Thread: Thinking of buying a RED

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  1. #11  
    Member Kerry Lofton's Avatar
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    Thanks Patrick! I should also mention that I won’t be offloading all my footage at once. Because My turnaround is so quick, even with my A7, I’m only dumping off one or two clips at a time. At most, 10-15 if I cut a pregame hype video. But won’t be that much footage getting dumped at once.

    Andrew I think you hit the nail on the head. Not that you told me what I wanted to hear as much as you kinda confirmed some things I was feeling. I would LOVE a Gemini but unfortunately it’s out of my price range (for now my budget is in the $10 range for brain, monitor, side handle and media. I have access to EF/PL lenses I’ll need, tons of gold mount batteries. And then I’m hoping to add an EVF as well). The Gemini is definitely on my wish list but also, my low light situations are minimal. Besides locker rooms and tunnels which I sometime underexpose to make it more dramatic anyway, most fields are pretty well lit, even at night, with the exception of the super dome, that place just had a darkness to it haha and we never travel at night, always mid day. Any interviews I do will have lighting setups. Still in all, it would be super nice to have that extra room on the Gemini, again, just can’t afford it. But definitely hoping with this camera I can get my foot in the door, build a bank of accessories and then have that option to upgrade down the line if it makes more financial sense to make the bigger investment
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  2. #12  
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    My personal opinion is that one should not buy any deep raw digital cinema camera if one is not seriously interested in cinematography as an art form and willing to undertake the substantial learning curve necessary to get the most from them. It is not a casual endeavor to grade, transcode, edit finished work on a laptop while in flight for delivery on landing and requires significantly more processing power in a mobile workstation than more common encoded video formats.
    That said, pre-configuring a Prores shooting solution with appropriate LUTS could potentially meet your fast turnaround needs with a Red.
    Canon C300 MkII seems to be the popular choice for a lot of fast turn doc work, though I don't care for the ergonomics. The XF-AVC intra-frame codec is a joy to work with.
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  3. #13  
    Member Kerry Lofton's Avatar
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    I agree David. I’ve seen people say this is not a videography camera this is a cinema camera and though that’s a big part of my job, take cinematography extremely serious. I’m taking steps to learn davinci, and pushing my editing and shooting as much as I can and making quick social videos for a football team is very far from my end goal. Like I said, I want to make my wedding films more cinematic, I want to create shorts and documentaries. In my opinion, the world of sports social hasn’t gotten flashy, less about good cinematography and more about transitions and flashy effects. I don’t knock it, but it’s never been my style and never been. I’m trying to elevate the level of what we do and respect the art of it all.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Lofton View Post
    I agree David. I’ve seen people say this is not a videography camera this is a cinema camera and though that’s a big part of my job, take cinematography extremely serious. I’m taking steps to learn davinci, and pushing my editing and shooting as much as I can and making quick social videos for a football team is very far from my end goal. Like I said, I want to make my wedding films more cinematic, I want to create shorts and documentaries. In my opinion, the world of sports social hasn’t gotten flashy, less about good cinematography and more about transitions and flashy effects. I don’t knock it, but it’s never been my style and never been. I’m trying to elevate the level of what we do and respect the art of it all.
    I've wanted a Red ever since spending an afternoon with the first Red One model, but audio/video engineering is my profession and shooting a serious hobby, so haven't been able to justify the cost. Komodo may change that. I love shooting raw rather than video. Currently own a Digital Bolex. So I sympathize with your goals.
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  5. #15  
    Member Kerry Lofton's Avatar
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    For sure. I’m just at that point where by the time I spend $2k on something like a pocket 6k or something more “budget” then spend another 4-5k getting it kitted out, it’s going to be pretty close to buying a used red. I just can’t see spending that much and falling short of my dream setup

    Which again, I can’t stress how cumbersome my current setup is. I’ll post pics if anyone cares but whatever I get next, it’s a must that it’s easier to build on
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  6. #16  
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    RED is not ideal for you. Consider just battery life, weight, media size and autofocus for the work you do and then it becomes obvious. I also wouldn't buy a used camera unless you can afford to carry a second. You need something robust and reliable. Useability is your biggest ask, all the cameras produce great images now, no one is that much better that your audience would know the difference, so it comes down to useability. Consider a the Panny S1's or similar or if you can wait the Canon R5.
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  7. #17  
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    Thanks for the info Ash! All valid points. As I mentioned earlier, I’m wanting to move away from those body styles of the S1, A7, R5. The time and cost to kit these things out are just as expensive as a red and way more cumbersome. My a7 rig after kitting it out with a gold mount battery, 7 inch monitor, shoulder mount and long lens I’m sure would be just as heavy as the red, but the build was so awkward. Not able to easily switch from having the monitor on the top to the side, limited EVF options, etc. also, autofocus is great but something I’m getting away from using. All of our other shooters on amiras and F55 use manual focus so it’s not impossible for what I’m doing.

    Me wanting avoid those dslr style bodies, no matter how great the image is, really narrows my options outside of red down to FS7, FX9, ursa mini and canon c200/c300. All of which I can’t really think of any reasons why these would be better than RED
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    The OP shoots sports.... for slow motion there is no other camera to own if you shoot action or nature than a RED in my opinion. Slow motion, and I mean "real slow motion at > 120 fps not just 60fps" is the biggest selling point to the RED ecosystem and a used Scarlet-W over anything else in its price range. Scarlet-W records 5k/60fps, 4k/120fps, 2k/300fps continuously all in 16-bit raw with compression options (if file size is a worry) which makes it a no brainer for sports. Closest competition is FS7/FX9, c200/c300, or BMP6k which will only do 2k max resolution at 120fps in 10-12 bit depth with reduced IQ (windowing of the sensor). Just the dynamic range and color fidelity of a RED camera places it in a league well above FX9, c200/c300 and BMP6k outside of the added bonus of its much higher frame rates at 4k-5k resolution. Shoot in challenging scenarios and you will quickly see that RED images hold up to a challenging grade better versus 12-bit or 10-bit PRO-RES or CDNG (which has even larger file sizes than Redcode Raw).

    Yes, the Canon R5 is promising and looks great announced online but its not out yet and definitely won't be out for another year. Remember it will only do 10-bit 4k /120fps, and most likely without using the entire sensor similar to how the 1dxii works which was a big drawback to its 4k/60fps as advertised. Lastly, remember that increased resolution (8k in a DSLR) doesn't matter if dynamic range and color bit depth are limited! I agree, the Canon c300 is great for storytelling (if not one of the best narrative cameras out there) and their Raw is more than adequate and actually quite nice, but its definite not an action cam with its less than impressive frame rates. If all the OP did was interviews, I would have recommended a pair of BMP6K or c200/c300, but the need for slow motion points towards a Scarlet-W which really makes a lot of sense, especially if he is only trying to make small edits in the timeline while on the go between locations.

    I edit RED footage on the go a lot between jobs when traveling, in cars, on planes, trains, etc. and it's quite easy with modern computers/graphics, SSD drives, and a powerful NLE. Now before you say you don't want to invest in a new laptop, remember there is always proxy workflow. Again, I still don't get the whole workflow debate of a RED verses a BM or Canon. All three shoot raw and require some level of post production. Don't forget BMP6k requires a DaVinci workflow to get CDNG files out of it while RED has integration right in FCPX where you can access and manipulate the Redcode metadata without using Redcine X, directly in FCPX. Yes render times are quicker with camera's that record at lower bit rates but there really is a trade of for a smaller file sizes which simultaneously means (lower quality image with less information). Whereas a RED camera records more info yes, but it produces a much fatter digital negative to work with in post. Larger files almost always mean better image quality I hate to tell you....To debunk the RED workflow mystery, I can offload and import a full 480gb redmag onto my 2019 MBP 15" into a FCPX library and a backup storage drive in less than 10-15 minutes. I can then quickly scrub through and clean-up a mags worth of footage in about 30 minutes and slice up and edit a few clips (say 5-10) in an additional 20-30 minutes, then drop an IPP2 base rec 709 conversion LUT (supplied by RED) onto the footage in less than a minute and give a client a pretty impeccable, high quality result within about 1-1.5 hours fairly easily. I find that I spend a lot more time on mixing audio in post than the entire process of review, edit, color grade, and publish on most jobs even with a RED workflow.

    Lastly, to address the portability factor, I highly recommend you check out the Cinebags Stryker 35 or CB-25 backpack. I can fit my Red gemini, 4 reasonably sized lenses (say canon L series), 4 gold mounts, 2 d-tap chargers, 2 mini mags, 2 card readers, 4.7" monitor, lemo a/b with cables, misfit atom matte box, 5 stops of NISI 4x5.65 ND filters, 1 x pro mist, lens cleaning gear, tools, zacuto z-drive follow focus, laptop, and much more all in one bag that counts as a carry on. Would be pretty easy for the OP to travel with a duffle bag and the backpack or vice versa. Other than shoulder rig, wireless accessories, stabilizers, etc. I have been able to fly with my entire RED gemini kit and lenses as a "fail safe" carry on fairly easily. Then I check/ship any additionally required production accessories (i.e. wireless video, gimbal, follow focus, directors monitor, lighting, etc.) when necessary but it is definitely very easy to travel even internationally with a RED camera.
    Last edited by Andrew Reese; 05-14-2020 at 01:46 PM.
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  9. #19  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ash Worth View Post
    RED is not ideal for you. Consider just battery life, weight, media size and autofocus for the work you do and then it becomes obvious.
    Are you shooting only outside during daylight?

    If you can't control lighting like for film, music videos, or commercials, then you might not be happy with RED's low light performance. Additionally, as stated you will need several heavy batteries. It also doesn't have autofocus. If Gemini is not an option, I would suggest renting a RED and filming inside without lights and whatever you might film at night; you might be surprised at it's limitations.

    The amazing images you see from RED generally have crews setting up the shots. Some guys do run and gun, but IMO if you aren't doing controlled shoots in a studio, you might be better off with a lighter, low light, autofocus, rig.

    I wouldn't consider a RED unless you are going to go into filmmaking, music videos, commercial, or wildlife cinematography.
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  10. #20  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Reese View Post
    The OP shoots sports.... for slow motion there is no other camera to own if you shoot action or nature than a RED in my opinion. Slow motion, and I mean "real slow motion at > 120 fps not just 60fps" is the biggest selling point to the RED ecosystem and a used Scarlet-W over anything else in its price range. Scarlet-W records 5k/60fps, 4k/120fps, 2k/300fps continuously all in 16-bit raw with compression options (if file size is a worry) which makes it a no brainer for sports. Closest competition is FS7/FX9, c200/c300, or BMP6k which will only do 2k max resolution at 120fps in 10-12 bit depth with reduced IQ (windowing of the sensor). Just the dynamic range and color fidelity of a RED camera places it in a league well above FX9, c200/c300 and BMP6k outside of the added bonus of its much higher frame rates at 4k-5k resolution. Shoot in challenging scenarios and you will quickly see that RED images hold up to a challenging grade better versus 12-bit or 10-bit PRO-RES or CDNG (which has even larger file sizes than Redcode Raw).

    Yes, the Canon R5 is promising and looks great announced online but its not out yet and definitely won't be out for another year. Remember it will only do 10-bit 4k /120fps, and most likely without using the entire sensor similar to how the 1dxii works which was a big drawback to its 4k/60fps as advertised. Lastly, remember that increased resolution (8k in a DSLR) doesn't matter if dynamic range and color bit depth are limited! I agree, the Canon c300 is great for storytelling (if not one of the best narrative cameras out there) and their Raw is more than adequate and actually quite nice, but its definite not an action cam with its less than impressive frame rates. If all the OP did was interviews, I would have recommended a pair of BMP6K or c200/c300, but the need for slow motion points towards a Scarlet-W which really makes a lot of sense, especially if he is only trying to make small edits in the timeline while on the go between locations.

    I edit RED footage on the go a lot between jobs when traveling, in cars, on planes, trains, etc. and it's quite easy with modern computers/graphics, SSD drives, and a powerful NLE. Now before you say you don't want to invest in a new laptop, remember there is always proxy workflow. Again, I still don't get the whole workflow debate of a RED verses a BM or Canon. All three shoot raw and require some level of post production. Don't forget BMP6k requires a DaVinci workflow to get CDNG files out of it while RED has integration right in FCPX where you can access and manipulate the Redcode metadata without using Redcine X, directly in FCPX. Yes render times are quicker with camera's that record at lower bit rates but there really is a trade of for a smaller file sizes which simultaneously means (lower quality image with less information). Whereas a RED camera records more info yes, but it produces a much fatter digital negative to work with in post. Larger files almost always mean better image quality I hate to tell you....To debunk the RED workflow mystery, I can offload and import a full 480gb redmag onto my 2019 MBP 15" into a FCPX library and a backup storage drive in less than 10-15 minutes. I can then quickly scrub through and clean-up a mags worth of footage in about 30 minutes and slice up and edit a few clips (say 5-10) in an additional 20-30 minutes, then drop an IPP2 base rec 709 conversion LUT (supplied by RED) onto the footage in less than a minute and give a client a pretty impeccable, high quality result within about 1-1.5 hours fairly easily. I find that I spend a lot more time on mixing audio in post than the entire process of review, edit, color grade, and publish on most jobs even with a RED workflow.

    Lastly, to address the portability factor, I highly recommend you check out the Cinebags Stryker 35 or CB-25 backpack. I can fit my Red gemini, 4 reasonably sized lenses (say canon L series), 4 gold mounts, 2 d-tap chargers, 2 mini mags, 2 card readers, 4.7" monitor, lemo a/b with cables, misfit atom matte box, 5 stops of NISI 4x5.65 ND filters, 1 x pro mist, lens cleaning gear, tools, zacuto z-drive follow focus, laptop, and much more all in one bag that counts as a carry on. Would be pretty easy for the OP to travel with a duffle bag and the backpack or vice versa. Other than shoulder rig, wireless accessories, stabilizers, etc. I have been able to fly with my entire RED gemini kit and lenses as a "fail safe" carry on fairly easily. Then I check/ship any additionally required production accessories (i.e. wireless video, gimbal, follow focus, directors monitor, lighting, etc.) when necessary but it is definitely very easy to travel even internationally with a RED camera.
    Well said and fully agree. Great post.
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