The RED integration with Apple’s Metal framework for real-time R3D

It’s finally here. RED announced its collaboration with Apple to improve real-time R3D playback. What does that mean for RED users? Learn why people are getting excited about the new Mac Pro and the new XDR pro display. How RED users can now edit 8K REDCODE RAW natively and play it back flawlessly on FCPX. Plus, how these two teams are working together to improve the entire RED workflow. 

RED and Apple – The Dream Team

The great Apple vs. RED debate is long over. What was once a legal match between the two powerhouses is now a match made in heaven. If you recall the lawsuit, Apple filed a petition to challenge RED’s ‘REDCODE’ patent. Apple filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). As it turns out, the process was a necessary due diligence protocol the two companies willingly performed. It was needed to further the development of the RED integration with Apple’s METAL framework. Little did we know during this time; the relationship between Apple and RED was never better. During the ‘debate,’ the teams from Apple and RED were actually working together closely to bring users flawless R3D editing capabilities on FCPX. 

Apple’s new hardware will bring a mind‐blowing level of performance to Metal‐accelerated, proxy‐free R3D workflows in Final Cut Pro X that editors truly have never seen before. We are very excited to bring a Metal‐ optimized version of R3D in September. “- RED, June 2019

Metal now supports R3D acceleration, REDCODE RAW, FCPX, and Resolve

In early December 2019, RED and Apple announced the finish of the METAL GPU accelerated R3D support in the SDK, and gave insight on the next major FCPX release. Completion of the development stage is major news, and it will enable users to incorporate R3D in the next FCPX version. According to RED, Blackmagic Design, who is responsible for the DaVinci Resolve 16.1.2, now uses the R3D Metal SDK as well. 

Is the Mac Pro Afterburner Right for Me?

Chances are you’ve heard about the new Apple Mac Pro Afterburner coming in at a whopping $2,000. The Afterburner accelerates decoding and playback of multiple streams of ProRes and ProRes RAW video files. RED shooters were looking forward to the Mac Pro’s hyped GPU card to help boost their R3D workflow. As it turns out, the Afterburner will be mainly focused on ProRes RAW utilization. So, if your ecosystem is mostly REDCODE you may want to hold off on the Afterburner. This is projected to change in the next Metal updates and will soon also be beneficial to R3D. 

RED shooters loyal to the Apple ecosystem will surely benefit from this new collab. We’re looking forward to digging into the unique abilities of the next FCPX update. We’ll be sure to keep you updated!