I just returned from a 4 day offshore shoot with the Scarlet. We were shooting aerials and oil rig footage for Apache Oil company of the ENSCO rig in the Gulf of Mexico. I wanted to report back to you all on some of the issues we encountered to see if anyone else has had the same problems. I was shooting aerials using a Tyler Mini-Gyro. I was using my RED 18mm prime set at infinity focus and I verified focus through the 5.0 touch LCD's focus magnification and focus assist in the settings/ display/ focus enhancement menu. It looked great and the aerials were super smooth. After landing I offloaded the card using Red Station and immediately previewed the shots on Redcine X. Looking at the footage using the FULL SCREEN selection (at the highest resolution) on my Macbook Pro it looked really nice...but when I clicked 100% it was soft and the focus was not sharp. I was shocked! My question is- is 100% a 'magnification' and not the actual fully sized image? I ask this because when I look at RAW still photo images in Lightroom at 100% they are clean and have crisp focus because in that program you are in fact looking at the fully sized image- not magnified. I had a friend who had some raw footage he shot on his Epic try the same experiment on Redcine X when I got home and his footage was just as crunchy at 100%. This makes me believe that my focus was true and that the issue is either in the Redcine X software or possibly because the Macbook Pro cannot resolve that high a resolution? Any insight here would be appreciated. Later I used my 18-85mm zoom and was extremely mindful of double checking focus but all the footage had the same result on Redcine X. Remember- these are NEW Red lenses- first time used - so it would be unlikely it was a backfocus issue on 2 lenses.
Issue #2: I noticed that when you use the Touch LCD in a hurried manner- which is pretty much what you do in the real world of shooting- the LCD will 'lock up' and you lose all touch functions. I first had this happen when I was reviewing clips on the chopper during aerial shooting. I was toggling quickly from viewing a clip (using the playback mode) to jumping back to the 'record mode'. Doing this would lock up my LCD- this happened 3 times! And since there is no 'on-off' button on the monitor itself- I had no choice but to hard shut down on the Scarlet and reboot to get the LCD functions back. Of course I was always greeted with a warning that I had shut the Scarlet down incorrectly. Thank God the monitor came back each time!
Issue #3: The AUDIO playback is NOT enabled on the Scarlet. You can record audio using a powered mic source just fine... but when you go to playback the clip to check audio you hear nothing. I had to offload the clips in order to insure myself that there was in fact audio there. Kinda scary!
The good news is the shoot did go well and the Scarlet for the most part performed very well. The footage of course is phenomenal (if the focus issue above turns out to be normal- someone please let me know!) The Scarlet X really feels more like your using a computer instead of a camera... especially the way it shuts down and boots back up and (downside- the way it freezes up) I spent 4 days reading and studying the Scarlet X manual before the shoot so I'm pretty knowledgeable now as to it's functions but NOWHERE in the manual does it cover any of the issues stated above.
I will have some nice stills from the shoot I will post soon and once I have a chance I will upload some of the aerials and other shots. We shot some killer sunsets and sunrises from the rig!