Customer Reviews


49 Reviews
5 star:
 (31)
4 star:
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3 star:
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90 of 92 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great quality over older HD and wide angle lens!
I bought the HC-V500 today as an upgrade to my 4 year old Panasonic HD SD5.
The main reason for the upgrade was the wide angle lens. For interior shooting in the average living room not to mention most other indoor situations the lack of wide angle is extremely frustrating.
This camera goes to 32.4mm as opposed to the usual 50mm so you get a lot more in and its...
Published 23 months ago by Mark Rendle

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Good for what you pay!
Its an ok camera but using the touch screen is incredibly fiddly. The zoom is fantastic. The stills it takes I found of very poor quality.
Published 14 months ago by A&A Mum


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27 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great entry level easy-to-use HD camcorder, 17 Jun 2012
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I was looking for a camcorder for 2 reasons - to take videos while on holiday and to record videos to explain my services and upload these to YouTube.

Amazon is not really very well geared up to purchase such items as you cannot select features you are looking for and then, get a filtered list.

Anyway, what I was looking for was a HD camcorder where I could use an External Microphone. And unfortunately Panasonic V500M does not have an External Microphone socket.

The next model up - Panasonic V700M - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Panasonic-V700-1080p-Ready-Camcorder/dp/B006T9JHZK/ - has an External Microphone socket and apparently, better video although, I have not seen the quality of V700M's output.

V500M is built well and handles well. It picks up sound within 1.5 meters really well in non-zoom mode. The video quality is good too. It is easy to operate. I would definitely recommend an HDMI cable. Something like this would be ideal - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Nedis-V1-3a-Cable-Plated-Connectors/dp/B002MSU5BM/

By default, V500M comes with VW-VBK180 battery that gives between an hour to two hours of recording time. I ended up also buying VW-VBK360 battery equivalent from Amazon - http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B006YQQKCQ/ - alongwith, an external charger - http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0042AUVLC/

If I could choose again, I would choose V700M and an external microphone - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Polaroid-Condenser-Shotgun-Microphone-Camcorders/dp/B005S45YX6/

I might go for X900M - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Panasonic-Camcorder-Built-In-Viewfinder-Built-/dp/B006U98G74/ or if budget was a concern, I might go for X800 - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Panasonic-X800-1080p-Ready-Camcorder/dp/B006U98G42/

These advanced models not only have an external microphone socket, they also have a socket for an accessory shoe and comes with an accessory shoe - an ideal way to use an external microphone or an additional light.

Given that the price difference between V500M and V700M is not much, I would recommend buying V700M.

I am sure the V500M will prove to be a good camcorder...or at least, I hope so.

My reason for giving a 3-star rating - there is a better product from the same manufacturer at not much extra price.

UPDATE - 16-Nov-2012:

I have done a video for a wedding using this camcorder. Video quality is great. Sound quality is much better than I expected. Hence, upgrading it from 3-star to 4-star.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing value camcorder, 13 Nov 2012
By 
R. collister - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Panasonic V500 Full HD 1920 x 1080p (50p) 3D Ready Camcorder - Black (1MOS Sensor, 50x Intelligent Zoom, SD Card Recording, 2D/3D Conversion with Face Recognition) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
This camcorder cost me 200 with the 50 cashback !! That is outstanding value for a top brand.
It is so easy to use, so light and effortless. The image stabilizing is awesome, keeping steady
captures through out. The battery last a good amount of time, but well worth buying a spare.
I shot in full hd, and was amazed are sharp it is on my 46 led Samsung screen.
I also bought a sandisk extreme 32mb hd video card, which may be helping on such good image quality.
Unless your a dedicated filmer, this camera is perfect for everyday use, especially the family man !
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great videos but how to store them?, 25 Sep 2013
By 
Ukhuman1st "Mike" (Gloucester, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Panasonic V500 Full HD 1920 x 1080p (50p) 3D Ready Camcorder - Black (1MOS Sensor, 50x Intelligent Zoom, SD Card Recording, 2D/3D Conversion with Face Recognition) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
This little camcorder produces stunning HD images which look fantastic on my HD TV (as might be expected, far better than the old Sony analogue one it has now replaced). The wideangle perspective is ideal for shooting buildings and interiors when you can't otherwise get far enough away, and the zoom function is amazing. Indeed, such is the HD picture quality that it is possible to use the digital zoom to magnify much more than the generous 50 x optical zoom without the picture becoming over-pixelated. For those who prefer close-up, there is also a macro function but this is hard to access, requiring lots of button-pressing to find, and then easily cancelled if you inadvertently use the zoom function. However, I have found that for close-ups of insects and flowers, the easiest option is to move the zoom up to a max of about 7 x magnification and then move the camera in close - this gives incredible detail. The ability to take a still photo at the same time is also very useful - although not high resolution, such images are very sharp and probably fine for 6 x 4 prints.

The only snag I have found concerns the storage of the resulting footage. I bought a 32Gb SD card naively thinking it would last me for ages, but HD files are so huge that I have quickly filled it up. With my old Sony recorder, I would play the pics through my TV and record them onto VHS cassettes, with 2-3 hours of recording on each VHS cassette. I thought I would be able to use my computer and the supplied HD Writer software to save the footage to DVD instead, forgetting that a 32Gb card implies the need for at least 7 full DVDs. However, even this proved mistaken, as the software seems to require lots of space for menus and other information on each DVD, and I have found I will need far more, even when burning at less than full HD quality. in fact, each DVD only seems to hold about 20 - 30 minutes of recording time. Furthermore, each disk can take well over an HOUR to burn, after first waiting for ages for the computer to convert the files to the lower quality. This method therefore ties up my computer for ages, but I have to keep popping in to switch disks so can't just leave it. To cap it all, after sucessfully recording 4 disks this way, a subsequent attempt failed, and although Panasonic Support was helpful in suggesting how to fix the problem, the problem has persisted. One batch of DVDs then turned out to be very jerky in places. So all-in-all storing files on DVD is proving a nightmare. Part of the problem here might be that my computer, although within the recommended specification, perhaps does not have the processing power needed, but forking out 100s for a new one just so I can store videos is not an attractive proposition. Another expensive option would be to buy a blu-ray recorder, but again this is not something I otherwise need. I would like the files on DVD so that I can play them on my TV. If anyone knows of any other solution I'd be interested to hear - at present, my only solution has been to buy more SD cards and hope that my camcorder remains able to play them for many years to come. But having the files only readable by the camera makes it hard to navigate around the footage to play selected scenes.

These problems are, of course, not just a problem with Panasonic or the camcorder itself. However, if I'd realised that storage of digital images was now a far more awkward proposition than it was in the good old days of VHS cassettes, I might not have ventured into this medium. If a high spec computer or disc-writing programme is essential to archive recorded footage, this should be made clearer to prospective buyers.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very nice camera, 21 April 2013
By 
Dp Quinton (wales) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Panasonic V500 Full HD 1920 x 1080p (50p) 3D Ready Camcorder - Black (1MOS Sensor, 50x Intelligent Zoom, SD Card Recording, 2D/3D Conversion with Face Recognition) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
having had a Panasonic sd60 before I can notice where Panasonic has made improvements with this model. Pic quality is very very good for such a small fit-in-hand camera. Easier to get the SD card out from underneath. Battery is fitted deeper into body. Shutter moves in a semi-sphere not a flat door which could easily scratch the lens before. Obviously the choice of recording formats are better.

One point to make about this camera, that the manual might not tell you, is that Still pictures can be taken while in Video mode, using the button on top, so no need to keep changing mode unless you like to take pictures in 4:3 not 16:9 of course.

Downside is... still pictures are only 3mega pixel. :(

HD video is recorded to MTS files (compressed h264) which need converting to M2TS (mpeg2 transport stream) on a Windows PC or Mac before editing can be done (Panasonic software does this) unles expensive software is used like Sony Vegas. However with Linux the raw MTS can be edited with at least two apps, thus it saves time!

My tips....

Record
o. Touch the screen to get info of battery, recording time remaining on memory card.
o. Zoom easily with touch on panel.

Playback
o. Easy controls for browsing the thumbs, fast-forward etc.

Manual record mode
o. Set manual with button on camera body.
o. Turn on/flip open panel and touch the |< >| button at bottom left.
o. Touch Shutter
o. The Camera adjusts to the light (really it auto-adjusts Aperture, amount of light allowed in the camera, and you can set what shutter speed while aperture is auto-adjusted).
o. Touch Aperture
o. Now adjust with |<| and |>| to close or open the aperture - to allow less light or more light in.
o. Close the panel.
o. Reopen the panel and the same light setting applies still.
o. Touch Shutter and Aperture returns to auto-adjust. Which means that when you've shot a movie in one situation, say in the shade with aperture quite open for more light, and then you go into situation lit by the sun, your setting will be too lighted, even white-out. So o. touch Shutter and the camera adjusts to the new situation. Touch Aperture again to adjust how you'd like the picture.
o. Touch Aperture again after adjusting it to hide the left-hand Shutter-Aperture controls.

Manual focus
o. Open panel and touch Focus then touch MF
o. Touch and hold (or touch once to fine tune) the |-| or |+| to focus further away or closer -objects in focus get outlines in blue.
o. To return to auto focus, touch Focus on controls twice
o. Then touch AF.

Picture setup
|Menu| > |Record Setup| > page up > page up > |Picture Adjust|
o. I set colour +1 and Exposure -2 or -3.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Small but efficient, 15 April 2013
By 
Y. Pees (Canvey Island, Essex UK) - See all my reviews
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I bought this video camera because I wanted a reasonably priced camera, never having used one before, I wanted something not too complicated, that I could easily record my South Africa holiday. I was not disappointed, the camera was more than efficient, small and easy to control, and fits into my pocket, but although small it is super efficient and takes superb video or still photo's. I have now downloaded my film onto my computer, another easy to manage procedure.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I made the right decision on this, 18 Feb 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Panasonic V500 Full HD 1920 x 1080p (50p) 3D Ready Camcorder - Black (1MOS Sensor, 50x Intelligent Zoom, SD Card Recording, 2D/3D Conversion with Face Recognition) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
I was looking for a camera that I could use for home movies, particualrly capturing precious moments of my little boy growing up. However, I also wanted to have the capability of editing movies and recording in Standard Definition as my laptop would not be able to handle editing HD footage + I would ike to copy to DVD.

This camcorder does not record in Standard Definition, but the software that it came with is able to convert from HD to SD allowing me to edit my footage easily. The software is able to trim footage, divide it, add decorations and graphics such as text or bubbles and balloons floating on the screen, which is a nice touch. The camera itself also has the capability to trim and divide the footage.

Quality: The quality of the picture is second to none when recording in the full HD format, you can also record in an iframe format which is not as crisp. The picture can get a bit grainy when recording in a dimmer light, but the picture is still very clear and the grainy appearnce would only bother you if you was filming the next Avatar movie which we are not.

Battery LIfe: The battery life is fantastic, I can get about 2hrs recording/editing and viewing footage with a single charge and that's good enough for me.

Storage: I got a "SanDisk 32GB 45MB/s Extreme HD Video SDHC Card " to record my footage on and I'm still using it after a mnth of recording. I also got an SD card reader USB to plug into the side of my TV so I don't have to convert everything to DVD just to show others.

Bad point: In really dark light it's not very good, it does come with a LED light, but you couldn't use it to record people as it would blind them and the range of the LED is about 4-5ft.
I had to turn the LED off because in slightly dim light it kept coming on when in auto mode and kept blinding my son, but I didn't need it to be on because the footage was still pretty good.

I done a lot of looking around and research on the camcorders available to me (took me 1 month to choose) and I stand by my decision. I could write a lot more about how good it is but I'm currently at work and jsut trying to get a quick , to the point review down.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Camcorder,Everything you need it to be!!!, 3 Jan 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Panasonic V500 Full HD 1920 x 1080p (50p) 3D Ready Camcorder - Black (1MOS Sensor, 50x Intelligent Zoom, SD Card Recording, 2D/3D Conversion with Face Recognition) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
The camcorder is brilliant, it is easy to use and with it being small and compact you don't even need a carry case you can put it your jacket pocket and use it without taking a bag with you. The features with the zoom and clear LCD screen are great and user friendly. Battery doesn't stick out the back of the camera it fits in perfectly so it is nice and compact. Fantastic buy at the price it was, would recommend this Camcorder for people who want to use it for travelling or special occasions. Great Product Panasonic!!!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Camcorder, 2 Jan 2013
By 
C. A. Grant "CAG" (Lincolnshire, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Panasonic V500 Full HD 1920 x 1080p (50p) 3D Ready Camcorder - Black (1MOS Sensor, 50x Intelligent Zoom, SD Card Recording, 2D/3D Conversion with Face Recognition) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
What a brilliant camcorder for the money. It is small and compact and so easy to use. Takes really good pictures. Highly recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Lights, camera, action!, 6 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Panasonic V500 Full HD 1920 x 1080p (50p) 3D Ready Camcorder - Black (1MOS Sensor, 50x Intelligent Zoom, SD Card Recording, 2D/3D Conversion with Face Recognition) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
Lovely little camcorder bought to replace an old Canon camcorder.

Easy to use and handy to carry around.

Thoroughly recommended
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great product, 23 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Panasonic V500 Full HD 1920 x 1080p (50p) 3D Ready Camcorder - Black (1MOS Sensor, 50x Intelligent Zoom, SD Card Recording, 2D/3D Conversion with Face Recognition) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
This is my first move into digital video cameras. It is light, easy to use and creates wonderful images. Well worth the money.
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