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Andrew Reid

Arri AMIRA priced to compete with Canon C500 - plus, the secret of Arri's success

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

I think Arri are -for the first time- going after the owner/operator market, and the relationship will be more of a business-to-customer one rather than a business-to-business (rental houses) one.
It's a major leap from Arri's side and I believe it will have a major impact on Arri's future line-up.

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Not true.  Not true at all.  I know people who have spent more than this, either individually on a RED or a group of local shooters pooling their cash to buy one and share.  This is likely to give them all serious buyer's remorse.

 

Rednecks spend more than this on fishing boats, hunting cabins and off-road vehicles.  Yuppies spend several times over this price for a midlife crisis sports car, a sail boat, a motor home or on vacation.  I have friends with much more than this invested in their gun collection.  A buddy of mine has spent far more than this building an airplane kit in his garage.

 

What's perhaps ironic is this camera at this price might be privately owned by individuals who are non-photography professionals or otherwise not in full-time employment as shooters.  Folks with six figure incomes, access to credit and looking for another expensive hobby, this one with the benefit that their purchase could eventually pay for itself by renting it out.

 

You live in a very different world to me, my friend.

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I don't think Arri clients mind about the price that much, be it $39k or $59k or $69k and 99 cents, they will use the damn camera.

 

On Twitter some people who hadn't read the article properly, insisted I was saying the Amira competes against the C300 in the low and mid-end of the production market!!

 

Nah - it's an all high end affair, but it still competes against the C300 and C500 because these were being used at the high end of the production market, due to smaller size than Alexa, run & gun ergonomics, etc. The Amira is designed to do that job and it will be the Amira which gets the job, over the Cinema EOS stuff at the high end from now on. Canon just lost some lustre.

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This is what i'm trying to mimic with my BMCC rig - It's not even close, but heck, it's something to strive for. If I ever have that amount of money laying around I'd be very tempted to pick this one up and be done with it :)

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Totally agree with Tom Hopkins and Andrew on this one: The Amira may become leading lady in what was the S-16 slot in the older days for higher-end TV. Both for documentary and narrative. While producing a superb s-35 image. Meaning: It may also be used for certain movie-jobs.

Yes, Canon and Sony have been faster in that slot, but I remember the Alexa coming a bit late to the digital party too - but taking up most of the more attractive dance cards fast and waltzing nicely.... ;-)

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I don't think Arri clients mind about the price that much, be it $39k or $59k or $69k and 99 cents, they will use the damn camera.

 

On Twitter some people who hadn't read the article properly, insisted I was saying the Amira competes against the C300 in the low and mid-end of the production market!!

 

Nah - it's an all high end affair, but it still competes against the C300 and C500 because these were being used at the high end of the production market, due to smaller size than Alexa, run & gun ergonomics, etc. The Amira is designed to do that job and it will be the Amira which gets the job, over the Cinema EOS stuff at the high end from now on. Canon just lost some lustre.

Agree that most Arri client won't mind the price....and an awesome R&G, one operator camera, no doubt about it.....but isn't the title of this article "Arri Amira priced to compete with the Canon C500, plus the secret of Arri's success".....? $40K vs $20K....?

 

Appreciate the post and the fantastic site, BTW.

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With priced to compete with C500 thing I had in mind the 25,000 original C500 price in Europe. This I believe has now gone down slightly, but it's still £20,000 inc. VAT at CVP, so not too different to the Amira, especially when you begin adding the necessary recorder for 4K video and 2K ProRes, better EVF and monitor, shoulder rig, etc., otherwise what is the point? You may as well get a C300! The ProRes, better codecs, very high quality EVF and shoulder rig is stuff which the Amira is designed to do pretty much out of the box without Zacuto's help.

 

So in my view, yes it the Amira price is competitive with most C500's out there, unless you were lucky and got one used or something, and haven't added much rigging to it.

 

In the US at the time of writing this article the USD pricing wasn't announced and it still isn't clear today exactly what the packages and prices are in the States.

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Pricing in itself will be a real but very probably not the most decisive argument in the market the Amira is heading for. In this market even a maybe slightly more expensive camera will win over customers - if it fits into the workflow and produces an outstanding picture.

For a high-end tv-movie in my country the actual costs of a camera (minus lenses and other directly camera related gear) may account for something of about 3 to 4 % of the budget. So the decision to go for a camera which is - say - 20% cheaper than the other accounts in real life for a difference of 0,6 to 0,8 % of the budget.

Every production manager worth his money (sic!) may think this still is a factor. True. But if the same camera will be easier to rig and handle, has an outstanding reliability and would produce an only slightly better image - then even in strictly economic terms this camera will win.

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Indeed. Consumers are price sensitive, but the people the Amira is for - aren't really. If you need to invest $39,000 in a camera, and can do so, it's obvious you have a way of earning that back. $5k or $10k here or there won't be the main point. It will stop the C300 crowd going for it maybe, but it will replace the C300 in the sense that the high end of the community would probably prefer the benefits of the Amira. I know the high end of the rental market certainly well. It's more robust.

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We believe that the $39,999 US price (correction $35,114.57 price) does not include any lens mount, battery plate, microphone holder or the sliding shoulder pad. These are all optional accessories that must be purchased at extra cost.

-http://www.newsshooter.com/2014/01/31/arri-sets-amira-pricing-who-will-pay-it-asks-matt-allard/

 

Okay, I first thought that the ergonomics of the Arri AMIRA was awesome. Turns out all of those are just extra accessories.

 

I think you can make a camera of your choosing to be similar to that with the same accessories from them. I like the lens with the zoom rocker attachment to it, the sliding shoulder pad. Add this to something like the BMCC could give you similar ergonomics.

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I spent 8 years shooting with a 30-pound TK-76 in the late '70s, early '80s. Ruined my back/neck with herniated discs.

Nevertheless, for me it's always about ergonomics. The trend that began in the '90s holding a camera out in front of you was a deal (back) breaker for me.

A video camera, in my opinion. should be positioned on the shoulder.

That's why this is a sensible and good camera! Long live Arri.

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No 4:3 mode. Arri have angered the anamorphic gods.

 

It's such a simple feature to add, don't know why more cameras don't do it considering the competition consists of one camera, and some hacked DSLRs.

 

Anamorphic is IN!

 

When you have got your AMIRA on your shoulder JG come to Berlin and you can use my Cooke PL lenses on it :)

 

I was at an AMIRA event last week, talking to the rep, it has the same sensor as ALEXA, which has just recently recieved an update to "Full Gate" (i.e. using the whole 4:3 sensor, no safe zones) . . . therefore AMIRA will more likely than not get "Full Gate" treatment at some point as well. 

 

On a side note, every camera manufacturer out there needs to go rent one and take notes. Copious ones. AMIRA is the best camera I've ever come in contact with, that's for sure. You're not going to strap it on front of your surf board, but for pretty much anything else, it's marvelous. I'm certainly hoping to rent one for a short film I'm planning in the not-too-distant future.

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