Jump to content


Photo

REDs Get Hot and Bothered


  • This topic is locked This topic is locked
44 replies to this topic

#1 Werner Klipsch

Werner Klipsch
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 86 posts
  • Other

Posted 26 July 2007 - 06:10 AM

I am just amazed to read about the first day's on-set shooting with the RED
1st Problems in the Field at reduser.net.

We are not going to see any pictures from the set "for obvious reasons" but what amazes me is that they are/were having big problems with keeping the camera (particularly the CMOS chip cool).

"1. The Peltier cooling system is mandatory.

2. If you shoot in the extreme heat for extended periods, cover the camera from direct sun. Short recording times don't seem to present a problem. All day might depending on how much improvement we can find through our engineering effort. Bring a fan."

I have a 1989 vintage SP Betacam that has Peltier cooling of the blue CCD! This was considered essential as the CCDs is least sensitive to blue light. Yet the Peltier junction went open-circuit sometime in the last 20 years and nobody noticed!

My point? Sony sell cameras all over the world, so they design them for the worst possible case. With a Betacam that would probably be Death Valley or Central Australia or somewhere in Arabia.

Of all the technical challenges that would facethe RED design team, heat management would have to be the most well-understood. How hard is it to heat up a test room to Spanish Desert temperatures? Yet here they are cooling the camera with bottles of cold water!

On set experience is great, but you won't get the best out of a design engineer if you bake him along with the camera though!

I might not be able to design a 4K CMOS sensor, but I am damned confident I could tell you how to stop the attached camera from overheating, or whether you could! All without leaving the comfort of my basement :lol:

I will bet they're using that useless grey plastic silicone crap instead of old fashioned white heatsink paste. Oh the stories I could tell you.... :P
  • 0

#2 Stephen Murphy

Stephen Murphy
  • Guests

Posted 26 July 2007 - 07:29 AM

Give them a break. They're field testing. Every camera breaks down sooner or later, Film and Video. Ive seen plenty of 900's overheat. Ive even heard of Milleniums reacting badly to heat. Wait for the field test to finish - its great that its on a real film set and not in a simualted one - and then we can decide if the camera works or not. Untill then specualtion, either for or against the RED camera does nothing to inform anyone.
  • 0

#3 Hal Smith

Hal Smith
  • Sustaining Members
  • 2280 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • OKC area

Posted 26 July 2007 - 08:46 AM

Modern design engineers who have only worked with solid state devices often don't know their rectum from a hole in the ground when it comes to cooling equipment. They think a fifty dollar heatsink glued on one end of a piece of equipment is all that is needed. Those of us with enough gray hair to have worked with vacuum tube gear know that a surprisingly small amount of air continuously flowing through a piece of gear does a remarkable job in keeping temperatures down. I install small fans on gear all the time with the result that unreliable equipment becomes reliable. The Mean Time Before Failure versus Temperature curves for electronic components look like an Olympic ski jump (IE: highly exponential). Moving a small bit of air through gear can increase MTBF by a huge factor.

If RED doesn't have a case ventilation fan it NEEDS one. To keep noise down one trick is to use 12VDC fans and run them at 6-8VDC.
  • 0

#4 Phil Rhodes

Phil Rhodes
  • Sustaining Members
  • 11936 posts
  • Other

Posted 26 July 2007 - 08:51 AM

What alarms me most about it is that they're claiming to have had finished cameras for months - they've been shooting on them, fer chrissake - and they've only just figured this out. This is the sort of problem you'd normally find halfway through development.

Phil
  • 0

#5 Brian Drysdale

Brian Drysdale
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 5069 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 26 July 2007 - 08:55 AM

I hope they also test them in rain and humidity.
  • 0

#6 Hal Smith

Hal Smith
  • Sustaining Members
  • 2280 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • OKC area

Posted 26 July 2007 - 09:06 AM

There's a high probability that what has happened is that they only now are seeing the result of bad thermal design. Initially they didn't see the failures because they hadn't run their gear long enough to push the camera's internal components up the MTBF versus temperature curve. If that's Jim's problem, he needs to go find an engineer who designs space flight rated gear - those guys and gals eat, sleep, and drink MTBF.
  • 0

#7 Gary McClurg

Gary McClurg
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 304 posts
  • Producer

Posted 26 July 2007 - 09:07 AM

Simple question... not a knock on the camera...

I come from the independent realm... features that end up on TV or cable networks and dvd shelves...

On my productions we work our butts off to get as many setups in a day as possible... why use an untested camera in the first place... that you have to cool down... and lose set up time...

I have a crazy idea... but thought I'd like see other people's answers first... before I post my thoughts...
  • 0

#8 Matthew Rogers

Matthew Rogers
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 175 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Knoxville, TN

Posted 26 July 2007 - 09:19 AM

I am just amazed to read about the first day's on-set shooting with the RED

We are not going to see any pictures from the set "for obvious reasons" but what amazes me is that they are/were having big problems with keeping the camera (particularly the CMOS chip cool).

"1. The Peltier cooling system is mandatory.

2. If you shoot in the extreme heat for extended periods, cover the camera from direct sun. Short recording times don't seem to present a problem. All day might depending on how much improvement we can find through our engineering effort. Bring a fan."

I have a 1989 vintage SP Betacam that has Peltier cooling of the blue CCD! This was considered essential as the CCDs is least sensitive to blue light. Yet the Peltier junction went open-circuit sometime in the last 20 years and nobody noticed!

My point? Sony sell cameras all over the world, so they design them for the worst possible case. With a Betacam that would probably be Death Valley or Central Australia or somewhere in Arabia.

Of all the technical challenges that would facethe RED design team, heat management would have to be the most well-understood. How hard is it to heat up a test room to Spanish Desert temperatures? Yet here they are cooling the camera with bottles of cold water!


Can you read? No one said this report was from the first day of shooting. Only that this is the *first* problem. The RED is far more complex technology and requires FAR more processing power. Stephen also justly pointed out that SONY's 900's will overheat. Why is that happening with a SHIPPING camera? Beside, he said that it was the OLD sensor design, not the new one which was supposed to have the Peltier cooling on it anyhow. This just confirmed that it needed it.

Heating a room up to 110 isn't going to tell you actual working conditions. Direct sunlight & humidity make a huge difference.

Give them a break. It's a friggin pre-release camera!

Matthew
  • 0

#9 Ruairi Robinson

Ruairi Robinson
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 279 posts
  • Director
  • Los Angeles

Posted 26 July 2007 - 09:24 AM

What alarms me most about it is that they're claiming to have had finished cameras for months - they've been shooting on them, fer chrissake - and they've only just figured this out. This is the sort of problem you'd normally find halfway through development.

Phil



Where did they make this claim? I haven't seen it. Produce a quote for me, else I'm gonna call you a filthy liar.
  • 0

#10 Stuart Brereton

Stuart Brereton
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 3057 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 26 July 2007 - 09:48 AM

It's worth remembering that they are shooting in Spain, where there is currently a heatwave, and so temperatures are abnormally high. It's likely that quite a few other cameras would fail in the 40+ degree heat.
  • 0

#11 Gary McClurg

Gary McClurg
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 304 posts
  • Producer

Posted 26 July 2007 - 10:31 AM

A friend sent me a cut and pasted copy of an email that he got from a rental company which claimed they'll be renting their two cameras at the end of August... so book them now....

And imbedded in their email was all the qoutes from red.com from all the big guys using the camera...

So the word of the camera coming maybe what Phil is speaking of....
  • 0

#12 Gary McClurg

Gary McClurg
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 304 posts
  • Producer

Posted 26 July 2007 - 10:47 AM

Man... it wouldn't let me edit my post... :(

Here's what I added... or tried to add...

Lately I'm really not pro or con towards the camera as long as it works... which again if all the bugs are worked out... you could get a package with the Red... their primes, lcd, viewfinder, cables, charger, 5 bricks and I think I added three hard drives for less than $50k... now if it performs like it says it will... I see that as not a bad idea for 35mm depth of field and I'm happy with just 1080p or 2k now...

And I think thats a great price for guys like me... guys who just produce and make a living doing small features... again to me... the fact that Peter Jackson shot with the camera means nothing... Peter Jackson again can afford to fix it in post... myself I can't afford that...

When the small guys like myself start posting their footage... I think that's when the camera will truely be accepted...

All of the above is just my humble .02 for today... or really make that .06 since I already posted twice already... :lol:

Now how come it lets me edit this time... :(

Edited by Gary McClurg, 26 July 2007 - 10:49 AM.

  • 0

#13 Craig Schober

Craig Schober

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 8 posts
  • Director

Posted 26 July 2007 - 11:21 AM

Where did they make this claim? I haven't seen it. Produce a quote for me, else I'm gonna call you a filthy liar.

i think he's just looking at some cam chart tests and assuming red has been running it through its paces all along. what everyone fails to realize is that this is a product in development. i've been part of small design teams similar to this. we develop products in a very quick cycle. then we advertise them and sell them all within a few months. what we would never do is issue day by day, trial and error statements as to the product's current state of development. it's refreshing to see such transparency while a camera is still being designed and tweaked.

if red were like other companies, we would still know nothing about pricing, features and upgrades and they would currently be testing this camera in heat/cold chambers right now. instead, they get soderburgh to test it in the field. not a bad idea.
  • 0

#14 Robert Hughes

Robert Hughes
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 873 posts
  • Sound Department
  • Minneapolis

Posted 26 July 2007 - 11:34 AM

Perhaps if their top level mgmt had spent more energy on development and less on hype manufacture they would be getting fewer embarrassing threads like this on the Web... <_<

Edited by Robert Hughes, 26 July 2007 - 11:34 AM.

  • 0

#15 Craig Schober

Craig Schober

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 8 posts
  • Director

Posted 26 July 2007 - 11:50 AM

Perhaps if their top level mgmt had spent more energy on development and less on hype manufacture they would be getting fewer embarrassing threads like this on the Web... <_<


their top level management is the sole source of this news on the same day it happened. would you prefer they hide only the bad news? oh wait, they can't win with you no matter what happens. i forgot.
  • 0

#16 Keith Mottram

Keith Mottram
  • Sustaining Members
  • 824 posts
  • Other

Posted 26 July 2007 - 01:46 PM

their top level management is the sole source of this news on the same day it happened. would you prefer they hide only the bad news? oh wait, they can't win with you no matter what happens. i forgot.


I don't see what's so weird about expecting a camera company to spend more time on r and d than hype. why exactly would i want to hear about camera's not working it's not transparancy it is part of thier publicity machine. i had a look on that thread (after a notice from a cml poster) and i was once again bowled over, people seemed to be celebrating the fact that a camera could not stand up to the rigures of a full film shoot, which, and please correct me if i'm wrong, is the point of this product. or maybe it's for sitting on a shelf next to the owners collection of transformer merchandise....
  • 0

#17 Craig Schober

Craig Schober

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 8 posts
  • Director

Posted 26 July 2007 - 03:25 PM

I don't see what's so weird about expecting a camera company to spend more time on r and d than hype. why exactly would i want to hear about camera's not working it's not transparancy it is part of thier publicity machine. i had a look on that thread (after a notice from a cml poster) and i was once again bowled over, people seemed to be celebrating the fact that a camera could not stand up to the rigures of a full film shoot, which, and please correct me if i'm wrong, is the point of this product. or maybe it's for sitting on a shelf next to the owners collection of transformer merchandise....


what don't you understand about r&d? they have been doing r&d for about 18 months now and are continuing to do it today. they will continue to do it after they start shipping cameras too. that was part of the deal that reservation holders signed up for. it not only shows commitment to a product but reaffirms future upgrades without expensive add-ons (at least that's what they promise).

you might not care about the camera's development details but you're not a reservation holder, are you? you won't be using one for at least a year unless you rent. and don't try the "i really don't care" angle. if you're posting on the red thread here, you care.
  • 0

#18 Gary McClurg

Gary McClurg
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 304 posts
  • Producer

Posted 26 July 2007 - 03:35 PM

Changed my mind...

Edited by Gary McClurg, 26 July 2007 - 03:39 PM.

  • 0

#19 Phil Rhodes

Phil Rhodes
  • Sustaining Members
  • 11936 posts
  • Other

Posted 26 July 2007 - 04:17 PM

> unless you rent

And that would be... yes, that would be perfectly normal.

You wouldn't ordinarily expect an individual to own a $50k camera package. Frequently, anyway.

Phil
  • 0

#20 Dewald Aukema SASC

Dewald Aukema SASC

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 6 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • London/Johannesburg

Posted 26 July 2007 - 04:21 PM

Any cinematographer, worth his salt, who opposes the idea of taking full control over the images they create has to have their mind's read. Period. For those who don't get this, don't bother.
Dewald Aukema SASC
  • 0


Opal

Glidecam

Willys Widgets

Abel Cine

Rig Wheels Passport

rebotnix Technologies

FJS International, LLC

Paralinx LLC

The Slider

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

CineLab

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Ritter Battery

Technodolly

Aerial Filmworks

CineTape

Visual Products

Wooden Camera

Tai Audio

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Metropolis Post

Wooden Camera

Abel Cine

Ritter Battery

Metropolis Post

Opal

The Slider

Technodolly

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Glidecam

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Visual Products

Willys Widgets

rebotnix Technologies

CineTape

Aerial Filmworks

Paralinx LLC

FJS International, LLC

Tai Audio

Rig Wheels Passport

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

CineLab