RED Komodo – What We Know so Far

November 29th, 2019 icon / message-square 39
RED Komodo - What We Know so Far

Jarred Land – RED’s CEO – is teasing a lot about its new camera: the RED Komodo. If you are not following Instagram or the REDUSER forum daily, here is what we know so far about this new camera.

REDKomodo_Featured

Image credit: Jarred Land

RED Komodo Features

Back in August this year, Jarred Land started to tease about a new “affordable” camera, the RED Komodo. On the RED’s CEO Instagram account, a couple of pictures were unveiled. Also, there is a 200+ pages long forum thread on REDUser to discuss the new camera. We learned a lot about what the camera won’t be, including:

  • It is not DSMC3, and it is not a replacement for DSMC2.
  • It is not 8K VV; the Komodo is not a Dragon/Helium/Gemini/Monstro sensor.
  • It does have a 4K SDI output port but no HDMI out port. Also, it has no XLR ports, but it features a 3.5mm microphone input and a headphone jack.
  • It is the first camera to record on non-proprietary media. Indeed, it records onto CFast cards.
  • It is not a “module” that you attach to another RED camera.
  • It will cost around $5000/$6000. RED Hydrogen owners should get a discount or a special offer.
  • It features a Canon RF lens mount and does not have a fixed lens.
  • Its body does not weight more than 2 pounds; it is a “box” design that is no larger than 4 inches in any dimension.

So, since that initial announcement, what’s new?

REDKomodo_01

RED KOMODO camera. Image credit: Jarred Land

RED Komodo 6K Sensor

In some recent posts on REDUser, Jarred Land unveiled a couple of new things about the RED Komodo sensor and the camera capabilities. Indeed, the Komodo will feature a Komodo 6K Super35 sensor that measures 27.03mm x 14.25mm (6144 x 3240). If you do the math, this sensor is more substantial than “traditional” Super35 sensors. Here is what Jarred Land has to say about this new Komodo 6K sensor:

You don’t need to fear the crop factor like you did with Raven or (black magic 6K or the Z2 6K) and the other “smaller” s35 sensors… Komodo has a whole new pixel remember and the physical sensor is much wider than all of those, 27.03mm x 14.25mm. So if you do need to crop to get to where you need to go, you are starting with much more width to get there which will be kinder to your optics.

Also, Phil Holland updated his website’s formatCompare tool so you can get a better idea of what the actual field of view of the RED Komodo should look like compared to other RED cameras.

REDKomodo_02

Image credit: Phil Holland

The Komodo will feature a Global Shutter mode. It should be able to capture footage up to 6K at 40 frames per second using the full-sensor, and 6K WS at 50fps in global shutter mode, with the possibility to choose a REDCode RAW codec. It will also support anamorphic recording.

Also, for the first time on a RED camera, the Komodo will support phase-detect autofocus. Even if RED is not using Canon’s DPAF with the RF mount, I do hope that this small beast will be able to take the full advantage of the lens mount. Unfortunately for Nikon Z camera owners, Jarred Land indicated on REDUser that he was not interested at all about the Nikon Z Mount.

REDKomodo_03

Image credit: Jarred Land

Top Screen and I/O

On top of the RED Komodo, there is a small color display with an appealing UI. Next to the display are five function buttons. The little connection pins you can see above the screen are not a pogo connector. According to Jarred Land:

After we changed Komodo to add the pins on the top for the Hydrogen, I also made the decision for those pins to support other phones as well ( luckily ) . We still have lots of work to do on that front… so we don’t know exactly what features those pins will end up looking like, but the chances that the Hydrogen doing anything ” special ” that another phone does, at least at launch, is very slim now that the Hydrogen program is no longer.

So it is not very clear what these pins will do, but they are not here for anything, I guess.

REDKomodo_04

Image credit: Jarred Land

On the back of the camera, there are two Canon BP style battery slots, which are hot-swappable. Canon BP batteries are the same as the ones that are used to power Canon C300 Mark II/C200/C500 Mark II. These batteries are not the cheapest out there, but they offer a decent battery life.

Pricing and Availability

The RED Komodo should not be available before 2020, and it will retail for around $5000 to $6000. Customers that bought a Hydrogen phone – which is now a discontinued project – should get a discount if they want to buy the Komodo.

What do you think about the RED Komodo? What features do you wish it had? Do you think of getting one next year? Let us know in the comments below!

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Michael
Michael
Guest
June 23rd, 2020

Wish it had hdmi for my Átomos ninja v with raw output.

Sam C
Sam C
Guest
April 25th, 2020

This article is incorrect on the type of batteries it uses. It takes the older BP-955 and BP-975 batteries used for the Canon c100/c300/c500 7.4v. Not the newer mark II 14v versions.

Sam
Sam
Member
April 28th, 2020
Reply to  Jeff Loch

My reply with the link to the forum is still pending approval but Jarred Land Posted on the reduser forum explaining it in Feb. You can find it under the thread (Komodo Batteries). The only way to do 14v is through the DC port.

Elliot
Elliot
Guest
January 16th, 2020

“Jarred Land indicated on REDUser that he was not interested at all about the Nikon Z Mount” – yeah no surprises there. Nikkor glass focuses the opposite direction to 90% of lenses any professional videographer have ever used. Nikon are busy scratching their heads over ProRes RAW via HDMI etc, but fail to address the simple fact that their lens design, that once kept Nikon photographers loyal to the brand, is now hurting their business. In a mirror-less world where we can adapt so many lenses to so many cameras, people are avoiding the ones which focus in the wrong direction

Geoffrey
Geoffrey
Guest
January 22nd, 2020
Reply to  Elliot

That and the monitor delay on the Z6 makes it almost impossible to use in a professional setting. It’s crazy how long the delay is on it. Plus as you said the HDMI Raw is almost completely pointless because it has less DR than the existing 12-bit N-log on the camera.

Chris Monk
Chris Monk
Guest
December 6th, 2019

Finally a camera with global shutter!!! THANK YOU!!!

 SMP Saint Marks Pictures LLC
SMP Saint Marks Pictures LLC
Member
December 5th, 2019

Any word if Red has discovered internal NDs yet? I recently bought a BMC G2. With EVF it came to 7400.00. As someone coming from Arri, I absolutely love this cam for doc and indie work. The internal ND’s are indispensable, as is the multiple codecs, best GUI, hot keys, HFR, XLR, TC in, best EVF in the business, incredible ergonomics, etc. Why I’d spend about the same for a Komodo is unfathomable? Also, considering by the time the Komodo comes out and is functional, BMC will probably have an URSA LF ready to go. Alternatively, I could always get a BMC P6K with WC’s PL mount conversion for almost half the price.

Harvey Walton
Guest
December 3rd, 2019

Being RED I wouldn’t be surprised if they took a Z-cam, rehoused and stuck their logo on it…

Wayne S
Wayne S
Guest
November 30th, 2019

Are they overselling it? What happens when they oversell? Scarlet fixed lense, monitors were mentioned before that, that big sensor etc chart with the monstro around 2009, redray codec odemax, the red laser system, hydrogen 1, hydrogen 2 etc. Such items might make a mark for somebody, but this doesn’t.

It’s overpriced, I don’t like the picture.

I think the cameras in the multipoint 3D patent were above the pay grade, now they resort to this instead. Look at me moment!

Red is the sort of company that could do a $500 4k+ cinema camera, if they put in the effort, even cheaper and more resolution if they really put in the effort. But, they want that my glasses cost as much as a TV type of profit. Go ahead, beat Alexa then? So, where do they really win?

Sick of it. Pass out the genuine people trying to help the community?

Caine Mitchell
Caine Mitchell
Guest
November 30th, 2019

I imagine dual Sony NP-F970 would’ve been a better option given their greater prevalence and use in other 3rd party / non Sony products than a Canon BP style battery. But I guess like a lot of other products (I’m thinking like Small HD monitors) they could release different battery plates catering for users whom have a glut of either Canon BP or Sony NP-F or even now the Mini VLocks.

William Koehler
Guest
December 1st, 2019
Reply to  Caine Mitchell

The simple fact they went with Canon RF mount I think identifies their target market and the accessories that go with it.

 C B
C B
Member
November 30th, 2019

Unless RED/Jarred has stated something new in the last few weeks, I’m pretty sure the $5K-$6K price is the discounted price Hydrogen owners will get.

Wayne S
Wayne S
Guest
November 30th, 2019
Reply to  C B

It’s not big enough a discount.

Maybe this is the hydrogen cinema module, what became of it?

BOUNCE
Member
December 2nd, 2019
Reply to  C B

He stated under $5k for hydrogen users.

baubergo
baubergo
Guest
November 30th, 2019

I truly wish a 6k mark camera body that shoots at least 300fps em 1080p, but it´s not this time yet :(

baubergo
baubergo
Guest
November 30th, 2019
Reply to  baubergo

*a U$ 6k

Krm
Krm
Guest
December 1st, 2019
Reply to  baubergo

Ursa Mini Pro G2.

Clayton Burkhart
Clayton Burkhart
Guest
November 30th, 2019

The pins mentioned in the article are for the battery unit. It is also likely that an optional equivalent to an XLR mini V-Lock back could be attached there. In a similar way that Sony does this with many of their cameras.

Chris Reynolds
Guest
November 29th, 2019

Someone at RED has been playing close attention to the Z-Cam……..

 Jones Paul
Jones Paul
Member
November 30th, 2019
Reply to  Chris Reynolds

No, they haven’t or they would have released a full frame Komodo. They are protecting their other cameras, the sensor size is the most disappointing aspect to this camera IMO.

Member
November 29th, 2019

Very nice, although the lack of HDMI-out and XLRs is objectionable. It adds to the cost of the camera, so it can make it more expensive than the URSA.

So far, the best value for the money remains the BMPCC 4k, at $1300. Its crop is 1.9x, which is better than most MFT cameras, and with a $150 speedbooster gets down to 1.35x, which is even bigger than what this RED sensor size can provide. Additionally, MFT can mount almost anything, adding more value.

I’m not suggesting that RED should go as low in price, but for the $5k-$6k price that they suggest, I definitely expect HDMI and XLRs. I mean, come on…

 C B
C B
Member
November 30th, 2019
Reply to  Eugenia L

HDMI has no place on, nor should have ever been put on any professional camera. Period.

Member
November 30th, 2019
Reply to  C B

Nor does autofocus, but guess what, there is one. Get over your RED worship. This is an obvious attempt by RED to get back the market that Blackmagic stole from them (anyone remember the original Scarlet that was supposed to cost $5k?). So HDMI and XLRs must be part of the package.

Wayne S
Wayne S
Guest
November 30th, 2019
Reply to  Eugenia L

$3k or under, I forget. Jim had something against soccer mums using it, and we got the lens mount types. They switcherooted it coming up to launch. Bastards, I still remember that and all the other things they got me to wait for and cancel competing business plans, before dropping them. They are not our friends unfortunately.

William Koehler
Guest
November 30th, 2019
Reply to  Wayne S

I don’t forget. In the beginning, they were aiming for 4K for $4K. Needless to say, they have left that far, far behind.

Wayne S
Wayne S
Guest
December 1st, 2019

The amount of changes are confusing.

 C B
C B
Member
December 1st, 2019
Reply to  Eugenia L

“Get over your RED worship”. Typical response that one would expect here from someone that interprets a comment as going against their beliefs, thoughts or feelings on a subject(or usually a specific piece of equipment or brand).

1) I don’t own or use RED camera’s. So, no dog in this fight.
2) My HDMI comment was a general comment regarding all professional cameras. I don’t believe HDMI belongs on my F55 or C300, either. And I don’t have to worry about it on my VariCam’s and obviously didn’t on my Betacam’s.

HDMI is a terrible connection for use in a professional environment. They are prone to failure with bulky, non-locking(non-secure) connectors. After you spend over 20 years in this business with a lot of that in ‘zero fail’ situations, like live network television, you understand the importance of secure, locking, reliable cables and connections, like BNC.

Member
December 1st, 2019
Reply to  C B

It doesn’t matter that HDMI is prone to failure. So are USB connectors. We all know that. The point is that 99% of the indies have HDMI monitors and they rather deal with the annoyance of HDMI/USB, than having to buy expensive, specialized hardware. Cheap trumps robust in an ultra-low budget project.

 C B
C B
Member
December 1st, 2019
Reply to  Eugenia L

“It doesn’t matter that HDMI is prone to failure.”

In the professional world, it most certainly does matter.

“…than having to buy expensive, specialized hardware.”

Decent HDMI and SDI monitors are the same price(smallHD Focus, for example). And reliable BNC/SDI cables are about the same or less than HDMI cables. I also find the “expensive specialized hardware” argument ironic, considering that you want XLR’s(which, yes, it should have). BNC connections on a camera or monitor are ‘specialized’, but XLR connections on a camera are not?

“Cheap trumps robust in an ultra-low budget project.”

Until cheap breaks or continually fails/lets you down and you have to do without or replace it and then you’ve spent as much or more than just buying reiable to begin with, plus the down down.

I’m not sure why I’m still in this debate, because one thing I’ve learned over the years, you’re never going to win the argument against “cheap” with cheap minded people. Except that it’s not about cheap. It’s about reliable.

And let’s circle back around to my original and subsequent post where I said “PROFESSIONAL CAMERA”. I’m not talking about indie kids shooting on DSLR’s or prosumer BMD Pocket cameras.

Chrispy
Chrispy
Guest
December 3rd, 2019
Reply to  C B

C B: “I’m a PROFESSIONAL” Only my opinion matters! Rabble rabble rabble!”

Jose Perez
Jose Perez
Guest
May 20th, 2020
Reply to  C B

BMD Pocket cameras are PROFESSIONAL Cameras. They are affordable but can do everything that the Kodomo can do for a lot less price.

David
David
Guest
June 19th, 2020
Reply to  Eugenia L

Why on earth do you want HDMI??!! SDI is FAR more reliable, I mean, have you ever worked with SDI before? HDMI is to SDI what DVR tapes are to Netflix

Corbin kelly
Corbin kelly
Guest
June 9th, 2020
Reply to  C B

As I can definitely see what you’re saying since professionals use SDI as my self but it is nice to have a back up in case the SDI port goes bad in the middle of a high budget shoot.

Dominic
Guest
June 23rd, 2020
Reply to  C B

Amen to that!

 SMP Saint Marks Pictures LLC
SMP Saint Marks Pictures LLC
Member
December 5th, 2019
Reply to  Eugenia L

If I have to choose and it keeps the rig small, lose HDMI. SDI monitors have come way down in price. That said, not having XLR is a big mistake – even mini XLR would’ve been fine.

Dominic
Guest
June 23rd, 2020
Reply to  Eugenia L

Hate to say it but you get what you pay for. RED, built in USA. BMD, built in Singapore/China. Tech support Red, ++, Tech support BMD horrible.

Peter Schurte
Guest
November 29th, 2019

I love my BMCC !

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