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Nizo 156 XL questions - Manual, anamorphic, 50D

Andreas Eymannsberger

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I just found out I can get access to a Nizo 156 XL, figured I could do something with film once.
I have a few questions regarding certain details since there's no manual online to be found.

- Is there real manual exposure with the 156 XL? Since there's no manual, is the green switch actual an aperture control?
Since there is a manual setting it might as well be the case, otherwise there's just the +1 switch, I get the function of this.

- Any point in trying the SLR Magic Anamorphot 1.33 40? Stepping it down from 49 to 52 could still work I guess. Would be even better to be able to get Super8 anamorphic.

- Accompanied by the camera are two (sadly can't geht more information) 100D Kodak stocks. Probably way too old to be of much use.
According to the infos I found the camera only meters for following speeds in Auto exposure mode:

40 and 160 ASA [17 and 23 DIN] with artificial light colour film

25 and 100 ASA [15 and 21 DIN] with daylight colour film

40 and 160 ASA [17 and 23 DIN] with black and white film

If there's a way to avoid auto exposure I guess the last point doesn't matter that much, but how about if that's not working, just use 50D and always hit the +1 switch during exposure?

Any help much appreciated!

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Hey. Glad you found this camera! It's a solid little camera. I have one and use it often. 

A few things:

It does have manual exposure but tbh, the joy of Super 8 is automatic exposure. With modern color negative stocks, you have extreme latitude to where you don't need to NAIL the exposure and the built in meters are generally reliable enough. Some people may say otherwise but I've shot probably 200 rolls 80% on auto and they have been great. The manual exposure dial is the top left one where it says (Control/Autom/Manual). Control is to test the batteries. Autom is auto-exposure. And manual is the rest of the dial to change aperture (shutter speed is fixed on most Super 8 cameras. This one is ~220º which is around 1/30). You can see the aperture dial change in the viewfinder on the left. But again, unless you want to lock exposure for a tricky lighting scene, auto is great.

I've never done the anamorphic thing but it's probably possible. Been done before. Tricky thing being that the front of the lens rotates to focus so most people I think just have the anamorphic held by supports in front of the lens. Adrian Cousins in the Super 8mm Facebook group has done it a lot.

If it's Kodak 100D, it most likely the coveted Ektachrome 100D 7285 stock from the late 2000s to 2013. It's gorgeous, saturated and punchy but it is a reversal stock so less forgiving. But can be projected. Similar to Ektachrome 100D 7294 that Kodak just re-released. This camera can expose it fine. Notice how the ASA readings says with daylight film (100 DAYLIGHT) it can read 100ASA. It'll shoot any modern stock just fine as well. 50D fine. 200T fine. 500T will expose at 160 but the film can easily handle the overexposure so I won't worry about it too much. Tri-X on bulb works fine.

Here's a roll I shot in my 156 Macro (same camera but with macro capabilities) on Ektachrome 100D a couple years ago.


Hope that all helps!

Edited by Nick Collingwood
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