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#1 Matthew W. Phillips

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 12:13 AM

I just had to post this so I wouldn't explode. It's not a rant but it is an attempt to understand a truly unique group of people.

I was over at REDuser and I saw that a fellow complained about having a problem with 2 REDs on a music video set with Grammy award winning artists. He posted his problems and was flooded with people blaming him for being at fault because 1) He obviously wasn't a pro since he didn't get the (so called) great results that they always get and 2) He shouldn't have used hid Build 16 on a pro shoot because it's a BETA build.

What fires me up about this is because 1) How many of these so called pros who are implying he is a noob are getting gigs with Grammy award winning artists and 2) If you don't use the camera for Pro shoots, why in the world would you invest so much money in this camera anyway? Why is something being released for that much money if it's not even stable? Let's get past the issue of whether RED has the asthetic quality of film and start looking at if it's even got the reliability of a Ford Explorer on Firestone tires. Also, I cannot understand how so many people can completely disregard VALID concerns about this camera and resort to insulting their fellow man without any other reason than because you DARED to say the RED camera has a flaw.

Maybe someone can impart some Ghandi like wisdom to me so I can comprehend such an occurance.
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#2 David Auner aac

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 01:02 AM

Hi Matthew,

that take at the relationship between the equipment and the user is one of the reasons I stopped visiting red-user at all. I also remember what a fellow board member here said about users's comments on David's Manure. Here people were all in awe how beautifully lit it was, there they all were in awe how good RED is. That putting the cart before the horse!
I think what is coming through here is some guys desperation in wanting to become famous in film by using the supposedly revolutionary camera. Aside from that RED is just another tool and you need to know all your tools to become a successful DP. Owning the camera doesn't make you a pro! I'm certain that some of these folks will come through, but not by owning a RED/BLUE/AMBER, but by hard work, dedication and perseverance! And to those good luck!
I'm just happy that there are people like David who show us how their excellent work in 35mm transfers to new digital cameras. IMO that is the only way to really judge what these cameras are capable of. No test or supposedly revolutionary specification is ever going to tell me as much.

Regards, Dave
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#3 Daniel Sheehy

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 01:11 AM

Maybe someone can impart some Ghandi like wisdom to me so I can comprehend such an occurance.

An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it. - Mohandas Gandhi

caveat emptor
;)

Edited by Daniel Sheehy, 18 July 2008 - 01:12 AM.

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#4 Saul Rodgar

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 01:02 PM

Why is something being released for that much money if it's not even stable? Let's get past the issue of whether RED has the asthetic quality of film and start looking at if it's even got the reliability of a Ford Explorer on Firestone tires. Also, I cannot understand how so many people can completely disregard VALID concerns about this camera and resort to insulting their fellow man without any other reason than because you DARED to say the RED camera has a flaw.


I just did my first shoot with a RED on a music video yesterday. The camera was so noisy, I was shocked. The internal fan just howls. I don't see how people can use it for dramatic content with such a loud fan. And the battery connections are so finicky the power kept on going down, with the 90 second initialization that followed. And using tungsten lights creates a lot of noise in the blue channel with the build they were using. It does take beautiful pictures, but so do a lot of other cameras.
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#5 Jim Exton

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 04:39 PM

I just did my first shoot with a RED on a music video yesterday. The camera was so noisy, I was shocked. The internal fan just howls. I don't see how people can use it for dramatic content with such a loud fan. And the battery connections are so finicky the power kept on going down, with the 90 second initialization that followed. And using tungsten lights creates a lot of noise in the blue channel with the build they were using. It does take beautiful pictures, but so do a lot of other cameras.



Saul,

The camera fan should not make any noise when recording (it should turn off). Sounds like it needs serviced.

Battery connections are a pain in the butt. I am looking to replace mine with another brand, but then you lose the ability to send battery information to the camera.

How much of a big deal would that be for AC's out there? Let's say the job you are working on is a Red job, you have the choice of batteries that are high quality, but no info on power remaining status in the viewfinder. Or the opposite?
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#6 Jim Exton

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 04:47 PM

I just had to post this so I wouldn't explode. It's not a rant but it is an attempt to understand a truly unique group of people.

I was over at REDuser and I saw that a fellow complained about having a problem with 2 REDs on a music video set with Grammy award winning artists. He posted his problems and was flooded with people blaming him for being at fault because 1) He obviously wasn't a pro since he didn't get the (so called) great results that they always get and 2) He shouldn't have used hid Build 16 on a pro shoot because it's a BETA build.

What fires me up about this is because 1) How many of these so called pros who are implying he is a noob are getting gigs with Grammy award winning artists and 2) If you don't use the camera for Pro shoots, why in the world would you invest so much money in this camera anyway? Why is something being released for that much money if it's not even stable? Let's get past the issue of whether RED has the asthetic quality of film and start looking at if it's even got the reliability of a Ford Explorer on Firestone tires. Also, I cannot understand how so many people can completely disregard VALID concerns about this camera and resort to insulting their fellow man without any other reason than because you DARED to say the RED camera has a flaw.

Maybe someone can impart some Ghandi like wisdom to me so I can comprehend such an occurance.



I agree with what you are saying about the tone of some of the responses, but the fact remains: the camera should not be used with a Beta build in any professional situation. Especially with a build that was written from the ground up.

Whoever rented the camera to him should not have had a Beta build loaded into it without advising him of the risks. I rent my camera out and I just consider that professional responsibility to educate the renter on the risks, problems and workarounds the camera needs.

As far as the people who post on there or here or anywhere: it is the internet, that is the way it works. There will always be people who mouth off when they shouldn't, it happens on almost every message board dealing with every topic.
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#7 David Auner aac

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 02:43 AM

I agree with what you are saying about the tone of some of the responses, but the fact remains: the camera should not be used with a Beta build in any professional situation. Especially with a build that was written from the ground up.


But then again, should you use RED at all for a pro shoot at this point? Every war story about RED I hear from DPs/ACs I know is about how unfinished and beta it is. I think there is a reason why Arri only rents their D-20 out instead of selling it. From my point of view RED is selling a product still in beta! No doubt the camera has its potential, and is capable of capturing really beautiful images, but I'd rather wait a while and shoot with a more advanced version with all the teething problems taken care of.

Cheers, Dave
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#8 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 07:03 AM

Arri now sells the D-20, called the D-21. Have to agree on the red, give it time to settle/bloom then she'll be a fine lil camera. I just worry what'll happen to the One once EPIC arrives.
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#9 David Auner aac

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 07:19 AM

Arri now sells the D-20, called the D-21.


Yes, that's after they sorted out most of the issue the camera had. Which is the right way to go IMO. And I agree, after Epic is out it will start the next hype, way before RED has evolved to "maturity".

Cheers, Dave
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#10 Jim Exton

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 03:02 PM

But then again, should you use RED at all for a pro shoot at this point? Every war story about RED I hear from DPs/ACs I know is about how unfinished and beta it is. I think there is a reason why Arri only rents their D-20 out instead of selling it. From my point of view RED is selling a product still in beta! No doubt the camera has its potential, and is capable of capturing really beautiful images, but I'd rather wait a while and shoot with a more advanced version with all the teething problems taken care of.

Cheers, Dave


I know people say this all the time, but I have never had a problem with mine. And I know of one other here in town, they had to have their main board replaced, but after that, it runs great.

I know there are issues with the camera, but I don't think we will ever have an accurate account of how many are good or "bad". I think there may have been quality control issues and Red is having to fix a lot of cameras that shouldn't have been sent out. But that is pure speculation on my part.

I know I would recommend the one I own on a pro shoot. And I think over the next 6 months, the reputation of the camera will get better as the firmware gets improved.
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#11 David Auner aac

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 04:41 PM

I know I would recommend the one I own on a pro shoot. And I think over the next 6 months, the reputation of the camera will get better as the firmware gets improved.


I hope so. I'd love to see another great, reliable tool added to the cinematographers tool box.

Regards, Dave
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#12 Joe Taylor

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 09:32 PM

I cannot understand how so many people can completely disregard VALID concerns about this camera and resort to insulting their fellow man without any other reason than because you DARED to say the RED camera has a flaw.

Maybe someone can impart some Ghandi like wisdom to me so I can comprehend such an occurance.


It is highly probable fact that most the most freakishly unstable fanboys over there rarely make much money in their "profession."
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#13 Joe Taylor

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 09:38 PM

I just worry what'll happen to the One once EPIC arrives.


RED's EPIC could be what the Lisa or the /// was to Apple.
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#14 Keith Walters

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 03:30 AM

I know people say this all the time, but I have never had a problem with mine. And I know of one other here in town, they had to have their main board replaced, but after that, it runs great.

I know there are issues with the camera, but I don't think we will ever have an accurate account of how many are good or "bad". I think there may have been quality control issues and Red is having to fix a lot of cameras that shouldn't have been sent out. But that is pure speculation on my part.

I know I would recommend the one I own on a pro shoot. And I think over the next 6 months, the reputation of the camera will get better as the firmware gets improved.

The highly variable nature of the reported faults sounds more like hardware problems than software.

It actually reminds me of the first HDTV digital set top boxes that came on the market a few years ago. They were very expensive, ran like the top of a stove and were subject to all sorts of bugs. Endless software upgrades really did very little, often simply introducing new bugs.

But reasonable numbers of them still ran without problems and are probably still doing so. The answer appeared to be the old problem of trying to build a 21st century device with 20th century technology. Some of the chips being used were simply not fast enough for the job being asked of them.

Other faults that they were trying to fix with software upgrades turned out be bad batches of Ralph D Mershon's birth-defected love child of the 1920s, the humble electrolytic capacitor! Over the past few decades these components probably cause more electronic appliances to be scrapped than anything else, often for faults involving less than a dollar's worth of parts.

Current model HDTV boxes cost as little as one-tenth what the early ones did, they largely consist of just one ASIC chip and some RAM, they merely run warm, and more importantly, they seem to be very reliable.

Jim Jannard briefly mentioned that Epic (and possibly Scarlet) will use ASIC chips, which suggests they are aware of the problem. Whether it could applied to the RED remains to be seen, however a motherboard upgrade that slashes power consumption and improves reliability would be an attractive option, although it would limit the scope of potential software upgrades.

Edited by Keith Walters, 20 July 2008 - 03:31 AM.

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#15 Christopher Santucci

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 09:53 AM

It does take beautiful pictures, but so do a lot of other cameras.



If that doesn't hit the nail on the head in regard to the supposed Red superiority, I don't know what does. I suppose Red's marketing process will be studied in schools some day...

.
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#16 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 03:44 PM

> Jim Jannard briefly mentioned that Epic (and possibly Scarlet) will use ASIC chips

Seem to remember bringing this up quite some time ago...
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#17 Stephen Williams

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 03:47 PM

> Jim Jannard briefly mentioned that Epic (and possibly Scarlet) will use ASIC chips

Seem to remember bringing this up quite some time ago...


Hi Phil,

I did mention to Jim that you had made some useful input on Red a couple of weeks ago, I have not heard a word from him since!

Stephen
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#18 Nicholas Shields

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 03:58 PM

I can agree with the unfortunate nature of some of the fanboys at the RedUser site. However, with regards to their critique of someone using a beta build for a professional shoot, they are dead on. If Arri or Panavision decided to change their business model so that their clients would do beta testing (with full consent and if so inclined), the result would be a price reduction based on a lower investment in R&D (as seen in the Red product). This is Red's business model and they have expressed it loudly, explicitly and repeatedly. If someone decides to throw caution to the wind and, when burned, blame it on someone else, they expose themselves as inexperienced professionals - regardless if they make pretty pictures for music videos or not. It goes without saying that a major responsibility for a DP is to make informed decisions on behalf of the production. In the above mentioned case, the DP was either not "informed" or consciously ignored advice. Either way it was a poor decision.

Nick Shields.
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#19 Stephen Williams

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 04:07 PM

I can agree with the unfortunate nature of some of the fanboys at the RedUser site. However, with regards to their critique of someone using a beta build for a professional shoot, they are dead on. If Arri or Panavision decided to change their business model so that their clients would do beta testing (with full consent and if so inclined), the result would be a price reduction based on a lower investment in R&D (as seen in the Red product). This is Red's business model and they have expressed it loudly, explicitly and repeatedly. If someone decides to throw caution to the wind and, when burned, blame it on someone else, they expose themselves as inexperienced professionals - regardless if they make pretty pictures for music videos or not. It goes without saying that a major responsibility for a DP is to make informed decisions on behalf of the production. In the above mentioned case, the DP was either not "informed" or consciously ignored advice. Either way it was a poor decision.

Nick Shields.


Hi,

FWIW I have turned down a number of shoots where the client wanted to shoot Red but did not understand the implications of a Beta camera & workflow.

Stephen
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#20 Matthew W. Phillips

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 04:24 PM

I can agree with the unfortunate nature of some of the fanboys at the RedUser site. However, with regards to their critique of someone using a beta build for a professional shoot, they are dead on. If Arri or Panavision decided to change their business model so that their clients would do beta testing (with full consent and if so inclined), the result would be a price reduction based on a lower investment in R&D (as seen in the Red product). This is Red's business model and they have expressed it loudly, explicitly and repeatedly. If someone decides to throw caution to the wind and, when burned, blame it on someone else, they expose themselves as inexperienced professionals - regardless if they make pretty pictures for music videos or not. It goes without saying that a major responsibility for a DP is to make informed decisions on behalf of the production. In the above mentioned case, the DP was either not "informed" or consciously ignored advice. Either way it was a poor decision.

Nick Shields.


Nick, if you're right (which you may be) then perhaps no one should use any REDs, BETA or otherwise. The problem is that in the particular thread I was talking about, the fellow was being criticized for using BETA build 16 instead of build 15. From what I've heard, build 15 was buggy also. So really it sounds like they were just trying to find ways to make the problem not REDs fault. That is the sentiment of every complaint post at REDuser. It is never REDs fault...just the fault of the user. It truly is a return to Caveat Emptor when I thought we've socially evolved to Caveat Venditor.
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