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Robert Hughes

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Everything posted by Robert Hughes

  1. Of course a Filmo is a 16mm camera. The shutter mechanisms are different enough, I'd guess that you wouldn't benefit. Besides, the $10 Filmos (like the -A and the -DA models) are too old - they have dual perf sprockets, and the older ones have a completely different speed governing device than the later models.
  2. Great idea - I'd be interested (if ever I could get the scratch to update my CP16R). Next idea, an in-camera color video tap.
  3. Fortunately the mainspring on the Eyemo is nowhere near the shutter assembly. You can pull the front assembly with shutter in about 5 minutes and review the workings - it's quite clever, simple and functional. It's possible you could make a new cam that would cause the pulldown to operate at twice speed (ie 24 pulldowns when camera is marked 12 fps). You would also need to replace the original 170 degree shutter with a bowtie shutter such as found on the old CP16's.
  4. A word of caution - some of the Kodak XL cameras used a plastic main gear that over the years degrades ("turns to cheese", some users say) and gets ruined by use. Before you wreck your camera you may want to open it up and see if the main gear (a big round thing) is plastic, and if so you may want to look around for a replacement made of nylon or metal.
  5. It's possible you need to get your lens collimated. I have a Beaulieu 4008ZM2 with the Schneider lens, and notice the ground glass focuses in a different spot than the aerial image - so mine needs collimation also. In general, lenses that are designed to be detached (like those on the 4008) are more likely to need collimation and focus adjustment than hard mounted lenses like the Nikons.
  6. Video has strong points and weak points relative to film, as you've probably read ad nauseum here. As for Beta this or digi that, I don't care too much - they all work OK (and digi Beta is better than most). The main issue I would concern myself with is gaining control over lighting, i.e. maintaining a low enough contrast ratio to avoid blowing out the highlights. Daytime skies, for instance, blow out very easily with any video format. If you need to shoot outside, try to plan your shots around early morning or late afternoon/evening, and don't shoot into the sun. Use plenty of reflectors and fill light on your talent to avoid black shadows. And for gosh sakes, get a decent boom operator that can hit his marks and not drop the mic into the shot.
  7. Oh, 33 1/3 RPM LP will always sound the best, of course! Oh, wait, you're talking about video. Never mind...
  8. As far as video BNC cables are concerned, "all aspirins are alike". The SD video spec requires 6MHz bandwidth, which is easily met by any 50' video cable in good condition. If you are very concerned with picture quality, plan to run your interconnects as 3, 4- or 5-wire component to avoid the losses inherent in the NTSC composite system.
  9. Take a look also at the Nikon R8 and R10 cameras (same body, different lenses, both good). Also look at the better Bauers such as the S 715 XL. I have these cameras, in addition to a Beaulieu 4008 - they are all nice. The problem with the Beaulieu is its need for a special battery - the others take standard AA cells.
  10. Yes, even non pin-registered cameras like Bolex or Filmo can make beautiful shots with acceptable steadiness (as long as you're not requiring rock-solid, video-like registration). Of greater importance to me is the caliber and condition of the lens. Does it focus sharply? Must you have a zoom, or can you get your shot with a fixed lens? Is the lens clear and are the coatings undamaged? Is a bit of "vintage" look appropriate to your production (lens flare, bokeh, vignetting on short lenses, etc)? I'm watching an old Hitchcock film on Hulu (Blackmail) with lots of vintage look due to the 1920's era Cooke lenses they used - and it looks, well, old.
  11. The easiest sound movie system is - video! If you need to shoot with sound, run a video camera simultaneously. Not only does this give you effective backup (and a second angle if you wish) you get stereo 16-bit digital sound, automatically synced to video. All you need to do in post is match image to video and you're in sync!
  12. I've heard of one or two Filmo S16 conversions, but in general don't think it's a very good choice for conversion. In addition to the hardened steel gate, the frame needs milling. The lenses will be offset and you will likely wind up with non-symmetrical vignetting. And the shutter may need to be expanded to cover the gate. As for the sprockets, if you have a single-sprocket camera (70-DL, DR, or late model DA) you don't need to machine down the sprockets, but you may wind up with marks on the emulsion. Older Filmos (the black ones) were dual sprocket, and aren't worth fooling with - there's too much rework involved. If you have access to a machine shop you may be able to handle this, but if not you'll be paying a lot for S16 conversion to a wind-up, $100 camera. Let us know your progress, though - if it works, I might be interested also.
  13. Hello, Sam. We all are noobs sometime, welcome to the club. I assume you've used a video camcorder somewhere along the line; film shooting is similar in that you are capturing a fleeting moment for playback later, but the technologies used are of course quite different. Film has been around since the 1830's, and moving pictures (MP) since about 1890. Using a film camera in comparison to a video camcorder is similar to driving a manual transmission car versus an automatic - you have to do more work to get it to do what you want. The biggest issue is that most MP cameras do not provide autofocus or autoexposure - you have to set the appropriate f/stop and focus to get a usable image - just like with a manual camera. As a matter of fact, one good way to practice filmmaking is to shoot a lot of still photographs with a 35mm camera set to all manual mode. You need a lightmeter to tell you the exposure level and you need to focus to get a clear image of your subject. Once you are able to reliably expose a roll of still film, you are ready to shoot 16mm movie film. Find an appropriate camera (a Krasnogorsk K3 is a good one, also consider other makes (Bolex, Bell & Howell Filmo model 70, Arriflex, etc). Make sure the camera you get still works - many of them are over 50 years old by now. Track down an operator's manual - often you can find copies on the Internet. Buy a few rolls of Kodak PlusX or TriX reversal film (100 foot daylight spools), load up your camera, and go to town! It's really not all that hard - people have been doing it for over 100 years, and you can too! One thing to note about film shooting - film stock is expensive! You measure your shots in seconds, unlike in video, where people often let the cameras run on and on, waiting for something interesting to occur. With film, you set up your shot, get just what you need, and stop immediately. Most film takes are between 10 and 20 seconds. Another item of note - basic film shooting is "mit out sound" - there is no audio track. You are making a silent film, so plan to tell your story with visuals. Audio would be added later, in post production, from separate audio recordings. When you send in your reversal film to get processed, ask your lab if they can make a video copy to VHS, DVD or some other consumer format. You will have to pay extra for the video transfer, but be careful not to go to a professional post house, where they have those million dollar telecines. Your first several films will be terrible, and you don't want to spend good money on a great transfer of your terrible shots. Matter of fact, you might prefer to try to track down an old 16mm projector, and make your own video transfers, shooting "off the wall" with your camcorder as you project your films. One last note. Shooting video is easy, but filmmakers get all the hot chicks. So start now and beat the rush!
  14. Hello, Paul. I'm not going to pull the front plate tonight to look, but I believe you'd need to have several parts replaced in order to accomplish 2-perf nirvana: At the very least, a new gate (of course), a pull-down advance cam located in the front plate assembly, and a regearing of the advance sprockets, which would be the biggest headache. I'd say no, it's not practical. Shooting it as 4-perf and adjusting in digital post is probably the better bet.
  15. I've heard that somebody in Hollywood is planning a remake of "October: Ten Days That Shook the World", by Sergei Eisenstein. Except they're leaving out all that political stuff ...
  16. There's an old Nike missile base in the Watchung Mountains with military style ruins. I remember that base from years ago, as a kid, playing in the area.
  17. Better watch your mouth or I'll send Buzz Aldrin to pop you one ...
  18. My only complaint is in the audio/music editing - you cut the song on the dominant ("five") chord, which sort of leaves us hanging, as if you couldn't time it right.
  19. I was not impressed by the prop selection - it looks like the art directors wandered into a retro shop with an open checkbook and no instructions other than "iconic style". I half expect to see the price tags still in place. Is there some era to be recreated, or is this merely some yuppie's fascination with grandma's odds & ends? Loved the string motif, though.
  20. Greetings, Brandon. Check out some of the comedy channels on YouTube, etc for ideas. For a random example, look at the BarelyPolitical/BarelyDigital folks, like the "TechKnow" series, where they do quite a bit with lighting for comedic effect.
  21. Pardon me gents, just stepping in from outside the S8 bubble... Super 8 is a fun medium but is, for all intents and purposes, dead as a capture or presentation medium. I own 3 or 4 cameras and other associated S8 gear, but never use it nowadays. Why bother? If you want quick & dirty capture you've got a cell phone in your pocket. If you want the classic low-fi film look you shoot 16mm because it's more reliable. If you want to display at a show, you'll be transferring to video anyway. If you want state-of-the-art moving picture bliss, you'd never use S8 anyway - you'd go to HD or 35mm. So shoot with Super8 if you like - then transfer to video for editing and presentation. Go for the look. But remember - Super 8 was always a home-movie format, built for cheap shots of Bucky and Frannie at the beach. Shaky frames? That's part of the look.
  22. Yeah, sounds good. Try a couple things in category (A) and a couple things in category ( B ). Let us know how it turns out. :lol: Or in other words - you are going to have to learn sometime. What better way than by doing? Go for it. Make terrible, hideous effects shots, then figure out how to make them better. Look at the shots you like in commercial movies, and figure out ways to do them yourself. Next thing you know, you'll be doing it, and you won't need to ask.
  23. How are you going to have her baby? This could make for some interesting pay-per-view... :lol:
  24. optical prisms use a very soft glass which is easily scratched. Start by blowing off dirt with compressed air. If you must, use lens cleaning solution and lens paper (very gently) to clean off the prism.
  25. Just a minor correction - 24 fps would be 90 feet per minute, not per second. Otherwise my Eyemo would run outta film in about 1.1 seconds!
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