The folks over at DXOmark, who have become the bible of camera testing , have tested the Dragon and the results are pretty incredible. The Dragon rose above all still cameras tested before it, including the best full frame and medium format cameras. Combining the best imaging sensor with the ability to shoot 100 frames per second opens up a whole new world of imaging to photographers.
DXOmark went on to praise the Red Epic Dragon camera –
– As the new leader in this category, the prototype Epic Dragon surpasses the Phase One P65+ and P65+ HR models in color sensitivity, and it marginally exceeds the mighty Phase One IQ180 digital back in our rankings.
– The highest color sensitivity ever measured: exceptionally low noise at the base ISO.
– The headline news is, of course, that of the Dragon’s exceptionally low noise levels. The SNR (signal/noise ratio) curve shown above is simply outstanding – it’s higher than the Nikon D4’s curve for the whole of that sensor’s signal response. The shape of the response curve is interesting as well.
– This noise curve, coupled with a good color response, leads to a very high color sensitivity. At the pixel level (screen mode), the color sensitivity is simply the best ever measured. We normally calculate color sensitivity using an 8-bit output sRGB colorspace. In this case, however, the 8-bit sRGB color space was not large enough to accurately represent the color sensitivity of the Epic Dragon. As a result, we had to switch to a 16-bit sRGB color space!
– this new technology just may forever change the way both footage and stills are shot in the future.
For the tests, the camera was set to full 6k resolution at 23.98 fps, 16 bit and RC 5:1 compression.
Red has released a new set of tools for Epic or Scarlet camera users.
One of the tools is amazingly good, it is visual tool for key mapping so you to setup all the buttons / keys on your Epic camera while using a Mac or PC. Once you have run the program and setup all you button / key choices you save it to a camera SSD and then load to your camera.
Its a so much quicker, easier and simpler way to set up your camera using this program. This tool would be great for anyone one who either rents an Epic or Scarlet or uses multiple cameras on a shoot. A great way to have all the keys / buttons setup uniformly.
The tools included in the latest release are:
REDMote Upgrade Utility
RED Guide Creator
RED Key Mapper
The new Epic Dragon camera allows for an amazing range of frames rates. Below is the maximum frame rate for each resolution of Epic Dragon. The minimum frame rate is 1 frame per second.
Please note all frames rates are based on 23.98 time base, 8:1 compression with Lookaround turned off.
With Red’s new sensor coming out now, its about time to have idea what you are getting with 6K shooting.
So what is 6K, well it is 6144 x 3160 pixels or 19.4 megapixels at a 1.94:1 aspect ratio.
6K is 9.36x more pixels than 1080p.
6K is 8.78x more pixels than 2K.
6K is 2.2x more pixels than 4K.
6K is 1.4x more pixels than 5K.
6K is 14% more resolution than 5K for a pristine full debayer down to 4K. Meaning it’s a 66.7% down sample/debayer to 4K.
What does all this mean to me?
Well if you’re thinking about a 4K finish it gives a bit more freedom for creative re-framing, cropping, or leveling. Fine and high frequency details will actually down sample into 4K and benefit from that extra resolution. There are many ways to work with and finish REDCODE for screen and print use. Over sampling and the use of a debayer pattern help eliminate aliasing artifacts. If you want crisp and detailed images there’s options. If you want a smoother feel there’s options. Just depends on what you’re after and the workflow you choose.
So we’re now in some new exciting territory!
Many Thanks to Phil Holland for all the numbers and great chart.