RED Prepares to Launch $28,000 Epic Camera

Nov 2, 2009
By Daryl Lang

RED Epic

One possible configuration of the RED Epic S35 5K camera system.
RED has announced a tentative rollout schedule for its follow-up to the powerful RED One digital video camera. Select customers willing to pay $28,000 for a prototype could have the camera by year’s end.

In a message board posting Friday, RED founder Jim Jannard said the first new camera, the Epic X S-35, will be “available this year (assuming no major drama).”

Last year, RED announced the development of two camera systems based on its new Mysterium-X sensor: The Epic, an expensive pro line, and the Scarlet, which is likely to be cheaper and tooled for less-demanding professionals.

The Epic will be the first one out the gate.

In the first phase of the Epic rollout, existing RED One owners will be able to order prototypes. Jannard’s message warns that “Stage One” customers will receive separate components as the parts are ready and are likely to experience some bugs. “It will be somewhat of a pain,” the announcement says. For the privilege of flying the airplane as it is being built, customers will pay $28,000 and will never be able to trade in their RED Ones. Jannard explains: “You make money with your cameras. You recognize that being 1st IS the best deal. You know who you are.”

Stage two will see production units made available to existing RED One owners in early 2010. Following that, a later batch of RED One owners will be able to buy the Epic camera at a discount in exchange for trading their RED Ones.

Finally, the Epic X S-35 will go on sale to all customers at an unspecified date. The “brain” of the camera will cost $28,000, with the components required for various configurations driving the price higher.

Jannard wrote that the company can no longer promise drop-dead delivery dates and that everything is subject to change. “Things will be released when we are finished, and finished properly,” he wrote.

The announcement Friday offered no new details about the availability of the Scarlet camera system.

Here is the list of preliminary specs from Jannard’s message.


RED DSMC (Digital Stills and Motion Camera)

New MYSTERIUM-X 5K sensor
5K (2:1) at 1-100fps
4K (2:1) at 1-125fps
Quad HD at 1-120fps
3K (2:1) at 1-160fps
2K (2:1) at 1-250fps
1080P (scaled from full frame) at 1-60fps
Increased Dynamic Range, reduced noise
Time Lapse, Frame Ramping
ISO 200-8000
New FLUT Color Science

Completely Modular System, each Module individually upgradeable
Independent Stills and Motion Modes (both record full resolution REDCODE RAW)
5 Axis Adjustable Sensor Plate
Multiple Recording Media Options (Compact Flash, 1.8” SSD, RED Drives, RED RAM)
Wireless REDMOTE control
Touchscreen LCD control option
Bomb-EVF, RED-EVF and RED-LCD compatible
Multiple User Control Buttons
Interchangeable Lens mounts including focus and iris control of electronic RED, Canon and Nikon lenses (along with Zoom data)
“Touch Focus Tracking” with electronic lens mounts and RED Touchscreen LCDs
LDS and /i Data enabled PL Mount
Rollover Battery Power
Independent LUTs on Monitor Outputs
Independent Frame Guides and Menu overlays on Monitor Outputs
Monitor Ports support both LCD and EVF
True Shutter Sync In/Out and Strobe Sync Out
720P, 1080P and 2K monitoring support
Gigagbit Network interface and 802.11 Wireless interface
3 Axis internal motion sensor, built in GPS receiver
Enhanced Metadata
Full size connectors on Pro I/O Module. AES Digital Audio input, single and dual link HD-SDI
Support for RED, most Arri 19mm, Studio 15mm, 15mm Lite, Panavision and NATO accessories

Dimensions- Approx. 4”x4”x5.5”
Weight (Brain only)- Approx. 6 lbs (2.72kg)

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