RED V-Raptor Goes Face-Tracking-Auto-Focus
RED V-Raptor Goes Face-Tracking-Auto-Focus

RED V-Raptor Goes Face-Tracking-Auto-Focus

2 mins read

RED Digital Cinema has released the new firmware for its DSMC3 flagship, V-Raptor VV 8K camera. One of the major features is the Face Tracking Auto Focus (alpha form). That’s an indication that RED continues to sharpen DSMC3 AF capabilities. However, RED knows that it has a long way to go.

All is white here. The super affordable 1.33X VILTROX anamorphic on the RED Raptor Stormtrooper. Credit: YMCinema
All is white here. The super affordable 1.33X VILTROX anamorphic on the RED Raptor Stormtrooper. Credit: YMCinema

RED V-Raptor: Firmware1.6.1 beta

The newest firmware (1.6.1 beta) for the RED V-Raptor 8K VV cinema camera is massive and contains many goodies. As stated by RED Digital Cinema CEO, Jarred Land: “New Beta Build today for Raptor as well as the DSMC3 Monitor, Lots of good stuff and for Raptor the standout is the First look at  Face Tracking Auto Focus which in it’s alpha form but super cool… but the one personally that makes me giddy is finally Raptor has online firmware upgrades.  This is something that I have put on the engineering wish list since the RED ONE, and it always was pushed for more important things…It probably will bug some ACs to see the pop-up every time you power on the camera when it auto checks for a new firmware but you can turn that off.. but I love love love love it. Thank you, RED engineers. Download now from

Laowa Ranger 28-75mm T2.9 FF on the RED V-Raptor. Source: Laowa
Laowa Ranger 28-75mm T2.9 FF on the RED V-Raptor. Source: Laowa

Check out the new features below:

  1. Added Face Detection Beta for Auto Focus
  2. Added In-camera Online Firmware Upgrade method
  3. Added Advanced Playback Controls
  4. Added RED Connect SMPTE 2110 support
  5. Added RED Connect Return Feed support
  6. Added RED Connect NMOS support
  7. Added multiple Calibration management
  8. Added ISO Display Mode Gain (dB)
  9. Added Remote Shutdown command
  10. Added UDP discovery
  11. Added Web UI for S3 credentials
  12. Added clip name to HANC data during playback
  13. Added DSMC3 RED Touch 7″ 5.5.0beta firmware
  14. Added DSMC3 RED Touch 7″ GIO Scope Interface (5.50beta)
  15. Added ability to disable DSMC3 RED Touch 7″ Page System (5.5.0beta)
  16. Added edit list functionality to DSMC3 RED Touch 7″ (5.5.0beta)
  17. Optimized RCP outgoing message
  18. Improved PTP locking
  19. Improved playback transition on DSMC3 RED Touch 7″ (5.5.0beta)
RED V-Raptor: Firmware1.6.1 beta
RED V-Raptor: Firmware1.6.1 beta

Autofocusing in cinema cameras?!

When RED launched the Komodo, which was the first RF cinema camera in the new lineup (DSMC3), Land said that RED’s engineers work hard to sharpen the AF capabilities and they have just started doing so, as compared to Canon which owns a vast experience in that field. AF is a complex process. Simple AF is contrast-based, but an advanced more efficient AF is a whole new ball game, involving complicated technologies like AI, machine learning, and more, at the sensor level. For instance, many filmmakers bought the Canon C200 because of its ability to AF-ing via the touch LCD. Then came the C70, which holds the RF mount for faster and better AF-ing. RED wanted to offer the same experience for its shooters, utilizing the RF mount of the Komodo, and now the Raptor, for usable AF. The most recent example is the Sony BURANO, which offers outstanding AF-ing via touch, including Face Detection. We tried it and it works almost perfectly. By touching a face on the screen (even a tiny object), the E-mount lenses immediately focus on the object. The AI capabilities allow the tracking, locking, and shifting of the focused object. That can be super useful even in cinema productions. Hence, firmware 1.6.1 demonstrates RED’s determination to make AF-ing better, faster, and more precise. Nevertheless, there’s still a long way to reach the destination. But it’s getting there, and it will get better and better on every firmware release.

Product List

Here are the products mentioned in the article, and the links to purchase them from authorized dealers. 

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Yossy Mendelovich

Yossy is a filmmaker who specializes mainly in action sports cinematography. Yossy also lectures about the art of independent filmmaking in leading educational institutes, academic programs, and festivals, and his independent films have garnered international awards and recognition.
Yossy is the founder of Y.M.Cinema Magazine.

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