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Best type of Super-8?

super-eight camera film best

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#1 Courtney Carlson

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 06:00 PM

I want to get my boyfriend a Super-8 camera for his birthday but I have no idea where to start. He is an editor for a film company and in so knows a lot about film cameras and he knows a lot more about Super-8 cameras than I. Basically I just want to know what is the best brand? And how should I go about getting film for it? Any information you think would be helpful, please share. Thanks!
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#2 Richard Hadfield

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 07:18 PM

I want to get my boyfriend a Super-8 camera for his birthday but I have no idea where to start. He is an editor for a film company and in so knows a lot about film cameras and he knows a lot more about Super-8 cameras than I. Basically I just want to know what is the best brand? And how should I go about getting film for it? Any information you think would be helpful, please share. Thanks!

In the USA I'd say the best cameras would be the most serviceable cameras.  The two brands that are usually on most "best"  lists are Canon and Nikon.    Specifically the Canon 814, 1014 , 814xls and 1014xls, and the Nikon R8 and R10.   Beaulieu super 8 cameras are nice but higher maintenance.  Leicas Specials are one of the best but a little more uncommon and expensive.   Chinon and Elmo made  some nice cameras too.  What's nice about the Canon and Nikon models I mentioned, is that they take almost any type of Super 8 film.

This company will refurbish Canon and Nikon  Super 8 cameras:

 

http://willardengineering.com/services

 

I live in Los Angeles so I can go to the Kodak building to buy film,  The only projectable Super 8 film that Kodak still sells is black and white film.  The other film they sell is Negative film which you must have scanned.  Super 8 film can be purchase online direct from Kodak.

 

I purchased Reversal film, which you don't have to scan,  from the following companies:

http://thereelimage....ur-web-showroom

/http://www.spectrafi...o.com/Film.html
http://www.dwaynesph..._Order_Form.pdf

 

 

 

 

 
The best place to buy film is directly from Kodak.  I go to the Kodak building in Hollywood it at Fotokem


Edited by Richard Hadfield, 25 September 2013 - 07:21 PM.

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#3 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 11:34 PM

The best all round camera is the Nizo 481 Macro or the Nizo 561 Macro. There are a lot of different Nizo models out there, but you want to stick to either of these. The drawback is you probably have to buy one from Germany to get a good one, and they require 2 additional little batteries for the light met(er Wien Cell PX625, avail on Amazon) No matter what model, you need to buy one that is guarenteed to work because a lot of them that have been sitting in bad places for 30 years don't work well.

http://www.ebay.com/...=item2582db62c0

 

You have to call Kodak to order Super 8 film 1-800-621-3456

Negative films available for digital scanning

50D for bright daylight, fine grain

200T for average daylight or bright artificial light, fine to moderate grain

500T for dim daylight, artificial light, night shooting, moderate to heavy grain

 

Reversal film for projecting or scanning

TriX B&W

 

For film processing and/or scanning http://spectrafilmandvideo.com/


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#4 David Cunningham

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 07:55 AM

I agree with everything above.  

 

If you have the cash flow, go with a Willard or Pro8mm already rebuilt/refurbed unit.  That's the only way you are guaranteed to get one in good condition.

 

Buying one on Ebay is hit or miss and will likely require maintenance to work correctly, especially with FUJI films (negative and reversal) as they are thicker and just don't pull through un-adjusted cameras well, especially old never serviced ones.

 

If you have the time, you could buy one on Ebay and then send it to Pro8mm or Willard for refurbing.  But, you won't save THAT much unless you are talking about a Canon 1014 XL-S or 814 XL-S.  Those are my favorite models because they work well with all film (if serviced) and have split image focusing which is a must for me.  I'm a horrible focus puller for some reason.

 

And Richard, Anthony is right, you cannot buy any film from Kodak on their website anymore.  Very sad, but true.  You must call or go in to the Kodak locations in Hollywood or NYC to get film now.


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#5 Zac Fettig

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 08:43 AM

A Beaulieu 4008 would also be a good choice. Serviceable, fairly common and with a lot of features a cinematographer wants. Most of the ones listed above are excellent cameras.
 

Pro-8 has always done OK by me, but a lot of people have really bad experiences with them. And their super 8 refurbs are a huge ripoff. Typically 2-4 times what the cameras are actually worth.

 


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#6 David Cunningham

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 09:13 AM

4 times might be a bit of a stretch (except the max-8 converted 1014 xl-s... that's a rip-off).  But, a nicely refurbed 814 AZ for $800 is a bit much, but not 4 times as much.  If you figure you can get a working 814 AZ online for $100, but it's going to cost you at least $200 if not $300 to have it properly serviced, plus you may get one that's not fixable... if you can talk Pro8mm down to say $600, that's "reasonable".


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#7 Matt Stevens

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 11:27 AM

$800 for an 814 in this market is simply too high. 

 

All the models mentioned above are great. I personally prefer the Nikon R10.  If you can buy a camera that seems to be in good shape then you can have it serviced at Willard. 

 

You can also check out du-all: http://www.duallcame...ore/index.shtml

 

Their cameras are overpriced, but you can always make them an offer. 


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#8 Zac Fettig

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 11:46 AM

$399.99 is what Pro-8 charges for a Canon 310XL (the Rhonda Cam). It's a camera worth maybe $40 in perfect condition, on a good day, with a real sucker for a buyer.

 

If they do a full teardown and rebuild, $600 is more than worth it. If they just glance it over, and say "good enough", not so much.
 

Courtney, if you're looking for a cool looking, but functional piece; not a high end cinematographer's camera, look for a Technicolor Mark 10. They're fairly cheap (typically between $10 and $60, depending on condition and accessories), and look awesome. They have nice lenses on them (they were really made by Minolta) and look like a miniature 1960s studio camera. They can meter correctly for most modern films, except for 500T. If nothing else, it'll look awesome sitting on a desk.

 

You can get film from Spectra (listed above), direct from Kodak (http://motion.kodak...._Info/index.htm), or from B&H (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/)


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#9 Courtney Carlson

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 02:01 PM

Thanks so much guys! You were all super helpful. I think I now have a much better feel for what kind of camera to get and what I should be looking for and paying attention to. Thanks again!


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#10 David Nethery

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Posted 27 September 2013 - 09:45 AM

The best all round camera is the Nizo 481 Macro or the Nizo 561 Macro. There are a lot of different Nizo models out there, but you want to stick to either of these. The drawback is you probably have to buy one from Germany to get a good one, and they require 2 additional little batteries for the light met(er Wien Cell PX625, avail on Amazon) No matter what model, you need to buy one that is guarenteed to work because a lot of them that have been sitting in bad places for 30 years don't work well.

http://www.ebay.com/...=item2582db62c0

 

 

I'd agree that a great all around camera would be Nizo 561 Macro or Nizo 481 Macro .   One of those or the aforementioned  Nikon R10 or Nikon R8  or  Canon 814 AutoZoom.      To see the different features available on these cameras look them up on the Super 8 database or Super 8 Wiki.   The Canon 814 AZ has the least features (no lap dissolve, no time lapse exposure, no slow-motion)   but it's a solid camera with a great lens .   In today's world of digital editing not having a feature like lap dissolve is not a big drawback , since you can add that when you're editing in Premiere or Final Cut , etc. 

 

All of those are good cameras ,  but as Richard Hadfield mentioned those models are also cameras which you can still get SERVICED .

 

In fact,  for the Nizo cameras , as well as the Canon 814 AZ  ,   Willard Engineering has a modification which rewires the light meter,  eliminating the need for the Wein Cell 1.35 v batteries to power the light meter.


Edited by David Nethery, 27 September 2013 - 09:45 AM.

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#11 Joel Pierre

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 04:15 AM

Basically I just want to know what is the best brand?

 

Leicina Special

 

Leicina Super RT1

 

Zeiss Ikon Moviflex GS8

 

Nizo Professional

 

Bauer A512

 

Rollei SL84

 

Bolex 160


Edited by Joel Pierre, 28 September 2013 - 04:16 AM.

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#12 Joel Pierre

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 12:11 PM

Agfa Movexoom 10 MOS Electronic


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#13 Andries Molenaar

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Posted 29 September 2013 - 04:23 AM

 

Well, that is indeed a much underappreciated camera!

 

Considering OP

 

Film type is a choice. Projectable or not and such. Unless you live nearby a lab/reseller film is to be had through mailorder. Getting from abroad can be annoying due to shipping costs, delays and duties.

 

The camera is a choice which much related ot budget and purpose.

If the filmer wants many features and a serious looking camera you are bound for the named top of the list.

When a laid back style with less carry-weight is wanted a smaller Nizo model will work and still have enough feature.

The Movexoom are nice too then.

As most film ends up digital only features are important which can not be replicated in editing.

Frame rate, exposure, optics and image stablity are important. Faders or backward filming are of little use these days.

 

Don't overpay for cameras who are 'overhauled' or serviced and cost less then an overhaul would cost. These are only dry tested and found good to go. Filmtested is very unlikely. Speculation is then that it will last past a garantee period and that it will exposed correctly.


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#14 Courtney Carlson

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 03:06 PM

Wow, you guys are awesome. Thanks again for all the great information. I think I might end up getting him a Nizo Professional since most of them are within my price range I want to spend on this. The look of the camera is awesome and I think my boyfriend will love it. Any tips on getting film for it or on specific features to look for in the camera?


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#15 David Nethery

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 06:55 PM

Wow, you guys are awesome. Thanks again for all the great information. I think I might end up getting him a Nizo Professional since most of them are within my price range I want to spend on this. The look of the camera is awesome and I think my boyfriend will love it. Any tips on getting film for it or on specific features to look for in the camera?

 

 

Good choice.    If the one you buy doesn't come with a user manual you can find it here:

 

http://super8exchang...nstructions.php

 

 

 

Film can be ordered by phone direct from Kodak  or from labs like Spectra Film.   

 

List of labs ;

 

http://motion.kodak....ducts/index.htm


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#16 Joel Pierre

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 01:19 AM

Wow, you guys are awesome. Thanks again for all the great information. I think I might end up getting him a Nizo Professional since most of them are within my price range I want to spend on this. The look of the camera is awesome and I think my boyfriend will love it. Any tips on getting film for it or on specific features to look for in the camera?

 

Whoever runs this site is a former repairman Nizo and Bauer. He still has the parts and make the repairs.

 

http://www.cine-super8.net/


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#17 David Nethery

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Posted 19 October 2013 - 11:59 AM

 

Whoever runs this site is a former repairman Nizo and Bauer. He still has the parts and make the repairs.

 

http://www.cine-super8.net/

 

 

 

I just ordered a replacement part for my Bauer C2A from Cine-Super8 .   ( Posted about >  HERE  )

 

I was very pleased with the transaction.   He shipped the item promptly.   He does seem to have a good stock of hard to find replacement parts.

 

 

.


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#18 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 19 October 2013 - 03:03 PM

Kodak ordering line is 1-800-621-3456


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