Panasonic’s New Head-Mounted 4K Camera Will Capture Your Adventures More Clearly Than Ever


A new, crisper way to document your much-needed summer vacation is on its way.

On Monday, Panasonic announced the imminent release of the HX-A500, a 4K wearable camera. This two-part gadget is one of the first action-oriented cameras to pack the latest available super-realistic resolution.

4K, for those unfamiliar with the term, is another way of saying that this camera will record video that’s more vivid than 1080p (the limit of most mainstream high-definition cameras).

On the other hand, when recording at 4K, the A500 can capture only 25 frames per second. That’s the same as a movie in a theater, but when you’re watching sports or action on an HDTV these days, you’re looking at 60 frames a second, the better to see every fast twitch and snap.

Currently, the only other 4K option that you can strap to your body is sold by GoPro—though it records at 15 frames per second, a speed that’s generally useless for anything other than a time-lapse.

As you can see from the promotional video above, the design of Panasonic’s HX-A500 is more unconventional than its GoPro competitor. It’s made of two separate entities: One is a camera that attaches to your ear, and the other is an arm strap with controls and a 1.5-inch preview screen. The two pieces are connected by a cable. You can also stream the footage over WiFi to an app, where it cam be edited or broadcast live.

All those who are planning to get all Survivorman with their equipment need not worry. According to Panasonic, the camera is both dustproof and waterproof to 10 feet under.

Yes, it’s resolution-forward and durable but also insanely expensive. It’ll go for £379.99 (or about $627) this May. That’s about $227 more than GoPro’s option. In other words: It’s likely not worth the price if you’re just going to be filming a water balloon fight (especially considering how dorky you’ll look wearing it). But if you’re swimming with sharks or scaling a cliff, it could make for a really amazing home video.

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