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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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!