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Standard 16mm aspect ratio obsolete?


Jon R Williams
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I think the 1.33:1 aspect ratio is more or less obsolete for general production. There are very few theaters that can properly show 1.33:1 without pillar boxing a wider format (mostly old revival theaters still projecting film), and there are no new 1.33:1 TV monitors being sold. If you were making deliverables for broadcast, theatrical, and Netflix you would be required to give them at least a 1.78:1 version or some other current standard. That said you can still use the aspect ratio for aesthetic purposes. It will just be displayed within a wider frame.

 

The only similar current aspect ratio is 15-perf 65mm IMAX, 1.43:1. But even then you would have to deliver a 1.78 version for other distribution venues.

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To not be able to project regular 16 is proof of ignorance, worse: disrespect of film history. It should be the other way around, that regular 16 (and 35) is the base plus other aspect ratios in addition. Integration, not exclusion!

 

Different story with television and video, of course

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Very few commerical theatres could project regular 16, apart from art houses. It was mostly used by film clubs and A/V work.

 

The last time I used my 16mm projector was about 10 years ago to project a short film which was only available as a print. The picture quality was on a higher level to the DVD video projected shorts, the down side being the projector noise.

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I love my regular 16mm pageant projector and all my work prints and what's left of my e100d. Nothing compared to those amazing images! My super16 pageant is that much more awesome. Projecting super16 e100d is like watching heaven. Just beautiful. Even timed super16 v3 50d 7203 is pretty awesome.

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