RED Announces GEMINI 5K S35 Sensor for RED EPIC-W

RED Announces GEMINI 5K S35 Sensor for RED EPIC-W

The GEMINI 5K S35 sensor, which started out as RED’s limited edition sensor for outer space and ultra low light missions, is now available to the public. 

In January, RED made a custom S35 low light sensor for dedicated customers for use in outer space.

“Super sensitive (2 stops more sensitive than Helium) Big pixel, 5K, 96fps and 30.72mm wide by 18mm tall. Gemini is a Vampire… Loves the dark, but you literally need to put ND’s on it if you want to shoot it in the light….This is not a normal product and is not in the RED stores or on and there is only 5 of them” said Jarred Land, President of RED Digital Cinema, on Instagram.

The first version of the Gemini

Today, RED made this sensor available to order for the public on their site, in form of a super sensitive sensor dedicated to ultra low light shooting. 

According to Jarred’s post on Reduser, “The GEMINI 5K S35 sensor started out as our space sensor that offered exceptional low-light performance. But we wanted more… So we spent the last few months, adding a ‘Normal’ mode as well. Now you can shoot in the Day and Shoot in the night”. 

The Gemini

Dual Sensitivity (LL VS Standard)

The Gemini sensor is RED’s highest sensitivity sensor to date. There are 2 sensitivity modes: Standard mode and LL (Low Light) mode. Standard Mode for well-lit conditions and Low Light Mode for darker environments. This is a dual-ISO sensor not unlike the one found in Panasonic Varicam or EVA1 cameras. The Gemini’s LL mode claims to produce a clean image with less noise, even in the darkest situations. LL mode is not intended to use in daylight, but dedicated to the very low light situations only. Also, the sensor has the ability to preserve highlights very well as you can see in the screenshot below.  

Gemini preserves the highlights

Low light situations. Gemini seems to have lower noise even in higher ISO.

The switching between “Standard” and “Low Light” (LL) sensitivity modes seems pretty straightforward. 

Watch the video below which demonstrates GEMINI Sensor’s dual sensitivity capabilities, as well as noise reduction in low light situations and the ability to preserve highlight details. 

Key features of the EPIC-W with GEMINI 5K S35 sensor according to RED’s specs:

  • New 5K S35 sensor that delivers optimized low-light performance
  • 15.4 Megapixel Dual Sensitivity CMOS Sensor
  • 30.72 mm x 18 mm (Diagonal: 35.61 mm)
  • Dual sensitivity sensor provides greater flexibility for a variety of shooting environments
  • Seamless switching between Standard and Low Light modes ( no reboot needed ) 
  • 5K up to 96 fps Full Format
  • 16.5 stops of DR
  • 4K upto 30fps and 2K upto 120fps using ProRes or Avid
  • Simultaneously record REDCODE plus ProRes or Avid
  • Up to 275 MB/s write speeds
  • Interchangeable lens mount


Starting at $24,500.

Alternatively, WEAPON Carbon Fiber and RED EPIC-W 8K customers will have the option to upgrade to the GEMINI sensor at a later date. 

Upgrade/Sensor Swap options: 

• DSMC2 WEAPON HELIUM > Can upgrade or RA-W to GEMINI for $4950.

• DSMC2 WEAPON DRAGON > Can upgrade or RA-W to GEMINI for $4950.

• DSMC2 EPIC-W HELIUM > Can upgrade to GEMINI for $4950.

Watch the video of the EPIC-W with GEMINI 5K Footage

So, there you have it. Another new RED sensor. This time is not about resolution and quality, but rather focusing on low light capabilities – a field where RED had some catching-up to do but is now seemingly doing quite well with latest sensor offerings. 

What do you think of the Gemini sensor on Epic-W? Is it a reason for you to upgrade or even to start into the RED ecosystem? Let us know in the comments section below!


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