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Telecine cost of 8mm vs 16mm


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#1 Jamie Lewis

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Posted 13 May 2008 - 09:48 AM

I cant seem to figure out a rough ballpark figure of telecining 8mm and 16mm. Can anybody give me a rough estimate per foot or roll (however you had it done) and how you had it delivered (you supplied the HDD, rented it or received it on disk).

Edited by Jamie Lewis, 13 May 2008 - 09:48 AM.

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#2 Chris Burke

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Posted 13 May 2008 - 04:08 PM

I cant seem to figure out a rough ballpark figure of telecining 8mm and 16mm. Can anybody give me a rough estimate per foot or roll (however you had it done) and how you had it delivered (you supplied the HDD, rented it or received it on disk).



with all things being equal; same film stock, pro transfer to hard drive as uncompressed media, the cost between the two is very similar with Super 8 being only slightly cheaper. As to specific numbers, check out the websites of all the lab around the country who do this. Cinelab is often the best deal.
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#3 Douglas Hunter

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Posted 13 May 2008 - 04:14 PM

We don't usually measure the cost of telecine by minute or foot. Telecine is usually billed as an hourly rate. For supervised session its safe to estimate your time at 2 or 3 to 1. So if you have 1 hour of footage telecine will take 2 - 3 hours depending on the number of shots, the length of the shots and how much work they need.

As for the cost of doing telecine 16 can be cheaper. Spectra for example charges less for 16 than for super 8 when going to tape.
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#4 Jamie Lewis

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Posted 14 May 2008 - 07:47 AM

So, basically it's done by film hour? If I have an hour of 16mm footage, I would be charged for an hour of telecining, plus any extraneous costs (developing, the HDD, etc.)? Now if I did ti supervised the hour will then turn into two hours? Am I getting it correct?
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#5 Douglas Hunter

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Posted 14 May 2008 - 11:59 AM

Its not exactly film hours, its hours of telecine bay time. Think of it like this, you can do your telecine 3 different ways.

1) - Unsupervised best light: This means that the telecine operator will take a few minutes to look at your footage and come up with a general setting that will work fairly well for all your footage. They will set-up the telecine and then let the footage roll. So for 1 hours worth of footage this would add maybe 15 - 30 minutes of telecine bay time.

3) Scene to scene unsupervised: In this case you are having the lab go from shot to shot of your footage and asking them to do basic adjustments to your footage to get "normal" exposure and color for each individual shot or scene. This takes longer than #1 but not as long as #3.

3) Supervised: This is where you sit in on the telecine and give specific instructions to the telecine operator as to how you want each shot or scene to look. As a rule of thumb its better to estimate on the longer side for this, I mentioned 2 - 3 hours per hour of footage earlier but its easy for a session to go significantly longer than that if you have a high number of shots and scenes, or if there are problems or if you have a specific aesthetic that you want to achieve.

You also mentioned developing (or processing) yes that is a different charge usually done by the foot. Expect to pay between .11 and .14 cents per foot for processing.

There is also a charge for prepping the film for telecine which may be a flat or an additional .02 - .04 cents per foot. Preping includes cleaning the film and adding leader.

Be sure to ask up front about any additional fees that the lab may charge. For telecine done to tape there are a few labs that charge a "deck fee" or maybe soon we will see hard drive set up fees, or conversion fees etc. Just make sure to ask about any and all additional fees that may come to bear on the work the lab does for you.

So lets say you have 2200 feet of 16mm to process, prep, process and telecine.

lets say the lab charges a base rate of .13 cents per foot for processing and an additional .04 cents per foot for prep. your cost will be .17 per foot X 2200 = $374 + tax

Now lets say you want to do scene to a supervised telecine and you have a lot a small shots in the footage and a good number of different scenes. Lets go long and say its going to take you 4 hours to do that and the lab charge $265 per hour to go to a hard drive as 10 bit 4:2:2. so that's 4 X 265 = $1060 + tax

Your total would be $1434 to get 1 hour of footage in Hi-res for editing and finishing.

At that point you need to think about the back end of your work flow. After your project is edited and you have created a full res quicktime, then what? Do you want to post it on the web? make DVDs or do you want to do out to tape? Most people can handle the web and DVDs on their own but going out to tape often requires a final trip to the lab for output and dubs.
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#6 Jamie Lewis

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Posted 15 May 2008 - 06:49 AM

Thank you, Douglas! That's just what I was looking for. I clearly didn't understand the whole process and you answered it perfectly. Thanks again!
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#7 Michael Lehnert

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Posted 15 May 2008 - 11:25 AM

Indeed! I would love to insert this thread - if no-one objects here - into the pinned FAQ under a Telecine heading that I am compliling right now. Expect it to be up within the next two weeks or so.
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#8 dave v

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Posted 13 November 2008 - 11:34 AM

thx for the info
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