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I Don't get the Negativity


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#1 Joe Taylor

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 10:54 PM

I've been visitng the RED web sight anxiously for months for new developments and I am blown away by it's current looks and specs. (Please give it an intervelometer so tht I can buy one.)

At first, to me, in it's early stages it resembled an Erktor set of sort. But it was a protype. (Anybody sen the Mustang protoypes from the early '60s?) What I see now impresses me beyond words. The stills from Peter Jackson's short are incredible, and not just because Peter Jackson shot them. They're the first real world footage that I've yet seen and my eyes see gold.

What disturbs me, and maybe I've been out of the loop on this subject (so flame away, but be civilized-- I've read enough negative garbage and it bores me) is why there is so much pent-up hostility about this camera. This is cutting edge tecnhology that could change everything. It's the perfect size, it's afforable when you consider all the variables.

Somebody please, explain in a nice, reasonable way: what could possibly be wrong with this camera?

(Some of us run and gun types might have a storage issue, but that point is moot at the moment)
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#2 Jay A. Kelley

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 11:06 PM

I've been visitng the RED web sight anxiously for months for new developments and I am blown away by it's current looks and specs. (Please give it an intervelometer so tht I can buy one.)

At first, to me, in it's early stages it resembled an Erktor set of sort. But it was a protype. (Anybody sen the Mustang protoypes from the early '60s?) What I see now impresses me beyond words. The stills from Peter Jackson's short are incredible, and not just because Peter Jackson shot them. They're the first real world footage that I've yet seen and my eyes see gold.

What disturbs me, and maybe I've been out of the loop on this subject (so flame away, but be civilized-- I've read enough negative garbage and it bores me) is why there is so much pent-up hostility about this camera. This is cutting edge tecnhology that could change everything. It's the perfect size, it's afforable when you consider all the variables.

Somebody please, explain in a nice, reasonable way: what could possibly be wrong with this camera?

(Some of us run and gun types might have a storage issue, but that point is moot at the moment)


Well my friend, you are going to get a lot of answers here. Some will tell you they take issue with Jim's marketing stratagy. Some will complain about the 4k sensor not really being 4k, some will complain that people talk like the camera's out when it's not. And finally, some will complain that people are calling it film, and it's not film, that usually destroys the thread when that one comes up.

But what you will no longer hear, that you would have heard 8 months ago, is that the camera is fake, and will never work.. You will no longer hear the words "vaporware".

One guy on here keeps saying the camera is not out yet.. And he's right (If you don't count Jackson, "Wanted", or the films coming up in a few weeks). So any real opinion about the camera, good or bad, is a bit of speculation.

Do what works for you.. If you like the camera, then keep liking it.. You've got a lot of company!

Jay
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#3 Richard Boddington

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 11:45 PM

"Somebody please, explain in a nice, reasonable way: what could possibly be wrong with this camera?"

There is nothing wrong with the camera and Jim Janard. Nice guy.

What we take issue with here are comments like:

"Red will kill film"

"With Red I can finally make a sellable feature film"

Etc.......

R,
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#4 Dan Goulder

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 11:53 PM

I've read enough negative garbage and it bores me
This is cutting edge tecnhology that could change everything.

Lines like the second one bore everybody else.
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#5 Jim Jannard

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 11:56 PM

"Somebody please, explain in a nice, reasonable way: what could possibly be wrong with this camera?"

There is nothing wrong with the camera and Jim Janard. Nice guy.

What we take issue with here are comments like:

"Red will kill film"

"With Red I can finally make a sellable feature film"

Etc.......

R,


Richard... thanks for the compliment.
RED will not kill film. It is a really good alternative to consider... that is when we start shipping.
RED will make feature films... but by trained professionals. Our camera will not make you one. But it just might motivate you to up your game.
"If you shoot at 4K, but want a “film look”, then you finish at 2K and add some grain. It’s easy. It looks like film. However, if you finish and screen at 4K. the result is like shooting in 65mm, like the old epics used to do. It’s pretty exciting, and will have a major impact on indie filming – but we could see no reason why you couldn’t use these cameras for any type of movie. I’m seriously considering using RED for The Lovely Bones." Peter Jackson

Jim
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#6 Mike Lary

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 01:24 AM

If some of the people who've never used this camera would stop singing its praises, I'm sure some other people who've never used this camera would stop trashing it. Personally, I don't care whether or not digital ever rivals or exceeds the quality of film. I don't care what a camera looks like, how great it sounds on paper, or what the future of the technology might be six months down the road. All we have in the end is the finished product. Without a camera, you can't shoot a film, and that means you have no product. Arguing about a camera you've never used is like arguing about a film you've never seen. It's silly and a massive waste of time. RED needs to be tested extensively by professionals in the field before any claims can be validated or discredited.
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#7 Carl Brighton

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 03:26 AM

Somebody please, explain in a nice, reasonable way: what could possibly be wrong with this camera?

It's somewhat difficult to explain it a nice, reasonable way, but I'll try.

How could we possibly KNOW what be wrong with this camera, when virtually nobody outside the RED organization has had a chance to try one out. THAT is what is wrong: we have no way of knowing, and neither do any of the people who accuse us of RED-bashing.

People keep saying that skeptics (like me I suppose) are trashing the camera, when what we are really trashing is people who come in here talking as though they've actually used one. People who keep hammering about what "will" happen, when they have no way of knowing whether it will happen or not.

As even Jannard has acknowledged, we have heard this same story so many times before.

For some people, the RED was a done deal before they'd even seen a still from the sensor. Then it was a done deal when all most of them has seen were a few massively down-rezzed images they'd downloaded. Then it was a done deal mostly on the basis of what other people reported seeing at NAB.

For me it will be a done deal when REDs shart shipping, and RED-sourced footage starts appearing on cinema screens and on TV.
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#8 Carl Brighton

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 04:53 AM

Can I just explain something.

I don't know how many of you are aware of this, but recently there has been a upsurge in interest in Live-to-air TV programming, in an attempt to lure viewers back to network TV, and away from downloads and DVD.

To have any hope of succeeding, they obviously have to offer something better than what is available right now. I've been informally involved with a working group exploring the possibility of combining home viewer interaction via the internet with large-screen cinema-type audiences using HDTV cameras.

Up until now, the problem has been that currently available reasonably-priced HD cameras that look pretty good on a 42" monitor, look like sh!t on a 40 foot screen. (I thought my Sony mini-DV handycam looked great on a normal-sized TV screen, then I saw it plugged into a 50" LCD :( )

The thing is, we'd been saddled with a couple of dingbat non-technical middle-management types who've bought the RED Kool-Aid big-time, and they were basically reporting to their superiors that by late-2007 they'd be able to just place an order and buy as many REDs as they want!

I always said I didn't think that that was terribly likely, and now I've been vindicated. I've only ever really been interested in when the camera would be working, and freely available. If my investigative style has gotten people offside, well, welcome to the real world, lads :rolleyes:

At no point have I ever said there was anything particularly wrong with the RED. At least from what I've been allowed to see, it would be perfect for the sort of application we had in mind. Information on synchronized multi-camera setups is a bit thin on the ground at the moment, but I'm sure that will be addressed in the fullness of time. (I know a lot of people think you can just let the cameras free-run, and re-sync them downstream, but they're the same ones who ask you why you use a clapper board when you're shooting videotape :rolleyes:)

Anyway, I've just been told that the whole project has been cancelled, so my interest in the RED has now suddenly dropped back to background level.

So I'm not going to be posting here any more. Some of you will no doubt be thrilled to hear that, I'm sure Jannard will :rolleyes:

Edited by Carl Brighton, 24 June 2007 - 04:55 AM.

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#9 Mark Williams

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 06:13 AM

The Red sounds like a brilliant video camera in fact top of its class. Simply groundbreaking and I will want one if the hype is true. I reject the idea Film and Video can be treated as equals. The Red will be used as a great and neccesary alternative for films in the same vein as video cameras are currently used.

Also Films loaded with effects and for convenience. As a learning tool and those with budget constraints. This will be a godsend and a major major tool. Film though will be the professional standard that will keep its position intact.
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#10 Dewald Aukema SASC

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 09:22 AM

The Red sounds like a brilliant video camera in fact top of its class. Simply groundbreaking and I will want one if the hype is true. I reject the idea Film and Video can be treated as equals. The Red will be used as a great and neccesary alternative for films in the same vein as video cameras are currently used.

Also Films loaded with effects and for convenience. As a learning tool and those with budget constraints. This will be a godsend and a major major tool. Film though will be the professional standard that will keep its position intact.


I have said it before, but I have to say it again. I have this very expensive coffee table made for me by Steenbeck...

Dewald Aukema SASC
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#11 Joe Taylor

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 09:28 AM

I think I've what now must be countless claims that RED is "not" trying to replace film. What the RED team is is in fact a small group of forward thinking types who have a damn good idea of where the industy is heading and they want to make sure they have the most progressive, ground-breaking machine on the market when those days soon arrive. We all know as of now that time has not yet arrived, but they are still out there busting their asses and sweating bullets to make sure they're ready when it does.

Some half-decade ago Roger Ebert said that "film is not dead, in fact it doesn't even have a cold." That maxim still hold true today. In 2000 I was the biggest film snob one could possibly be. "I'll NEVER shoot any digital" I'd often hollar when drinking beer and shooting pool. But over the past couple years I've had to stop acting so bullheaded and face the music, and today it's sounding pretty good. I shoot primarily time-lapse and 90% of what I shoot is 35mm. (I've just worn out my second Canon 20D for digital time-lapse work.

As far as not putting their system out when people are snapping their fingers on demand--- WHY THE HELL SHOULD THEY?! It's simply not ready. Think of Microsoft... now, if they'd just done a bit more testing.... But very soon it will be out that there (hopefully intervelomenter ready) and I'll have a new debt and one hell of a new camera.

Be patient guys and gals. For some, the waiting is the hardest, but most fullfilling part. Seems a few are wringing their hands hoping for failure (so sad) but I put my $5 on RED.
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#12 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 10:48 AM

The negativity will keep fading over time, especially once the camera is out and being used by a lot of people.

And the camera will be finished and released, that's fairly certain. We already see other companies with single-sensor digital camera products that work, so it's not impossible, and besides, we've already seen footage from the RED camera.

And what will make RED different from its imitators is that Jim has the money and the drive to finish that last 10%, to get things right, that other small companies won't be able to. It's a lot more than slapping a lens and sensor together and connecting it to a processor.

And it will affect the industry -- with that many cameras shipping, at that price, it would be hard not to have an impact. "Change everything"? Well, that's a bit of hyperbole. That's giving technology too much credit for how things work in Hollywood. If a TV show like "Big Love" switched to the RED camera, I doubt the impact on the writing staff would be significant. And there are a lot of production departments where such a switch would be minimal. I doubt whether you needed to use a 20'x20' silk or lay 100' for dolly track is going to be affected much by a switch to a RED camera. Now I suppose with any savings, you could order more dolly track, use bigger silks... I doubt the sound mixer's decision to use a radio mic versus a shotgun mic is going to be affected by a switch in cameras. I doubt it will be easier to get the movie star out of her trailer...

A bigger impact will be seen in the indie world, but to some extent, this is part of a decades-long trend towards digital filmmaking so it's not out-of-the-blue -- people have been waiting for such a camera to come along.
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#13 Nate Downes

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 11:17 AM

I have said it before, but I have to say it again. I have this very expensive coffee table made for me by Steenbeck...

Dewald Aukema SASC


And I keep groaning that I can't find even an upright intact for my own use....
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#14 Mark Williams

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 12:42 PM

As an indie film maker I will want a red. I understand the potential quality convenience and abilty of the Red. But I also have my Arri 16mm BL ready to make real film albeit in standard mode.

The best route for anyone wishing to make a film is to originate on film and finish in digital.

As for a steenback coffee table please send it to me I will find it useful employment.
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#15 Adam Thompson

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 11:23 PM

I've been visitng the RED web sight anxiously for months for new developments and I am blown away by it's current looks and specs. (Please give it an intervelometer so tht I can buy one.)

At first, to me, in it's early stages it resembled an Erktor set of sort. But it was a protype. (Anybody sen the Mustang protoypes from the early '60s?) What I see now impresses me beyond words. The stills from Peter Jackson's short are incredible, and not just because Peter Jackson shot them. They're the first real world footage that I've yet seen and my eyes see gold.

What disturbs me, and maybe I've been out of the loop on this subject (so flame away, but be civilized-- I've read enough negative garbage and it bores me) is why there is so much pent-up hostility about this camera. This is cutting edge tecnhology that could change everything. It's the perfect size, it's afforable when you consider all the variables.

Somebody please, explain in a nice, reasonable way: what could possibly be wrong with this camera?

(Some of us run and gun types might have a storage issue, but that point is moot at the moment)


Actually posts like yours are the reason there's so much negative feeling to the subject. A lot of pros here like to learn from other pros. The net has made it so any Joe-Blow can wander in and say anything without ever having set foot on a real set before. It gets really frustrating to read post after post from people like that. A fan-boy is what people end up calling these guys because it's a way to vent.

It's as if they only want to read what makes them happy (see reduser) ...this happy feeling they have is unfounded and is based on the fantasy that you can finally make movies happen because of a camera that's "cheap" to shoot with. When someone says "hey kid, movies cost so much because of sets and actors, etc, etc." it upsets the fan-boys and makes them come back with tears and whines because the year+ long fantasy is being crushed. It's all emotional, not factual or experience based. It's unfortunate that we live in the push-button age where anyone under 35 wants everything right now and can't understand why they can't have what they want... now!

Will the RED/others digi-cams change anything? Yes. It will change one detail within a very large production picture, it already did years ago. Please, read that again, one detail, that's all. So what, you wouldn't have to mess with film anymore. What else? Nothing. Sorry my friend but nothing will ever change the extremely complex world of production, which is filled with even more complex people, nor will it change the already very sad state of indie film distribution... this is the worst reality of all to face for small films. Shoot at friggin 8K or in IMAX and still have a one in ten-thousand chance of getting it out.


You know, it's interesting that the more HD/video formats evolve, the more popular Super8 and 16mm become.
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#16 Sam Wells

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Posted 25 June 2007 - 12:00 PM

Will the RED/others digi-cams change anything? Yes. It will change one detail within a very large production picture, it already did years ago. Please, read that again, one detail, that's all.become.


I'm not sure I agree with you.

I think the evolution which started you might say with the Eclair NPR in 16mm and the use of things like hand held Cameflexes in the French New Wave did change things.

I think DI has changed things if only as a 'bridge' to something different.

Digital Cinema is in it's infancy in most respects, I wouldn't want to assume too much as to where it might go. But I don't think 21st Century cinema will be the same as the cinema of the past 40 years.

Shooting in 4K RAW, an NLE is *not* an electronic Steenbeck, it's a film lab, an optical printer and more.

I can forsee films that are far more assemblages than montages of fully-realized-in-the shooting frames.

For the past 150 years of photography and the past 100 years of cinematography, the photgraphic image was "evidence" and the exceptions were special cases: effects.

This is no longer true and I think it might represent a rather profound change, actually.

-Sam
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#17 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 25 June 2007 - 12:18 PM

In classic Hollywood narrative cinema, there have been changes allowed by new technology, but generally it has to fit within the constraints of storytelling and whether the new techniques enhance that or not. Jump cuts became part of the common language, for example.

Yes, the lightweight cameras used by the French New Wave did allow movies to be made with a certain freedom of shooting, but the question is whether there are other cameras besides the RED that allow that now. Is Super-16, for example, any more constricted than RED? Or a Varicam? Will the affect of the RED camera on storytelling be any different than the effect that HD cameras had, only that now the picture quality will be higher?

I see the biggest impact, just as the DV revolution before, on the people with the least amount of money, but on Hollywood and medium-budget indie movies, I see a technical impact on shooting and post, but probably not a fundamental impact on the final results. It's still a script & acting-driven medium in classic narrative cinema. There is always changes of style that result of course. Look at the effect that the zoom lens had, for example.

The real question is what is the impact of getting higher quality at lower costs?
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#18 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 25 June 2007 - 12:39 PM

I personally don't see what the big deal is. Yes, it's an amazing new tool at an amazing new price-point. But the question always becomes what happens when you're given a great tool without the budget to really optimize it.
I remember I began shooting an Indie Bollywood film here on the F900. I tried to talk them out of it, as they were going to blow their entire equipment budget for a 3 hour long piece, on one camera rental. It didn't work, and we moved forward; until they realized that they couldn't afford the fun new tools. Everything is on hold now because of it, and chances are it will be on hold indefinitely. I worry about a lot of people who will accept any system on blind faith, or lack of forethought. The hubris of inexperience is always a hard thing to get around.
That being said, though; I do welcome the RED. I would love to get my hands on one for some shooting, just to try it out. But, as with anything else and as has been mentioned many times before RED will not up-heave the film industry. If anything, as DV and now the newer HDV and DVCPROHD cameras have in the past done; Red MAY further democratize film making. And in the end, Democracy is a good thing.
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#19 Sam Wells

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Posted 25 June 2007 - 02:54 PM

In classic Hollywood narrative cinema, there have been changes allowed by new technology, but generally it has to fit within the constraints of storytelling and whether the new techniques enhance that or not.


But I think a whole sub-genre of "classical Hollywood narrative cinema" - literary script-oriented oriented (in the sense of a written medium) has already jumped ship and gone to television; which has produced new things - like the extended form we see in "The Sopranos" etc...

In the Indie world, theatrical is the advertisement for DVD / cable release and no, I don't see that changing so much as from shooting format to reception format.....

But if "300" is as much an example of Hollywood theatrical cinema as "Evening" then I don't think the word classical applies........ and I don't mean that as a value judgement (... I could make one, but.....)

-Sam
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#20 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 25 June 2007 - 04:46 PM

Perhaps classical in the traditional 3 act structure sense. Of course, how you use the new tools to tell the story is another matter. The writing gurus debate how far you can take this structure, but it does seem to remain in place, even in some of the cutting edge films.
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