Sanyo unveils world's-first 1080p consumer cams

It seems that Sanyo decided to wait for the dust to settle on CES before it unveiled its new camcorder range, hoping that the announcement wouldn't be drowned out by the hundreds of others at the show.

It turns out they needn't have bothered, because its new range of camcorders contains some impressive, headline-grabbing new features.

First up are the DMX-HD2000 and DMX-FH11. Even though there are a number of consumer camcorders that offer hi-def shooting, these claim to be the world's first consumer cams to shoot full HD footage in the progressive format (1080p).

The HD2000 has a pistol-grip design and also moonlights as a 'real' stills camera. This feature is shared by all the models in the new range: Sanyo has popped a 8 megapixel CMOS sensor into each camcorder, so the static shots you take should rival most compact cameras.

The DMX-FH11 has near-identical features to the HD2000, but it's significantly different in body shape, making use of a horizontal style more akin to the majority of standard HD cameras on the market. Both cams shoot to MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 format, forgoing AVCHD compression, so expect your memory space to be eaten up quickly.

On that note, the DMX-FH11 has 8GB built-in memory and both cameras support up to 32GB SDHC cards

As for shooting features, there's the ability to shoot high-speed video at 240fps or 600fps and an Enhanced zoom feature, which apparently boosts zoom to 16x without any loss of quality.

Waterproof camcorders

The other camcorders announced also boast a few world firsts in their spec lists, albeit slightly less impressive ones.

The DMX-CA9 and DMX-WH1 are the world's first waterproof HD cameras (Sanyo's words) and pack a 30x zoom, so you don't have to get too close to those pesky sharks to take a decent picture.

Don't expect to do any deep-sea diving with these cams though, as their official submersion rates are rather low at 1.5m (MX-CA9) and 3m (DMX-WH1) respectively.

The final release is the DMX-CG10. In another world first, this cam has a 10 megapixel CMOS sensor for stills shooting and is HD ready – both features have never been in a camcorder before, apparently.

The new range should hit the UK around February/March time. TechRadar is attending the official UK launch of the new range tonight, so expect more information soon.

Marc Chacksfield

Marc Chacksfield is the Editor In Chief, at DC Thomson. He started out life as a movie writer for numerous (now defunct) magazines and soon found himself online - editing a gaggle of gadget sites, including TechRadar, Digital Camera World and Tom's Guide UK. At Shortlist you'll find him mostly writing about movies and tech, so no change there then.