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Tobin TXM-20Ba crystal sync motor????

Super 8 Beaulieu Crystal Sync

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#1 Keil Mitchell

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 06:48 AM

I came across an old forum in another website talking about using a Tobin TXM-20Ba crystal sync motor with a Beaulieu 4008 and nothing more.  The user only stated the motor cost $495 and it worked well not only with the beaulieu but also with other film cameras.  Nobody really added to the forum as far as the noise level of the motor (believe it or not I have come across crystal sync motors that are so loud it is absolutely pointless to record audio) or where I could even buy one.  After digging around on google I came up with nothing so I figured this would be a good place to ask.  Does anybody have any information on this motor or other cheaper alternatives for crystal syncing the beaulieu?  Thanks for any response


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#2 Nicholas Kovats

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 09:17 AM

The manual and specs are still available on Clive Tobin's web site. Clive no longer manufactures these units, i.e. http://www.tobincine...les/Page498.htmDuall Camera in New York still stocks new old stock Tobin motors, i.e. http://www.duallcame...sChargers.shtml (look under crystal motors)
 
They are not quiet and require a blimp for serious lip sync work. They show up time to time on eBay. I have both the TCS TXM-20B and 20Be versions. The Bolex becomes a whole different heavy loud beast when the motors are attached. I need to increase the battery capacity/amperage as they will not work in the slight cold. Good luck.  

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#3 Keil Mitchell

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 10:56 AM

Thanks a lot for taking the time to reply.  I find it really frustrating when crystal sync motors make that much noise.  Do you think it's worth trying to get a hold of one of these or have you found better options? I'm in the beginning stages of trying to piece together a budget friendly sync-sound Super-8 camera. 


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#4 Nicholas Kovats

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 02:12 PM

I see. Your original query was specific to Super 8 cameras not 16mm as I originally thought. That is incorrect info regarding interfacing the Tobin TXM-20Ba crystal sync motor with a Beaulieu 4008. It's physically impossible as the TXM-20Ba specifically makes use of the direct one-to-one drive shaft of the Bolex H16 16mm camera systems. 

 

The quietest sync sound "historical" Super 8 cam setup is the Braun NIzo 6080 with Film Group Camera Crystal Control Unit ($500 US). The CCCU does not generate any noise as it is solid state electronics and works in conjunction with the 1/fr per sec "digital" 1000hz tone generated by the 6080 PC connector on the camera. It serves as a digital feedback loop system whereby the camera motor self corrects speed variations referenced to the Film Group CCC time base, i.e. http://www.webtfg.com/sync8.htm

 

Apparently the 6080 belt drive is one of the quietest cameras but good luck on finding one whereby you don't have to replace the 35-40 year old belts.

 

I am concentrating on testing my Logmar Super 8 camera with 5 pin XLR stereo mic connector whereby it records sounds directly to an internal 24 bit digital recorder. The camera's direct drive motor is accurate to .001 fps thereby potentially lip sync accurate. Not the quietest camera but a bit of imaginative blimping should work just fine. The point being no external crystal control necessary as it it built right into the camera and it's firmware is upgradable.   


Edited by Nicholas Kovats, 09 July 2015 - 02:12 PM.

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#5 Glenn Brady

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 03:01 PM

That is incorrect info regarding interfacing the Tobin TXM-20Ba crystal sync motor with a Beaulieu 4008. It's physically impossible as the TXM-20Ba specifically makes use of the direct one-to-one drive shaft of the Bolex H16 16mm camera systems. 

 

 

 

Seth King of American Cinematographic Specialties made a bracket that allows the Tobin TXM-20Ba motor to be fitted to a Beaulieu 4008 series camera, so the pairing does exist (I own what may be the only example).  


Edited by Glenn Brady, 09 July 2015 - 03:03 PM.

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#6 Keil Mitchell

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 06:00 PM

Thanks for the info on the Nizo.  I've never used one and I understand that not only do they fit my budget friendly requirements but they are also well-respected cameras.  It's just that I'm having a hard time choosing a fixed zoom lens over a c-mount camera that typically comes with a solid piece of glass.  Glenn, how do you feel about the sound of the motor with the beaulieu? Is it worht buying and putting the time or money into blimping or do you feel that it would be a better option to save up the extra cash for a higher priced motor?


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#7 Glenn Brady

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Posted 09 July 2015 - 10:04 PM

Glenn, how do you feel about the sound of the motor with the beaulieu? Is it worht buying and putting the time or money into blimping or do you feel that it would be a better option to save up the extra cash for a higher priced motor?

 

I use the setup only for MOS filming.  The motor would be too noisy for synchronous sound and any blimp/barney would have to be custom-made, so it'd be an expensive rig.  I don't know what "higher priced motor" you have in mind or how that would solve the noise problem.  The built-in motor of 4008 series cameras is already too noisy for synchronous sound recording (on a quiet set, anyway).  I believe Nicholas is correct in identifying the Nizo 6080 (and its companion models) as the quietest Super 8 camera, but, as he said, the drive belts may be problematic.

 

Mark Mikolas and Gunther Hoos devote a chapter of their publication, Handbook of Super 8 Production, to sound recording with Super 8 cameras.  Some of the information it contains is obsolete - the 2nd edition was published in 1978 - but you may find much that's useful.  The book is generally available second-hand (although not usually cheaply).  


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#8 Keil Mitchell

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Posted 10 July 2015 - 07:23 AM

Right on, thanks a lot for the advice.  The problem solving that comes with film seems to be endless but I still don't see the fun in digital filmmaking.  I'll look into getting a hold of that book.  I figured Super 8 would just be a cheaper option to 16 but it appears that it has become a completely different monster in terms of syncing and lenses.


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#9 Nicholas Kovats

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Posted 10 July 2015 - 12:11 PM

Great to hear of this splendid singular exception, Glenn. But it sounds a tad unwieldy for handheld shooting. And probably just as loud as my own TXM crystal motor setups. Seth's web site is down but I managed to get a glimpse of his efforts via the Internet WayBack Machine, i.e. http://web.archive.o...ancinespec.com/

 

 

Seth King of American Cinematographic Specialties made a bracket that allows the Tobin TXM-20Ba motor to be fitted to a Beaulieu 4008 series camera, so the pairing does exist (I own what may be the only example).  


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#10 Nicholas Kovats

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Posted 10 July 2015 - 12:14 PM

Best crystal sync motor, proven engineering are the quiet "small format" camera's in the 16mm format. All selling for fire sale prices. Aaton is one the best examples. 


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#11 T Sanders

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Posted 07 December 2015 - 12:13 AM

I know this is an old thread but I also have the Tobin TXM-20Ba crystal sync motor. It's loud. I used it once with my Bolex Rex 5 shooting a film for the Zombie Film Challenge and gave up on it pretty quickly. It was just in the way and loud. I also have a custom blimp for my Bolex and the motor stuck out too far to fit in the blimp. It is a high quality sync motor for sure. But I was able to sync sound with no issues by shooting shorter dialogue scenes without the motor. :)


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