Autor: Redaktion


REDCODE RAW is a proprietary file format from the camera manufacturer RED.

Like other raw formats, REDCODE RAW is comprised of the data output of the image sensor of a digital camera with minimal processing. This recorded data is often referred to as a ‘digital negative’.

RAW images are then taken through an ‘image development’ process and converted into a variety of file formats for storage and manipulation. In this context, the process of converting RAW recordings into viewable images involves debayering, the adjustment of  parameters such as white balance, noise reduction, colour space, or sensor sensitivity as part of the post production process. Because these settings are only metadata, the process is completely non-destructive. Debayering also offers a general advantage. In the future, if advanced algorithms for image development from raw data are created, the process can be re-applied to the original material to achieve higher quality results.

REDCODE RAW allows a fairly extensive range of compression settings, with options allowing compression ratios ranging from 3:1 to 18:1. The compression ratio describes the relative file size compared to a completely uncompressed data stream. Thus, the higher the compression ratio, the greater the file size compression. Compression ratios of 5: 1 to 8: 1 are visually lossless. The same file in a lossy ProRes 422 codec  has a smaller file size than a REDCODE RAW file at the same resolution.

However, the compression settings play a bigger role. It is no longer only about choosing between a simple data rate and memory size. The maximum frame rate and additional image settings such as shooting in High Dynamic Range (HDR ) depend on the selected compression level. A production may choose to increase the compression ratio based on their final delivery format. 

If the programme is being delivered as HD and not UHD, then the camera can be configured to increase the compression instead of reducing the sensor surface. Under these conditions it’s possible to  work at a compression ratio of 10: 1. Whatever format a production is contracted to deliver, it is important to test out different compression settings in order to get the best results for the output.

REDCODE RAW is written to the R3D format with a corresponding file extension. This format is compatible with all major file or partition systems, as the R3D files are automatically divided into 4GB segments during recording . This means that there are no limits to use a  FAT32 system.


  • Quantising: 12-bit
  • Compression: DCT, similar to JPEG2000
  • Compression Ratio: 3:1 - 18:1
  • Chroma-Subsampling: 4:4:4
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 (1,78:1), 2:1, 2,4:1
  • Framerate: 23.98p, 24p, 25p, 29.97p, 47.95p, 48p, 50p, 59.94p, 60p
  • Video Datarate: up to 300Mb/s, dependent on camera type, framerate, compression ratio, resolution, HDRx, recording media
  • Resolution:
  • 6K (6144x3160)5K (5120x2700)4.5K (4608x2412)4K (4096x2160)3K (3072x1620)2K (2048x1080)2K HD (1920x1080)
  • Channels: 2 -4Encoding: 24-bit / 48kHz uncompressed
  • File Format: filebased, R3D Files
  • Recording Media: proprietary RED Mags with different capacities and write speeds

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