Last Updated on July 10, 2020
- 4K Ultra HD recording, plus in-camera editing for 1080p displays
- 1/2.3-inch BSI MOS Sensor
- LEICA Dicomar Lens optical 20x zoom
- 5-axis Hybrid Optical Image Stabilization
- Tilting 0.24″ EVF / 3.0″ Touchscreen LCD
- Built-in Twin Camera & Wireless Multi-Camera
- 4K Cinema in-camera editing and effects
- High Dynamic Range (HDR) mode
Panasonic HC-WXF991K Introduction Video
Panasonic HC-WXF991K Overview
At the CES event in 2016, Panasonic unveiled a series of 4K consumer camcorder models – their first. For this year’s event, they showcased updates to those models and one of those was the HC-WXF991K which replaces the WX970. New features of the model include a tiltable electronic viewfinder, 24p recording, slow-motion effects and dolly-zoom effects. Features that remain include Twin Video Camera and the rotating camera on the LCD door providing second HD feed for picture-in-picture video. Panasonic also added 4K Cropping, which allows users to extract a cropped area of an HD video.
The Panasonic HC-WXF991K offers 4K Ultra HD video recording as well as in-camera editing and creative effects. Along with wireless multi-camera functionality, the camera allows users to capture different angles and viewpoints at once. All of these combined make for a unique video experience, but is Panasonic’s camcorder worth the shot?
Design & Features
The HC-WXF991K from Panasonic comes with an array of features, including:
This is a secondary camera that is built into the edge of the LCD monitor. What this does is provide 270-degree panning as well as +/- 20-degree tilting to enable users to record two angles at the same time. The video that is being recorded in the secondary camera appears in a sub-window for picture-in-picture recording. The secondary camera’s narration mode allows the voice of the user to be emphasized during a recording.
While allowing users to record from different angles simultaneously, the HC-WXF991K also has another great feature: wireless multi-camera. This feature expands on the picture-in-picture recording offered by the Twin Camera feature and what it does is allow up to three mobile devices to be connected to the camera over WiFi and use two of those to record picture-in-picture images. This feature gives users more creativity on how they can shoot videos and make moments. In short, this feature makes it easier for users to capture multiple angles and viewpoints simultaneously.
Panasonic’s HC-WXF991K has a set of built-in editing tools that allow users to crop 4K video as well as add various effects such as panning, stabilizing, tracking and zooming. The videos that are cropped from 4K will be saved at 1080p resolution.
4K Photo Mode
This feature allows users to pause a video at a certain moment and extract 4K images from those frames.
The HC-WXF991K from Panasonic comes with a range of cinema-like effects that allow users to simulate shooting techniques seen in films. These effects include Slow Motion Video, Slow & Quick Video, Slow Zoom, and Dolly Zoom.
High Dynamic Range Movie Mode
This comes in handy when a subject is back-lit as the HDR Movie Mode is able to maintain the gradation in the images. HDR works by combining two images that were taken using different exposure times. The blown highlights are suppressed and the shadows are blocked which creates videos that are crisper and clearer.
Tilting Electronic Viewfinder
A tilting EVF comes in handy during bright daylight. Adjusting the 0.24” screen offers users a more comfortable recording.
5-Axis HYBRID O.I.S+
This prevents blurring and jitters in videos when users don’t use a tripod or any other kind of stabilizer. This feature stabilizes on the five axes: pan, roll and tilt as well as horizontal and vertical directions.
Level Shot Function
When there is tilting in images, this feature automatically corrects it. Three options are provided: OFF, Normal or Strong. The choice users make will depend on the shooting conditions they are in.
Through the use of WiFi, users can control the camera remotely using their smartphones or tablets, as long as the Panasonic mobile app is installed. Users can live stream video using USTREAM so they can share moments as they happen with friends and family. WiFi also allows users to easily share recorded videos.
Pros & Cons
It’s always best to weight the good with the bad before making any major purchase. While the HC-WXF991K looks impressive from a feature standpoint, it definitely has some flaws. You will find a list of the camera’s most impressive features as well as its not-so-good side. Knowing these will allow you to determine whether the camera is the right one for you or not.
- Very good video quality
- Capturing video from different angle
- Provides 5-axis image stabilization
- Offers in-camera editing and cinema-like effects
- Background noise can be heard when recording in an empty room
- Color isn’t rendered faithfully when shooting in low-light conditions (purple becomes blue)
- Images become blurry when using the max zoom level
What’s the difference between HC-WXF991 and WXF990?
Not very much. Since both models are part of Panasonic’s 4K Ultra HD Camcorder series. They both have an integral Leica Dicomar 20x optical zoom lens, 5-axis hybrid optical stabilization, 4K Cinema in-camera editing effects, in-camera downsampling for 1080p Full HD displays, 4K photo stills from video frames, and built-in Wi-Fi links, among others. One stark difference is the price point.
Overall, the Panasonic HC-WXF991K is a gem of a camera. In addition to being able to shoot 4K video, it offers users with in-camera cinema creative and editing solutions which allows the creation of more professional looking footage.
|Sensor||1x 18.91 Megapixel 1/2.3″ MOS Sensor|
|Effective Pixels||8,300,000 @ Video 16:9
6,100,000 @ Video 16:9
8,300,000 @ Photo 16:9
7,000,000 @ Photo 3:2
6,200,000 @ Photo 4:3
|Shutter Speed||1/24-1/8000 sec|
|Outputs||1x HDMI D (Micro)
1x USB 2.0
|Package Weight||1.95 lb|
|Box Dimensions (LxWxH)||8.9 x 5.9 x 4.1″|
- Get in Close and Detail: 18.91 Megapixel...
- 1/2.3-Inch BSI Sensor: The Back Side...
- 4K Recording and In-Camera Editing:...
- HDR Movie Feature: Exclusive...
- 4K video and 4K photo: Panasonic’s...
- Leica DC Vario Elmarit lens: 24x zoom...
- High image Quality: The 12.1 Megapixel...
- Rugged Camera Design: Splash...
- Fine Detail Performance: 16 megapixel...
- Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera:...
- Class Leading Dual Image Stabilization:...
- Live Viewfinder and Flip LCD Display:...
Panasonic HC-WXF991K Overview
If you’re looking for a camcorder that records and plays back 4K Ultra HD video at 24/30fps, you won’t go wrong with a Panasonic HC-WXF991K 4K Ultra HD Camcorder. Did we mention that it’s a twin camera and wireless multi-camera?
It is because of these features that the Panasonic WXF991 is considered the best of the hand-held 4K video capture. As prosumer camcorders go, this baby packs some great features that are not found from its predecessors.
Design & Features
These days, most camcorders are about small sizes that are packed with snazzy capabilities. The Panasonic HC-WXF991K 4K Ultra HD Camcorder differentiates itself by adding a few inches in its dimensions in order to accommodate a ton of features. It is bigger than the Panasonic HC-WX970K 4K Ultra-HD Camcorder, but smaller than Sony FDR-AX53 4K Ultra HD Handycam, at 2.7 x 3.1 x 6.4″ / 68.0 x 78.0 x 163.0 mm.
It features a 1/2.3-inch backside illuminated MOS sensor with an effective resolution of 8.29mp. Combined with Crystal Engine 4K image processor, the camcorder can support 1080p video up to 60FPS and 4K UHD video at 24/30FPS. It comes with an HDR movie mode, in-camera 4K editing tools, and built-in cinema like effects. The editing tools let you crop, zoom, pan, stabilize and track 4K footage. All edited videos will be saved in 1080p resolution.
The 20x optical zoom range provided by the Leica Dicomar lens gets a boost from the intelligent zoom range of up to 25x for 4K recording and up to 40x for Full HD. The same lens provide the camcorder a 35mm equivalent focal length 30.8 mm at the wide end.
The Panasonic HC-WXF991K 4K Ultra HD Camcorder comes with a secondary camera that is built into the edge of the 3-inch LCD monitor, giving you twin cameras for the price of one. You can use this camera for ±20° tilting for recording two angles at the same time, and 270° panning. It boasts of a 5.27MP, 1/4″ MOS sensor, 37.2mm (35mm equivalent) and f/2.2 lens.
Still unsatisfied with 2 cameras? The HC-WXF991K also has a wireless multi-camera feature that expands the picture-in-picture recording of the twin camera. You can easily capture multiple angles and viewpoints simultaneously using up to three mobile devices connected with a camcorder over Wi-Fi, and using two out of the three devices for recording.
If you want to capture every precious moment down to the minute detail, you can record the entire event and then use the 4K Photo Mode to extract still images. Just play the video, pause and then get pictures from 4K video frames. This will give you photographs at 8.9mp.
But how can the Panasonic HC-WXF991K 4K Ultra HD Camcorder provide cinema-like effects?
You can choose from different settings that simulate shooting techniques used in movies. These include Slow Zoom, Slow Motion Video, Slow & Quick Video, and Dolly Zoom. Along with the high dynamic range (HDR) movie mode, you can capture videos and stills that are crisper and clearer.
The tilting electronic viewfinder (EVF), on the other hand, lets you view an object or subject in bright light. For more comfortable recording, simply slide or tilt the EVF.
Other features of the Panasonic HC-WXF991K 4K Ultra HD Camcorder are the 5-Axis HYBRID O.I.S.+, level shot function and Wi-Fi functionality.
Pros and Cons
- Produces high-quality 4K images
- Better, more capable manual controls
- Return of the EVF
- New slow-motion modes have been added
- Excellent built-in microphone with provisions to connect a mixer
- Lacks a lens control ring
- Not the most affordable prosumer camcorder
- Still not a full camera hybrid
- Battery life needs improvement
- Requires a 4K TV or computer monitor for better playback viewing
The Panasonic HC-WXF991K 4K Ultra HD Camcorder may not be perfect, but it is a lot better than its predecessors. It is also a better choice than a Sony FDR-AX53. Technical specs aside, the camcorder supports portability and easy handling. Given its price point, this camcorder is a great buy. Still, you might want to ask yourself if you need all those features when all you will use the camera for is to point and record.
Hm-970 Overview ( out of manufacture )
4K 3840 x 2160/25p
HD 1920 x 1080/50p
Has a second camera so you can record yourself
Wifi enabled with live streaming
Latest 4k sensor from Panasonic.
Panasonic HC-WX970 4K Camera Review
First announced at CES 2015, the Panasonic HC-WX970 is one of two 4K camcorders released for consumers. The other camcorder is the similarly featured Panasonic HC-WX870.
Panasonic has been rolling out 4K UHD for targeted for high-end camera users since 2014 – Luimix FZ1000, GH4 and LX100. With the release of both the HC-WX970 and the HC-WX870, Panasonic now has entries for 4K devices especially for the consumer camcorder market.
While the two cameras are aimed at regular users, Panasonic believes they are sophisticated enough to cater to the needs of professional users.
The HC-WX970 also comes with a “Twin Camera” feature, which is a secondary camera placed in the flip-out LCD. This can be used to shoot picture-in-picture, selfies and a whole lot more. For example, you can be at a football game with the game all tied up and all that is needed is a touchdown so your home team can walk away with a victory. As you’re filming this historic moment, you can also film your reaction. Another example the feature is good for is conducting an interview where you can film you and your subject together. Now, this isn’t exactly a novel idea, but the one that Panasonic has does allow you to pan and tilt.
Features & Capabilities
The Panasonic HC-WX970 4K camera is capable of shooting 4K video at 50p, as well as high dynamic range (HDR) capabilities. The HDR video capability works just like in photo where two videos are filmed using different exposures. These images are then combined to produce a better looking 60p video. Although it does offer HDR capability, this feature only works in Full HD Mode.
Anyone who’s ever played with 4K knows just how lifelike the captured moment is. And with the HC-WX970, Panasonic gives you what’s called a 4K Photo Mode where you can grab a high-quality 8-megapixel still from a 4K frame.
Fast and accurate autofocusing is also offered by the HC-WX970 4K camcorder thanks in part to its 4K sensor, as well as minimal handshake owed to a hybrid optical image stabilization system with 5-axis correction. Rolling shutter distortion is also reduced with the camera and is credited to the 4K sensor and high-speed signal processing
]Panasonic also teamed up with Leica to create a new lens for their 4K camcorders. This way, the cameras remain compact even when using a zoom up to 20x. The new lens also allows a more precise autofocus.
Panasonic HC-WX970 Test Footage
One of the biggest differences between the cameras is that the Panasonic HC-WX870 does not have the Twin Camera feature present. However, it is possible to mimic the same output. All you need is a smartphone that you connect to the camcorder through WiFi.
Other Notable Features:
Baby Calendar / Stop-Motion Animation Assist
Set the name and birthday of your baby to display thumbnail images of recorded scenes around the date. This makes it easier to find relevant images.
Built-in filter effects allow you to match video recordings to shooting situation.
Full-HD Slow Motion Video
The HC-WX970 can record Full-HD video at 120 fps, but a more dramatic slow motion effect can be achieved through Crystal Engine’s Intelligent Frame Creation.
Level Shot Function
Detects and corrects tilting in images automatically.
5-Axis HYBRID OIS
Reduces blurring in videos when shooting using your hands or when not using a tripod or any kind of stabilizer.
Control several in-camera features such as Focus, White Balance, Shutter Speed, Iris, Sharpness, Color Saturation and Brightness.
- Ultra sharp 4K ultra HD recording, plus...
- Electronic Viewfinder EVF emulates a...
- Leica Decoma Lens optical 20x zoom, 5...
- Built in Twin Camera, plus Wi Fi mobile...