Skip to main content

Apple ProRes RAW promises faster RAW video workflows for Final Cut Pro X

Atomos delivers first ProRes RAW monitor recorders to video industry

Apple released a new version of its ProRes video format this week as the company continues to regain ground in the world of professional video editing. Called ProRes RAW, Apple claims the new filetype combines the flexibility of a RAW video file with the performance advantages of ProRes, all with a file size that is actually smaller than ProRes 4444 (the previous top-of-the-line version of the format).

As with RAW still photos, RAW video offers more latitude for making adjustments in post-production, capturing greater dynamic range and bit more depth than consumer formats like MP4. Unlike other RAW formats, ProRes RAW uses compression to keep storage requirements minimal. It supports multiple resolutions in 12-bit color and a data rate of 80 to 140 megabytes per second. 4K video can be recorded up to 120 frames per second, and can record 2K up to 240 fps.

DJI is one of the first companies to license the new format and will bring it soon to its Zenmuse X7 aerial camera that can be mounted to the Inspire 2 drone . The Zenmuse X7 uses a Super35 sensor (equivalent to APS-C) which produces excellent image quality, and while it already offered RAW recording via Adobe’s CinemaDNG standard, ProRes RAW should offer improved, real-time editing performance in Final Cut Pro X.

Select cinema cameras from Canon, Sony, and Panasonic will also be able to take advantage of the new format thanks to their ability to output RAW data over HDMI. That’s because Atomos, maker of external HDMI video recorders, will soon be integrating ProRes RAW into its Shogun Inferno and Sumo 19 recorders via free firmware updates. Not only will such a recorder capture the full color and dynamic range of a camera’s sensor, it will even save metadata like shutter speed, f-stop, and ISO.

Of course, the question that’s bound to come up is, can this be used to record RAW video from a mirrorless camera or DSLR? We reached out to Atomos for clarification on this, and the answer is a pretty hard no — at least, for now. While using an external recorder is a good way to bypass some of the limitations of your camera’s internal video processing, no mirrorless camera or DSLR currently outputs RAW data over HDMI. Even the video-focused Panasonic GH5S only outputs a 10-bit 4:2:2 feed; many other cameras offer just 8-bit color, and some don’t output a clean HDMI feed at all. Furthermore, these cameras “bake in” a color profile to their HDMI feeds, which may be a flat log profile, but is not actual RAW data.

Still, the existence of the ProRes RAW format is good news for the future of DSLR and mirrorless video. Should a manufacturer choose to allow its cameras to output RAW HDMI feeds, small cameras could truly compete, quality-wise, with much larger and more expensive cinema cameras. And while a RAW video workflow certainly isn’t for everyone, ProRes RAW may make it more approachable to a broader range of videographers, at least those working in MacOS and Final Cut Pro X.

Daven Mathies
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Daven is a contributing writer to the photography section. He has been with Digital Trends since 2016 and has been writing…
New Leica Lux app turns your iPhone into a Leica (sort of)
The Leica LUX app for the iPhone.

If you’ve always coveted a Leica camera, but don’t have the absurd amount of money required to buy one, then perhaps you can make do with camera maker’s new Leica Lux app instead.

Currently only available for the iPhone, the Leica Lux app promises an experience about as close to a Leica as you can get without actually owning one.

Read more
Best GoPro deals: Save on action cameras and accessories
Prime Day 2022 GoPro deals graphic.

Action cameras are great for recording your active lifestyle; whether it's tracking through a mountain range or skiing down a slope, they can keep up with even the most strenuous activity. Of course, one of the best action camera brands is GoPro, and there are a lot of options you can pick from within its lineup, with a lot of great deals on the base camera and other accessories, of which we've collected our favorites below. You could also check out these drone deals to give you another cool perspective, or if you don't want to grab a GoPro, these camera deals might be good for you instead.
Best GoPro camera deals
GoPro HERO9 Black (open box) -- As low as $156

The GoPro HERO9 Black is a bit of an older GoPro at this point, but that certainly doesn't mean that it's geriatric, and the older age means you can get it for a lot cheaper. It has a large front screen for you to work with, and it can take 27MP stills, although the 5k video recording is a little bit pointless on a model like this. It has a larger battery, which is nice, and if you're okay with going for a refurbished or open-box version, then you can save a little cash.

Read more
Hurry! The GoPro Hero12 has a $100 price cut at beat buy
GoPro HERO12 offers waterproof use.

There are a lot of action cameras on the market, but one of the best and most well-known is the GoPro, so if you want something that can handle your active lifestyle, a GoPro is a great option. That said, GoPro cameras can be quite expensive, which is why you'll likely want to grab a deal on one to save you a little bit extra. Luckily, this GoPro Hero12 has a great deal on it from Best Buy that discounts it down to $300 from $400, saving you a solid $100, which is a nice discount.

Why you should buy the GoPro Hero12
One of the most important parts of any action camera is its video quality, and you'll be happy to know that the Hero12 can manage a whopping 5k at 60fps, which is pretty impressive for something so small. If you need more frames, you could go for the equally impressive 4K at 120fps, which is still quite impressive, and you could even go as fast as 240fps at 2.7K, so you have a lot of options when it comes to resolutions and framerates that work best for you. Another big positive is that the Hero12 has a pretty large field of view and can capture an aspect ratio of 8:7, which is pretty massive, all things considered.

Read more