Own a RED KOMODO? You Need a RED KOMODO Outrigger Handle

January 20, 2024
3 mins read

I owned a RED KOMODO from September 2022 to July 2023 – not quite an entire year, but I had accumulated enough hours and used it to a varying degree to realize that the camera wasn’t the right fit for me. Don’t get me wrong, there are numerous aspects to appreciate about the RED KOMODO. As someone who entered the world of filmmaking with a 5D MK II and acquired a RED ONE MX in 2012, the idea of a RED KOMODO existing back in 2012 would have been unfathomable.

You can see why I parted ways with the KOMODO in this video with Videvo.

However, this isn’t intended to be a comprehensive camera review, nor are we here to nitpick its drawbacks. Well, to some extent, we might be, as I’m recommending a tool that significantly enhances your experience. But our goal isn’t to write a critical piece, so to speak.

One of my fundamental issues with the camera is its shape. This is ironic, considering the boxy format is one of the camera’s selling points. Equally important, another selling point is the camera’s usability with minimal additional accessories.

Image of a hand holding the RED KOMODO

See, the record button is situated on the right-hand side. If you’re holding the camera with your right hand and focusing the lens with your left hand or stabilizing the body, you must let go of the camera to hit record and revert back to your position. It doesn’t seem like too much of an issue, but when you’re set and ready to start filming, the requirement to unset yourself to start recording can become tedious.

A bearded male holding the RED KOMODO and pointing to the record button.

If we look at cameras like the FX6 and the C300, as well as many other mid-tier cinema cameras, the record button on the body is usually situated on the left-hand side.

Product image of the Canon C300

I’m not an engineer or designer, but as a user, having it on the left-hand side feels more natural, at least for a right-handed person. However, it’s also noting that this isn’t nessecarily the primary record function that handheld filmmakers would use, it’s would be the record button situated on the grip handle.

This puts us out of luck with the KOMODO, right? Well, not too much.

KOMODO Outrigger Handle

Released alongside the KOMODO, the Outrigger Handle is a low-profile handle that offers full 360-degree swivel rotation and adjustment for maximum flexibility. Made from aluminum, it has a rugged design and features two ¼-20 mounting points for additional flexibility in rigging. So, you’re not losing mounting points from where the handle needs to be placed.

Black and White image of the Outrigger Handle placed on a box

The primary selling point of the Outrigger Handle is the record button access on top of the handle. It provides a more natural grip, akin to what I experienced with the C300 Mk III, without sacrificing the professional feel. The handle’s design ensures balanced weight distribution, making the camera feel like an arm extension rather than a cumbersome tool. Now, you can easily hit record without taking your hands away from anywhere on the body.

I no longer have to awkwardly reach around the camera or adjust my grip to start filming. Ease of use is critical in filmmaking, and the Outrigger Handle addresses this. I understand that the KOMODO is a cine camera, which comes with cine-workflow adjustments, like a longer boot time and the need for the sensor to calibrate to the temperature. So, the need to immediately hit record isn’t too much of a necessity at a base level.

Man with sunglasses outdoors looking at the external monitor screen on the RED KOMODO

However, the Outrigger Handle proves invaluable for run-and-gun filmmakers who keep the RED KOMODO turned on, like in documentary filmmaking, where agility and quick reflexes are key. I found that shooting handheld was far less tiring, and I could react more swiftly to unfolding events. Similarly, during action sequences, the handle’s stability and ease of access to controls allowed me to capture dynamic shots with greater confidence.

I have no intention of picking up a KOMODO again in the future. However, if you are thinking about acquiring one, or you already have one and would like some reassurance, I can tell you that the RED KOMODO Outrigger Handle is not just an accessory; it’s a necessity for filmmakers who value ergonomics, functionality, and efficiency.

Whether you’re a documentary filmmaker, shooting action scenes, or working in any environment where agility is critical, this handle enhances the RED KOMODO’s capabilities. In my year of using the camera, it has become clear that the Outrigger Handle isn’t just an add-on; it’s an essential component that unlocks the camera’s full potential.

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Lewis McGregor

Lewis McGregor is a filmmaker, photographer and online content creator from Wales.