This post was going to go live far earlier but there's been quite a bit of news regarding cameras. First Sony releases more models than we can keep track of, and then we get the Panasonic GH3 and Nikon D600. RED has been plugging away at their Meizler Module for some time now, and the amount of functionality shoved into one device is truly mind-boggling. Unfortunately, it comes at a price, but it will be one of those modules that will be very useful as a rental (unless you've got a lot of money to spend). Since there are so many, some of the more important specs are listed below.
- 1x 2B Lemo DSMC standard input power
- 2x 2p 1B accessory power output
- 1x 9p 1B Gig-E
- 1x 10p 1B 232/422
- 1x 4p 0B CAN
- 1x HD-SDI video BNC
- 1x Time Code BNC
- 1x D-Tap output
- 1x RED MINI-MAG Input
Some of the more interesting specs:
- Proxy Recording – Record Proxy files to a RED MINI-MAG card and record REDCODE RAW to sideSSD simultaneously (DNxHD, H.264, ProRes)
- Wireless Motor Control – Integrated Wireless communication between 3rd party hand controller and Meizler module. Internal wiring to front outputs for clean cable routing
- Wireless Video – Transmit 720p or 1080p uncompressed video at 5Ghz. Wireless video system has <1ms latency
- Wireless Audio – Receive audio signals from REDsync Master (optional purchase)
- Wireless Timecode -Receive wireless timecode from REDsync Master ( optional purchase )
- 802.11b Compatible – Receive system control commands from custom iPad/iPhone/iTouch app through REDsync system
- CAN Port – Allows for hardwired communication between the 3ality Technica hand controller and Meizler module
- RS232/422 Port – Hardwired communication for iPad, iPhone and iTouch apps and 3rd party devices
- 3D Port – Sync two Meizler modules together to create a 3D lens control system
- REDmote Port – Charges and Communicates with REDmote via direct hardwire
- RED Monitor Port – Support Dual RED EVF/LCD operating simultaneously via monitor ports on Meizler and Side SSD. Touchscreen control capability on the RED monitor
- Lens Ports Front -- Control 3rd party lens motors for Focus, Iris and Zoom
- Wireless Internal Antennas
- Price: $13,000
The other modules announced:
- REDsync Master: $2,900
- HD-SDI Wireless Receiver: $3,400
- HDMI Wireless Receiver: $1,100
The reason for the asterisk is that it seems that they are still going through certification for ProRes and they aren't supposed to say either way during that process. Jarred from RED did reveal the current resolutions for recording -- which include 10-bit for any of the recording formats (these are also standalone files ready to edit):
720p - 4:2:2 @ 24 & 60fps
1080p - 4:2:2 @ 24 & 60 fps
2k - 4:2:2 @ 24 & 60fps
2k 4:4:4 will become enabled early 2013.
Jarred also mentioned that 25fps and 60fps were included in the spec, so anyone in PAL country can have the correct outputs if they need them. The proxy files match the R3D files exactly, as this would create all sorts of problems when relinking footage. A question was asked about the possibility of proxy recording being built into a much cheaper recorder, and rather than completely give up the information, offered that a proxy-only recorder might be seeing the light of day next year.
What is truly interesting about the module is that it includes the ability to interface with lens motors. This is a big deal because if it works correctly, it will mean that there will be no need for antenna control boxes hanging off the camera. It also means at some point in the future that the REDMote wireless focus controller will be able to work with the lens motors from other companies to properly control the focus, iris, and zoom.
I did not make a mistake with the price, and since it is that high, this is going to be a rental option for anyone who owns a SCARLET -- and probably most people that own EPICs. This is a very high-end piece of gear with a lot of expensive and complicated technology built-in, but many of the functions are not always needed, so this makes a lot more sense as a rental on a shoot like a feature film. A cheaper proxy recorder is definitely in RED's best interest, as this has been one of the most requested features since the first RED One. Other companies have made products that will create proxies, but having a native piece of gear that bolts onto the back would be preferable to most RED shooters. The idea of modularity is that items like this can be made, and it's definitely an argument towards the RED system.
There is no question that a moderately priced proxy recorder will sell well, and with the amount of action that the Arri Alexa tends to get at rental houses, it is still a big draw, especially since we're still in 1080p land for the most part, and if a job has to move quick enough, they may prefer not dealing with the RAW footage. We should know in the next few months more about this cheaper proxy recorder, but until then, the Meizler priced at $13,000 is the only native RED option. To see the rest of the specs, head on over to the RED store below.
Link: RED Meizler Module