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Sound/picture distance

Luigi Castellitto

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Sound/picture distance is 18 frames for Super8, 56 frames for Standard8 (value respected by very few biformat projectors).
Is there a sound/picture distance even for the super 8 optical sound? Is 22 frames?
Thank you.

P.S. Let alone, the Normal 8 sound optical machines (Toei, etc.), too few and too experminetal, but if someone wants to enter the explanation...

Edited by Luigi Castellitto
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Maybe some amateur work, but perhaps impossible, the distance between sound and image would be distorted.

Ah, does anyone know if labs could/can perform on commission optical tracks for private customers?
If not in Super 8, maybe in 16mm, etc.
I knew of laboratories that can make FROM optical track to magnetic track, but not vice versa. And not being able to do any kind of optical track on private films, even if the customer provided an audio base. Am I wrong?

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You can buy copies of ISO standards, but this one is obsolete.


Super-8 optical tracks are all reductions from 16 or 35, so I expect they would all be 24 or 25. The only lab I can think of that might still deal with optical would be Dirk deJonghe's in Kortrijk. He might answer you himself- he drops by this forum.


Edited by Mark Dunn
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All of the Super 8mm Optical Sound commercially released films [and also the former In-Flight films] ran at 24fps, none were released in 18fps.  However, it should be possible, if someone had the necessary equipment to produce 18fps optical sound tracks. 

The only ever made Super 8mm format camera to record in optical sound was the very limited production FUJI Fujica ZS-400 which recorded at both 18fps and 24fps.  The sound was variable density method and was said to be similar in quality to that of a small AM Radio sound.  Experiments with Regular 8mm Optical Sound (aka Normal 8mm, Standard 8mm) were done with a couple projectors available, but no known ISO standard was established for this format that never really was released commercially to the public.  Anyhow, I wish FUJI had continued with optical sound, as I certainly would've loved to use it.  It certainly would have some significant use for family films and projects, and without mag stripe filmstock, would make it easy to shoot optical sound on most any Super 8mm film loaded into their Single-8 cartridge.   I had worked on converting a Super 8mm mag sound camera over to optical sound, but there were some technical issues, and I felt there'd never be a real demand for it.  Anyway, there is still a ton of unused Super 8mm Sound Film out there, in freezers all over,  and probably still plenty of Single-8 Sound Film, all in the hands of filmers or former filmers in the 8mm formats.

Magnetic track sound systems also varied somewhat for 8mm and Super 8mm early on, until the KODAK Ektasound system was released setting the standard for the 18 frame picture/audio separation for magnetic sound.  The optical sound standard is 22 frame picture/audio separation.   Many earlier projectors had varying picture audio separations, so that if you were to play a commercially released print, often the sound was not in sync.  Many earlier projectors prior to the 1973 standard being established, had add on sound units, such as early BOLEX M-8 projectors, early NORIS R8/S8 projectors, early BAUER projectors (also those released under the REVUE and PORST names), and the sadly long gone famous HEURTIER projectors from France.   EUMIG also varied, but settled in the 1960s on established and soon to be established 8mm and Super 8mm magnetic sound standards.  Some users that played Regular 8mm magnetic sound on their projectors thought the sound was out of sync, but it was just due to failing to provide the 56 frame loop that had to be done when projecting Regular 8mm sound films.

Sadly, when the long old time labs that did have the support equipment to allow them to do all kinds of things closed, most of their equipment went to scrap. Some that was bought up by potential future users, never seemed to material in any services later on for whatever reasons, despite them having the best intentions for it.  At least we still have several labs supporting processing and digital services for all of us 8mm, Super 8mm and Single-8mm fans.

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