Redepic-lg1-224x148Just a week after boldly proclaiming, "we won't telegraph what we are planning anymore," RED's Jim Jannard has posted a RED Roadmap. Thanks to semantics, Jim is able to differentiate between an "announcement" and a "roadmap," and I suppose given the only new products on this new list are described as "Suprise #1" and "Surprise #2," he's not telegraphing. However, there is something conspicuously missing from the roadmap: the indie-friendly, cheaper EPIC-S camera. Here's the roadmap, in chronological order:

  • EPIC-M- shipping
  • EPIC-X- shipping
  • Scarlet
  • REDray
  • Dragon update
  • RED projection
  • Monstro 645 DSMC
  • Monstro 617 DSMC
  • Surprise #1
  • Surprise #2

I suspect the EPIC-S still exists, but has been renamed as a Scarlet camera. Since RED originally announced the 3K, fixed-lens 2/3" Scarlet, the market has changed substantially. Besides, the EPIC-S was originally called a Scarlet before getting renamed the EPIC-S. So why would RED do this?

The EPIC camera is upgradeable to the new "Dragon" sensor, which is unknown at this time but should be similar to the M-X upgrade for the original RED ONE. I suspect the reason to rename the EPIC-S as a Scarlet is to more clearly delineate the upgrade-eligible cameras from the ineligible. Jim had stated on REDUSER in the past that the EPIC-S would not be upgradeable -- which makes sense, given they had claimed the EPIC-S would offer 5K resolution at up to 60FPS. If that were true, why spend $30k on a 5K 120FPS camera when you can get a 5K 60FPS camera with the same sensor for less than half the price? Most shooters don't need 120FPS slow-motion, and for those times when you need it there's always software interpolation. Therefore the lack of upgradeability is a key differentiator, and as far as I know the Scarlet cameras will have no such sensor upgrade program (which puts them in the company of every other camera manufacturer's offering). Just a guess; we'll see.

Also, since it was a week from the time Jim said "we won't telegraph what we are planning anymore" to posting a roadmap, I can't resist sharing my initial reaction to that claimed philosophy change:


As someone who can't afford an EPIC-X, I certainly welcome the roadmap and any transparency regarding their plans. I'm hoping to make a feature, after all. But still -- it was a week...

Link: RED Roadmap... - REDUSER