Jump to content


Photo

Arri 235 & 3 perf & 4 perf


  • Please log in to reply
19 replies to this topic

#1 william koon

william koon
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 82 posts
  • Student

Posted 12 January 2008 - 12:04 AM

Hi friends,
My institute intends to purchase an Arri 235 camera. Can anyone please offer your recommendations?
(1) What are the differences between 3 perf and 4 perf film and can Arri 235 take both perfs?
(2) What are the prime lenses we should buy for student training purposes?
(3) What range of zoom lens should we get?
  • 0

#2 David Mullen ASC

David Mullen ASC
  • Sustaining Members
  • 19759 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 12 January 2008 - 12:45 AM

You would buy the camera with a 3-perf or 4-perf movement. I'm not sure what you're asking when you ask what the difference is between 3-perf and 4-perf -- obviously one is 3-perf and the other is 4-perf, i.e. the 35mm frame is either three or four sprocket holes tall.

The downside to 3-perf is that 3-perf is not really a common projection format (a few labs have 3-perf projectors but not all of them), at least, not for finishing a project photochemically to print using a contact printer. It's really used for projects to be scanned or transferred to video, as part of a D.I. or a video finish. But you do save 25% on stock & processing by shooting 3-perf instead of 4-perf. So how do your students plan on watching what you shoot on the camera?

Also, the Arri 235 is not a quiet sound camera, it is more for MOS shooting, so what camera are you planning on using for 35mm sound shooting and will it be 3-perf or 4-perf?

For students, a set of PL-mount primes like Zeiss Super-Speeds or Standard-Speeds would be good. A basic zoom like a Cooke 20-100mm would work.
  • 0

#3 Freya Black

Freya Black
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4161 posts
  • Other
  • Went over the edge... Central Europe

Posted 12 January 2008 - 04:46 AM

(1) What are the differences between 3 perf and 4 perf film


None Whatsoever. A 4 perf camera just uses more of it faster than a 3perf camera. The film is exactly the same whether it is 4, 3 or 2 perf. It is just 35mm movie film, it is only the cameras that change and the way they record pictures on the film.

There are savings in cost in shooting 3 or 2 perf but at the expense of having a less standard format which makes it much harder and more expensive to make film prints. If you are finishing digitally this may well not be an issue tho.

love

Freya
  • 0

#4 Paul Bruening

Paul Bruening

    (deceased)

  • Sustaining Members
  • 2858 posts
  • Producer
  • Oxford, Mississippi

Posted 12 January 2008 - 01:50 PM

Hello Freya,

I'm just guessing, but if you could do a telecine to hard drive on-site in 2-perf, then 2-perf would help keep those student budgets in reach. The great thing about 2-perf is that a short-end (200 ft. typically) will last in the camera like a 400 footer in a 4-perf cam. Short ends are by far the cheapest film by the foot. They're half the lab cost as well compared to 4-perf. While 2-perf is only half the picture information as 4-perf, how much does that matter when going telecine? As well, what are the chances a student project will get a big screen, distribution deal? With all that, 2-perf is still 35mm film. The students will learn their craft in a professional format but at less than 16mm prices. The Aaton Penelope may come out at just the right time for your school. It is quite, new and multi format. Sounds perfect for your peeps.

Just a thought.
  • 0

#5 Mitch Gross

Mitch Gross
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 2873 posts
  • Cinematographer

Posted 12 January 2008 - 11:30 PM

Abel Cine Tech can sell you the Arri 235 as well as the Aaton Penelope (when available) as well as any lenses and accessories you might need. We'd be happy to consult with you about your school's purchase.
  • 0

#6 william koon

william koon
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 82 posts
  • Student

Posted 13 January 2008 - 04:32 AM

Hi David, I am sorry for the confusion. Infact I have no knowledge of 35 mm technology. All this while I have been learning about 16 mm camera. My institute intends to buy a 235. I am not sure if the camera caters for 2 perf, 3 perf and 4 perf format or we have to change gate and shutter to get the desired format. How about projectors? Do we have to buy different projectors to view the 2 perf, 3 perf & 4 perf formats. If you have time please explain more. Thanks
  • 0

#7 Tasha Back

Tasha Back

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 5 posts
  • 2nd Assistant Camera
  • London, England

Posted 13 January 2008 - 09:08 AM

I am not sure if the camera caters for 2 perf, 3 perf and 4 perf format or we have to change gate and shutter to get the desired format. How about projectors? Do we have to buy different projectors to view the 2 perf, 3 perf & 4 perf formats.


Hi William

You can shoot 4 perf, 3 perf or 2 perf with a 235 but you would have to change the movement inside the camera each time and really this should be done by an Arri technician to make sure it's running smoothly. It's not just about the camera gate but how much film is pulled through per frame. Obviously for 2 perf you have 2 frames for every 4 perf frame (hence savings on footage!)
2 perf would make you lots of savings on footage but remember you have no choice but to do a DI in order to get it back to 4 perf if you want to project it in most cinemas (if you did a contact print with a 4 perf projector from 2 perf you'd see 2 images per frames!) 2 perf projectors are pretty rare at the moment. Does your institution have access to DI facilities and / or the budget for them?
Yes 2 perf / 3 perf / 4 perf use different projectors. You could TK if you are eventually viewing digitally (ie for TV) but check you have a lab nearby that does 2 perf / 3 perf transfers as not all do. I'm not sure what facilities your institution has but also think about where and how your final films will be viewed.

Check out
http://en.wikipedia....gative_pulldown

Hope that helps :)
  • 0

#8 Freya Black

Freya Black
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4161 posts
  • Other
  • Went over the edge... Central Europe

Posted 13 January 2008 - 10:46 AM

Hello Freya,

I'm just guessing, but if you could do a telecine to hard drive on-site in 2-perf, then 2-perf would help keep those student budgets in reach. The great thing about 2-perf is that a short-end (200 ft. typically) will last in the camera like a 400 footer in a 4-perf cam. Short ends are by far the cheapest film by the foot. They're half the lab cost as well compared to 4-perf. While 2-perf is only half the picture information as 4-perf, how much does that matter when going telecine? As well, what are the chances a student project will get a big screen, distribution deal? With all that, 2-perf is still 35mm film. The students will learn their craft in a professional format but at less than 16mm prices. The Aaton Penelope may come out at just the right time for your school. It is quite, new and multi format. Sounds perfect for your peeps.

Just a thought.


Hiya Paul!
I think you got me confused with another poster or something, I'm not at a film school at all! :)

2 perf is great, but if everyone starts shooting it, those nice cheap short ends may quickly dry up. It does however have the massive advantage of having twice as much footage from a 400foot reel meaning you could actually shoot longer takes of stuff which would be really useful. (and obviously it's cheaper as you say!)

I should point out that I mentioned 2 perf in passing because I really like the idea of it. The original poster is talking about 3 perf, so I'm really guilty of taking the thread off track here, but obviously theres massive amounts of overlap between the subject of 2 perf and 3 perf. :)

love

Freya
  • 0

#9 Paul Bruening

Paul Bruening

    (deceased)

  • Sustaining Members
  • 2858 posts
  • Producer
  • Oxford, Mississippi

Posted 13 January 2008 - 11:52 AM

It is quite, new and multi format. Sounds perfect for your peeps.



"quiet", actually.

Sorry about the misquote, Freya.



William,

The projector issue may not be as big of a concern as it once was. Production companies are getting out of optical post and going digital post at a rapid rate. I hear various statistics, all of which indicate that more than 3/4s of post is done digitally. If you could find a lab (or, even better, do in-house) that could satisfy 2, 3, and 4-perf telecine and scans, then expensive film dailies, workprints and projection/editing equipment disappear from your budgets. Computers, software at educational facilities and especially SATAII hard drives are getting much cheaper. It's all making 2-perf better and better as well as 3 and 4-perf.
  • 0

#10 James Daly

James Daly
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 16 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • Brooklyn, NY

Posted 20 January 2008 - 08:13 PM

William,

If it is a budgetary decision to buy a 3-perf movement, I would advise against. THe headache of finding a lab that can project, print, and not charge extra for the handling of 3-perf might outweigh the the cost of good ol' universal 4-perf. Also, working at Arri CSC, I've quickly noticed the rarity of 3-perf movements, and they might be a costly addition to an already costly camera package.

Also, to piggyback other posts, this camera is about as loud as a lawnmower.

-James Daly

prep tech, camera slave.
Arri CSC
  • 0

#11 John Sprung

John Sprung
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4635 posts
  • Other

Posted 22 January 2008 - 03:04 PM

A little over 20 years ago, 3 perf came into widespread use for television origination. Its advantages there are savings on stock and processing, with a native aspect ratio of 1.78:1, which is the same as the HDTV 16:9 format. There's plenty of equipment to shoot and telecine 3 perf, but to get to theatrical projection you're stuck with either a DI or an optical blowup. As television moves to digital cameras, there are likely to be lots of 3 perf bodies on the shelf. Unfortunately, most of them are from a company that only rents, never sells. The best places to look for 3 perf cameras would be Hollywood and Vancouver, the big TV centers.

The amount of work required to swap out the gate and movement between 2, 3, or 4 perf is enough to make it more practical simply to own complete bodies for each format.



-- J.S.
  • 0

#12 Phil Savoie

Phil Savoie
  • Sustaining Members
  • 94 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Montana / Wales

Posted 22 January 2008 - 05:56 PM

Check out
http://en.wikipedia....gative_pulldown


Thanks very much for sharing the Wikipedia link Tasha.

William If your going to DI or finishing on tape 3 Perf is an attractive format. I own a 3 Perf package and shoot for TV never going to print. I'm very happy with the format. Spirit telecines can handle 3 perf with a flick of a switch. As your camera is for student use the 2 perf option may be worth looking into as well due to the increased stock/cost savings.

Cheers
  • 0

#13 william koon

william koon
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 82 posts
  • Student

Posted 23 January 2008 - 08:46 AM

Thanks very much for sharing the Wikipedia link Tasha.

William If your going to DI or finishing on tape 3 Perf is an attractive format. I own a 3 Perf package and shoot for TV never going to print. I'm very happy with the format. Spirit telecines can handle 3 perf with a flick of a switch. As your camera is for student use the 2 perf option may be worth looking into as well due to the increased stock/cost savings.

Cheers

If budget is not a problem, what format should we go for? We may need to see the rushes on common projector, at the same time we may go into editing on film just to get the experience.
  • 0

#14 Stephen Williams

Stephen Williams
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4708 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Europe

Posted 23 January 2008 - 09:47 AM

If budget is not a problem, what format should we go for? We may need to see the rushes on common projector, at the same time we may go into editing on film just to get the experience.


Hi,

4 perf, then you can even shoot anamorphic!

Stephen
  • 0

#15 Paul Bruening

Paul Bruening

    (deceased)

  • Sustaining Members
  • 2858 posts
  • Producer
  • Oxford, Mississippi

Posted 23 January 2008 - 10:24 AM

Sure, if money's no problem, 4-perf. Like Stephen says, you can then teach anamorphic. Give some thought, however, about where post production is heading. Will your students end up working in an optical post situation when they graduate or will they more likely end up in digital post jobs? With digital post, they'll work in digital dailies and workprints from telecine and increasingly higher resolution digital scans for eventual output to either film or digital formats for distribution (therefore, perf-format becomes less of a concern as there are plenty of telecine and scan rigs that can handle all three formats). I only volunteer this since you have demonstrated a concern for positive prints and projection. I suspect that your interests in optical post are disappearing from the industry as we speak.
  • 0

#16 william koon

william koon
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 82 posts
  • Student

Posted 25 January 2008 - 09:36 AM

Sure, if money's no problem, 4-perf. Like Stephen says, you can then teach anamorphic. Give some thought, however, about where post production is heading. Will your students end up working in an optical post situation when they graduate or will they more likely end up in digital post jobs? With digital post, they'll work in digital dailies and workprints from telecine and increasingly higher resolution digital scans for eventual output to either film or digital formats for distribution (therefore, perf-format becomes less of a concern as there are plenty of telecine and scan rigs that can handle all three formats). I only volunteer this since you have demonstrated a concern for positive prints and projection. I suspect that your interests in optical post are disappearing from the industry as we speak.

Having said this, do you think it is a waste in pursuing optical post since digital post is taking over the job?
  • 0

#17 Stephen Williams

Stephen Williams
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4708 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Europe

Posted 25 January 2008 - 01:00 PM

Having said this, do you think it is a waste in pursuing optical post since digital post is taking over the job?


Hi,

Possibly but the chance to shoot Anamorphic rather than S35 is very compelling if you ever see the 2 projected side by side.

Stephen
  • 0

#18 Paul Bruening

Paul Bruening

    (deceased)

  • Sustaining Members
  • 2858 posts
  • Producer
  • Oxford, Mississippi

Posted 25 January 2008 - 02:51 PM

If only we had an easy and obvious answer for you. I lean in favor of 2-perf since your students are probably going to need a break on film and processing costs. But, they won't see a lot of 2-perf when they get out into the real world. As well, finding quiet 2-perf cameras will be a bit of a challenge. If you want versatility (spherical, anamorphic, and largest choice of sync-sound and MOS cameras and accessories to choose from), 4-perf will serve best. If you want something in between? Well, I guess 3-perf might suit.

I hate to sound like a salesman for the Penelope, but if you can afford it, it might solve all of your problems in one camera. However, we're all waiting to see how good it really is.

Is DI really the best way to go? Some post is still being done optically. David Mullen has made a recent post in which he lists out some of the Academy Awards nominees and whether they went optical or digital post. I believe he mentions that optical post is still cheaper than digital (though I'm not sure if he's including all of the costs through the entire post procedure). It's likely a judgment call as to whether optical post is a goner or not. As DI costs come down, optical will have an even more difficult time keeping up. DI, while expensive, has so much more power over the image. You can do so much more to it than optical easily allows. Further, won't most of your students be finishing their projects from telecine? It's unlikely they'll ever have to spend money on a scan or high res format transfer. Save that for the occasional project that can pull some festival play.

I'm afraid we haven't made your decision easier.
  • 0

#19 David Mullen ASC

David Mullen ASC
  • Sustaining Members
  • 19759 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 25 January 2008 - 04:30 PM

4-perf makes sense if you are going to be printing and projecting dailies, tests, etc. at the school and even editing on flatbeds.

Though it is possible to get a 3-perf movement for a projector, even maybe a 2-perf movement, but your options in buying a projector get limited. Flatbeds and moviolas, that would be even harder to find in 3-perf or 2-perf.

These days, you'd think an HD projector would make more sense for a film school, so students shooting HD or transferring film to HD could watch it on a big screen.
  • 0

#20 John Sprung

John Sprung
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4635 posts
  • Other

Posted 25 January 2008 - 06:38 PM

Is DI really the best way to go? Some post is still being done optically.

I know of one major studio that put DI in their generic pattern budget a couple years ago. It's SOP now, not something you have to fight for.




-- J.S.
  • 0


Opal

Tai Audio

Technodolly

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Glidecam

Ritter Battery

Metropolis Post

Broadcast Solutions Inc

CineTape

FJS International, LLC

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Paralinx LLC

The Slider

Wooden Camera

Willys Widgets

Visual Products

rebotnix Technologies

Rig Wheels Passport

Aerial Filmworks

Abel Cine

CineLab

Tai Audio

Abel Cine

Glidecam

FJS International, LLC

Wooden Camera

Opal

Rig Wheels Passport

Metropolis Post

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Ritter Battery

CineLab

Paralinx LLC

Aerial Filmworks

rebotnix Technologies

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Willys Widgets

CineTape

The Slider

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Visual Products

Technodolly