Panasonic HPX-301 and the “Dancing black dots”

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As you know I am doing a review of the HPX-301 camcorder at the moment and it has been delayed because I have discovered an unusual phenomena when I lift the gain to 9dB…’dancing black dots’. These black dots are apparent in the purple and black parts of the colour chart. I am now going to press with this because a few owners are now reporting this on various forums so it has become public knowledge. I phoned Panasonic’s Rob Tarrant last week and he has informed Panasonic Japan. Before we all get hung up on speculation and 1/3″ chip theories, this may only happen in a few camcorders some users are reporting no noise problems, if that is the case Panasonic will have a fix for the rogues that have entered the marketplace. Personally I don’t think it is a noise issue, I think the action of adding 9dB is exacerbating what seems to be electronic breakthrough in other words I think this is caused by a substandard PCB component that is leaking interference into the picture. I hope to get some answers on Monday morning from Panasonic UK, I will keep you updated.

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