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Video Tap for a Super 8 Camera

Video tap Super 8mm Super 8 small format Super 8 film

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#1 Moises Perez

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Posted 30 April 2013 - 10:15 PM

I'd like to share my new idea. All you need is an iPhone with a case you can attach to your rod system to have a workable video tap for a Super 8mm film camera.

 

Enjoy it,

 

MOY

 


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#2 Mitchell Perkins

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Posted 04 May 2013 - 04:19 PM

I'd like to share my new idea. All you need is an iPhone with a case you can attach to your rod system to have a workable video tap for a Super 8mm film camera.

 

Enjoy it,

 

MOY

 

 

 If you look closely at my avatar you will see a "pinhole" surveillance camera attached to the matte box on the Nikon R10. You might have to stare at the avatar for a couple of hours [recommended]. Okay maybe not, but the pic was taken some 10 years ago.

 

What I'm saying is that an iphone would be way better - big ol colour picture and you can zoom it to match the S8 cam frame.

 

Nice!

 

Mitch


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#3 Matt Stevens

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 09:25 AM

I think we need more information on this. 


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#4 Moises Perez

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 09:00 PM

Hi Matt and the rest of you,

 

Thank you for your interest in the topic. I should had stated “all you need is a smart phone to have a video tap for your Super 8 film camera.”

 

I used an iPhone because that's what I have available. But trust me, I'm not promoting any brand in particular. I already owned one before I used it as a video tap.

 

I didn't do anything special to use my iPhone as a video tap and that's what I like about it. The phone is already good to go when you buy one. As you know, it already includes the camera, the screen, and the application to use it as video recorder.

 

I like the iPhone because it's small and light. I don't need to worry about anything else. No such things as separate batteries or cables to connect or anything like that. There's no need to buy any other piece of software for it to work.

 

However, I guess you could use any other smart phone that has a video camera for the same purpose. All the specifics will be determined by the kind of Super 8 camera and gear you own. For instance, your needs are going to be different if you have a 15mm versus a 19mm rods system. But, I can assure you don't even need a rod system or a tripod. I bet you can attach the phone to your camera using something different than a case for the phone and a rod system, but again that will depend on you.

 

Perhaps my set-up looks fancy but it's just the extra gear I use. This particular camera is a Beaulieu 4008 ZM II but I also use the Canon 814 E and 1014 E cameras. I only have one 15mm rods system, and one 4 x 4 matte box and I use this gear interchangeable with all my cameras. What makes this system a little different is the Century Optics 1.33X anamorphic adaptor that I put in front of the lens.

 

Trust me, at the end, you don't need any of this extra gear to use your smart phone as a video tap. It will work whether you shoot with the anamorphic adaptor or without it. The anamorphic only helps you to be able to use all the frame of your film stock in the case you want to go HD or want to have the 2.40:1 aspect ratio. I already own all of this gear and that's why I use it over and over.

 

Here is another clip that shows you what my system is looking at. I processed the second part with After Effects for you to see the difference, but when I'm shooting I don't worry about this. What I see on the screen is what I get on the film. I focus my Super 8 camera manually using a tape measure. The iPhone clips are just for a reference but the most important is the footage you get on the film.

 

 

I hope I didn't make thinks more complicated. Please enjoy this clip.

 


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#5 Mitchell Perkins

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 11:49 AM

We have "request policy" on this computer and I didn't think to allow the clips the first time I saw your post, Moises. I was way off and I see you are not just mounting a parallax view tap, but looking through the camera's viewfinder.

 

That is so wicked! Great idea! I will certainly use it and thank you!

 

Mitch


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#6 Matt Stevens

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 02:37 PM

I'd like many close-up pics so we can see exactly how you di this. More is more, not less, so share, please. 


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#7 Gregg MacPherson

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 03:29 PM

I am going to steal my son's Ipod when I can and try fiddling with a 16mm camera. If we all are experimenting please share some results. Lots of little details could make this work or not on a particular camera / viewfinder.

Bravo Moises !
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#8 Gregg MacPherson

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 05:02 AM

So I did take an ipod, remove the eyecup from the viewfinder and try to find the approx best position. To give a roughly stable position I cut a hole in a plastic bottle top and sat that on the eyepiece. The corner of the ipod sat on that. Sadly the zoom wasn't working on this ipod.

It would be possible to make a clamp system that attached the ipod to the eye piece.

The viewfinder here is the Kinoptic which has a very big image.
Sorry for the crappy photo.

Edited by Gregg MacPherson, 12 May 2013 - 05:04 AM.

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#9 Owen Parker

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 06:59 AM

Moises,

That's a neat little set up.

You know what they say, 'the simplest ideas are often the best'

Case in point I think. Well done
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#10 Owen Parker

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 07:10 AM

Forget my last post, it's not 'neat' it's brilliant!

Just did a quick and dirty test and it worked pretty flawlessly.

IPhone 3 with a Nalcom FTL Super8, an old Sanyo Super8.

Spurred on by my sucsess I thought I'd try one more...

An old Bell & Howell 70DR Filmo and it not only worked on the rangefinder but the critical focus viewer too!

Hats off to you Moises, thanks.
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#11 Jeremy Cavanagh

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 08:51 AM

Great idea of using video taps.Perhaps something like this could be experimented with where its small and could be built to fold out of the way easily when wanting to use the viewfinder. The real advantage of video taps is that for the generation that know nothing except live video this might make film less of an unknown to them.


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#12 Dom Jaeger

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 09:22 AM

Very nice set-up Moises.

 

I tried using a mobile phone camera through the eyepiece for my home-made 8mm steady-rig a couple of years ago. I remember posting the suggestion in a thread about S8 steadicams. The biggest issue I found was keeping the phone camera position exactly aligned, a few bumps to the rig and I lost the picture and had to realign things. So the method of securing it has to be quite firm. But when it stayed put it worked surprisingly well. Rails out the back with a magic arm holding the phone is a good solution, but not something everyone has access to. Perhaps one of those phone casings that allow a telephoto attachment could be modified to simply clamp around the eyepiece diopter?

 

The other issue I had was the phone camera switching off after a while, unless I had it recording. Maybe there's a setting you can choose on some smart phones to avoid that.

 


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#13 Moises Perez

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 03:24 PM

Thank you for all your comments. I very happy to know that I sparked some of you to experiment with the equipment you have available. It's also good to know that you too have achieved some very interesting results. As far as me concerns, I'm always exploring ways in which I can bring this lovely film format to the next level.


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#14 Heikki Repo

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 03:52 PM

For the first time I'm feeling a bit sorry I don't own an iPhone!  ;) Very nice setup.


Edited by Heikki Repo, 12 May 2013 - 03:53 PM.

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#15 Moises Perez

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 04:12 PM

Don't worry about it Heikki. As I said before, "I guess you could use any other smart phone that has a video camera for the same purpose. "


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#16 Francisco Martins

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 08:44 PM

Moises, it would be appreciated if you could tell us how you pulled that off (how did you connect the iphone to the camera, with what, etc). We're all kinda of in the dark and I'd to see if we can extend this to 16mm as well. Thank you.


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#17 Gregg MacPherson

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 09:01 PM

I think all Moises has done is position his iphone with reasonable accuracy behind his viewfinder. If you grab an iphone or ipod and hold it where your eye sits behind any camera you may get an image. Took me about 2 minutes (and the wrath of my son, who owns the ipod).

The difficult (not so difficult actually) part is making a clamp system that holds the phone where you want. For 16mm cameras with orientable viewfinders, a clamp onto the finder or diopter barrel will not be that hard.
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#18 Francisco Martins

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 06:16 PM

But is it sharp and accurate enough for focus pulling?


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#19 Gregg MacPherson

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 07:20 PM

i wouldn't pull focus with it,  but if I was doing strange things with the camera,  unable to look through the eyepiece,  I would be very glad to have it.


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#20 Chris Burke

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 10:06 PM

What if you get a call? LOL. But you could use any number of board cameras with some similar holder.


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