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18fps Super 8mm film to NLE to digital media final workflow


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#1 Anthony Brock

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Posted 20 July 2010 - 04:03 PM

I want to shoot super 8mm film at 18fps because I love the look. The stock will be negative, and the final output will be media files for computer playback only. I've spent countless hours scanning forums looking for a 18fps to NLE work flow but all the info seems to center around 24fps destined for ntsc or pal television playback.

Can I shoot super 8mm film at 18fps, then have it scanned and edit it in an NLE without any sort of work flow that involves frame blending?

From what I understand, the frame-by-frame scanning equipment like the Moviestuff gear handles 18fps well by adding some exotic pulldown. Eventhough the maker of Moviestuff gear say's it can't handle negatives, I have found one transfer house that claims to have found a workaround and can indeed digitize negative film using Moviestuff gear. If this is true, would I import this to my NLE as 29.97 or 23.976, or 24? Then, would I have to be careful about which frames I cut on?

To avoid cutting on repeated frames, would it be better to have my 18fps footage scanned at 24p, edit it in my NLE at 24p and then do the pulldown on output? If so, what would I use to output a 24p timeline to 18fps media files that can play on computers? If I don't mind the slight slow motion, can I output the 24p timeline of 18fps film to 15fps computer media files and keep all frames. I mean, can I achieve 15fps output with a method that doesen't cut out frames but instead simply uses all the frames I shot but play them back at 15fps by extending my video?

I'm willing to pay for rank transfers since they handle negative film well. Is it correct, however, that rank systems aren't set up for 18fps? So for a workaround using rank transfers, could I have my 18fps footage scanned at 24p, edit it in my NLE at 24p and then do the pulldown on output? Again, which software could I use to add a pulldown to the footage on my 24p timeline to make the origional 18fps footage playback at normal speed?

Help!
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#2 Jim Train

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 05:54 PM

Interested in this as well. Anyone have anything to offer on the subject? I have several family films shot at 18fps that I would like to have transferred and I plan on editing them using Premiere Pro, am I doomed?
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#3 Robert Houllahan

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 07:38 PM

Interested in this as well. Anyone have anything to offer on the subject? I have several family films shot at 18fps that I would like to have transferred and I plan on editing them using Premiere Pro, am I doomed?



If you are going to HD at 24fps you can then slow the clip down to 18fps by doing a speed change in Final Cut and turning frame blending off.

This short film piece I shot at 18fps on Plus-x Super8 and I transferred it on our new Y-Front as scaled 1080x1920 at 24.0 fps. I speed changed it in Final Cut with frame blending unchecked I think it came out pretty nice even scaled down to 720p for Vimeo.

-Rob-


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#4 Paul Korver

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 08:21 PM

I'm willing to pay for rank transfers since they handle negative film well. Is it correct, however, that rank systems aren't set up for 18fps? So for a workaround using rank transfers, could I have my 18fps footage scanned at 24p, edit it in my NLE at 24p and then do the pulldown on output? Again, which software could I use to add a pulldown to the footage on my 24p timeline to make the origional 18fps footage playback at normal speed?

Help!


Hey Anthony,
We have both a Rank and a Spirit. They can both do 18fps transfers and output 24p HD and 29.97 or 24p SD... but the pulldown pattern is locked in. When dealing with non-standard frame rates we generally recommend transferring at 24p to 24p. Then you'll end up with all progressive frame video. You can play it back however you wish depending on your editing platform with no loss in quality. As Robert said... be sure to turn frame blending off. We don't work with Premiere a lot but the workflow for 18fps material in Final Cut would be 24p transfer to ProRes 4444 or 422 HQ. Then speed change to 75% and turn off frame blending. You'll be left with an all progressive 24p timeline of your 18fps material playing back at the correct frame rate.

Good luck!

-Paul
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#5 Robert Houllahan

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 09:09 PM

Right 1:1 frames is what you want and then you can basically tell the editing app how fast to play them on a timeline of your choice. There is not a standard 18fps playback format in the digital world so most likely you will have to fit those frames into a 24, 23.98, 25 or 29.97 timeline and delivery format. If you have the 1:1 frames though you can slow or speed their playback in a digital timeline as you might by varying the speed of a motor on a film projector and without blending frames.

-Rob-
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