The Drentsoft Blog

Drentsoft Acquires New Camera

Submitted by Drentsoft on Sunday, 15 January 2012

Drentsoft recently acquired a new video camera. The Panasonic AF101 has a Micro 4/3 (~4/3") sensor. This is a near-35mm sensor, so called because the cinema celluloid standard for many decades has been a 25mm film. This allows more light to be transmitted to the sensor compared to the more common sensor sizes of 1/3" or 2/3". With smaller sensors, the aperture must also be smaller in order to project the image from the lens onto the smaller sensor area and as the basic physics of light and photography says, the smaller the aperture, the less light can be transmitted to the film/sensor.

There are several advantages to larger sensors. The first is that you can get better exposed images with less controlled light. For example, in a normally lit office, where a more traditional camcorder might require additional professional lighting to even come close to perfect exposure the larger sensored AF101 uses the additional lighting as an extra creative tool, rather than a neccessity.

The second advantage is that utilising larger apertures allows for shallower depth of field which is heavily sought after in many types of photography and videography where the subject matter needs to be separated from the background. This has been very difficult to achieve with traditional camcorders without moving further back from the subject and zooming all the way in to the telephoto end of the lens. There are often two difficulties in doing this however. The first is due to the fact that you might not be able to move far enough from the subject in an office or outside of a studio environment. The second is that given that modern lenese are constructed to save space, they often have a reduced aperture at the telephoto end, again requiring even more controlled lighting to get a correctly exposed shot.

The AF101 also uses Panasonic and Olympus' recently created Micro 4/3 lens system and allows you to change the lens you use with the camera, much like a DSLR stills camera. Interchangable lenses means you have much greater creative control when shooting. Using relatively cost-effective lens mount adapters the AF101 can connect lenses from Panasonic/Olympus' 4/3 lens system, Sony lenses and Nikon's F mount lenses. Given the quality and many years of Nikon creating F and compatible G lenses using a Nikon adapter will give you almost all the control you could ever need.

The AF101 records to very affordable SDHC/SDXC cards which are significantly more cost-effective than other formats such as Panasonic P2 flash or Sony SXS cards allowing Drentsoft to pass the savings onto the customer.

The AF101 has an industry standard BNC connection for outputting HD/SDI signals for use with external monitors for better image acquisition or external recorders for redundant parallel recording. It also has a consumer-grade HDMI output for similar functionality. Combined with the Atomos Ninja or Samurai external recorder/monitor the AF101 becomes a much more powerful image acquisition tool in a relatively compact space.

In short, Drentsoft are immensely pleased with the recent purchase of the AF101 and we hope to record many hundreds of hours of quality footage with it. If you require a company profile for your website, a new training video for your staff or your latest event filmed to be turned into a DVD for purchase, get in contact on the contact page.