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JVC brings 1080p pocket camera to the US

updated 08:10 am EDT, Tue October 13, 2009

JVC Picsio pocket HD cams make NA debut

JVC on Tuesday exported its first-ever pocket camcorder to US shores. The Picsio GC-FM1 is one of the few cameras its size to record in 1080p (albeit 4:3) at a full 30 frames per second with image stabilization. It also has a 720p, 60FPS shooting mode and a toggle to switch to 8-megapixel still image shooting. All movies are captured in H.264 (AVCHD) in a format that can be immediately sent to iMovie, iTunes or YouTube without being transcoded first.

The camera aims at giving more control than a camera like a Flip Mino HD with a dedicated directional pad and discrete buttons. Expansion is also an emphasis as the Picsio uses SDHC cards instead of fixed storage, but it still has HDMI output for a full-resolution preview.

Black, blue and pink versions of the GC-FM1 should be in stores soon, if not today, and sell for $200 each.

By Electronista Staff
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  1. vasic

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2005



    4:3????? Something ain't right here. Hi-def standard does NOT support 4:3 aspect ratio for picture (only 16:9). Most video editing apps wouldn't even know what to do with a 4:3 video inside a HD timeline.

    After checking the manual (on the linked site), it seems that 4:3 applies only to stills, and video is captured in proper HD aspect and resolution.

  1. climacs

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: Sep 2001



    it letterboxes the HD video to a 4:3 aspect ratio? If so that would kind of suck, wouldn't it?

  1. hayesk

    Professional Poster

    Joined: Sep 1999



    The 1080p is 16:9 but it's 1440 x 1080 - so it uses rectangular pixels instead of square ones. So it's it's not "Full HD" as it doesn't have the 1920 wide resolution but it is 1080 high.

  1. vasic

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2005


    16:9 at 1440x1080

    The anamorphic version of HD at 1440x1080 is standard on EVERY tape-based HD camcorder (i.e. HDV). The old HDV does not even support 1920x1080. AVCHD-based consumer camcorders are capable of doing "full" HD at 1920x1080, but only at bitrates of 17Mbps and above; at slower bitrates, even they capture at 1440x1080.

    So, there's no letterboxing on these, and the resolution is not unusual. Based on the max. recording times mentioned in the manual, it seems that the maximum bitrate of these devices is 12Mbps. There should be a lot of blurring and/or pixelation in shots with a lot of moving objects. Otherwise, there is a chance it may produce decent HD (especially for the money).

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