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Describe it as a perfect storm. A mad scientist, with the passion and resources to make his dreams come true, a team of brilliant specialists that shared his passion and, finally, the moment in history when the technology would be possible. All factors were necessary for the dream to be realized. The genesis of RED® stirred in 2005, with the first RED ONE® camera being delivered in August of 2007. Jim Jannard, the owner and founder of sportswear and sunglass icon, Oakley, set out to realize his ultimate quest, to build the world's best cameras. Starting literally out of a warehouse garage, he and a small group of pioneers changed the face of the motion picture industry. Based on the RAW file capture of digital SLRs, the RED team engineered a camera capable of recording RAW, 4K images at up to 30 frames per second. Digital cinema, on a modern scale, was born.

Prototype 1

The Breadbox

Built in early 2006, RED's first testing platform, a mere sliver of what would ultimately become MYSTERIUM®, was used to create the first image. From the humble beginnings of a wooden box came proof that the technology could work. There was much to do, many problems to solve, but the sensor was viable. From this point forward, history would be made.

Prototype 3


Successor to the original Frankie, a board based, cable-laden, lens/sensor/computer/array, cobbled together monster responsible for creating the first images of the Milk Girls, the Oakley watch and the 959 Porsche, Frankie 2 was enclosed in an artful piece of engineering beauty. Within this sculpture, the MYSTERIUM® sensor took its first step out of doors and was subjected to the rigors of vibration and adverse environment. This first real-world testing met the challenges and pushed the program forward with new insight.