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New to Cinematogaphy, Super 8, need advice, and gear!


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#1 Evan Samaras

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Posted 10 October 2015 - 11:10 AM

Hello all,

 

Thank you for having me here. Although I am new to cinematography I have been shooting and developing my own 35mm, Medium Format, and Large Format film over the last few years. I even started printing from my own negatives the last few months. 

 

While picking up some darkroom equipment I was also given a Nikon Super 8 zoom camera. I was always interested in trying out Super 8 and here is my opportunity. I know that it's not on the higher end of the cameras but am excited none the less. However, I need some advice.

 

I see places like Pro8mm offer packages for purchasing film + processing. (I have also seen something about Pro8mm being a ripoff? Please correct me if I am wrong) I noticed the same for spectra film packages. This would include film + processing + digitizing. Is this a viable option? I was planning on trying to develop my own film, which opens up more questions. I am looking at the 15m Lomo tanks, which are ridiculously expensive + shipping (which is $$$). If anyone is selling one of these for a reasonable price, at least with reasonable shipping, I am highly interested! I have seen the home made version: http://www.peaceman....processing-tankbut would hate to risk my time and money to mess something up. Any other alternatives? I picked up some ektachrome 160 super 8 film for a decent price but understand the remjet may contaminate the e6 chemicals. Can I just use some sort of filter when pouring the chemicals back into storage? For b&w I was thinking of using Photographer's Formulary for b&w reversal. Will it be worth it for me to develop my own film, or is the cost nearly negligible when taking into account a film + developing + digitizing package I can purchase from one of the other companies? I was thinking of digitizing through DiJiFi not to far from my home in Brooklyn. At least this way I can save on shipping, and I am looking around $25 or so per roll for their HD transfer. Does anyone have any experience or advice regarding their services as well?

 

I'm sure I have more questions, but seem to have typed enough for my first post.

 

Thanks again in advance! 

 

P.S. If anyone is seeking to unload/sell any film, editor, projector, splicer, please let me know as I believe these are items I will be needing! Thank you!


Edited by Evan Samaras, 10 October 2015 - 11:15 AM.

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#2 Rudy Velez Jr

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Posted 11 October 2015 - 08:21 PM

Hi 

 

I have used DiJiFi and they are good, if you want you to see some of their work with regards to transferring super 8mm.. check out my vimeo( vimeo.com/idontspeakthatjargon)  

since all of my 16mm and super8mm was all done by them minus 3 uploads which I sent out to Colorado ( I think ...) because  I shot with Kodak G. sadly the film was processed as black and white because I assumed the lab would see that it was COLOR film and process the film as COLOR but no, they processed it as black and white...I am still kinda bummed about that, but it was my own fault for not being explicit.. 

 

I would recommend purchasing a LOMO tank that can handle 100ft/ 30m, this way you can develop your own super 8mm. Developing your own super 8mm is fun and will save you $$$, you just missed out out on the ERA of 16mm and super8mm filmmaking in NYC with PAC LAB,( just about everyone here in NYC enjoyed pac lab's development services ) my go to lab for developing 16mm/super8mm.  I am STILL depressed about PAC LAB shutting down!

I can't express how sad it is for me to be walking by 2nd avenue nowadays.....those narrow stairs that used to lead to PAC LAB... I miss the lady who always used to accept my student ID...Pac Lab will forever be one of my favorite little corners in the world and it lives on in my my dreams.

 

NYC really needs a lab like that, you would think there would be a few here but no... but there is MONO NO AWARE. check them out! They offer amazing workshops and have a great festival they put on in December, you can see projected super 8mm and 16mm!! You can submit your film on super 8mm or 16mm, its the closest thing in this day to that theater that Robert Downy Sr. mentions that used to exist in the city back in the late 60s

 

 Also while your in brooklyn check out Spectacle Theater they have the best programming in the city in my opinion! ( #2 = Anthology and #3 is FILM Fourm) I don't go to spectacle theater (in fact I went only once to see White Star and Supermarket a roland kilch double) but I always check out whats showing, and they play the best stuff in my opinion. I live too far away in Queens to trek to Williamsburg and if I lived closer I would go. 

 

ok so for super 8mm --- I would recommend you get a projector, I enjoy shooting on reversal film and once you get your film developed either by lab or yourself you can then screen your work, this is important because you don't want to just get your stuff developed and then automatically get it transferred, that can be expensive, and you might not want that roll transferred in the end. projecting gives you a chance to look at the film in all its glory, trust me, its not going to look better then when its projected! 

 

now if you don't want to get a projector, you can get a viewer, which is helpful with editing your film, or editing movies you can get off eBay or ETSY which is a lot of fun, you can hone in your skills editing by just buying super 8mms and splicing them up to create new and interesting things, you can also further manipulate the movies if thats your thing. 

 

Goko makes good editors, there is also Minette, search for Goko super 8mm---

projectors --- Eumig, Bauer, Elmo, AGFA. There are  a lot of great projectors for super 8mm. 

 

so: LOMO TANK ( 100FT/30m version ) so you can develop your own film, a projector so you can watch your films or the works of others or old classics like star wars, and a viewer so you can look at your film before you edit, and also a splicer, there is Catzzo which are great but $$$ and the guillotine splicers which are more affordable, these are orange and black.

 

some will say everyone these days scans, and the a lot of film from kodak is negative so you cannot view it on a projector, which is true but you can always collect some super 8mm films and re edit them and then view your creations.

 

50D film stock is a nice negative color film, I recommend using 200T as the highest,500T looks to grainy on super 8mm but thats me. If your shooting INTERIORS/LOW LIGHT or NIGHT stuff I recommend picking up some SUN GUNs, I have a few of these bad boys and they are awesome! You can also get REDHEADS which are cheap lights off eBay, stay away from the stuff made in china.

 

 

 

Ocho Y Pico in Spain does some of the best transfers for super 8mm that I have see, there is also Film Discreet which I have yet to personally try but from looking at the stuff I have seen online, there stuff looks great as does Film Video Solutions and Cinelab. 

 

good luck and shoot super 8mm


Edited by Rudy Velez Jr, 11 October 2015 - 08:27 PM.

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#3 Mark Dunn

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Posted 12 October 2015 - 05:15 AM


 

I would recommend purchasing a LOMO tank that can handle 100ft/ 30m, this way you can develop your own super 8mm.

The cartridges are only 15m. so you can use the smaller, and cheaper, 15m. tank. Of course with the 30m. you can process two films at once.

E-6 needs tight temperature control, 100F within 1 degree F for the whole of the development time, which is tricky to achieve if you're used to b/w tank processing. Otherwise the colour will be off. But if you don't mind a 'hand-made' look it might be OK.


Edited by Mark Dunn, 12 October 2015 - 05:20 AM.

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#4 Evan Samaras

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Posted 12 October 2015 - 10:13 AM

 

good luck and shoot super 8mm

 

Rudy!

So much information, thank you for the detail! I am going to develop on my own, but was just thinking, how much do I have to shoot where it becomes worth the process of buying chemicals and developing on my own?   I am already looking into a projector, editor, and splicer. I have read some good things about the Goko, but am trying to budget and get as many deals as I can.

 

I was able to pick up some random films for a decent price to get started. I got 4 packs of Ektachrome 160 Type A, which from my understanding can be developed in E6. However, for the "remjet" I guess I will try the washing soda method of standing and agitation which should take no more than 2 minutes before development begins, unless I am advised of another process. I will probably shoot a mix of interior and exterior so I will test the different films available and see what works best for me. Sounds like I may need one of those SUN GUNS you mentioned (although I prefer to work in natural light).

 

Anyone have experience with Agfa 200D? It seems like it would be a nice all around film for reverse processing and projection. Can these films be pushed/pulled with decent results like many do with their photographic film?

 

 

 

The cartridges are only 15m. so you can use the smaller, and cheaper, 15m. tank. Of course with the 30m. you can process two films at once.

E-6 needs tight temperature control, 100F within 1 degree F for the whole of the development time, which is tricky to achieve if you're used to b/w tank processing. Otherwise the colour will be off. But if you don't mind a 'hand-made' look it might be OK.

 

Thanks Mark,

 

I actually picked up a 15m tank with the capability of processing 2x8mm rolls at a time. It set me back $100 shipped but i seems to be the best price I have seen so far. I am familiar with E-6 temperature as I have developed slide roll film many times before. I understand it may be a trickier process considering the film to liquid ratio as compared to a roll of 120 film, but I am willing to see if I can achieve a decent result. 


Edited by Evan Samaras, 12 October 2015 - 10:16 AM.

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#5 Simon Lucas

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Posted 14 October 2015 - 04:32 AM

 

good luck and shoot super 8mm

 

Rudy, I enjoyed your post. I checked out the Spanish service you mentioned, Ocho Y Pico. They have a nice page of films they have scanned. And inspiring.

http://ochoypico.com/en/our-works/


Edited by Simon Lucas, 14 October 2015 - 04:35 AM.

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#6 Rudy Velez Jr

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Posted 14 October 2015 - 10:36 PM

Thanks Simon.

 

I am loving your posts. please keep experimenting and sharing your exciting results. You should start a blog about it, and go into further detail. I am intrigued by your developing methods and the results. Keep up the excellent work! You have an audience 


Edited by Rudy Velez Jr, 14 October 2015 - 10:36 PM.

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#7 Simon Lucas

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Posted 15 October 2015 - 03:14 AM

Thanks Simon.

 

I am loving your posts. please keep experimenting and sharing your exciting results. You should start a blog about it, and go into further detail. I am intrigued by your developing methods and the results. Keep up the excellent work! You have an audience 

Thanks Rudi,

 

I have thought about it. I've never blogged. If it might help others, I thought it could be a good thing.


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