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Single-8 versus Super 8 image steadiness


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#1 Joe Briggs

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Posted 21 November 2008 - 09:49 PM

I have always heard that the single-8 format was always vastly superior to super 8 in regards to image steadiness due to the pressure plate being situated in the camera, instead of the cheap plastic pressure plate in the cartridge with super 8.

I have to say, based on all of the single-8 videos that I have seen posted on the internet, I don't agree. This image steadiness may be true in theory, but all of the single-8 films that I have seen are very unsteady.

Someone posted some single-8 that they shot recently from a quality camera (a fujica zc 1000, I think) and the images were simply not impressive. The same goes for other videos I have seen from a fujica Z800, etc.

Does anyone know why this is?
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#2 Mike Lary

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Posted 21 November 2008 - 10:57 PM

Maybe because the regular 8mm cameras were decades older, used more over the years, and not maintained. Maybe you're looking at footage from low quality cameras. I owned two Bolex H8's. One was rock steady and I have yet to see any super8 footage that matches in steadiness or sharpness. The other camera needed servicing, like most cameras that are fifty or more years old and have been sitting in someone's basement after their owner died and his/her relatives bought camcorders.
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#3 Giles Perkins

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Posted 22 November 2008 - 05:10 AM

This is Single 8 that I shot a few years ago - no image stability problems here (considering it's underwater - obviously hand held)!


View on Vimeo

Usual applies good camera + good telecine = good image.
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#4 Christian Appelt

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 03:30 PM

FWIW - I was told by a guy who repairs 8mm equipment that some Single 8 cameras require adjustment of film gate/pressure plate if you want to use film stock that has been cut down from 35mm (like Fuji Velvia and other slide films) because the base is thicker than the original Single 8 reversal stock.
This may explain why registration is not good in some cases.

Edited by Christian Appelt, 23 November 2008 - 03:32 PM.

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