September 14, 2015

RED's Next Camera is Called RAVEN

RED RAVEN Camera
We know the name of RED's next camera: RAVEN.

[Update]: RAVEN will be announced September 25th, has WiFi built-in, and will be capable of 4K up to 120fps:

Hey Mikael Lubtchansky, Everything is working :) Good Job. #FoolControl

Posted by Jarred Land on Tuesday, September 15, 2015

He also posted this video showing the frame rate change:

Cranking it up.... #RAVEN4K120fps

Posted by Jarred Land on Tuesday, September 15, 2015

RED's Jarred Land has teased yet another photo of the RAVEN on Facebook, this time showing that it's in a similar style body as WEAPON and takes Mini-Mags for media. The picture above is the second teaser so far, with the first one coming just a few days ago, showing us that it probably has a fixed mount (possibly EF).

This will likely be the last full post before the official announcement, since I know Jarred likes to tease these things out a bit (we'll just update this one with new teasers). That shot of the media told us a lot about this camera in terms of its affordability. Full disclosure: I own a RED, and have owned them for a few years now. I've also owned a number of other cameras from other manufacturers and will buy more of them in the future. I am partial to underdogs, but generally it doesn't matter to me, I'll shoot on whatever, and I can get excited about anything from any company.

RED 4K for All Jarred Land

Now, back to this camera. We've seen RED's president mention "4K4ALL" in regards to this camera (the first teaser image is above). To me, based on announcements from other companies, that means we're getting something below $10,000 (body only), which will likely replace the original SCARLET MX. I would be surprised if they went back to the MX sensor for something like this, and didn't just move straight to DRAGON. I'm sure RED could sell the guts of the RED EPIC in a new body for basically nothing at this point, and let it shoot 5K at high frame rates, but then they're cutting into the other lines they've established. 

I think a DRAGON sensor with reduced specs is coming, though it's worth noting that if they used the same DRAGON sensor found in SCARLET and EPIC (and also WEAPON), at 4K the field of view is reduced to about Micro 4/3 sized, which would be smaller than anything Sony, Canon, and Blackmagic offer at the $4-$5K range and above. 

Final Words on Affordability

It's easy to get excited about anything they may announce, especially if you're someone who couldn't afford more than $5K or $6K, and you really want to get into a compressed RAW workflow (which does save a ton of space in the end). The only issue with RED is the fact that they have a lot of proprietary accessories, including media. If they stick with the same body style as WEAPON, that means you're buying a Touch LCD or SideKick just to control the camera, which are both over $1,000, and the cheapest media starts at nearly $1,000. After you buy the body, you're in for $3,000 to $4,000 more right off the bat. That's not to knock the company, but it's the current reality buying a camera from RED.

I hope I'm wrong, and I hope they throw in a bunch of accessories for a reduced price, but don't expect to be shooting with a $4,000 camera for $4,000. Whatever the company announces, you'll spend a bit more just to get it shooting in their ecosystem. 

We'll let you know when the official announcement comes.      

Your Comment

31 Comments

I don't really dig Red cameras, but it would really be something if they actually sold this camera for $4k ready to shoot, ef mount with a external or built in monitor, 2 batteries and (1) 120gb mini mag

September 14, 2015 at 5:03PM, Edited September 14, 5:04PM

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Peter Staubs
Camera Assistant
425

Will never happen. I'd guess it will take $4k in accessories to get it up and running.

September 14, 2015 at 5:31PM

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$4000 in extras is pretty conservative. The scarlet mx canon collection is $14,410, or $6460 above the cost of the body. That includes the ssd & lens mount, side handle, used LCD monitor, power pack, 240 gig mini mag and reader. A viewfinder will cost more, plus you will need a rig for shoulder mounting.

September 14, 2015 at 6:58PM, Edited September 14, 6:58PM

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d shay
377

At least it will come equipped with pro audio inputs and built-in NDs. Oh wait. That's my Fs7.

September 22, 2015 at 11:36PM

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Steve Smede
Magazine Editor/Photographer/Videographer
171

Ok so $4k for the body and then $2k to get it up and running. whatever, I don't really care. I am curious but its not something I'd evert think about buying in the short term. I'm more interested in sony and canon cameras for lower budget purchases and rentals.

September 14, 2015 at 9:09PM

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Peter Staubs
Camera Assistant
425

Huh. It costs $6460 in extras to get the scarlet mx up and running. Probably the same for the Raven.

September 14, 2015 at 9:50PM

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d shay
377

But what if the LCD was built in, as is the lens mount and so the only thing you need to buy is cards and batteries.

September 14, 2015 at 10:15PM

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Peter Staubs
Camera Assistant
425

Unless it has compressed raw + 4-5k RAW capability and 120fps+ in HD+ for under $5k I will stick to my Ursa Mini 4.6k......whenever it arrives.

September 14, 2015 at 5:05PM

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I'm sure it will use variable compression R3D RAW just like their other cameras, though they've never released a camera that scales resolution, only crops, so you might get HD resolution at 60fps or 120fps, but it's probably going to be cropped in significantly.

September 14, 2015 at 5:18PM

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Joe Marine
Camera Department

Well, the Weapon does indeed scale resolution for ProRes.

September 14, 2015 at 6:11PM

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Rodrigo Prata
Director of Photography
159

That's right, completely forgot about that. It will be interesting to see if this camera gets ProRes at all though.

There's a huge price difference between the WEAPON MG and WEAPON CF, and huge part of that difference is 4K ProRes and higher ProRes frame rates.

September 14, 2015 at 6:24PM

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Joe Marine
Camera Department

The second they revealed it uses their own proprietary "mini mags", the entire concept of "4K For All" flew straight out the window. Not that I have any faith in RED delivering on their hype to begin with.

September 14, 2015 at 5:13PM

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Tom Arkeman
Lighting Camera-Operator
86

This right here. You'll need $4k of accessories from RED just to get a proper kit.

September 14, 2015 at 5:32PM

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My guess is that Red Raven is just the Weapon Scarlett, so to speak. 4k for all referring to 4k prores option of the Weapon, but with lower frame rates. But who the hell wants to be teased by a camera company? Could you imagine if Black n' Decker started teasing it's latest screw gun with partially obscured pictures and over the top naming. Would construction contractors everywhere be drooling or just confused and annoyed. This bonerific hype-machine that is Red is really annoying, great cameras though, if you can afford them.

September 14, 2015 at 6:11PM, Edited September 14, 6:14PM

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Derek Olson
Directomatographeditor
621

I have never been crazy about what RED names its cameras, but I don't care about that, I care what you can do with them. When RED introduced its RECODE Raw, people wanted ProRes (so did Alexa users) because mere mortal computers couldn't keep up without a super expensive card. (RED ROCKET in the case of RED) That's not the case anymore. I edit 5k raw on my computer, no problems and with no expensive cards. I don't need ProRes, because the freaking raw works so well. In other words, no need to transcode.

September 14, 2015 at 9:33PM, Edited September 14, 9:42PM

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Scot Yount
Director/Editor/Photographer/Motion Graphic Artist
399

People forget so often that it's the man or woman behind the camera and editing system that makes the Film. A worldclass director and dp can produce a better movie with a better story with an old crop sensor DSLR than an average director and dp with the most expensive RED and Zeiss lenses. I did visit the IBC today in Amsterdam and the 4K/8k hype with RED and Black Magic Design (and even Sony, Panasonic, Arri) we used to have 3-4 years ago was totally gone. In my opinion, there are not really BIG announcements made this year when it comes to hardware really. Other than minor improvements on already excellent equipment. Well....the 4K range of camera's get cheaper (and will be probably replacing most of the 1080p equipment in a couple of years I guess).

September 14, 2015 at 10:31PM

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Lutte Kikker
Photographer
254

Question is: how many people (even the filthy rich) do really need the latest RED camera anyway? So many productions are not even in 4K nowadays, just in 1080p (some people think the quality of modern 4K format systems is TOO good and TOO sharp and detailed, it takes away a lot of the old film-feeling, so they avoid using it).

September 14, 2015 at 10:37PM

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Lutte Kikker
Photographer
254

Completely agree. Give me an extra stop or 2 of dynamic range and I will take that any day over 4K or 6K or whatever.

September 15, 2015 at 8:16AM

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Output 4K? I'd agree...shoot in 4K? All the time. There are many benefits to capturing in 4K for 1080 output.

September 15, 2015 at 12:41PM

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seanmclennan
Story Teller
965

This "4K look" you speak of was also apparent with 1080P, most digital sensors are not flattering to actors including RED and Alexa. Any decent DP will be using a filter in front of the lens like promist or Hollywood black magic. This is how all the digital productions you watch in the theater and TV are handled. (Game of thrones, birdman, unbroken)

Truth is digital film reproduction as a whole is not there "yet." Tom Cruise and many big name actors refuse to be shot digitally for these reasons, putting the requirement to shoot film in their contract.

September 16, 2015 at 7:51AM

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Cruise shot on film? That must be recent because"Oblivion" and "Rock of Ages" were both shot digitally.

September 18, 2015 at 7:01PM

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I think 4k for just the body is a good start. No one ever said this industry was going to be cheap, and there are much cheaper and just as capable option out there for those (like myself) that COULD afford a RED, but went with other options to get more bang for the buck.

Indie folk can dream, but we still have to live in reality and be frugal where it counts.

September 15, 2015 at 12:15AM

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Justin Gladden
Producer
390

120 FPS. I'm curious now.

September 15, 2015 at 3:44PM

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I did read some of the comments but still have a question.

Assuming the Raven :
- gets 4K ProRes 444
- costs about 10-12K (including for exemple the LCD monitor, ssd module, side handle, 4 redvolts, mini mags and reader etc)
- gets some interesting specs (dynamic range, frame rates up to 120 4K apparently,...)

Would some of you go the extra cash and buy the Raven over the URSA Mini (+ viewfinder, shoulder kit, v-mount batteries...)? If so, why? This question obviously goes with the reliability of both companies.

What do you guys think?

September 15, 2015 at 6:41PM

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Alex :)
234

I think it depends on the frequency you go out and shoot. Definitely Red has a better workflow (using less hard drive space is very appreciated over time) and the Dragon sensor does a really great job getting the image you want on the spot (MX sensor was tricky sometimes if you where shooting with little to no light equipment).
It is a good well-known rental camera. It pays over time and you have at least 2-3 years before it starts to feel left behind.
Blackmagic is cheaper, they are still on the learning curve with the sensor and they give you less time for you to get your money back before the next model arrives.
I think it can be a great camera for learning and/or a great camera for a small production company for the purpose of doing jobs without going to a camera rental.

I would definitely go one way or the other depending on the budget. It´s a good time to invest if you know what you are doing.

September 15, 2015 at 7:22PM

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Fernando Tufiño
Director/Cinematographer
88

Thank you Fernando !

September 15, 2015 at 8:04PM

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Alex :)
234

Man,.....that's tough. I owned a RED Scarlet and really enjoyed the camera. Ultimately I gave up on them when they kept changing the rules of their upgrade policies. I understand to some extent why they had to do what they did,....especially now with these totally new models coming out, but I couldn't ride the roller coaster any longer.

I have an Ursa Mini on pre-order, and not having any compressed cinemaDNG 4:1 & 3:1 to work with yet is a little unnerving (anybody know where to get some!?). I LOVED working w/ R3D files. I suppose that's one of the biggest unknowns in my opinion. RED footage was SO easy to handle w/ Adobe CC products.

However,....I think you're always going to get more bang for your buck in BlackMagic world.

Blergh,....I don't think I helped you any, and I may have confused myself even more in the process LOL.

September 15, 2015 at 7:35PM

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Ian Mora
Writer, Director, Editor, Camera Operator
123

Thanks Ian,did you have any issues with your RED Scarlet at that time?

September 15, 2015 at 8:06PM, Edited September 15, 8:06PM

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Alex :)
234

So I did a little list of Red accessories for Raven.
I own a Scarlet Dragon (Scarlet MX before that), so I spent some years trying to figure out what I need the most and what I don´t on a tight budget.
It should go like this:

Camera Display/Control:
Weapon Red Touch 4.7" LCD 1450 $US
Weapon Sidekick 1150 $US

Media:
Red Mini-mag 120gb 850 $US
Red Station Red Mini-mag 195 $US

Power:
Weapon Redvolt XL Module 1150 $US
Redvolt XL (2-pack) 675 $US

TOTAL 5470 $US

I would add the Dual Outrigger Handle (490 $US), because you need a good grip of the camera body.

So just to have the camera up & running you need a little over 6000 $US in accessories.
Red will have a camera package but I find them to have some items that you really don't need right away, adding more $ to the equation.

I really wish the camera body will cost basically the same as this list of accessories, that would be a good deal.

September 15, 2015 at 7:11PM, Edited September 15, 7:58PM

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Fernando Tufiño
Director/Cinematographer
88

Totally agree ! Thank you Fernando :)

September 15, 2015 at 8:07PM

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Alex :)
234

What if Raven is just cobbled together from old MX parts that people turned in for their various upgrades?

September 17, 2015 at 9:56PM

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Erik
81