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Kodak's New Super 8 Camera Update


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#21 Simon Wyss

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Posted 06 December 2017 - 02:30 AM

I herewith declare that I shall never accept a Kodak Super-8 camera for repair.

 

Double-Eight cameras I continually do service and, Samuel, those are the right entryway. Relatively cheap, reliable, open of concept, and film is available: Kodak Vision3 negatives from Dennis Toeppen; black and white stocks from various sources.

 

It was the Eastman-Kodak Company that introduced not only the Super-8 and the 16mm formats but also 2 × 8!

 

To round matters off, there are Regular-8 projectors that make 16mm projectors look pale. Something for every taste


Edited by Simon Wyss, 06 December 2017 - 02:31 AM.

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#22 Will Montgomery

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Posted 06 December 2017 - 09:47 AM

If Super 8 dies, film could very well die with it because you lose that cheap, accessible entryway into the world of celluloid.

 

Unfortunately it's just not as cheap and accessible as it used to be. If Kodak comes up with an inexpensive HD transfer then that may go a long way to keeping film alive...although it will drive other companies out of business and I'm sure they are sensitive to that.


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#23 Samuel Berger

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Posted 06 December 2017 - 04:37 PM

Edited out of fear after looking further into sources of Double 8mm film.

The rabbit trail does not end well.

Edited by Samuel Berger, 06 December 2017 - 04:47 PM.

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#24 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 02:26 PM

$3000 just defies any logic. I really want this camera, I have the money, I have my own 2K scanner, but I won't buy it at this price. Now what whimsical consumer is going to jump on this? It will sort itself out one way or another. 


Edited by Anthony Schilling, 09 December 2017 - 02:26 PM.

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#25 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 04:06 PM

I don't quite understand Kodak's vision. This new camera doesn't really offer anything that doesn't already exist. I love the interview on the podcast where filmmakers talked about the camera having a monitor. Jesus guys, both my S16 and S35 cameras have monitors, I even have wireless transmitters! This technology has been around for decades, why is this a new thing?

The other thing is that minute per minute super 8 is more expensive than S16. This is mainly because it's considered a "speciality" format and the user is paying for the expense of a cartridge based system. If they brought back longer loads for instance, maybe we could talk about bringing the cost down. However, the fact they're still using the ol' 50 ft cartridge design, means the costs are going to be more then S16 no matter what.

What kills me about this new camera... outside of it not having a proper optical viewfinder, is that the damn thing is still loud. It's not a "sync sound" camera, like they're trying to promote. For $2500 bux you can get a serious Super 16 Bolex kit off ebay and yes, it won't have all those fancy digital components, but it will create a crisper more stable image from an "MOS" camera.

When Kodak initially announced the new camera would cost $600 - $800 in that rage, it made sense. Younger people who wanted to experiment could do so, without too much cost. If it were a sync sound "quiet" Super 8 camera with a logmar style movement and a spinning mirror shutter and optical viewfinder, then the $2500 - $3000 price tag would be worth it. I just don't see this camera making any significant impact in the industry as it stands.
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#26 Samuel Berger

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 07:39 PM

Too many cooks. Kodak said they were listening to input from filmmakers. That's the mistake that created a camel, which is nothing but a horse designed by a committee, and then broke its back.

 

$3000 for a Super 8 camera? How many Coppolas are there to buy this?

 

When they said it was around $750 that sounded doable.  Now they'd better absolutely stun everyone or this will be the nail in the coffin.


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#27 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 09 December 2017 - 09:35 PM

 

 

 This new camera doesn't really offer anything that doesn't already exist

The sync sound and max gate are are all i'm really after apart from my existing cameras. Pro8mm is already selling rebuilt cameras with crystal sync and max gate for $2500-$3000. The Logmar was selling for $3800. How do they NOT know there is no market for 2000 cameras at that price? I sent them an email with my 2 cents and that's all there getting unless they sell it at a realistic price.

https://www.pro8mm.c...super-8-cameras


Edited by Anthony Schilling, 09 December 2017 - 09:36 PM.

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#28 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 01:27 AM

The sync sound and max gate are are all i'm really after apart from my existing cameras.


But the camera makes too much noise to be a "sync sound" camera.

Are you going to shoot with a 50mm lens and put a coat over the camera body when you shoot interior dialog scenes?
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#29 Samuel Berger

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 01:33 AM

But the camera makes too much noise to be a "sync sound" camera.

Are you going to shoot with a 50mm lens and put a coat over the camera body when you shoot interior dialog scenes?

 

Where did you hear the camera? As far as I know they haven't reached a release version yet, so maybe quieting down the movement is in the works.


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#30 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 02:09 PM

But the camera makes too much noise to be a "sync sound" camera.

Are you going to shoot with a 50mm lens and put a coat over the camera body when you shoot interior dialog scenes?

I have a 66mm zoom ready for it, but i have a long history of shooting live music on film where camera noise doesn't come through. Syncing has always been a pain staking task. If it is quiet enough, or blimpable, Doing a sync dialog short on S8 would be a lot of fun. 


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#31 Tim Carroll

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 04:26 PM

https://www.youtube....h?v=3Nh9BTMWj9M

 

I'm a bit confused, when I look at the Logmar footage that is posted on YouTube, it looks great. But then when I really study it, and notice the sprocket holes that are projected on the left side of the image, the sprocket hole is moving around all over the place. If that is actually a projection of the sprocket hole in the film (and not some artifact from the telecine or some other process), that image is  not registered well at all. The whole point of a registration pin (and the side rail and pressure plate) in a motion picture camera is to place the captured image in the exact same location, frame after frame, relative to the edges of the film and the sprocket hole. The fact that the sprocket holes on that test footage, seem to be moving all over the place, tells me that the registration is off.

 

You can lay one frame on top of the next, frame by frame, in a very tedious, time consuming process, after the film is scanned, and you will get what looks like perfect registration. That is what it looks like was done with that test footage. Having proper registration, proper tension of the side rail, and proper tension on the pressure plate all adds up to having each frame on the film landing in the exact same spot, in relation to the sprocket hole/film edge, thereby negating the need for tedious, time consuming frame alignment.

 

If that truly is a projected image of the sprocket holes on that piece of Super 8 footage, that film is not registered properly at all.

 

Best,

-Tim


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#32 Samuel Berger

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 04:32 PM

https://www.youtube....h?v=3Nh9BTMWj9M


 

You can lay one frame on top of the next, frame by frame, in a very tedious, time consuming process, after the film is scanned, and you will get what looks like perfect registration.

 

There's no need to manually place frames. You stabilize it with a tracker in AE or Nuke or any number of different programs.

 

But yeah good point.


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#33 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 05:12 PM

We've had this discussion many times. It's impossible to get a stable image from super 8 and the only reason the Logmar looks good is because it has a real pressure plate AND the scan fixes all the frame wobble that's inherent with the format.

Again, had the Logmar mechanics been in the new Kodak camera, even if it were $2500 bux, that would make sense. The fact the new Kodak camera relies on the cartridge pressure plate, is going to kill any stability. Someone has posted the samples here before and they don't really look any different then a Beaulieu with a good lens.
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#34 Samuel Berger

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 05:24 PM

We've had this discussion many times. It's impossible to get a stable image from super 8

 

I'd take Super 8 over a Sony any day. ;-)


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#35 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 05:35 PM

I'd take Super 8 over a Sony any day. ;-)


Yea right, at least the effin' skin tones will be right. LOL
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#36 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 05:36 PM

I have a 66mm zoom ready for it, but i have a long history of shooting live music on film where camera noise doesn't come through. Syncing has always been a pain staking task. If it is quiet enough, or blimpable, Doing a sync dialog short on S8 would be a lot of fun.


Yea music video stuff and shoots where dialog isn't critical, it can work.
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#37 Dom Jaeger

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 07:52 PM

https://www.youtube....h?v=3Nh9BTMWj9M

 

I'm a bit confused, when I look at the Logmar footage that is posted on YouTube, it looks great. But then when I really study it, and notice the sprocket holes that are projected on the left side of the image, the sprocket hole is moving around all over the place.. The fact that the sprocket holes on that test footage, seem to be moving all over the place, tells me that the registration is off.

 

According to the youtube notes by Friedeman:

"The clip was stabilized (tracking marker put on the frameline) since the scanner software used currently does not register based on the +2 sprocket hole, but on the sprocket hole next to the visible frame. You can see how bad the sprockets in this cartridge were if you watch the weaving sprocket hole on the left. "

 

If you use a different sprocket to register the scan than the one used by the camera you will introduce weave that can exist in the film itself.

 

Stabilizing in post is pretty simple anyway, but I think the remarkable thing about this footage is how sharp and clear Super 8 can look. A registration pin doesn't just act to stabilise the image from frame to frame, but (along with the pressure plate) keeps the film rock steady during the individual frame exposure, which is really what we're seeing here compared to most Super 8 footage that can also be stabilised in post but doesn't usually look this sharp.

 

We've had this discussion many times. It's impossible to get a stable image from super 8 and the only reason the Logmar looks good is because it has a real pressure plate AND the scan fixes all the frame wobble that's inherent with the format.

Again, had the Logmar mechanics been in the new Kodak camera, even if it were $2500 bux, that would make sense. The fact the new Kodak camera relies on the cartridge pressure plate, is going to kill any stability. Someone has posted the samples here before and they don't really look any different then a Beaulieu with a good lens.

 

Well yeah, Super 8 is not generally a format designed for super sharp imagery. I'm actually amazed how sharp it sometimes is with those old plastic cameras.

 

But that's the format, and it's what people expect from Super 8. The cartridge makes it quick and easy to load, and keeps things compact. The Logmar requires threading and space for the sprockets, it's no longer really S8, you may as well shoot S16.

 

Super 8 carts don't actually have a pressure plate, just a fixed film channel slightly thicker than the film itself, so you can potentially get focus breathing within that channel as well as vertical movement during exposure. Only the side rail pressure and the design of the film path inside the cart act to stop the take-up from pulling on the film during exposure, there's no fixed loop as such.  But a well-designed new camera should be able to get the most out of the format, and a good scan will make it look stable. I just wish (like everyone here) they could have kept the cost below a grand.

 

If they can keep camera noise to a minimum the sound recording aspect will be a big advantage.


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#38 Simon Wyss

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Posted 11 December 2017 - 02:07 AM

One small mistake, Super-8 film is generally positioned in the perforation hole minus two counted from the optical axis.


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#39 Martin Baumgarten

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Posted 11 December 2017 - 08:07 PM

Just want to chime in here. Super 8 cartridges DO have a pressure plate.  It's actually quite substantial which a thick spring behind it. I am amazed at how durable this disposable cartridge is.  I have kept a couple around for over OVER 30 years which I have reloaded and they have run fine every time.  So much for a cheap piece of plastic; it's well engineered despite some of it's drawbacks.  Lastly, keep in mind THIS is the SUPER 8 part of the Cinematography dot com site....so those respected folks that want to bash the film for whatever reason, please just go to the format you love best. And please stop telling us fans of this format to use Standard 8mm or 16mm etc.......we KNOW all that....we KNOW the limitations of this format, and this is what we chose and want to share information to help each other out in keeping Super 8mm film alive and using it to the best of our abilities.  We also KNOW that IF the format had been designed differently for film transport it could be better, steadier, stabler, more professional etc, but it is what it is.  I mean, none of us are going to the 16mm and 35mm sections of Cinematography dot com and telling those fine venerable folks to not do this or that, or that using their format or certain cameras is total crap etc.  Let's be reasonable, so, add to this site to support Super 8mm or just not say anything negative (unless of course, you're discussing negative filmstocks).  Just my opinion, I don't want to step on any toes here, but....this IS the Super 8mm area.

 

    In all my years in working with Super 8mm (aside from other formats all the way up to 70mm), it has always been fun.  I have seen some incredibly sharp films on various filmstocks in Super 8mm.  Some of my own films that I had shot in CinemaScope using an Anamorphic lens and projected onto screens up to 24ft wide, had to be pretty steady in image registration and projection otherwise viewers would get sick.  Some simple cameras have also produced very nice sharp images, such as the very basic ones made by Haking in Hong Kong for GAF, Halina and others using a manual exposure setting via the Waterhouse Stop wheel method.  

 

   There is so much you can do in Super 8mm, and KODAK realizes this, thus all their work in getting a camera back into the market.  I would've like to see perhaps a much lower cost camera as well, in addition to their electronic hybrid one that's coming out soon.  However, they probably feel there's a glut of such cameras remaining in the hands of most of us, so they are putting all their sticks in one basket here for now at least.  This camera will have some similarities to the LOGMAR, but it will NOT be a LOGMAR.  And the LOGMAR has some similarities to the former MEKEL Super 8mm pin registered camera that was custom made in California, had C-mount lenses and a similar film path where the film was pulled from the cartridge and hand threaded thru sprockets, rollers and the film gate.  The new upcoming KODAK camera is designed to make filming fun and easy via their long running Super 8 Cartridge design.  Only time will tell how well the new camera will sell.  More importantly for many of us, will be having Color Reversal EKTACHROME film to use.  So, let's keep this Super 8mm section, for Super 8mm.  Thanks.

 

P.S.  Perhaps there should be a Double 8mm (aka Regular 8imm, Standard 8mm, Normal 8mm) section....and one for 9.5mm since eventually there will be film available for Nine Fivers again, as we're all hoping.


Edited by Martin Baumgarten, 11 December 2017 - 08:11 PM.

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#40 Dom Jaeger

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Posted 11 December 2017 - 11:12 PM

Just want to chime in here. Super 8 cartridges DO have a pressure plate.  It's actually quite substantial which a thick spring behind it. I am amazed at how durable this disposable cartridge is.  I have kept a couple around for over OVER 30 years which I have reloaded and they have run fine every time.  So much for a cheap piece of plastic; it's well engineered despite some of it's drawbacks. 

 

I'm sorry, Martin, but it's not a pressure plate. Super 8 cartridges have a sprung plate but it's not a pressure plate that presses on the film like those in standard 8, 16 and 35mm cameras. Those are highly polished metal plates with specific spring pressure to keep the film steady while still allowing it to slide past during the pulldown phase.

 

The sprung plate in a Super 8 cart presses up against the gate to form the film channel, but exerts no pressure on the film itself. It's just a means of ensuring that the film channel is formed.

 

See: http://www.cinematog...showtopic=59680

and: http://www.cinematog...=22#entry398623

 

Lastly, keep in mind THIS is the SUPER 8 part of the Cinematography dot com site....so those respected folks that want to bash the film for whatever reason, please just go to the format you love best. And please stop telling us fans of this format to use Standard 8mm or 16mm etc.......we KNOW all that....we KNOW the limitations of this format, and this is what we chose and want to share information to help each other out in keeping Super 8mm film alive and using it to the best of our abilities.  We also KNOW that IF the format had been designed differently for film transport it could be better, steadier, stabler, more professional etc, but it is what it is.  I mean, none of us are going to the 16mm and 35mm sections of Cinematography dot com and telling those fine venerable folks to not do this or that, or that using their format or certain cameras is total crap etc.  Let's be reasonable, so, add to this site to support Super 8mm or just not say anything negative (unless of course, you're discussing negative filmstocks).  Just my opinion, I don't want to step on any toes here, but....this IS the Super 8mm area.

 

I hope you don't believe my comments were bashing Super 8, I apologise if anything I wrote seemed to be doing so.

 

You're absolutely right, it is what it is - easy and fun, full of character, a fantastic gateway into filmmaking and a valid hobby in itself.  All I was suggesting was that if people are hung up on getting super sharp imagery then they should probably look to another format. I think it's valid to describe how the transport system works, as a way of explaining why it isn't a format that can be expected to consistently deliver sharp imagery. That isn't putting it down, it's just being honest about what it is. 

 

I agree that we shouldn't disparage Super 8 for not being something else. 

 

 

P.S.  Perhaps there should be a Double 8mm (aka Regular 8imm, Standard 8mm, Normal 8mm) section....and one for 9.5mm since eventually there will be film available for Nine Fivers again, as we're all hoping.

 

Though I love Standard 8 I think a separate section for that format would be very quiet.. and I can't remember ever even seeing a 9.5mm question on this forum!


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