Monday, September 22nd, 2008

RED pulls the SCARLET


RED, the company created by Oakley founder Jim Hannard, has sent the SCARLET back to the woodshed. Why? Apparently the emergence of DSLR cameras like the Nikon D90 and the Canon 5D MkII that can shoot in HD (though in the case of the 5D, at the indie-unfriendly frame rate of 30p) has forced RED to rethink what they’re trying to accomplish in the prosumer video space.

Honestly, it’s about time all camera manufacturers took a step back and figured out how to merge SLR and HD video in a package that serves both filmmakers and photographers. There’s no reason, with the emergence of fast and plentiful hard drive space, huge memory cards for on-camera storage, and lens adapters that already graft SLR lenses onto HD camcorders, that a new class of camera shouldn’t emerge that doesn’t follow the old paradigms of tape-based shooting. The 5D and D90 are an important first step, and RED’s backtracking looks to be the next step in a saga that I’ll be very interested to see come to fruition.

Warren Frey is a journalist, freelance writer, podcaster, video producer, and all-around media consultant currently based in Vancouver, Canada. His written work has appeared in such publications as Metro Vancouver, the Westender, Mac | Life and the Japan Times.

2 Responses to “ RED pulls the SCARLET ”

Victor says:

Dammit I was really looking forward to it. My investment may end up going to Canon’s 5DMk2 as a result.

Warren says:

Well, they aren’t scrapping it, just retooling it, so there’s a chance it’ll be even better. I’m going to wait and see when a hybrid of a camcorder and a DSLR arrives on the scene. It’s only a matter of time before someone (possibly RED) comes out with this mythical beast.

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