REDMAG SSD Cards Will Have a Dramatic Price Drop Very Soon

RED just recently announced a significant firmware update, and in what will surely be music to the ears of many, according to Jarred Land of RED, the costs for their raw stock of SSDs has gone down dramatically. Therefore they will be lowering the prices across the board for REDMAGs. Since RED uses proprietary firmware and housings with their drives (unlike say Blackmagic with their Cinema Camera), the only choice EPIC and SCARLET owners have is to use RED-branded media. But when are they coming and how much will the price drop be?

In a recent REDUser posting, Jarred detailed the new prices (which includes a new addition, the 512GB card). These cards will all hit the RED website on July 17th.

  • 64Gb -   $725 vs. $950
  • 128GB - $1250 vs. $1800
  • 256GB - $2450 vs.$3200
  • 512GB -  $3900

Jarred also had this to say about pricing:

Market pricing can be a dangerous game to play... sometimes things don't make sense. Shortages or overages can dramatically change pricing on some chips and not others overnight. Moores law gets a bit twisted. I guess I should go back and say " Temporary" price reduction on the original post.

I'm sure many would hope that they are not just temporary, and are, in fact, permanent price reductions. RED has also been working on lower-priced 32GB cards that were announced at NAB and are specifically designed for SCARLET users -- but they aren't ready for prime-time yet. The 512GB cards mentioned above are a new class that RED is calling Turbo cards, and these red RED cards (yes they're actually red) will allow for faster offload times and lower compression at higher frame rates (which I'm sure many data wranglers/DITs would be happy to hear). As of right now the 512GB card is the only one that has been given Turbo classification, but here are the specs on those new cards vs. the standard black ones:

  • Turbo REDMAG Build 3.3 5K WS vs. Original REDMAG for 5K WS
  • 24 - 3:1 vs. 24 - 3:1
  • 30 - 3:1 vs. 30 - 3:1
  • 48 - 5:1 vs. 48 - 5:1
  • 60 - 6:1 vs. 60 - 6:1
  • 96 - 9:1 vs. 96 - 10:1
  • 120 - 11:1 vs. 120 - 12:1

Here is a photo of a pack of the new 512GB Turbo cards:

At some point all of these cards might also be available in lower price form as part of the bundles that RED sells. If so, that might also mean that there will be even more of a discount per GB. If you're looking at the best bang for the buck, the 512GB card is actually only $7.60 per gigabyte, as compared to a little over $9 and as much as $11 for the others.

Though all of these might seem incredibly overpriced, if you look at other companies, like Sony for example, a 64GB card is $1400 vs. $725 for the equivalent REDMAG - though the Panasonic P2 cards are right around the price of the RED media (assuming you're still using a Panasonic camera that requires those).

So RED owners, will you be filling up your cart with new RED media on the 17th?

Link: New REDMAG Pricing REDUser

Your Comment


Crucial M4 512GB SSD: $398 for BMCC or Ninja etc.
Transcend 400X 64GB CF: $117 for C300

Wow that RED footage better be timeless and poetic for that premium. The Zacuto shootout results will be interesting.

July 8, 2012 at 8:34PM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM


Honestly if you're shooting on an F3 or an Alexa you're in no better shape unless you record all externally, and that has its own costs and considerations. What could be interesting is if you decided not to shoot RAW with a RED SCARLET or EPIC, you can get the full clean 1080p out of the HD-SDI, and it might actually be comparable to a log profile on the F3 or Alexa (but I haven't recorded that so I don't actually know the quality). So you could treat it like a non-RAW camera when you don't want RAW and save some money - but I'm sure the debayering is much better in post than it is in the camera.

July 8, 2012 at 8:52PM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM

Joe Marine
Camera Department

How hard is a Bayer filter to get right though? You have, say, a dozen adjacent sensor readings of different colors, and from those you want to determine the best color value of a given pixel. How much better can you do that in post vs. in realtime? Really? If you do it poorly in realtime, I wonder whether you spent more than a hungover morning on it.

Downsampling, noise reduction, and compression I grant you are complex subjects. But Bayer filters? Look up the appropriate math and implement it.

July 8, 2012 at 9:43PM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM


It's actually not hard at all to get raw bayer data onto a ssd, heck its not hard to record raw data of any sort, it's actually the easiest since it's in it's simplest form. If you lack the bandwith to record raw data... Well add a raid, it's seriously not that hard. The problem is, no company wants to make it cheaper. Why would they?

It's like how there really isn't a HDD shortage anymore but our prices aren't dropping. Just how business is done, not something we should be surprised about.

July 8, 2012 at 9:56PM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM


Well I meant both of those combined - debayer plus downsample - since you're going from 5K or 4K to 1080. I don't know what the quality would be compared to the same file created in post and downsampled to 1080, people may have already done these tests, but it wasn't that long ago that you couldn't get a full 1080 out of EPIC or SCARLET.

If it was that easy you'd think they would have implemented it as an option in the camera - but I don't believe it's that easy. Just like video playback, it took Sony and RED a long time to implement playback in the camera. Same with deleting clips - some argue why you'd ever want to do it in the camera anyway, but even the F65 does not allow deleting clips in the camera. These cameras are a whole different animal when it comes to everything we take for granted on regular cameras.

It very well could yield exactly the same results, but I just don't know, I don't have one at the moment to test that.

July 8, 2012 at 11:19PM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM

Joe Marine
Camera Department

Ah yes, playback is an entirely different story, quite honestly, the RED is very under powered processing wise. There's been plenty of demos of low powered computer processors (netbook size) that definitely fit the RED's power envelope that could handle these tasks ( I believe XIMEA has an demo unit). Either way, I'm just throwing my 2 cents... I'm a high school student with a dslr, this high end stuff is just for me to look at....

Give me anything above a t2i and I would be a VERY happy camper.

The redmag pricing is still leaving me befuddled though... Guess that's just high end.

July 9, 2012 at 12:03AM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM


Its great to see that companies have become so responsive, they are plugging every hole that the customer brings up, canon excluded. Red has responded to the criticism of overpriced media and they have an interesting opportunity to react to the frame rates of the fs700 with the dragon sensor upgrade for scarlets. Can't wait to see the competition unfold.

July 8, 2012 at 10:39PM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM


Great to hear, been dragging my feet on another SSD, this is perfect timing for me.

July 8, 2012 at 11:28PM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM


How do REDMAGs hold up in terms of corruption? With my DSLRs, I avoid using anything over 16GB cards for recording since there's always the potential for cards to corrupt - better to lose only a fraction of footage if it's unrecoverable than the entire day's work.

July 9, 2012 at 12:04AM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM


According to RED, one of the main reasons that their media is overpriced is due to the stress testing they put it through to ensure that it remains reliable under pretty much any conditions. Personally, I haven't had any failures with the two cards I've got (one 64 and one 128), and according to the Scarlet's log, I've shot around 60 hours with it.
I haven't heard of anyone who's had a Redmag fail on them either. Considering that the reduser community is pretty vocal about errors and flaws, they appear to be pretty reliable so far.

July 9, 2012 at 1:20AM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM

Andreas Kopriva

Great news for everyone. Bit bummed I already have bought my quota these past few months though. Would have saved quite a lot.

July 9, 2012 at 7:39AM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM

Lliam Worthington

Pricing like this is the reason the company I worked for bought into FCP 1 around the year 2000. Avid wanted many multiples of the going market price for hard drives with their firmware ($2500 for a 40GB Avid drive at the time, I think) but Apple didn't care what you used. SSDs are now commodity items under $1/GB, and I don't see how charging 10x the going rate is justifiable.

July 9, 2012 at 7:41PM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM


Yeah $1 a GB is the going rate...RED has gone proprietary codecs and media.
So you suffer the price.
What was once the cheapest systems in 2008 is now
one of the very highest.

July 11, 2012 at 2:18PM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM


Compared with what? Alexa+Codex or an F65? You gotta be joking...

July 12, 2012 at 4:43PM, Edited September 4, 7:54AM