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D20 and where it might be going..


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#1 Alexander Joyce

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Posted 21 April 2007 - 12:43 PM

I'd like to know if any of the people who went to NAB had the opportunity to speak to ARRI about the D20 and perhaps ask them where they see themselves going with it?
I'm thinking mostly in terms of rental vs retail.
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 21 April 2007 - 01:02 PM

My sense is that they don't seem to be in any great hurry to do major modifications. They added a fiber cable out from the camera in case you didn't want to deal with dual-link (you can go farther with a fiber cable) and they are still trying to work out the bugs in recording data mode, though I don't know what the problems are.
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#3 Max Jacoby

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Posted 21 April 2007 - 07:44 PM

As far as I know Arri isn't selling the D20, but there are some rental houses besides Arri (Clairmont, Fletcher) thar have it in their inventory as well. It's important to note that Arri do not consider the D20 a replacement for theatrical feature film production, but more of a television camera. Of course this does not prevent people from using it as such, but I am sure we can expect a higher resolution camera from Arri in the future which is aimed at theatrical feature productions.
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#4 jan von krogh

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Posted 23 April 2007 - 07:03 PM

As far as I know Arri isn't selling the D20, but there are some rental houses besides Arri (Clairmont, Fletcher) thar have it in their inventory as well.

As we were asking Arri to sell us a digital 35 sensor camera for years, i can confirm that the D20 wasn´t for sale. However, that was pre-red, meanwhile we wouldn´t be interested in a D20 anymore - I´m afraid that red is superior in any aspect i am aware of.

It's important to note that Arri do not consider the D20 a replacement for theatrical feature film production, but more of a television camera.

the positioning of the D20 was very different, depending who you spoke with. The worlds market leader for 35mm is hardly a usual suspect to admit that digital technology can do theatrical features.

I hope they finally recognized the writing on the wall this nab and take up the challenge.

Of course this does not prevent people from using it as such, but I am sure we can expect a higher resolution camera from Arri in the future which is aimed at theatrical feature productions.

the last time i spoke with arri employees (march), they indicated they might have something up their sleeves when i asked them en detail about their strategy regarding red. i only hope they adapt fast enough - would hate to see arris camera dept go the way of steenbeck, leica etc.

however, arri as a company isn´t cameras only, light, digital post, lens, rental, there are lots of fine divisions, so they might have a looong breath to r&d themself into a favourable position regarding the new competition - this will require quite radical new concepts for arri, thats for sure.
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#5 Stephen Williams

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 03:09 AM

however, arri as a company isn´t cameras only, light, digital post, lens, rental, there are lots of fine divisions, so they might have a looong breath to r&d themself into a favourable position regarding the new competition - this will require quite radical new concepts for arri, thats for sure.


Hi Jan,

If Red is as good as you think, there is no point in any other camera manufacture ever trying to build a camera! It would be easier to take a RED and and modify it, not unlike what Panavision did with Mitchell's.

Stephen
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#6 jan von krogh

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 07:53 AM

If Red is as good as you think, there is no point in any other camera manufacture ever trying to build a camera! It would be easier to take a RED and and modify it, not unlike what Panavision did with Mitchell's.


Hi Steven,

first of all, it is not what "i am thinking".
i saw the images running in 4k, so did peter jackson, his dop, so did mr. mullen, so did thousands of people.
the techspecs are published and have meanwhile be locked for the important features.

there are several things arri could do better or enhance compared to red.
just read the "red 2" thread on reduser.net.
120p full sensor just is one example.

arri should take the challenge.
it would be sad, no, even stupid, if they leave the market to the american and the japanese manufacturers.

and lets be realistic, their current digital product (D20) isn´t able to competete with red.

regarding the modification, as panavision did with the sony F900, mitchell etc...
... microelectronics are pretty tough to modify, mechanics aren´t.

its always the same when markets enter are in translation:
cannibalize yourself or be eaten.
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#7 Stephen Murphy

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 09:31 AM

I know Arri have had the D-25 in development for a while, and as the original idea for the D-20 was for it to be a constantly evolving camera i think it would be safe to assume that they have something up their sleeve. Personnally id love to see something like the Red sensor in the body of a 235.
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#8 jan von krogh

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 10:02 AM

I know Arri have had the D-25 in development for a while, and as the original idea for the D-20 was for it to be a constantly evolving camera i think it would be safe to assume that they have something up their sleeve. Personnally id love to see something like the Red sensor in the body of a 235.


yes, that would be a really exciting camera.
also, there are technological concepts for multisensor HDR capture. i sincerly hope that HDR cameras go into production within the next 10 years.

there are some mayor challenges for arri camera.
- getting the internal "go for it". i have experienced this situation myself first hands several times. good example was discreet logic, who had their legacy systems (FFI) making huge revenues and didn´t understand that the next-gen postproduction would be desktop systems. arri isn´t a stocklisted corp, and the internal management is rather conservative.
- positioning the new digital product. reds pricing is really somewhat aggressive.
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#9 John Holland

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 10:41 AM

hi Jan i want to know about you ! please what is it you do Producer , run a rental company ? find it difficult to get into any sort of chat mode with someone who i dont really know where they are coming from , you may have said before , but i am lazy and cant be arsed to look .
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#10 jan von krogh

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 01:34 PM

hi Jan i want to know about you ! please what is it you do Producer , run a rental company ? find it difficult to get into any sort of chat mode with someone who i dont really know where they are coming from , you may have said before , but i am lazy and cant be arsed to look .


yes, i said before, however:
it is only one company. between the productions, we do rent out our equipment, as our own stuff, services & co-productions usually only take 6-8 months a year.

company was founded in 1989. started with 35mm, mostly doing stopmotion, moco, sfx & sounddesign.

when vfx begun to become big we took the challenge and that really paid off.

over the years with these revenues we were able to buy complete workflows.

as the german industy is rather, lets say, slow in taking benefit of new tools, we often were early or even first adoptors for new tech.

Be it DigitallSLR for stills, DAW for Audio, early discreet logic when everyone was still using blackbox systems, on-line NLE instead of steenbeck etc.

in 2002 & 2003 we then bought a complete cinealta workflow (lenses, vtr, class 1 monitors, measurement, ff, online nles, grade etc), digital and film begun to coexist.

the recent years more and more jobs became digital, we still looked for better systems.
hdcam sr wasn´t interesting (we do mainly uncompressed disc 4:4:4 if we need higher quality).
arri, thomson, aaton, panavision, sony, panasonic, dalsa all hadn´t better cameras we could buy,
then run into a small startup called red and placed a order early on, saw their 4k testfootage then @ IBC and placed second order.

its a small company however (8 people in its core).

our role varies all the time. di for a high budget, rental for a mid budget, vfx for a low budget, exec prod for a series, training customers for the manufacturers, raising funds for a doc...

only common points are that we mainly work for & with people we already know - you´ll hardly find any advertising or pr from us - and try to make really cool films here and there.
berlins filmindustry, besides of babelsberg, isn´t that big anymore, and babelsberg is a universe of its own.

let me add that i really like this renaissance style.
Its a nice little niche between the freelancers & postproboutiques on the one hand and the mayor studios, productioncompanys and large rental houses on the other hand.

personally i enjoy grading & producing most, and rarely shoot myself these days, but that might change again.
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#11 John Holland

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 01:54 PM

Thank you for that Jan , i really thought you were in L.A. not Germany .
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#12 Alexander Joyce

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 02:08 PM

As we were asking Arri to sell us a digital 35 sensor camera for years, i can confirm that the D20 wasn´t for sale. However, that was pre-red, meanwhile we wouldn´t be interested in a D20 anymore - I´m afraid that red is superior in any aspect i am aware of.


Thing is we're not even remotely interested in a camera who's support division is in the US.
We have been looking at the F23 now. We just bought two SR decks recently. An SRW-5500 and an SRW-1 for our F900 and we are getting a new Avid DS and Symphony Nitris system.
As you can see we don't exactly go running after the latest flare. Now that might be our loss, but that's just how conservative we are. We've been burned seriously on betting our money on the wrong people because they promised great things that they just couldn't deliver in the end.
You might think the Red is superior, but the fact is even though it might be a great camera it's just NOT a camera for everyone.
It's not like those of us who put our money in tried and tested technology are all going to go bancrupt because we didn't jump on the 4K merry-go-round.
I really do wish you and all the other Red reservation holders all the best, but please stop being so ignorant as to think that once Red hits the shelves everything else will go the way of the dodo.
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#13 jan von krogh

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 03:47 PM

You might think the Red is superior, but the fact is even though it might be a great camera it's just NOT a camera for everyone.


#1 i have never said that it is the right camera for everyone. so please don´t put words in my mouth.
i exactly understand why there is not single a camera that fits all.
i am also aware of the sales figures of cameras in consumer, prosumer, eng/broadcast and cinema - cinema is by far the smallest.

you have asked about the arri D20, not about cameras in general.
and the market spot of the d20 now happens to be exact the one which overlaps with red.
To be precise, at the lower end of the red.
red sold over 1500, if not thousands of cameras meanwhile. arri has, as far as i know, some tens of cameras.
And the D20 won´t be easy to rent out or even sell anymore, if arri now decides that their product is ready to sold.

#2 its not me "thinking" that red is superior.
a - technological facts, not opinions.
red has a better resolution, a higher framerate with more flexible workflows in more compact formfactor, is lighter and, allows more sensorareas etc - at a fraction of the cost.
in fact, if you can´t strike a very good deal, buying a red will cost you less than renting a d20 for a week.
b- the worldclass dops who saw the footage or even shot with the red have expressed it quite precise, that the reds images are stunning.
go to the website, download moving or still images, judge yourself. the difference in resolution is almost ntsc to hd if you compare 1080 to 4k.

It's not like those of us who put our money in tried and tested technology are all going to go bancrupt because we didn't jump on the 4K merry-go-round.

once more you are putting words in my mouth, sir.
i wasn´t talking about your company, i was talking of the, and this is the topic of the thread, market outlook for arri with the D20.
so its rather you, sir, who is making generalisations here.
furthermore, i happen to own & operate a full line of hdcam gear, which would certainly be qualified as tested & tried.
i can assure you that sonys teething problems in hdcams early days certainly weren´t tried & tested - class 1 monitors couldn´t show 25psf etc...
meanwhile its tried and tested. the F23 certainly will have its own evolution, as any other camera.

I really do wish you and all the other Red reservation holders all the best, but please stop being so ignorant as to think that once Red hits the shelves everything else will go the way of the dodo.

You are calling me ignorant? and are suggesting that i think everything else will go dodo?
sorry sir, before making such bold statements - i didn´t say such things. so please start -reading- my posts before you answer or even begin personal attacks.

the question at hand is: "D20 and where might it be going" in the "arri d20 subforum".
ok then, so what is your sales & manufacturing projection for the camera in question - the arri d20?
50? 100?
may i remind you that red already had >1500 orders before NAB?
from key account customers like top LA rental houses & peter jackson over midsized customer like us down to lowbudget indies?

and finally, to make this clear: i just responded in a sharp tone because you put words in my mouthm but:
sony, panasonic & thomson GV are in the broadcast market. this market is huge.
the benefits & advantages of the red are of no huge importance for this market. we can be sure that there will be more panasonic HVX200 solds in a month than reds in a year.

but the 1080p, 2k and 4k markets will be -flooded- with reds within the next 24 months, and any competition will have a pretty tough challenge in these markets.
so if you plan to spend >200k on a F23 setup, its your choice and if it fits your need might be a excellent choice.
the fate of the D20 however is pretty clear. if they don´t drop prices like theres no tomorrow it will be a marginalized niche camera.
and i certainly don´t wish that arri becomes a niche player for digital cinema.
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#14 Brad Grimmett

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 04:01 PM

and lets be realistic, their current digital product (D20) isn´t able to competete with red.

It's these kinds of absolute statements that agitate people. The red camera has only been used to shoot one short film (from what I understand), so I think it's a little too early to declare it better than anything. People were declaring the F900 better than every other camera when it first came out too, and we know that was incorrect.
It appears that the camera will be a viable choice for folks in the very near future. I'm personally looking forward to using one, but I would never make a claim that a camera was better than any other without using it and/or seeing a lot of stuff shot with it. I just wish these premature declarations would stop.
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#15 Alexander Joyce

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 05:00 PM

you have asked about the arri D20, not about cameras in general.
and the market spot of the d20 now happens to be exact the one which overlaps with red.
To be precise, at the lower end of the red.


Again you are making the mistake of just talking about numbers and ignoring other factors. Such as after sales support, construction and build quality, range of accessories and so on...

#2 its not me "thinking" that red is superior.
a - technological facts, not opinions.
red has a better resolution, a higher framerate with more flexible workflows in more compact formfactor, is lighter and, allows more sensorareas etc - at a fraction of the cost.
in fact, if you can´t strike a very good deal, buying a red will cost you less than renting a d20 for a week.
b- the worldclass dops who saw the footage or even shot with the red have expressed it quite precise, that the reds images are stunning.
go to the website, download moving or still images, judge yourself. the difference in resolution is almost ntsc to hd if you compare 1080 to 4k.


Could very well be, but apart from it having a higher pixel count I can't say the picture quality was mind blowing in any way.
Mostly all post houses here go through SR out to 35, so if the images are pretty much on par I'm not sure I would worry too much about originating in 4K just yet.

may i remind you that red already had >1500 orders before NAB?
from key account customers like top LA rental houses & peter jackson over midsized customer like us down to lowbudget indies?


When Peter's DP was asked in that interview about if he would shoot again on the Red he didn't seem very reassuring. So just how happy they were with it I guess one will never know.

but the 1080p, 2k and 4k markets will be -flooded- with reds within the next 24 months, and any competition will have a pretty tough challenge in these markets.


As we have discussed in other threads the cost of the camera isn't the only cost to factor into a production. In fact the camera dept. is only a small portion of it. Since mostly all productions rent anyways it comes down to the rental company what camera they will invest in.
Over the course of that cameras life it's going to be paid down quite a few times. Now if they are say an ARRI rental house with quite a few ARRI cameras already. Are they going to throw out their commitment to ARRI and head off to another company with no track record?

If what you say happens and the market is flooded with Red's. How will you price that camera? Say you have 20 productions looking to shoot on the Red with 100 cameras to choose from.
Then you have 2 productions looking to shoot on the D20, but with 1 camera to choose from. That would in effect make the D20 a more sought after object and would therefore be priced at a premium.

so if you plan to spend >200k on a F23 setup, its your choice and if it fits your need might be a excellent choice.
the fate of the D20 however is pretty clear. if they don´t drop prices like theres no tomorrow it will be a marginalized niche camera.
and i certainly don´t wish that arri becomes a niche player for digital cinema.


Well as I explained there are many factors for us to consider when looking at a camera. Not just the image off the chip. It would be no step down from the F900 and so therefore would fit our needs quite nicely.

Red hasn't to my knowledge even announced how they will solve the support issues for customers outside the US. They are also only selling it directly to the customers and not through localised dealers. Which means one would have to deal with a company in the US every time there was an issue regarding the camera. If you indeed run a rental company then surely you would know what a hassle it can be to service your customers and get suppliers to act fast.
Now I might not have a particular liking for Sony, but their office isn't far from here and if they can't help me I know who to call in Sony Europe to make things happen. I can't have a relationship to someone based half way around the globe and I don't think I could rent a camera from someone I knew was dependent on a supplier half way around the globe.
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#16 jan von krogh

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 05:27 PM

It's these kinds of absolute statements that agitate people.

only facts & specs:

#1 resolution & sensor
D20
6,63 MP 4:3 sensor
3018 x 2200, 4:3 Aspect Ratio
2880 x 1620, 16: 9 AR
RED:
12,64 MP 16:9 sensor
4520 x 2540, 16:9 AR

#2 framerates
D20:
1-60fps
RED:
1-60fps, 120fps windowed.

#3 size & weight
D20: 7 kg, 39x19x30 cm
RED: 4,5 kg, 30x13x16 cm

#4 lens systems on camera
D20 : PL
RED : PL, Canon, Nikon, B4

#5 sensor geometry
D20 : S35 (ANSI)
RED : S35, 35, S16, 2/3

#6 type
D20 : camera, external recording - need for additional deck or device.
RED : camcorder, external and internal recording, no need for additional deck or device.

#7 RAW recording formats
D20: 6.6 MP RAW@4:3
RED: 12.64MP RAW@16.9, 4K, 2K, 1080p, 720p

#8 RGB & encoded recording formats
D20: 1080p
RED: 4K, 2K, 1080P, 720P

#9 recording options
D20: disc, tape.
RED: RAM, Compact Flash, ExpressCard, disc, tape.

#10 price
D20: not for sale, negotiate, typical 2000-2500$ rental / day.
RED: 17.500$

the list would go on for quite a bit - as example, the workflow is something which isn´t in the list at all, and red has clever options there.
the strenght of the d20 in comparision to red is the company behind it, as arri can & will give you excellent support if you pay it, but certainly not the product.

The red camera has only been used to shoot one short film (from what I understand), so I think it's a little too early to declare it better than anything.

thousands of visitors of this NAB, who saw the images might disagree. i, also having seen the red 4k footage running on 4k projection, disagree - the images were -much- better than the stuff i know from sony & arri.
have a look at the images and clips shoot with red on their website. even if they are still prototype they easly surpass -anything- i have seen from the D20 so far.

People were declaring the F900 better than every other camera when it first came out too, and we know that was incorrect.

we are not speaking about "every other camera" - we are speaking about the D20.
although i bought a hdcam camera, i never said or even thought that the 900 would be ideal for all cinematic purposes.
with the red one however i don´t see many many reasons to choose another camera for >95% of our feature work.

It appears that the camera will be a viable choice for folks in the very near future. I'm personally looking forward to using one, but I would never make a claim that a camera was better than any other without using it and/or seeing a lot of stuff shot with it.

here i have to agree with you - partially. there still can be screw-ups, delays, whatever.
i have seen dozens of manufacturers with wild annoucements (anyone remembers "play"?) -
but the people involved in the red project and what they developed & manufactured within the recent 15 months which i can deny.
be assured that -once our first red arrives- will quality-check the hell out of it.

however, as the threadstarter -especially- asked about Arri D20 in comparision to red we have to compare.

I just wish these premature declarations would stop.

red stated that the delivery starts within the next weeks.

arri has the tools, technology and the talented employees who can built a better camera than red.
the sooner arri realizes that, the better for everyone of us.
competition is good, and right now, the D20 doesn´t offer a real competition.
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#17 jan von krogh

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Posted 24 April 2007 - 06:16 PM

Again you are making the mistake of just talking about numbers and ignoring other factors. Such as after sales support, construction and build quality, range of accessories and so on...

Sorry we are talking D20? There is no "After sales support" for the D20 - as arri doesn´t sell, and that IS a huge problem for us, as we use ~180-220 camera days a year with ease.
arri certainly sells great support if you rent - but no D20 camera.

that there is no international service network in the very near future is indeed a problem. red announced they would take care of that but one thing is for sure - the first units won´t have local support.
that was, btw, one of the reason why ordered 2 reds.
build quality is unknow as of yet. i had lots of trouble with crashing sony F900/2s, heard bad stories about the early D20 days, so i hope for the best here.
range of accessories however is excellent, as PL mount (and others), V-Mount, 15/19 rodsystem, interfacing etc is all industry standard and other than the D20 there is a NLE which can edit rawdata even on a notebook - apple.

Mostly all post houses here go through SR out to 35, so if the images are pretty much on par I'm not sure I would worry too much about originating in 4K just yet.

yeah, 2k & 1080p are certainly good enough for >90% of delivery for years.
BUT: for us 4k is relevant as with 4k you have so much more headroom for grading, complex VFX (keying, tracking) pan and scan.
Also, lets not forget special exhibition, shows etc.
as i am sitting here in the studio and posting on the board, i have 3* 1080p rendering in the background for an installation in a ballet - we had to use 3 hdcam for that resolution.

When Peter's DP was asked in that interview about if he would shoot again on the Red he didn't seem very reassuring. So just how happy they were with it I guess one will never know.

Ahem, he was asked directly about the NEXT fullfeature and he said "we don´t know yet" - and that he likes to shoot on the camera.
What we do know however is - that Peter Jackson ordered the max amount of reds.

Since mostly all productions rent anyways it comes down to the rental company what camera they will invest in.

indeed. red sold at least 8 units to german rental houses so far. arri none.

Over the course of that cameras life it's going to be paid down quite a few times. Now if they are say an ARRI rental house with quite a few ARRI cameras already. Are they going to throw out their commitment to ARRI and head off to another company with no track record?

I sure don´t hope so - the later they wake up the longer i can earn on our reds.
ok, without joking:
the problem is that arri didn´t sell any digital cameras to rental houses. so the amount of D20 in rental houses, besides arri itself, is 0.

If what you say happens and the market is flooded with Red's. How will you price that camera? Say you have 20 productions looking to shoot on the Red with 100 cameras to choose from.
Then you have 2 productions looking to shoot on the D20, but with 1 camera to choose from. That would in effect make the D20 a more sought after object and would therefore be priced at a premium.

sorry, but capitalism works a little bit different.
when, as in your example, arri only gains 1.7% of reds market share in digital cinema aquisition, then they have -lost- their leading role as being the world leading manufacturer of cinemacameras, with all the consequences.
furthermore, as a producer you -always- try to reduce the budget when it doesn´t reduce the value of the production - so if the arri D20 is "priced at premium" and doesn´t offer additional benefit to the production - its out.
then, there are two factors. push & pull. a camera "sought" after is -pull-. a camera which belongs to the dop or producer is -push-.
So far we mostly had -pull- in the decision process for cameras, as HDCAM & 35mm gear was quite expensive.
but -push- will become VERY present from now.

Which means one would have to deal with a company in the US every time there was an issue regarding the camera. If you indeed run a rental company then surely you would know what a hassle it can be to service your customers and get suppliers to act fast.

agreed. to make things even more complicated - there will be very few other companies where i could get a replacement when a unit goes belly up in the beginning.
red has to offer a replacement service or an insurance asap, but i think that the first one, two months won´t have that.
we protected us against this by networking with other reservation holders and by having a second camera as backup, but this is clearly not an option for everyone.
however, when schedules are -really- tight, we -always- take at least one spare camera with us, especially when shooting in remote location like deserts etc.


Now I might not have a particular liking for Sony, but their office isn't far from here and if they can't help me I know who to call in Sony Europe to make things happen.

Yeah, agreed. And they have spare units (at least here in berlin) for most of their cameras.

I can't have a relationship to someone based half way around the globe and I don't think I could rent a camera from someone I knew was dependent on a supplier half way around the globe.

rental demand is high already now, but all customers so far want to test is out on shortform (clip, commercial etc) before thinking fullfeature.
We have told them to be prepared to switch to a 750/900 or 35mm if anything seems bizarre or doesn´t work.
however, the first month is reserved for testing anyhow and i hope that until IBC red will have some european service & support strategy. if not, our second unit is due to be shipped september, and we then can offer a second camera if needed.
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#18 Stephen Williams

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 01:03 AM

Hi,

The D20 has an optical viewfinder, for many this will be the deciding factor if choosing between a Red one or D20.

Stephen
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#19 Keith Mottram

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 11:26 AM

i agree with stephen and this becomes more important if you want to shoot anamorphic. the red is fantastic for it's price, this is beyond doubt, but from the images i have seen the d20 looks less electronic compared with the (admitedly web sourced) images from the red. personally if i could choose it'd be the new dalsa evolution, that baby looks real tasty- compact enough/ on board recorder and optical viewfinder.
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#20 Keith Mottram

Keith Mottram
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Posted 25 April 2007 - 11:30 AM

only facts & specs:
....
competition is good, and right now, the D20 doesn´t offer a real competition.


actually the only fact is the d20 doesn't currently have competition as the d20 is available to rent and the red is scheduled to be delivered. unless you mean fact as in the rumsfeld version of the word...
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Tai Audio

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Visual Products

Ritter Battery

CineTape

rebotnix Technologies