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Any ideas on getting sharp B/W 16mm


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When working with the 'classic' B&W films, 7231 and 7222 in 16 or S16mm the age of the technology shows. Contact prints are no problem, when doing optical blow-up to intermediate pos/neg then a great deal of sharpness is lost even on very good printer equipment.


Shooting on modern color negative and then printing on sound recording stock will give you exceptional sharpness but the price is a funny grayscale. Some people may like it and some award winning films were made like this.

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I like the B&W reversal stocks for sharpness, but midtones like in "Through A Glass Darkly" (the most beautiful closeups ever ?) are really gonna require some work. Esp if you try to do it all with natural light. Which I love too, but.... cheating tungsten into natural settings can be beautiful if done right...


Using the best glass you can won't hurt you in 16mm B&W........



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On a short film that was going to live on video. I shot 7222 at 30 fps. Came out very sharp, a lot of details in highlights and shadows. I remember the antagonist was pulling a gun out of his black jeans. The handle of the gun was black also, but you could clearly see grip marks in the handle even against his black jeans.


I shot the film with Zeiss super speeds mostly outdoors, on a cloudy NY day. Telecine on a Shadow to Digibeta.

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