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February 10, 2013

KineRAW-MINI Pre-Ordering Has Begun, Get a 2K RAW Super 35mm Camera for Just Over $3,000

This one came as a bit of a surprise back in January, and now it looks like pre-orders have already begun. The KineRAW-MINI, a new camera from Kinefinity, has an identical sensor to the KineRAW-S35 (which is shipping in China). However, it forgoes some of the fancier aspects of the larger S35 -- like Cineform and dual SSD slots -- to create a compact and much more affordable version. We've now got some preliminary pricing information that should make this a very, very interesting option when it starts shipping next month (likely in China first). Check out more details below.

First, check out some new photos of the camera (thanks to Cinescopophilia for the heads-up):

Here are the specs on the camera:

  • Super 35mm CMOS Sensor
  • 12-bit Uncompressed CinemaDNG (Cineform is optional to a recorder they don’t make yet)
  • 2048 x 1080 // 1920 x 1080 // 1280 x 720
  • One 2.5″ SSD Slot
  • ISO: 80-10,240 — Base of ISO 800
  • Dynamic Range: 11.5 Stops (up to 13 stops in log)
  • Electronic Canon or Interchangeable Kinefinity Mount
  • Monitoring: 720p with 2 HDMI Outputs
  • No Fan or Phantom Power Audio
  • Optional Handgrip with Battery
  • Power Consumption: 8-10 Watts
  • No On-board Monitor or LCD

Here are a couple photos of their order form. I've translated the document (using Google, with some changes to make it clearer), and converted the prices based on the current exchange rate between the Yuan and the Dollar:

We should keep in mind that these are the Chinese prices converted, so it's not clear yet if these will be the exact prices when the camera is made available internationally. There is also an $800 deposit for the camera (which is refundable), and the first 100 buyers get a discount.

As you can see above, the price of the body starts at a little over $3,000, but that includes just the "brain," very similar to RED's EPIC and SCARLET cameras (which it shares an uncomfortable resemblance to). To really get the camera working, it's going to cost another $1-$2,000 for media, batteries, and monitoring, but even at $5,000, a RAW Super 35mm 2K camera is pretty remarkable, especially since all you can find in this price range are 8-bit 4:2:0 1080p cameras. They are also offering package deals which get you started in terms of power and SSDs -- the most expensive of which is still under $6,000. While the MINI can take off-the-shelf SSDs, you are guaranteed not to have any dropped frames with the speedy KineMAGs.

In my last post I said where I thought this camera would fit in, especially at the prices above, and I think the only obstacle going forward will be support in the US. As of right now they don't have any distributors or repair facilities here, so the camera would need to be sent back to China. With these low prices though, I think that situation could change much sooner.

There have been many complaints about the Blackmagic Cinema Camera not having a larger sensor (it's a little smaller than Micro 4/3), but they made that compromise for overall image quality. The Cinema Camera has more dynamic range (Update: it may still have more, but Kinefinity's documentation has changed for the S35 camera to only list log dynamic range which puts it at 13 stops. We'll have to wait and see if anything changes for the MINI camera, as their original specification listed 11.5 and 13 in log), which is clear from the samples of the KineRAW that I've seen so far, and Blackmagic's sensor may actually resolve a higher resolution image thanks to the pixel-binning down to 2K on Kinefinity's 4K sensor. The one advantage the Kinefinity sensor has besides its physical size is that it can go all the way up to 10,240 ISO.

It also shares one major feature with the Cinema Camera: uncompressed CinemaDNG. While these clips should be a little bit smaller since it's 2K or 1080p as opposed to 2.5K, uncompressed RAW makes for some very large files (as we talked about in this post). It's the price you pay for a cheaper camera. They do plan on making a Cineform recorder which would give you compressed RAW with the MINI, but it's unclear if the product listed above with that name is actually the recorder or is the cost of the Cineform software itself that allows you to convert in post.

RAW cameras are now within reach for almost any filmmaker -- the MINI makes the 3rd available for under $5,000 -- but RAW has its own workflow hoops that one must jump through in order to get to a final product. CinemaDNG is an open codec, but it's not NLE-friendly, so it's a bit more complicated than just bringing your footage into your editor and cutting away. As computers get faster and CinemaDNG gets broad NLE support, this will be a non-issue -- but we're not quite there just yet.

We should get more information on international shipping for both of Kinefinity's cameras as the company is expected to be at NAB.

What do you think of the price? How do you think this compares with the Digital Bolex and the Blackmagic Cinema Camera (which are all around the same price)?

Links:

[via Cinescopophilia]

Your Comment

121 Comments

as much as i want a raw camera today. this just doesnt seem better than a bmc mft. to me, DR is one of the most important things at the moment. once i finally get the bmc mft ill probably be drooling on red dragon.
one great things about the bmc is that 5in monitor, you can really go run and gun if you really want to.

February 10, 2013

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vcrd

I think the best thing about this is the 35mm sensor. That means if I was to say upgrade in the future I wouldn't be stuck with super wide primes.

February 11, 2013

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Tyler

S35 Sensor, PL Mount, Mount is interchangeable with Canon & Nikon F, & RAW

February 11, 2013

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Jon7athan

Like Jon wrote, I'd say there're three major advantages to using this camera instead of its closest competitors, the Blackmagic Cinema Camera and Digital Bolex:
- Sensor size
- High ISO flexibility
- Interchangeable lens mounts (though the base mount may be proprietary)

February 11, 2013

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Blah

"Sensor size" - why people still play this card is beyond me. I'd shoot on a 1/2" sensor if it gave me more dynamic-range than a S35 sensor. What's the point of having a large sensor if it can't deliver good dynamic-range? I've shot a lot of 16mm film, a lot of Alexa, and recently got to take the BMCC out for a spin - I shit you not, the BMCC looks so close to Alexa (plus having the grain extremely similar to film) that it's ridiculous. I saw the KineRAW footage shot by that Matt guy, no offence, but it looked awful - the dynamic-range was really off putting.

Add the BMCC's dynamic-range (which is more than a RED Epic/Scarlet even, which I'd rate around 11 - 11.5 stops) together with Blackmagic's color-science, and it not only trumps the KineRAW cameras, but is so indistinguishable from Alexa that I'm still in shock.

Also, the KineRAW might say "11.5 stops" on paper, but from what I have seen, I'd say it's getting around 10 - if that. The thing with the BMCC is, I think it's dynamic-range rating is spot on. I'm sure Blackmagic could have marketed it as "15 stops of dynamic-range", but they come across as a very honest company - when they say 13 stops, you're getting 13 stops.

February 11, 2013

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Voltaire

You spec-tards are not understanding that the sensor size of the BMCC is it's fatal flaw not because of the sensor itself, but because NO LENSES EVEN COVER IT WITHOUT INSANE CROP FACTORS OR VIGNETTING. It seriously limits what glass you can use, and you are limited to crappy variable aperture wide angle zooms (canon or nikon) and the tokina 11-16. Unless you like shooting at focal lengths greater than or equal to 60mm lol

February 11, 2013

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john jeffreys

@JJ , Lol, you out of your mind, I mostly shot with Scarlet using the lenses: 24, 35, 50, 85, if I want to have FOV on a BMC I'd need 17, 25, 35, 60, not hard to find at all, some even match my current set of lens, please do your homework.

February 11, 2013

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Marcus

also remember that shooting raw is a lot of data. TBs of stuff. I like the ability to shoot pro res or avid dnxhd on the BMC - that with the Speedbooster makes the camera make a lot of sense.

February 11, 2013

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Ed David

'Spec tards' , oh my lord that's funny. I've never posted here before but long time reader. Spec tards, hehehehehe

February 11, 2013

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Robert

This.

February 12, 2013

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Mark

I think the best thing about this camera is that it is shipping. BMCC is still practically vaporware.

February 11, 2013

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Damon

I think you've got that backwards. The Kineraw mini is not shipping, and the BMCC is.

February 11, 2013

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Ant

Exactly. Tons of people have their BMC and they are shipping quite a few now each week. VImeo is loaded with BMC footage from users around the world. It's already shipped, the wait is over. Now it just has to ramp up production to what we're use to with Canon etc. But it's understandable they're not available in those kind of quantities yet.

The KiniRaw is actually not even a real product at this point. Those are only renders, not an actual pics. It's more vaporware than a BMC but less than the Bolex. Just sittin right there in the middle in terms of a tangible product that can be used.

February 14, 2013

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James

is this complain not moot now that there is the speed booster? making it a 35mm sensor with 1 more stop of light?

February 11, 2013

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kevin

Give Blackmagic a year and we may see a 35 sensor.

February 11, 2013

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Mark

A year is too late and who knows what these guys will have next when BM does get round to it.

February 11, 2013

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Tyler

its taken them a year to ship a camera so i wouldnt have so much confidence!

February 11, 2013

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Peter Kelly

Camera was announced April of last year and was supposed to originally ship in July of last year. They're 6 months and change late with a wide release. As someone who pre-ordered on the day the camera was announced; I'll say that it's been a long wait, but it hasn't been a year at all...

February 11, 2013

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A year is too late.
The time is yesterday.

February 11, 2013

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vinceGortho

Very interesting. We need Dan at DSLRnewsshooter to put up more of what he's shot with that sensor. I've found KineRAW only ok to deal with so far. They were a bit overwhelmed last time I spoke to them. The Movcam rigs they have look great too.
We're going to see a lot more product out of these guys (and China in general). Bring it on.

February 11, 2013

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marklondon

Now, although I do love competition, and I do like the supposed shipping date of (in a month), this camera for some reason just doesn't feel right. The Blackmagic Camera has support of an industry leader in post production technology. The Digital Bolex has support of a rabid and supportive fanbase and has worked in and improved the camera based on suggestions from its supporters.

This new cheaper Kinefinity RAW camera seems to just -exist-. It also feels like a knockoff of RED.

I have a feeling that RED will soon come out with something to counter these new "upstart" cameras. If RED came out with the (previously hinted at) 3k for $3k, or even a 3k that resolved down to 2k (for $3k), it could still sell it's incredibly overpriced accessories and media and make a nice profit. It would also get students trained, ready and used to working with RED when they want to step up to DRAGON (and beyond) for their pro projects/jobs.

But once again, competition is a wonderful thing... I'd just rather spend my money on a BMCC or a Digital Bolex.

February 11, 2013

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some guy

3k for $3k wasn't something hinted at, it was something announced and promised and then they failed to deliver (charging $12k instead). Don't hold your breath.

February 11, 2013

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Ant

Jim said the future is 4k and nothing less. I have to agree don't hold your breath for 3k camera from RED. Also I bought the scarlet and sold it within a couple months. Their work flow is garbage. I am happy to see there is more cameras coming out in this price range. It will give us variety and the ability to pick the right camera for each job. I suggest not to invest in cameras and invest in high quality lenses.

February 12, 2013

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jack

I'd rather get a BMC as well. Maybe I'm the only one, but I really do like the image from the BMC the best. If both cameras kitted out with everything needed to shoot were at the same price point, I'd still go for the BMC without hesitation. The image is exactly what I desire for narrative films, it has that Alexa vibe and the most filmic image out of the current crop of affordable raw cameras.

The epic would be absolutely incredible no doubt, and in terms of feature set and quality, it probably surpasses the BMC by some orders of magnitude... but at the end of the day, I'm going with the sexiest image.

February 14, 2013

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James

We ask for cameras like the Kinefinity. When they finally come, we push them away.

February 11, 2013

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Soosan Khanoom

Yea truly spoiled.

February 11, 2013

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agreed

February 11, 2013

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francis

not pushing away. competition is great, but im not a rich guy, i need to buy the best my money can buy. nothing wrong with analyzing the options right???

February 11, 2013

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vcrd

Not pushing away. I don't have to embrace every new camera that comes out. I'm a fan of the BMCC, and I like the D-Bolex, but the KineRaw-mini just doesn't seem to have its act together. It really seems if someone stuck a S35mm sensor in a box, and did the absolute minimum to bring it to market.

The standard version runs $4,100. Still, not a bad deal, and yes, it's S35, But for the same price you can get either the BMCC or the D-Bolex and at least two 512GB SSD cards.

Love competition :)

February 11, 2013

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some guy

It seems they put a lot of thought into it. The cineform option and the large sensor make it very interesting.

February 11, 2013

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This is humorous. If you look at the pro version it comes with 2x 64gb mags. So you can't really complain about memory. Also you complain about a sensor being shove in a box. Guess what that is what RED did and Oh wait, so did BMC. Gasp! do I see a trend? I

February 12, 2013

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jack

Agree with Soosan.

February 11, 2013

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hansd

its called having an opinion. thats what happens with a brain :)

February 11, 2013

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vcrd

Add the speed booster to the BMC and you solve the need for fast wides. That leaves only the rolling shutter as an issue for me. If Kinefinity can do well there they could make a decent impact.

This year is looking more exciting than even 2011 when all the big chip cheaper cams first started coming out. :)

February 11, 2013

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Nate

This looks awesome but I'm a Canon fanboy ;-P (I'm invested in the EF mount, take a lot of photos too and don't have the money for sperate video and photo cameras) so I see this and think "Come on Canon, where is my 7D C you jerks!" hopefully more stuff like the Kinefinity and a Super35 BMCC for $3k with give them the kick in the a** they need.

February 11, 2013

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P337

Canon will never bring out a raw camera at this price point. They have extremely popular cameras at much higher prices that are much more limited.

February 11, 2013

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Ant

Hey "filmmisers" no more excuses, s35 RAW is here.

February 11, 2013

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ryan

These is good but still not something that I see myself using. Im not picky but I think the camera that will blow everyone's mind is going to be something that has a 5K sensor that down samples to 4K and shoots Cineform and I believe that company who will make it will be GoPro.

February 11, 2013

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Russell

I think you may be right, Russell.

February 11, 2013

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I would like to see that myself, makes a lot of sense.

February 11, 2013

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I played with the kineraw s35 here in Sydney and the rolling shutter was like nothing I have ever seen. 35mm lens, fastish pan unusable. But if they sort that out ill buy one!

February 11, 2013

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mikki young

even worse than the rolling shutter of the bmcc?

February 11, 2013

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gerald

Yeah yeah competition blah blah but as filmmakers what we need is competitiveness on QUALITY not on SPECS.

11.5 stops dynamic range(probably closer to 10 and a bit real world shooting) is not going to cut it for the hassle of wrangling 12bit uncompressed raw dng's. Sorry but that's where the BMCC comes up trumps, not to mention the out of the box option of shooting damn fine looking pro-res or dnxhd.

Also the Kineraw isnt in the shops, not even close. Its at the pre-order stage...who's to say you wont be waiting another 6 months to a year for it to finally ship.

PASS

February 11, 2013

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Peter

true.

February 11, 2013

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vcrd

you mean like the BMCC?

February 11, 2013

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Marc

Its cool having a S35 raw camera BUT is this cameras colour science as good as my BMCC? Skin tones? highlight roll off? These are more important to me.

February 11, 2013

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Lee

Dynamic range is 13 stops in EI mode

February 11, 2013

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Marvin

That's interesting. Would love some files to test out that has been shot in that mode.

February 11, 2013

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I think we all missed that in the spec sheets. Joe would've most definitely mentioned it. You're correct, it says 13 stops in EI mode: http://www.dslrnewsshooter.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/BAgQf48CQAAJtY...

February 11, 2013

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Yeah I must have missed it, now on their site the specifications lists 13 stops, nothing else (but their documentation still mentions both 11.5 and 13 stops). So they could have been listing linear gamma which is probably at 11.5 as they originally stated. I adjusted that above, but it's a little confusing since they don't have any specs for the MINI yet.

February 11, 2013

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Joe Marine
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