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What is the cheapest camera for shooting sync sound?


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#1 Fhj Ais

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Posted 07 October 2009 - 11:57 PM

I'd really prefer to not rent, mainly because it forces you to a schedule, + buying insurance, etc. What is a quiet enough 16mm camera, that can be quipped with a crystal motor or already comes with one, that has good pin registration?
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#2 Fhj Ais

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Posted 08 October 2009 - 12:11 AM

Let me elaborate. I'm going to shoot a feature. I want the quality of the image to be as fantastic as possible within my limitations. Advice please :(
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#3 Matthew W. Phillips

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Posted 08 October 2009 - 01:47 AM

For 16mm, its by far the CP-16R camera. Quiet motor, crystal sync sound, 400' mags, often comes in packages with an Angenieux lens...the camera is a bargain at the price most sell it for. I've seen full packages as cheap as $1k- $1200 on ebay. The only thing is the look of the camera doesn't have the "cool" factor of an Arriflex or Bolex Reflex that's maxed out.
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#4 Charles MacDonald

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Posted 08 October 2009 - 08:13 PM

For 16mm, its by far the CP-16R camera. Quiet motor, crystal sync sound, 400' mags, often comes in packages with an Angenieux lens...the camera is a bargain at the price most sell it for. I've seen full packages as cheap as $1k- $1200 on ebay. The only thing is the look of the camera doesn't have the "cool" factor of an Arriflex or Bolex Reflex that's maxed out.

the CP16 was based on a redesign of the design of the Auricon TV news camera and many were equiped to do magnetic sound if only striped film were still made. The low price is probably related to the lack of TV stations still doing news on film.
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#5 Olex Kalynychenko

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Posted 09 October 2009 - 05:05 AM

I'd really prefer to not rent, mainly because it forces you to a schedule, + buying insurance, etc. What is a quiet enough 16mm camera, that can be quipped with a crystal motor or already comes with one, that has good pin registration?


Russian professional, Kinor-16 SX-2M
reflex videfinder, 30 m, 120 m film magazines, pin registration.
12v electrical motor 24/25 fps, analog stabilization, can be upgrade to crystal sync speed with digital film counter, remote control, speed synthesizer.
Prime lenses: 6....300 mm
zoom lenses 7.5-75mm, 10-100 mm, 12-120 mm
shutter disk - 170 degree.
Kinor-16 SX-1M, turret version have shutter disk with variable angle of view.
Noise- 42 Db
weight 4.7 kg.

About additinal technical questions can ask me,
About service, repair, upgrade can ask em too.
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#6 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 09 October 2009 - 03:38 PM

the CP16 was based on a redesign of the design of the Auricon TV news camera and many were equiped to do magnetic sound if only striped film were still made. The low price is probably related to the lack of TV stations still doing news on film.


You can shoot double system sound with the CP16 without any problems. They weren't really used that much as full production cameras, but for anyone today wanting to shoot sync sound on a budget they're a good starting of point. I'd put a tend barney on, they're not in the Aaton league noise wise. You can get an adapter for Arri bayonet mount lenses. There was a production kit with matte box etc in an attempt to break into the production camera market.

They don't have pin registration, but, apart from the Arri cameras, none of the sync sound 16mm cameras do. Run a steady test to check out the camera before starting on your film.

Put on good lenses, that will make a big difference. Although, unfortunately, the best used 16mm lenses are not that cheap.
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#7 Jason Hinkle (RIP)

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Posted 10 October 2009 - 10:27 PM

What is a quiet enough 16mm camera, that can be quipped with a crystal motor or already comes with one, that has good pin registration?


I have to put in a good word for the Eclair ACL, like all film cameras there are some great deals happening on ebay. Though it doesn't have pin registration, the ACL has a claw registration design that is solid and quiet. to get great images, though, you need quality lenses. unfortunately lens prices have not gone down as much as it has with cameras. The ACL is nice in in that it has an adapter lens mount system so you can use anything from c-mount to nikon to cinema PL mount lenses.
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#8 Ray Friera

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Posted 18 October 2009 - 07:55 PM

Do not forget the other CP camera. CP-GSMO 400ft coaxial magazine, crystal motor and built like a tank.
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#9 Charles House

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 01:39 PM

Do not forget the other CP camera. CP-GSMO 400ft coaxial magazine, crystal motor and built like a tank.


Any thoughts on the Canon Scoopic 16?
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#10 Dan Salzmann

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 02:07 PM

Any thoughts on the Canon Scoopic 16?

The Scoopic 16M is not a sync camera but it takes very nice images and is easy to use and has a discreet profile - kind of like a giant super8 camera. Limited to 100 ft rolls however.
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#11 Rob Vogt

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 03:08 PM

the CPs are built like tanks... and they are as heavy as them too. If you want quality get arri, if you can't get arri, get aaton or eclair. where are you located? There might be some owner/operators who could give you deals.
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#12 Adam Garner

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 03:50 PM

I was reading the specs for an Aaton A-minima today and noticed the db rating at 30db. It got me to thinking, "Hm... I wonder if I measured my Scoopic db level what it would be." THEN it occurred to me: The App Store.

So of course the app store has a wide selection of groovy db meters. I read most of the reviews which said the db meters were great, and registered db levels at just about exactly what professional eqpt would in a comparison. So, I thought it was worth a shot to get a reasonable estimate on the db level.

I found it interesting that my "room" levels were at 40db. The chart that comes with the app indicates a quiet library is about 30db. Maybe just basic room noise causes a bit of db. I would assume deep space would be 0db.

Scoopics are often said to be too noisy for sync. We've all gone back and forth on this one for a while, and I know that some scoopics run quieter than others. Important to note that I had my Scoopic 16M with Bernie at Super 16 Inc about 6 months ago, and I don't use it all the time. I run it occasionally so it gets warmed up. It's been on the road with me for some projects though and I've probably run about 800' - 1000' ft through it over the past 6 mo. He did a full CLA, but it was in reasonably good shape to begin with.

So, my scoopic came in at 50db reading. I took that reading anywhere from 3-8 feet away and it came in nearly the same each time. Since a modern camera shoots at 30db, I'd say a 40 year old mos camera running at 50db aint too bad if you wanted to try it. I think a barney might knock off a few db and could even bring it down to 45db. With a little sound post you might just do ok.

Keep in mind with a directional mic you're going to kill that db a LOT. I hear the sennheiser mics are amazingly good at being directional.

So, basically, a Scoopic isn't silent. But it's not loud. Not sure what a CP16 rates, or an Eclair ACL. Maybe someone feels like downloading the "DecibelMeter" app and giving it a shot. Some comprehensive data would be cool to have.
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#13 Will Montgomery

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 12:28 AM

So, basically, a Scoopic isn't silent. But it's not loud.

You know I love that camera and have had a few of them but you're not going to get sync sound out of them no matter what a decibel meter says.

There are plenty of work arounds and you can certainly do things to minimize the sound with very directional or up close mic placement and notching the sound out in post but I don't think they're practical for any critical sync sound work.

I'm still saving up for that Ultra conversion. Bernie worked over my MS about 3 years ago and I love it; although I still have some nasty squeaks. There's no mistaking it for a video camera when its rolling; the sewing machine effect gets attention every time.
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#14 Adam Garner

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 09:44 AM

Well, 50db isn't quiet. I don't have any squeaks though. I do have to warm the motor up if it hasn't been used for a few days. I have to pump it a few times. That may be on account of being nearly 40 years old.

They say sound sync cams are around 27-32 db which is basically silent. So 50 isn't gonna cut it, but it does't sound like an air compressor either. But I have to say that, in my field recordings with an ambient mic, it's not too bad. I certainly wouldn't use it for a feature, but I think you could use it for run-and-gun interviews or outdoor shoots.

The trade-off is that a scoopic converted to ultra 16 is ridiculously inexpensive, has auto-metering, it's ergonomic, and small. It's the perfect little 16mm camera for certain productions, or as a b-cam for hard to shoot spaces. If you're shooting a feature and don't need that run-and-gun style camera, a CP-16 or Eclair are all great for the price. Not exactly "run-and-gun" but perfect for production and quiet.

I'm still curious if a barney would bring a scoopic down to an acceptable level. I know that custom upholstery makes them. I'd love to know what the level would be.
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