August 2, 2017

RED RAVEN Comes Exclusively to the Apple Store

Now you can buy a digital cinema camera at the mall for a mere $15,000.

RED has announced that its entry level camera, the RED RAVEN, will be available exclusively from the Apple store. If you go to the RAVEN page on RED's site and click on "Shop now" it now doesn't take you to RED's online store, but instead to Apple's. It's a major move for the camera manufacturer to abandon its own online sales channel and go exclusively with Apple for the small 4.5K Canon mount body. The $15,000 package comes bundled together with all the accessories you need to get shooting fast, including a Sigma zoom and 2 V-mount batteries.

For filmmakers, it will not be the most useful place to buy your camera. 

But why?

As odd as the placement seems, it makes a lot of sense from RED's perspective. As hard as it might be for imagine to film industry people, there are still a lot of folks who haven't heard of the company because it doesn't have a lot of consumer offerings the way Panasonic, Canon or Sony do. This is a way to help promote the RED brand to an audience that might still be unfamiliar with the platform. Some particularly wealthy consumers might be inspired to buy it as a Christmas gift for a budding filmmaker in their lives. Some corporate decisions makers will be reminded that there is a RED package out there at what is for them a reasonable price point. Apple stores are beautiful, well thought out, get a lot of traffic, and there are thousands of them all over the world with the accompanying shipping and logistics infrastructure in place. All of these factors work in RED's favor.

Credit: Apple

For Apple, this is an odder choice that smacks somewhat of desperation. The RAVEN will be a "halo" product in the store, attracting foot traffic customers who might've only heard of RED if they saw the name in the credits while waiting for the secret scene in a superhero movie, or saw an article about it in the paper and are curious to see it in person. They'll look up from shopping for shoes and see the camera from across the aisle of the mall, in a big plexiglass case, and wander in to look at it, then maybe stay to play with an iPad or an Apple Watch.

It feels desperate because, until now, Apple products have always been the halo unit in an apple store. Buyers came to see the Mac Pro and stayed to buy a watch, or came to get an iPhone and browsed cases and speakers. Apple needing a "halo" product to bring people in is a major admission that the company's own products don't have their previous magnetism. Nothing else in the store is going to inspire people to just stop in and look because nothing else they currently sell feels "new." On top of that, the package just doesn't feel very "Apple-y," with the tall V-mount battery sticking up above the camera body in a way that would make Steve Jobs' flesh crawl. Couldn't Apple have found a way to at least bundle with something designed for that size body, like the Core HC9 minis?

Credit: RED

For filmmakers, it will not be the most useful place to buy your camera. Yes, the package itself is not insanely priced, and comes with Foolcontrol bundled in for iPhone control of your camera, which is a nice touch. And being bundled together with everything you need to get going all in one case is convenient. The Sigma Art lens is a popular choice, but in this package it's literally your only choice. It comes with Final Cut Pro X, but that might not be the NLE of choice for many filmmakers who could just get Resolve for free.

Here's the thing: under "recommend" accessories the only thing on offer is Beats headphones. No tripod. No rain case. No other lens options.  For such a major purchase, the ability to explore tripod and other mounting options and play with accessories that you get from your local camera dealer or rental house is sorely missing here.

Batteries that look good on a shorter body do exist.Credit: Core

Available now from Apple.com for $15,000.

Tech Specs:

  • RED RAVEN 4.5K camera BRAIN
  • RED DSMC2 Touch LCD 4.7" Monitor
  • RED DSMC2 Outrigger Handle
  • RED V-Lock I/O Expander
  • RED 120 GB RED MINI-MAG
  • Two IDX DUO-C98 batteries with VL-2X charger
  • G-Technology ev Series RED MINI-MAG Reader
  • Sigma 18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM | Art
  • Nanuk heavy-duty camera case
  • Final Cut Pro X
  • foolcontrol for RAVEN Camera Kit

Your Comment

19 Comments

"We don't think this camera is for anyone doing pro stuff, so we're gonna force you to buy it like a consumer thing, including a lens you may not need at all, and batteries that kind of suck."

F that.

August 2, 2017 at 3:28PM

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Patrick Ortman
I tell stories. Sometimes for money. Sometimes, not.
733

RED RAVEN 4.5K camera BRAIN - 6000$
RED DSMC2 Touch LCD 4.7" Monitor - 1200-1500$
RED DSMC2 Outrigger Handle - 200-300$
RED V-Lock I/O Expander - 200-300$
RED 120 GB RED MINI-MAG - 600-700$
Two IDX DUO-C98 batteries with VL-2X charger - 500-600$
G-Technology ev Series RED MINI-MAG Reader - 200$
Sigma 18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM | Art - 600-700$
Nanuk heavy-duty camera case - 150-200$
-----------------------------------------------------
Total cost is 9450-10200$, why RED company wants EXTRA 5000-5550$ for this kit / package?

August 2, 2017 at 9:25PM

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Mher Hakobyan
Cameraman, Editor, Photographer
2

I tried looking up the RED Website for these costs. I don't see it anywhere. Even B&H doesn't sell the raven anymore, it looks like. Could you point me to a place where I could buy the raven at this cost?

August 3, 2017 at 12:44AM

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Sahit Anand
Director and Co-Founder of DO. Creative Labs
164

First off none of these products vary in prices in terms of their retail price. I have no clue why you created ranges unless you want to consider the cost of used gear which is completely irrelevant to this article. Also, the Raven doesn't cost 6K, RED raised it to 9K awhile ago.

With that being said, look below with the actual retail prices off of the RED site.

RED RAVEN 4.5K camera BRAIN - $9000
RED DSMC2 Touch LCD 4.7" Monitor - $1450
RED DSMC2 Outrigger Handle - $550
RED V-Lock I/O Expander - $1900
RED 120 GB RED MINI-MAG - $850
Two IDX DUO-C98 batteries with VL-2X charger - $650
G-Technology ev Series RED MINI-MAG Reader - $200
Sigma 18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM | Art - $800
Nanuk heavy-duty camera case - $200
-----------------------------------------------------
Total cost $15600. Some of your prices we're completely off.

August 3, 2017 at 8:54PM

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Emil
Content
133

Interesting product announcement, but disappointing article. The writer clearly has no appreciation of FCPX, which has over 2 million licenses sold and has been used successfully in Hollywood. Apple is not suddenly planning on becoming a 2nd B&H Photo, so of course it isn't planning on stocking tripods, video lights, or any other pro video hardware, so it is an ignorant statement to criticise Apple "accessories".

What Apple is saying is that "Hey, here is a high end camera bundled with a very capable video NLE. Go start shooting". Apple also is unique (outside the US) in providing a 14 day return service, so now I could order a RED and see if I like it, without having to commit.

The Sigma ART Lens is an excellent starting point and one that will allow the purchaser to start using this camera straight away. Perhaps as an extra B-Camera, or just to start building a new system.

Yes, this is an interesting marketing move, both for RED and Apple, but the article's commentary, is frankly very ignorant, IMHO.

August 2, 2017 at 11:37PM

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Paul Nofilmschool
Video Production
9

"Hey, go start shooting," for 15,000 dollars...sounds like apple. I truly hope the panosonic Eva1 is going to crush this. This is also a person who got screwed over by apple care and my 3300 dollar useless dud of a trash can that can't play a youtube video without giving me the rainbow of death. So maybe I'm a biased jerk...Correction, I am :P

August 7, 2017 at 1:02PM

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Jeremy A
Teacher/Director
82

LOOOOL

August 3, 2017 at 12:14AM

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This is a sad commentary on both brands...both were technology companies offering innovative new tools...now they've become vapid and empty "must have" luxury brands - you're not cool if you don't own one...it's the ultimate triumph of "branding"...marketing tricks instead of real substance and value. When is apple going to offer a really useful (and reasonably priced) computer again? Will RED ever keep the promise it made (and then bailed out on) of offering us a professional camera at a really good price like Blackmagic does? And don't even get me started on the ridiculous prices Red charges for their accessories...

August 3, 2017 at 1:44AM

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Ed Wright
Director, DP, Writer
326

So salty

August 3, 2017 at 9:01PM

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Emil
Content
133

Internal ND filters? or is this kit not quite turn key?

August 3, 2017 at 2:14AM

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Isaac Elliott
Director/Cinematographer
236

This is a joke right? Very finicky, hard to use but entry level camera paired with prosumer editing software. This is going to be a 'big' success.

August 3, 2017 at 7:07AM

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I think making a claim that this is a desperate "halo" product is pure opinion. Apple has some behind the scenes partnership with RED and they obviously have plans. Red is selling more of it's high end cameras to filmmakers and this is that entry level that pairs well with Apple's software.

It just seems like a good marketing strategy on their part and probably the air of something bigger coming our way as far as cross branding and partnership.

August 3, 2017 at 9:02AM

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Hey author, your Apple hate is shining through this thin conjecture. Here's so actual info on what happened: https://twitter.com/kschluter60/status/893057501368897536

August 3, 2017 at 11:27AM, Edited August 3, 11:27AM

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Braden Storrs
Post Production Manager, Photographer
368

Sales

August 3, 2017 at 7:10PM

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Jonathon Sendall
Stories
1434

Direct quote from REDs CEO about this:

Apple gets Raven only because of their new investment into their Mac pro hardware program. That was the deal. Sometimes you gotta take one for the team to push for a much bigger cause. I hope everyone can read between those lines and congratulate apple for putting some skin back in the game that so many assumed they just abandoned.

August 4, 2017 at 12:10AM

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Charles C.
Editor/ Director/ Director of Photography/ Wannabe Thinker
1010

"..now they've become vapid and empty "must have" luxury brands"

EXACTLY! Are we not talking about the same Apple customer base who's too afraid to even think about doing their own upgrades, repairs or has any interest in how their computer works? And yet someone thinks they are going to be interested in a complex prosumer camera NOT part of their iPhone? This is merely an unholy alliance between two overeager marketing suits who clearly haven't thought through any of it. Plus, it's a bit ironic that no current Apple product powerful enough to work with anything Red makes features any sort of standard memory card readers.
Apple gave up the pro editing market (or pro "anything" for that matter) years ago! This just another periodic attempt to "seem" like they still care, or are still cool, which they are not.

August 4, 2017 at 11:07AM

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Douglas Bowker
Animation, Video, Motion-Graphics
70

I edit RED 6k on a current gen MBP using FCPx with no problems. Everything you said is pretty misleading and seems to be based on opinions rather than facts.

August 8, 2017 at 12:53PM

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Charles C.
Editor/ Director/ Director of Photography/ Wannabe Thinker
1010

Recommending this package with a Beats headset? That is a very odd choice. I gave my Beats away for they have an excessive and artificial bass response. When trying to accurately capture sound in the field, one wants a flat audio spectrum, nothing added nor taken away.

August 4, 2017 at 9:21PM

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I think the author is not looking at the business behind this move. It is a smart move for both companies and nothing screams desperation. Both companies sell high-end products to consumers who can afford to shop in their markets. There will be plenty of high-end consumers who walk into the Apple Store and walk out with a Raven, iPhone (hence the included controller), Mac Pro, iMac or MacBook Pro, and all the computer accessory fixin's for their little angel to play with. Corporations and schools can go to one store and get everything they need to shoot, edit and distribute online at a price point that is EASY and reasonable to them. We, as filmmakers, may find it ridiculous, but if you step back and look outside our bubble the move is quite brilliant.

August 9, 2017 at 9:32AM

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