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RIA-1 Now Shipping

It’s been a bit of wait, but I’m very happy to share with you that the RIA-1 has started shipping out to dealers today. We’ve got several hundred units already built and ready to go, so availability should be quite good. Hopefully you’ll have a couple of units in your hot little hands soon enough!

New Radio Modules

The main feature of the RIA-1 is of course support for the various radio modules that were launched alongside the Hi-5, and we consider this a bit of a completion of the system that was launched last year. Here’s a little rundown on the different modules currently available:


- The standard ARRI “white-coded radio” that has been a fixture of ARRI cameras and ECS devices for over a decade. The ALEXA Plus, ALEXA Mini, ALEXA Mini LF, ALEXA 35, WCU-4 and SXU-1 all have this radio module built in, to name a few.

- This module is certified globally.

- The EMIP module allows network mode – up to three hand controllers or client devices connected to one camera/motor controller/host device.

- It features 14 radio channels on fixed frequencies in the 2.4Ghz band.

- The RF-EMIP available for Hi-5 and RIA-1 is the fourth generation of this module, and features better rejection of interference than previous generations, whilst still maintaining backwards-compatibility.


- Higher transmission power than the RF-EMIP (about 40%).

- New, frequency-hopping system that significantly improves connectivity and range between radio modules.

- Same physical size as the RF-EMIP.

- This module is certified globally.

- Network mode is not supported by the RF-2400, only a single pair of modules can communicate with each other, but a camera’s internal RF-EMIP module can be used simultaneously for multiple handset operation.

- 100 channel-hopping schemes to choose from (similar principle to choosing a radio channel) so many systems can be used simultaneously.

In the near future we will also be releasing the RF-900 radio module. This module will only be available in the USA and Canada due to radio restrictions elsewhere, but promises to bring extraordinary range capabilities to the Hi-5 ecosystem. We’ll have more details on the RF-900 when it launches.

Host and Client

A new concept that we’re introducing with the RIA-1 is that of Host and Client mode. Host Mode is the standard mode for a motor controller: the RIA-1 is mounted on camera and is connected to cforce motors via LBUS, the camera via the CAM port and a distance measuring device via the SERIAL port. It’s receiving commands from a Hi-5 or similar hand unit and then passing them off to the motors, camera and Focusbug. It’s basically acting as the hub of operations in Host Mode.

When using the RIA-1 in Host Mode it’s important to connect to the camera via CAM, and not only via an LBUS port, as this can cause a double motor controller conflict.

Client mode is where you’d like to use the RIA-1 at the other end of the wireless link. This could be with an LBUS controller like a Master Grip or OCU-1 to enable it to be a wireless device, or it could be with a WCU-4 or SXU-1 to allow it to use one of the new radio modules. We call this Wireless Expansion. Client mode makes the RIA-1 an exceptionally versatile tool, and helps to bring your previous generation devices into the new radio module world.

One of my favourite use cases for the RIA-1 is paired with an OCU-1 as a long-range iris controller. This is similar to setups that we’ve featured online before with the ERM-2400 LCS, and which has been used on many of the largest feature films to give a DP or DIT in a tent a reliable connection back to camera. An example of this setup could look like this:

In this setup, a RIA-1 in host mode with an RF-2400 radio module is placed on camera. It’s paired to a RIA-1 in client mode with an RF-2400, set up in a DIT tent, and connected to an OCU-1 so that the DP can make iris adjustments and activate the SDI-1 false color user button.

Meanwhile, the internal RF-EMIP module found in the ALEXA Mini LF is being used simultaneously, allowing a 1st AC with a Hi-5 and RF-EMIP module, who would often stand quite close to the camera, to have full camera control and lens data. The 1st AC has control over the focus and zoom motors attached to the camera, and the DP can control the iris. The beauty of this setup is that both users are sharing the same lens data, so the 1st AC will be able to see the iris value on their Hi-5 and a depth of field indicator will be generated, even though it’s being controlled remotely and through an entirely separate wireless link.

We’ve developed a whole new webpage just for sample setups on a variety of cameras, and it’s available here:

Third-party camera control

Another feature that we’re introducing alongside the RIA-1 is support for third party camera control with a Hi-5. This is also possible through the cforce mini RF with the same CAM cables. Licenses for RED camera control and Sony Venice camera control can be purchased at the ARRI License Shop:

RED camera control is reasonably straight forward. It supports the control of the following features on both DSMC2 cameras and DSMC3 cameras such as Komodo and V-Raptor:

  • Frame Rate

  • Shutter Speed

  • ISO

  • White Balance

  • ND Filter

  • Playback (clip list handling)

  • Playback (next clip/previous clip)

  • Playback (Fast Forward)

  • Camera User Buttons

For correct operation, the RED CTRL Protocol must be set to Red Command Protocol (RCP). On newer cameras such as the Komodo and V-Raptor the Baud rate must be set to 460800. The cable you’ll need is the K2.0015758 Cable CAM (7p) – RED CTRL/D-Tap (0.6m/2ft), but please make sure the camera you’re using has the correct 4p Lemo 00 CTRL port, as some modules do not feature it. If you’re using a bare Komodo or V-Raptor without any additional modules you will need a breakout cable from the 9p EXT connector to RED CTRL.

The Sony Venice control license key requires a little more setup on the camera side. With the camera in normal operation, the following features are supported:

  • Frame Rate (only full frame)

  • ND Filter

  • Playback (next clip/previous clip)

  • Playback (Fast Forward)

If the camera is set to RCP mode, the following features are supported:

  • Frame Rate (only full frame)

  • ND Filter

  • Playback (next clip/previous clip)

  • Playback (Fast Forward)

  • Shutter Speed

  • White Balance

  • ISO as GAIN in dB

The last point will be the most contentious – unfortunately Sony only permit adjusting the ISO when the camera is set to show the ISO value as GAIN in dB, instead of standard ISO values. Many DPs will not want to work this way, but we’re stuck here until Sony can offer a firmware update to improve this.

The cable required for Sony Venice and Venice 2 camera control is new: K2.0047268 Cable CAM (7p) - Sony Remote (8p)/D-Tap (0.8m/2.6ft). This connects to the 8p REMOTE connector on both the Venice and Venice 2 and will allow both run/stop and control. The previous 4p Hirose cable we offered for Sony F5/F55 and Sony Venice will still be supported for run/stop on thos cameras, but will not support camera control. The Venice 2 has done away with that 4p now, so best to go for the new one any way!

Focusbug License

The third license that we are releasing for the Hi-5 is the Focusbug License. This license features a host of new features, mainly centred around extended control of the Focusbug CineRT. It will add support for multiple distance measuring inputs, so that the measurement from the horns and a bug can be viewed simultaneously, and the license will allow you to change settings on the Focusbug from the Hi-5 itself, such as the field of view and your limits and lockouts. We’ll have a detailed tech talk on this and a separate blog post in the coming weeks.


We’re stoked that the RIA-1 is finally here, and can’t wait to hear your feedback from the field. Let us know if you have any questions in the comments, and for more info you can check out the tech talk here.

And the RIA-1 product page here:



Product Marketing Manager - ARRI

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Thx for sharing Sean…. Please check the link: Looks like dead link…

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