CES 2007: Hitachi touts HDD/DVD hybrid camcorder and a $2500 50" LCD

Las Vegas (NV) - Hitachi began the first official CES day with a press conference that took place a couple hours before the show floor officially opened. Among the key topics covered were its flagship HDD/DVD hybrid camcorder as wella s a 50" LCD for less than $2500.

Click through the Hitachi Press Conference Slideshow ...

Hitachi's catchphrase apparently was that the company don't wants to be a "me too" anymore and that that was exampled by the company's new hybrid camcorder, which has both a hard drive and DVD recording functionality. The device has been on sale in Japan for several week, apparently with quite some success, and is now coming to these shores.

The first-generation hybrid camcorder, the DZHS300A, will carry a $599 retail price point and comes with an 8 GB microdrive and a DVD slot. Users can record directly to DVD, or save to the hard drive and burn the content to DVD later, directly from the camera. The second generation product, which increases the HDD capacity to 30 GB, is slated for an April release date.

Additionally, HDTV - not surprisingly - is big for Hitachi at this year's CES as well. The biggest product announcement for 2007 is a new 50" full 1080 HDTV for less than $2500. The resolution will be 1.3 million pixels (1280 x 1080). Hitachi also announced a "2-tier 1080" business model, to provide "affordable" 1080 (that is "i") solutions, as well as full high-scale (that is "p") TV sets. Hitachi plans to double its market share in plasma TVs by the end of this year, after doubling its year-to-year share at the close of '06.

These announcements come as a complement to Hitachi's 1 TB hard drive, which the firm unveiled over the weekend. The company continues focusing on storage, but the increasing trend has been to use that technology for multimedia and high-definition applications.