Most of us may have never heard about a company called RED that makes ultra-high-end cameras with 4K and 8K resolution support for Hollywood. However, many of us may have seen movies like The Martian, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and shows like Mr. Robot. These are just a few examples of many movies and TV shows that have used RED camera equipment for shooting. The results are there for everyone to see, which should tell you how good RED’s cameras are.
Shocking us all, RED announced that it is making a smartphone. The camera maker announced its first phone, the RED Hydrogen costs a staggering $1595, which is approximately Rs. 1,00,000. There’s a slightly cheaper aluminium alloy version that costs $1195, or approximately Rs. 76,000. RED says that these are pre-order prices only, suggesting that once the device is released, the prices may be increased.
At that price, you may be wondering what exactly is special about the RED Hydrogen.
Here are the five cool things about the RED Hydrogen.
5.7-inch screen featuring “nanotechnology”
The RED Hydrogen comes with a revolutionary new “holographic” display. The Hydrogen will let you view 3D content without any glasses whatsoever. You can experience AR, VR, MR, 3D and regular 2D content without having to wear any glasses at all.
Imagine looking at all that content without having to wear a dorky pair of huge glasses. It’s what the RED Hydrogen promises with its revolutionary new display tech. For this alone, the Hydrogen could be worth the price. However, it goes without saying that we’ll have to wait to see how it works in real life.
Modular attachment support for upgraded camera experience
RED clearly says that the front and rear cameras on the Hydrogen are not going to produce cinema quality images. However, RED promises that its modular system will allow it to bring modules that will take the image quality “well beyond any other camera short of our professional cameras”.
That is a bold step, but it is exciting to see RED try and undertake this big gamble. While modular systems on phones have been more about gimmicks and less about adding real value for its users, RED’s promise to drastically improve the Hydrogen’s image quality using modules could be a game changer.
Integrated support for other RED cameras like Scarlet, Epic and Weapon
The RED Hydrogen is not being aimed at smartphone enthusiasts, or even the geeks. This is probably aimed more at RED fans and existing RED users. Targeting them, RED has integrated support for other RED cameras like the Scarlet, Epic and Weapon.
New content format - .h4v – Holographic Hydrogen 4-view content
Another cool thing about the Hydrogen phone is that RED is developing a new content format that you can create with this phone. Early reports suggest that RED will be launching a separate module for this purpose.
H4V stands for Hydrogen 4-view. Basing on everything that we know so far about this format and the Hydrogen phone, it seems like it could be a variant of something that we know as “Multiview” or “Multiscopic 3D”.
All said and done, this is a fascinating concept to say the least. RED’s founder James Jannard says that they’re “still testing the best configuration for shooting 4-View”, so we’ll have to wait and see how it turns out in the end.
Virtual 5.1 high quality audio support via headphones
The Hydrogen phone also comes with another unique feature that converts stereo sound into multidimensional audio. For this purpose, RED has introduced a new H3O algorithm. Terming it Virtual 5.1 on headphones, this is logical extension of the Multiview/Holographic display feature. You may have to convert your stereo audio to high-quality virtual 5.1 to enjoy the improved audio performance.
(All Images: Marques Brownlee)