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An incredible achievement - Roald Christessen builds his own raw cinema camera and grading software

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    Andrew Reid - British Filmmaker - Editor EOSHD

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 12:36 PM

Roald raw camera

Small and modular in design and featuring a global shutter, this raw digital cinema camera isn't built by a camera company, or even a small team. Created over the last 6 months in Flensburg in Northern Germany single-handedly by Roald Christessen, the camera features a global shutter and raw output.

Here's an exclusive Q&A with Roald and more about the camera technology...

Read the full article here
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#2 andy lee

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 12:54 PM

wow that's a staggering achievement !! Images look great too....

the big manufacturers should watch and learn!! -  global shutter- yes please!

Andy Lee
LTI Films

'If it looks good , it is good!'

#3 riccardocovino


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Posted 11 June 2013 - 03:08 PM

I think it's really a great effort and an incredible result, althought I don't see a commercial future for it.


For half the price BM gives 4k with DaVinci Resolve 10.. who would risk paying double for a one man product?


Respect for the project, even if I wouldn't buy it.

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#4 Tzedekh


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Posted 11 June 2013 - 08:11 PM

Then there's the cheaper Digital Bolex, which should be released eventually. But I agree, it's an amazing achievement for one person.

#5 finducinema



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Posted 11 June 2013 - 08:29 PM

Mr. riccardocovino hit it on the head.


I think this camera/software package would have been amazing 2-3 years ago at its current projected price-point.


Now with all of the options from Blackmagic, all of which come with a degree of product support that couldn't possibly be matched by a single person.


And if Blackmagic weren't enough, people now have the ability to record RAW with the 5D Mark III. The Mark III is not only cheaper than this camera, but it's also an amazing stills camera. And even with it being a "hack" Magic Lantern also offers a degree of support that can't be matched by one person.


Hypothetical: Let's say a person buys this camera/software package, but, they're one of only a few who do purchase it. So, sales never really take off.

Then, Mr. Christessen basically recoups the money he put into developing this project, realizes it was a good effort, but now wants to dedicate himself to the next thing in hopes for a better outcome. No one could blame him.

However, if you were one of the few who bought the package wouldn't you be a little perturbed?

Knowing there will be no more updates for the software.

Knowing if anything goes wrong on the camera there's literally nothing you can do about it.

Certainly would be a high price for such a lonely feeling.


Not only do I think there is no room in the market for this camera, but I think it would be a downright bad investment.

It's a high risk investment, except the potential for greater return isn't there. It has all the bad parts of a high risk investment with none of the good.


Yes, it's an awesome achievement for one person.

I myself had been seriously researching building my own digital-cinema camera since 2011. However, I stopped pursuing it once Blackmagic announced their new 4k camera, not only was it the resolution I was seeking, but at the exact price I was looking to pay.

So, having just a taste of the complexity involved in this type of undertaking I have a great admiration for what he accomplished.


I think Mr. Christessen should use this to get a job with one of the top cinema camera manufacturers so we can enjoy the fruits of his labor and talents without the risk.

#6 Edward Zaee

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 10:49 PM

nice, but 7k for that? I'll pass.

#7 Marino215


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Posted 11 June 2013 - 11:36 PM

An incredible achievement indeed. I think it sounds like a winner, the more I'd be able to accomplish on set, the happier I'd be. Seems great, set exposure for each scene, add your lut and bam...less time in post. Maybe I'm wrong but I would have to think it's the best way to get maximum dynamic range out of the camera. You can see it on set and light accordingly. Idk, it looks great and seems pretty reasonable. I'll have my eye out. Thanks

#8 Brellivids


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Posted 12 June 2013 - 03:59 PM

Great job. Perhaps teaming up with more ppl and working together to drive the price point down. How ever it turns out. I hope he get's some financial success from a few customers at least. 

#9 milkjam



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Posted 27 June 2013 - 09:49 PM

He has the right idea.


BMC - terrible


There are really TWO cameras we should be trying to emulate (besides film)

- Arri Alexa for look

- Red Epic for latitude


The ikonoskop is like a mini alexa, the ccd from kodak has a beautiful image and global shutter. Better than canon raw, bmc, and whatever else is in that range. The kineraw is coming, maybe...


Main problem here is lack of stability of a company behind the product and the PRICE. Few will want the kit lens. For close to the same price you should just buy the Ikonoskop. It's established and available now. I've always wanted one but their solution to data transfer is too slow and expensive. Either way service and support will be limited. Which is why we've avoided it thus far. 


To be successful it also needs to be functional in a professional environment, reliable, fixable, replaceable. It's a touch business.


Congrats on this project. Now shoot something cool because that might be as far as it gets. 

Great work, would love to play with one regardless. 

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