Orange County Business Journal

Red Digital Unveils Specs, Ship Dates for Scarlet Camera

Kari Hamanaka Friday, November 4, 2011

The wait is over for Irvine-based Red Digital Cinema Camera Co.’s long-awaited Scarlet-X camera.

The camera maker released product specifications Thursday night and said orders could begin shipping later this month.

Scarlet is the third model in Red Digital’s camera lineup.

Film industry buffs and professionals chatted up the Scarlet announcement in the weeks leading up to its debut, which came at the same time as a competing product launch by Japan-based Canon Inc.

Trade publications and industry buzz generated a number of theories on what the two companies would announce—and which would emerge the winner within the film industry.

Only sales will tell.

The Scarlet boasts video resolution of 4K. That’s about four times the resolution of a high-definition TV at 1080p—a number referring to display resolutions in pixels.

Still images on the Scarlet can be captured at a 5K resolution.

Some versions of the Scarlet could begin shipping out to customers as soon as Nov. 17. Other orders are expected to be shipped beginning Dec. 1.

The camera price, which has always been a competitive edge for Red Digital within the industry, is low.

The main component of the camera, which Red Digital calls the “brain,” is $9,750.

Lenses and other accessories could push the price up to around $16,000, some industry reports say.

The price confirms initial chatter that Red Digital’s Scarlet announcement would be a game changer for the industry, broadening the availability of film quality resolution at a price accessible to smaller companies and independent filmmakers.

Canon’s product launch was precedent-setting for the camera company.

Canon’s EOS C300 video camera is the company’s first step into the filmmaking industry as it looks to make a big push into the motion picture business.

The Canon camera boasts 4K video resolution and could be available as early as January.

Reports have pegged the cost of the camera at about $20,000. Additional lenses could take the price even higher.