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Why does Super-8 always look... Damaged


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#1 Macks Fiiod

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 01:09 AM

I've seen people throw up 16mm clips they've shot themselves which have looked pretty good. However every 8mm clip/short I've seen online has always had an overwhelming amount of grain/scratches/splotches/etc.

 

Is this the nature of the format? Does the camera cause this? The film itself? Is it because the majority of available equipment is of an older era? Can no one get it developed right?

 

I'd love to try working with film as this being the intro phase, but if 8mm will always strictly look like 8mm film no matter what I'll probably look elsewhere.

 

Also is Kodak's new 8mm film/digital hybrid camera going to solve any of these factors?

 

Thanks.

 

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#2 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 01:14 AM

If you shoot modern stocks with modern cameras and transfer with modern scanners, Super 8 can look like a noisier 16mm. However, the VAST majority of people, don't do that. They use older cameras with poor registration and they use stocks which are noisy and inferior transfers.

I'm currently supplying a friend with Super 8 equipment for a feature, which has a subplot shot in that format. We wanted the noise, grain and dirt and we got just that with my old Yashica Super 8 camera. It looks like a home movie and I think that's what the vast majority of people who shoot super 8 are looking for. People who want real quality, generally opt for 16mm or better.

So WHY does super 8 generally look bad compared to it's bigger brothers? Well, it's just technical. There have been many discussions about it and many threads you should dig up and read.

The Kodak camera will be an option for shooting higher quality material for sure. It doesn't solve all the problems, but it does solve a few of them.
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#3 Matthew W. Phillips

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 01:40 AM

My biggest problem with S8 was gate weave. the camera just wouldnt run the film through straight. Of course, with such a small frame, any movement is magnified. Fun format but not for serious work on a big screen, I am afraid.


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#4 Macks Fiiod

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 02:25 AM

Could I please get a sample video of super8 footage that isn't shot with the intent of being a nostalgic home movie? Every time I look it up on Youtube I still get the faults I was speaking of.

 

How do you feel it stacks up with the footage of an older DSLR? Even if the frame is small, does it still have all that dynamic range 35 or 16mm is appreciated for?

 

Thanks guys.


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#5 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 03:03 AM

This looks pretty good to me:

 

 

The problem is that, done at this sort of level, super-8 is barely cheaper than 16mm.

 

P


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#6 Matthew W. Phillips

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 03:04 AM

Could I please get a sample video of super8 footage that isn't shot with the intent of being a nostalgic home movie? Every time I look it up on Youtube I still get the faults I was speaking of.

 

How do you feel it stacks up with the footage of an older DSLR? Even if the frame is small, does it still have all that dynamic range 35 or 16mm is appreciated for?

 

Thanks guys.

I personally did not like the look of older DSLRs. Also the rolling shutter issue. S8 still has the DR since it is still film. I had made an S8 short film that is on YouTube. I dont know if it is still considered "home movie" by your standards but I did shoot low-grain reversal on a tripod and had a Rank Cintel transfer. A certain amount of it is just the S8 look which will have a retro feel. But if you want, I can post the link for you.


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#7 Jose luis villar

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 03:27 AM

Two examples:

 

 


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#8 Macks Fiiod

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 03:53 AM

 

 

But if you want, I can post the link for you.

Yeah sure, link me up please.


Edited by Macks Fiiod, 14 May 2016 - 03:53 AM.

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#9 Mark Dunn

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 05:27 AM

The frame size is smaller so physical faults are bound to be magnified, but my getting-on-for-40-year-old films don't look too bad as they haven't been projected much.


Edited by Mark Dunn, 14 May 2016 - 05:28 AM.

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#10 Nicholas Kovats

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Posted 14 May 2016 - 08:15 AM

As always, Jose, superlative! 

 

 

Two examples:

 

 


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#11 Serge Gregory

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Posted 18 May 2016 - 05:51 PM

Inspired by examples of terrific transfers of 7203 in Super-8, I've decided to try the stock out. In the meantime, I've re-edited some Kodachrome Super-8 footage I shot in 2005. This is a 720x480 upload and, sure, it's grainy, saturated Kodachrome, but if shot and edited well, Super-8 has its own definite aesthetic.
https://vimeo.com/167184955


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#12 Nicholas Kovats

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Posted 18 May 2016 - 08:19 PM

Beautiful S8 K40 aesthetic, Serge. Well done. The music perfectly compliments the essence of Eastern European melancholy. Love the muted tones of the K40. Do you remember the camera you used? 

 

 

Inspired by examples of terrific transfers of 7203 in Super-8, I've decided to try the stock out. In the meantime, I've re-edited some Kodachrome Super-8 footage I shot in 2005. This is a 720x480 upload and, sure, it's grainy, saturated Kodachrome, but if shot and edited well, Super-8 has its own definite aesthetic.
https://vimeo.com/167184955


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#13 Serge Gregory

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Posted 18 May 2016 - 08:55 PM

Beautiful S8 K40 aesthetic, Serge. Well done. The music perfectly compliments the essence of Eastern European melancholy. Love the muted tones of the K40. Do you remember the camera you used? 

 

 

Bauer C61XL. It has a very good 1.2 lens manufactured by Schneider/Kreuznach.


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#14 Mark Day

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 12:29 PM

Watching these super 8 videos (sorry, I mean film shorts), I can't help but to notice a colour saturation and depth that I've never experienced with video.  Too bad that film is more cost-prohibative than, say Mini DV, yet for viewing, the Super 8 shorts shown here are hard to beat.  This is something I'll never be able to do.  I'm not as artistic as you guys, but it does give one ideas.  Good work to all!


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