly close range, but the extra focal length on this camera comes in quite handy. And, most amazing of all, it's still a very user-friendly camera, easy to handle, well-balanced and not too heavy.

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            • No

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            5.0

            Great camera!

            By Chaz Video

            from Texarkana, TX

            About Me Pro Videographer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Great Picture Quality

            Cons

            • Pricey

            Best Uses

            • HD Shooting

            Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

            We were using some Canons in a LIVE church format. But we experienced 3-4 frames of delay on the SDI output of the camera. This caused serious lip sync issues. We bought a couple of these Panny 250's and it is so much better! There is still about 1 frame delay on the sdi output but it's un-noticeable now.

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            • No

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            5.0

            Great camera.

            By Chaz Video

            from Texarkana, TX

            About Me Pro Videographer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Great Picture Quality

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • HD Shooting

              Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

              We were using some Canons in a LIVE church format. But we experienced 3-4 frames of delay on the SDI output of the camera. This caused serious lip sync issues. We bought a couple of these Panny 250's and it is so much better! There is still about 1 frame delay on the sdi output but it's un-noticeable now.

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              • No

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              (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Great camera I've ever had.

              By mehtap

              from McLean, VA

              About Me Pro Videographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Easy to Use
              • Good Image Stabilization
              • Good in Low Light
              • Great Picture Quality
              • Great Sound
              • Great Zoom
              • Large Clear LCD
              • Zoom range/performance

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Documentaries
                • HD Shooting
                • Home Movies
                • Indoors/Low Light
                • Movies/Short Films
                • Travel
                • Weddings/Events

                Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                I loved this camera and would like to recommend to everybody who is interested video job.I am a freelancer news cameraman and It's quality perfect for my job.I am also filming documentary with this amazing camera and it gave me great result al the time. Yessss I would be happy to recommend this camera to all friends.

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                • No

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                (7 of 13 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                a1!!

                By sfww

                from Brooklyn, NY

                About Me Casual User

                Pros

                • Great Sound

                Cons

                • Poor Image Quality

                Best Uses

                • Documentaries

                Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                I love this camcrder

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                A significant improvement

                By Dermfellow

                from Inland Northwest

                About Me Semi-pro Videographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Good Image Stabilization
                • Great Picture Quality
                • Great Sound
                • Great Zoom
                • Large Clear LCD
                • Zoom range/performance

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Documentaries
                  • HD Shooting
                  • Movies/Short Films
                  • Weddings/Events

                  Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                  After using two excellent products, the HVX200 and the HPX170, I was happy with the image quality of these two camcorders and the DVCPRO-HD codec, and for the most part, I still am. But Panasonic has listened to people like me and the nitpicky gripes we had about the cameras and our reservations about the 8-bit DVCPRO codec. The HPX250 is a much improved camera, with a better screen, more options, and especially a new 10-bit codec that makes the footage more robust in post-production. The images look great compared to its predecessors (which is saying something because the image quality of the HVX200 and HPX170 are excellent in the hands of an experienced videographer). The HPX250 is a real winner!

                  Now the reality check: the AVCIntra-100 codec is more efficient and looks better than DVCPRO-HD, but it requires considerably heavier lifting for your workflow. Make sure your computer is up to the task before using it, or consider using an intermediate for editing. P2 cards are still too expensive, but they've come a long ways down from the stratospheric cost they used to be. The expenditure for this model is quite high for a one man shop or small video outfit; but, it is the least expensive model where AVCIntra is an option, and just like going from SD to HD, once you've experienced the improved quality, you won't want to go back. It was a no-brainer for us.

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                  • No

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                  (9 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  4.0

                  Great Camera

                  By frogman

                  from Honolulu, HI

                  About Me Pro Videographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Easy to Use
                  • Good Image Stabilization
                  • Great Picture Quality
                  • Great Zoom
                  • Large Clear LCD
                  • Zoom range/performance

                  Cons

                  • No Simultaneous Recording
                  • Poor In Low Light

                  Best Uses

                  • Documentaries
                  • HD Shooting
                  • Travel
                  • Weddings/Events

                  Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                  This is a great camera. The image is super crisp and sharp. The 10-bit 4:2:2 color is really superb and the 22X zoom is dynamite. The camera also has a great macro ability that is rarely mentioned. The camera is not as good as the Sony EX1R or Sony PMW200 is low light conditions, but you wouldn't expect it to be since it is an 1/3" sensor and not the 1/2" sensor that is used on the Sonys. My only complaint so far is that the camera does not shoot simultaneously to both P2 cards for an instant backup as advertised on B&H and other sites. I have since gone to the Panasonic website and they do not list simultaneous recording in their list of features. Though I am disappointed by this I am still very pleased with the camera and its many functions.

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                  • No

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                  (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Solid Performer

                  By G Whiz

                  from Washington, DC

                  About Me Pro Videographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • 10 Bit Full Raster
                  • Easy to Use
                  • Good in Low Light
                  • Great Picture Quality
                  • Great Sound
                  • Great Zoom
                  • Large Clear LCD
                  • Zoom range/performance

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Documentaries
                    • HD Shooting
                    • Home Movies
                    • Indoors/Low Light
                    • Movies/Short Films
                    • Travel
                    • Weddings/Events

                    Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                    I sold my two HVXs and needed a true broadcast replacement. This camera at true 1080p and 10bit is a dream. Truly worth the price and is a great performer in its category.

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

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                    (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Punches way above it's weight

                    By Digital Island

                    from South Florida

                    About Me Pro Videographer

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Easy to Use
                    • Good Image Stabilization
                    • Good in Low Light
                    • Great Picture Quality
                    • Great Sound
                    • Great Zoom
                    • Zoom range/performance

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Documentaries
                      • HD Shooting
                      • Indoors/Low Light
                      • Movies/Short Films
                      • Travel

                      Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                      We purchased this cam to replace our aging Pana hvx-200's. We got a HPX 370 at the same time as the 250. We find ourselves very satisfied with the powerful 28 - 616mm lens on the 250 and often choose to shoot with it over the 370 because of the lens. The cam is very solidly built and there are plenty of threaded accessory holes. Colors are spot on and not over saturated. Excellent low light camera and the OIS rocks.

                      WB preset is useless and leaves you with a greenish picture.
                      Our lens recently started focusing on its own even though it was set to manual. Factory repaired it for free, but now the # scale is incorrect and reads about +30 ft over where you are focused.
                      Overall a great piece of gear for budget minded clients that need excellent HD quality.

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                      • No

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                      (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      HPX250

                      By Eric

                      from Richmond, CA

                      About Me Pro Videographer

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Great Sound
                      • Large Clear LCD
                      • Zoom range/performance

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Documentaries

                        Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                        I need a fixed lens camera - an attached zoom that covers the requirements of documentary shooting. The Panasonic HPX250 does a great job of covering my lens choice and codec needs. The wide angle end of the lens allows for close shooting and the long end is adequate. The P2 workflow into FCPX is easy enough with the Panasonic PCD2 card reader. While it is a bit bulkier than the HPX170 it replaces, it is still easy to handhold. In the small sensor fixed zoom lens market it is a reliable tool that performs.

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                        • No

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                        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        Gets the job done!

                        By Sasjoberg

                        from Fargo, ND

                        About Me Pro Videographer

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Easy to Use
                        • Good Image Stabilization
                        • Good in Low Light
                        • Great Picture Quality
                        • Great Sound
                        • Great Zoom
                        • Large Clear LCD
                        • Zoom range/performance

                        Cons

                        • Complicated To Operate

                        Best Uses

                        • Documentaries
                        • HD Shooting
                        • Indoors/Low Light
                        • Movies/Short Films
                        • Travel
                        • Weddings/Events

                        Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                        Between the built in nd filter, zoom lens and professional constuction, this camera gets the job done. This is the 2nd I have bought. Use it for company videos - studio work, on location - outside or dark warehouses. Great all around.

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                        • No

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                        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        A beast

                        By Alan

                        from Chicago

                        About Me Semi-pro Videographer

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Great Picture Quality
                        • Great Zoom
                        • Zoom range/performance

                        Cons

                        • Complicated To Operate
                        • Heavyish

                        Best Uses

                        • Documentaries
                        • Movies/Short Films

                        Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                        We use this for documentary work, primarily. It's a tad larger than I'd like but it's a fine machine and the imagery is beautiful.

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                        • No

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                        (2 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        Versatile and Easy to Use

                        By ASHLine Stephen

                        from Tucson, Arizona

                        About Me Video Enthusiast

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Easy to Use
                        • Great Picture Quality
                        • Great Sound
                        • Large Clear LCD
                        • Zoom range/performance

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                          • HD Shooting
                          • Home Movies
                          • Indoors/Low Light
                          • Movies/Short Films
                          • Weddings/Events

                          Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                          I use this camera in a number of different ways, from shooting tripod of shows to free form shooting on hikes and at parties. It never disappoints. After a few quick lessons from the manual on where everything is, I had no problem using this and making adjustments was quick and easy. I love that I can easily pick it up and do shoulder shooting with ease. If I had any complaints, it's just that a few of the controls are a bit sensitive. But maybe I just need to learn to be more gentle. Wouldn't hesitate to get another one.

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                          (8 of 11 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          1.0

                          Beware of lens failure out of box

                          By discman

                          from Manitoba, Canada

                          About Me Semi-pro Videographer

                          Pros

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                                Comments about Panasonic AG-HPX250 P2 HD Handheld Camcorder:

                                I purchased this camera from BH a few months ago. Straight out of the box it had a flickering, grainy LCD display--however, I ignored the problem because the recorded video seemed okay. The problem suddenly became worse a month later and I was forced to send it to Panasonic. They said it needed a whole new lens assembly (4500 dollar repair.) I am a Canadian, so the warranty did not apply, and Panasonic USA won't accept packages from Canada.

                                Very unfortunate experience with this camera. The camera may be worthy of five stars, but I wouldn't know.

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                                • No

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