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Martin Baumgarten

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About Martin Baumgarten

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  1. 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.
  2. Most Super 8mm cameras will have their Footage Counter count if a film cartridge is inserted. Some require that the core cog rotate. So in the case of your BAUER, you will need an empty Super 8mm cartridge. The cartridge depresses a button or tab in the film chamber letting the camera know a cartridge is in there, and the core needs to rotate so that the Footage Counter will move in conjunction with the core rotation. Most Footage Counters are an approximation with a few high end camera exceptions, such a BEAULIEU, but even then the Footage Counter is still not exact, only a guide which could be off as much as a foot. So, if you have an old dead useless cartridge of film that isn't any good, you could strip out the film from it.....so the core rotates freely, or even just remove the core entirely.
  3. If the NIZO is set at the Single Frame setting, the exposure is 1/43 second. This information is from the Manual. This is identical across all of the NIZO S-xx and S-xxx models, including the Pro versions. Except for the extra features on the Pro version, all other similar functions are virtually identical, as are the electronics and mechanical internal functions. So if you used a 1/30 second exposure rating on a light meter, you'd get some slight over exposure. If using a Negative film, that would would be fine....if Reversal film, it might be fine also, relative to what you're filming, as it would be slightly over-exposed. Only a test would show/compare your accuracy. Keep in mind that the onboard camera light meter already factors in any light loss from the viewing prism and lens optics. So a direct comparison between a hand held light meter and the camera meter might not match up. Meter an 18% Gray Card and compare the camera's meter reading to that of a hand held light meter (if using a hand held light meter), then you'll see the offset difference. Factor this difference into your exposure setting of the camera. For example: If the camera shows a reading of F/4 off the Gray Card with its internal meter, yet you get a reading of F/5.6, you'll know to factor in an adjustment of 1-Stop (or whatever adjustment you would need to make, 1/3 Stop, 1/2 Stop etc). So, everytime you use the hand held light meter, you would then adjust the camera aperture in Manual Mode to compensate. You can also synch up the two Light Meters, by adjusting the exposure calibration or filmspeed adjustment on the Hand Held Light Meter until the reading you get matches the camera's reading exactly. Then you just read off the hand held meter and set the camera to the same F-Stop setting. But truly, if density of art work material changes, the reflective reading will change. So to maintain consistent exposure use an 18% Gray Card for correct exposure, and any adjustment, based on your initial exposure tests, to either lighten or darken the filmed material to your desire liking. Hope this helps.
  4. Not sure who would do that Max 8 conversion on this camera. The common method is just filing out the gate, but then the lens is not optically centered over the film. As for crystal synch, I wouldn't bother. This is a late generation Super 8mm magnetic sound camera, which uses a quartz crystal synch reference internally for accurate running. You will find that in use, it will work quite well the way it is. Since most post film making is done digitally in the computer, any slight variations can be adjusted in software to line up audio and picture should there be any significant drift. I have gotten quite accurate matches with audio on shots with durations up to one minute...and that is long for any film sequence. Hopefully someone else knows of a conversion source. You might consider buying a camera already converted to the Super 8 Wide format, since that could cost less than getting yours converted. Just a thought.
  5. Hi, the film run indicator in the viewfinder of Super 8mm cameras is linked to the take-up core mechanism, so without a cartridge in the camera, it rotates faster, thus the indicator (either a needle, or an up & down type flag as in the Chinon made cameras, or an indicator light) will move faster, relative to the linkage speed. This is not indicative of actual camera run speed. While most cameras will run or seem to run somewhat slower when under film load, in Super 8mm cameras, much of this apparent speed increase is the take up core when not under load. Actual film speed transport is determined by the camera's pull down claw mechanism. To do a dry test without any film, insert either an empty or spent film cartridge into the camera, and compare the running time to the amount of footage movement on the footage counter. The footage counters aren't dead accurate, but you'll get an idea. So, at 24fps run speed times 60 seconds equals 1440 frames, divide that by 72 frames per foot, equals 20 feet. So you should see 20 feet of movement on the footage scale via this test. True frame run accuracy would have to be determined either electronically or mechanically by a technician, or checked on the film itself for visual accuracy after a roll has been exposed and processed etc. Aside note: I was just out in Seattle, getting cooler there just as it is here in the northeast!
  6. Hi. You will want to darken the exposure (under-expose) the film a little to get into the density range you desire. Since you used the NIZO built in light meter, all you have to do is note the exposure/aperture setting in the viewfinder, switch the camera to Manual Exposure mode and adjust the aperture to what you feel you need to get it correct. For example, if the exposure needle is at F/5.6 on Auto, you just need to set it to between F/5.6 & F/8 to darken it by 1/2 Stop exposure. Due to varying degrees of density in your subject material, you would want to shoot this in Manual Exposure mode so that the scene density doesn't fluctuate among your various animated material. So, you really don't need to use a separate light meter. However, if you do wish to use a separate light meter, you could also use a 35mm SLR film camera or even a DSLR and set the camera to the film speed you are using, and the shutter speed to that equivalent to the NIZO in Single Frame mode, thus 1/43rd per second average. You'd have to select the closest shutter speed, 1/40th if available, or vary the ISO/ASA speed to compensate that slight variation. NIZO states in their instruction manual that using an external hand held meter will not read the image the same way as the built in meter. You can still use an external meter, meter the light reflected from an 18% gray card at the position of the subject (your animated material), AND then COMPARE this reading to what the camera is giving you. IF the camera's light meter states F/5.6 and the hand held light meter (having first put in your film ISO speed and shutter speed equivalent etc) and the NIZO's light meter is reading the same, then they match. IF not and for example you are getting F/4, then you will know, that F/4 (or any F-Stop setting you obtain from the hand held meter, in this example only) will yield the same image density as the NIZO will provide. Knowing this, and also knowing that the NIZO meter gave you image density that was too light (over exposed), you can adjust your exposure setting on the light meter by changing the ISO/ASA setting until the hand held meter or DSLR or 35mm SLR gives you the exposure that will provide you with the correct density. You won't know the exact correct density without shooting a test film first, and slating (filming a piece of paper with the F-Stop setting used) for each variation of exposure. Again as I stated earlier, don't bother animating anything since this is only an exposure test, shoot your image, slating it, then make another slate for the next exposure change, for example if it was F/4, then F/4 - F/5.6, then F/5.6, etc. You only need to film a few seconds of each to then later determine which is best for your work. Since the NIZO built in light meter actually works, you can just use that, as light meters are really only reference points. In Automatic exposure mode, we depend on them to give us an acceptable exposure when we film most anything. However, in an exacting type of work such as the animation you are filming, you need this to be correct and what is correct, is whatever you feel is correct for your material. No need to go out and buy a light meter when the camera light meter does work and you can use that as a reference, and then just set it to Manual Exposure and adjust it to darken the image. WHY the built in light meter is off, is another question. That could be due to the film type you're using if the meter cartridge notch isn't being read by the camera, or a variation in the meter due to age (since you're using the NIZO Pro, it uses the main battery supply for meter power, unlike the non-pro models which require separate light meter button batteries. I hope I've been able to explain myself here clearly enough. My intention truly is never to confuse anyone, which would defeat the purpose of trying to help. I hope you can sort this out on your end.
  7. On many of those earlier Super 8mm cameras, there is a small round cap that you use a coin to unscrew, this contains the light meter batteries. On later model SANKYO Super 8mm cameras, the voltage is divided up from the main Double A batteries. However, the 4x is a very early model. It was made to work primarily with the KODACHROME ASA/ISO 40 (25 with filter for Daylight) and EKTACHROME 160 (100 with filter for Daylight). So, you can use TRI-X ISO 200 (close enough for most purposes being rated at ISO 160), VISION 50D (will be rated at ISO 40 in Daylight without filter needed, so some slight overexposure which will help), VISION 200T (which will also be slightly over exposed, but these color neg films benefit from that little bit extra). The trouble issue here is if you wish to shoot the new EKTACHROME 100D which is ISO 100 in Daylight without filter conversion needed. The camera will rate it at ISO 160 so it will be under-exposed, thus darker. If you can adjust the exposure manually or if there's a Backlight button or switch on your camera (often there is) you can set the switch which will usually expose the film anywhere from 1/2 Stop to 1/Stop over the 'normal' setting. A 1-stop decrease will bring the effective rating to ISO/EI 80, close enough for most purposes, but it is slight underexposure from the 100 rating. Some cameras' backlight setting does a 2/3 Stop extra exposure, so this would also get you in the range of usability. If you only have the backlight button, then it must be held in while filming and that can be a pain. A workaround is to use some good vinyl electrical tape and tape some small coins or buttons which would press in the button and hold it that way. [I suggest just getting another camera that would allow you to do all you need manually, plenty of affordable ones under $50 on eBay such as the GAF ST-100/110/111/111E/602/802 and similar models which were all built by Chinon in Japan are built like tanks] Lastly, you do want to make sure that the metering system or at least the Manual Exposure control (if it has one). These days with the higher cost of film and processing, it's just not worth wasting the time and money on unknowns. So if you could just shoot a few feet for a film test, and then use the rest of the cartridge up in a known good camera, that would be ideal. However, if you've checked that the meter works, that there's either manual exposure control and/or backlight switch/button, and all seems to be working, that will be the best you can do prior to actually shooting film. Good luck!
  8. Repairing the light meter in that Super 8mm camera or any Super 8mm camera is a task only for experienced camera repair technicians, and even then, many would only bother doing this repair IF parts are available (old new stock or broken cameras to salvage parts from), and/or it's only certain cameras, since the more valuable ones are truly only worth the high cost of repair. That all being said, have you double checked that the meter batteries are good and that the contacts for the meter batteries are free of corrosion? Does the manual aperture setting function work? If so, you can always then just use the camera in manual mode and not worry about having the Auto exposure work. These old CANON Super 8mm cameras were well made, and often it's something little. Another thing to check is the plastic strip on the front of the camera near the name plate, this is a 'window' for the exposure scale, and if it has come loose, it will hit the needle and prevent the needle from displaying the aperture setting as well as block the galvanometer to which it is attached from working. If it's fallen in a little, usually because the old cement holding it in place has dried crumbled/failed after over 40 years!.......you can just pull it back out with some tape, and then carefully glue it in place via putting some glue around the piece and allowing the tape to hold it in place. If it's in too far to use tape, you'll have to get creative and make up a tool with something very tacky on the end, such as FunTac or similar to pull it back into position. This is all to avoid having to open up the camera to properly repair it.....and that is quite an involved task, again, not for a novice unless you don't mind risking losing the camera altogether. This workaround can work in some cases.
  9. Hi, all light meters are based on the 18% gray card standard. So really any working hand held light meter will do. You just have to know its parameters. Using an 18% gray card and metering from it will place the exposure density of the card in the correct range. Then you just need to factor in any exposure change +/- needed to compensate for camera lens/prism light loss (usually 1/4 to 1/2 Stop average for large lens cameras, going all the way up to as much as 1/Stop on some....refer to the owner's manual for using manual exposure for any compensation advice). Also, then factor in any exposure adjustment you wish to make for your subject material, to make it darker or lighter (if using any black construction type paper and wanting to make sure it appears dark enough relative to other elements in the animation). The easiest way to avoid lots of frustration is shoot a film test, using the hand held light meter, and slate each shot with a card/paper stating what the exposure setting is, and shoot a series of frames....no need to actually animate, but do shoot in Single Frame mode as if you were. Just 10 frames after each 'slate information' shot is enough. You only need to shoot a few feet for all the tests you'll need and this can be done quite quickly. Then use up the rest of the roll having fun filming family or something else you like. Once the film is processed, you can examine the image density of the tests, and referring to your 'slate info' prior to each short test, you will know which one works best for you. This will avoid wasting tons of time actually animating something, as well as wasting an entire roll and processing for a full roll test, and still yield you some good film of family and/or friends, so it's not wasted at all.
  10. Yes, the film will work in the Hanimex Loadmatic M200, which will index it to ASA/ISO 40 without the Daylight Filter in position, or to ASA/ISO 25 with the Filter in position. However, this film is now VERY OLD.....and unless it has been frozen all these long years (Svema B&W and others were discontinued by 1991/1992), it will have lost significant film speed. Since your camera is a basic Super 8mm, the workaround would be to push process the film for the speed loss, but again, the other issue is also age fog, which would require pull processing to compensate. Since it's a less than 50/50 gamble that you'll get anything you'll be pleased with, my suggestion is to just look for something else. IF the price is dirt cheap (less than half of what a new roll of B&W film would cost factoring in the postage as well), and you are willing to take the risk, AND, are even willing to maybe process the film yourself.....then it might be worth it. Via self processing, you can snip off a short segment and see how it does processed normally, then factor in compensation to process the rest of the film. The first few feet you could shoot of a gray chart with something else in the frame, so you can figure out how best it would look. Then go ahead and shoot whatever you want. These first few feet can be snipped off and processed a few different ways: B&W Negative in a continuous tone Developer, B&W Reversal, B&W High Contrast to compensate for age fog, and a variety of the above with whatever Push or Pull processing you determine. OR, find a lab that can do a snip test for you, make a determination from that and process the rest for you. The extra cost though would negate getting this junky old film in the first place. I feel these old USSR era films are best suited for self processing and experimentation. Good luck!
  11. The shots in question with the 'flicker' appear to be tripod mounted shots. If so, you need to block off the viewfinder eyepiece. Unless many Super 8mm cameras are held to the eye for filming....extraneous light gets into the viewing tube and can affect exposure, which appears as flicker because the stray incoming light is flickered by the shutter and getting to the film. Some cameras have a viewfinder light shutter to prevent this, others don't. I don't recall if your BAUER does or not. As for the side to side weaving, that could also have occurred in transfer. If not, it can sometimes be due to over or under width film, film not having seated correctly in the gate, thus the variable pressure pad on the one side isn't keeping the film in position. This pad allows the film to maintain guidance along one side of the film gate, and it is designed so it will 'ride' any film width changes, yet maintain that pressure to prevent film weave. Since many later BAUER cameras are rear film loading, it might be more difficult to examine that pressure pad along the side. However, you can place a short piece of film into the gate, pushing it into position with a long Q-Tip and see if the pad holds it in position. If not, you'll know the pad has too much slack. It can sometimes be bent slightly to provide the needed pressure against the film side. This becoming weak though is quite rare. First, hit each possible variable that could be causing this 'flicker', and via process of elimination you'll find it.
  12. Back in the day some years ago, decades really, the PX625 and similar 1.3 volt batteries powered most metering systems in many many cameras, both movie cameras and still film cameras. The adapters which have a built in resister to lower the voltage is probably the best method to use if you want to use those older cameras on Automatic. Otherwise, as Nick states.....film and processing etc is just too expensive to risk making unnecessary exposure mistakes. There will be plenty of filming errors, focus, movement, composition, lighting etc, no need to add camera technical problems to our own mistakes we make when making films. The extra voltage is slight and will not mess up the electronics of the cameras, since those are all analog electronic systems. It's also quite possible to adjust the meter's circuit potentiometer so the camera meters correctly with the 1.5 volt batteries. But, this involves opening up the control side of the camera and using a non metal tool to tweak the pot until the exposure is where it should be. Not for the faint of heart of course, and this can actually be done for a variety of the older Super 8mm cameras. There are some photos and instructions out on the Internet showing how to do this on some cameras. I don't have any links available, but search and you'll find how it's done. While not complex, you will need to to know how much to adjust for, and this will involve having a cartridge in the camera to index the meter Then using an 18% Gray Card (or white wall could work also) and comparing the exposure obtained prior to adjustment, and knowing how far off it is, thus comparing that to a known standard such as a decent hand held meter (and factoring in what the actual exposure should be with any camera prism, lens setup light loss). Anyhow, at least there are viable options to consider. I still use many older cameras that originally didn't meter for some of the modern films available now, via such adjustment methods.
  13. Those Zinc Air batteries have a fairly short life span once activated! I don't bother using them anymore unless it's in something I will use consistently before they wear down. You can use the Alkaline cells which are 1.5 volt, but only in Manual mode since in Auto Exposure they will underexpose since their voltage is higher.
  14. As Jean-Loui´╗┐s said earlier, it's tricky work reassembling these parts in cameras to make them work correctly. That being said, if the price was low enough, you could try a couple things, such as without any power to the camera, use some fine electrical contact cleaner, GENTLY on the switch areas. This will clean them hopefully and make them work correctly. Oftentimes, dust has gathered in these regions and with humidity has allowed fine tarnish to exist and cross short the switches so they don't work correctly. Do this to the main power switch, and also to the light meter test button switch on the Auto Manual knob. Carefully using dust off, you can can blow out anything lose inside, but definitely want to avoid getting crud on the lens elements or into the light meter 2 vane assembly. NIZO did change the power supply later on the Pro models so meter power ran from the Double A cells. I'm sure things would have advanced further had Super 8 remained in the mainstream and such cameras were still being made. Obviously this is not the case. Regarding the light meter functions on the NIZO 6080 and similar late model sound cameras, these are first generation CMOS chip circuit boards. When they fail, and most have, the light meter fails as so often does the manual control. There was a shop in Germany that had replacement parts, not sure if he's still in operation. As nice and fancy as these cameras are, they mostly become paper weights due to their reliance on that earlier and often failing technology. Compare that to my SANKYO XL 620, while their design has other issues, the main circuitry still seems to function well after many years. However, that being said, many also fail, as do those nice high end CANONs. The earlier electro mechnical cameras will continue to be repairable; such as the NIZO silent cameras, BEAULIEU pre 6008 series models, CHINON made 70s cameras (and all their earlier models made for PORST, REVUE, WARDS, SEARS, NORIS, BAUER, EUMIG, BOLEX and GAF). If you can't get the light meter unit working, the camera is not useless, as you can still use it in the lighting which would allow F/1.8 setting. Also, it is possible, not advised due to the delicate nature of the mechanism, but possible, to use a small piece of tape to set the galvonometer to a specific F-Stop (viewing the scale in the viewfinder) and leaving it at that. Or, you could use Neutral Density filters to adjust exposure....not idea, and certainly no Depth of Field control, but nonetheless, possible. Completely replacing the entire light meter unit from another camera requires a significant amount of disassembly and unless you have some good camera repair experience, is not recommended. Like anything though, if you got the parts camera cheap enough, and have some skill and desire, take notes, take photos etc, to help guide you back to an assembled camera. So often though, the light meter units still work, even if the meter cell is dead, the Manual Exposure Control will work, IF there is power getting to it. The knob is just a rheostat adjusting micro voltage to the vanes to adjust them. The switches are so often the problem, due to dirt, dust, light corrosion causing them to short out or not allow power to flow. Some testing with a voltage meter on the resistance setting will show if there is continuity or not. Good luck!
  15. The manual exposure function relies on the meter batteries to work. So, you can just put in most any 1.5 volt batteries that will work. For auto exposure though, they will underexpose unless there's an adjustment done to the exposure potentiometer on the circuit board...or you use the Wein or similar 1.35/1.4 volt batteries which are closest to the orginal 1.3volt PX625 cells. Later Pro NIZO camera models moved around this, but that's the way it is as tech progresses. Even so, the S-800 is an awesome camera, capable of many useful functions, and sharp images with that lens. Best of success in whatever your filming yields.
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