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Will Montgomery

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Posts posted by Will Montgomery

  1. You should notice the viewfinder getting darker or brighter as you adjust the aperture. You won't see blades or anything like that but it will get darker or lighter. Sometimes I find myself opening it up all the way to focus then putting it back to where it should be although this can be dangerous if you forget to set it back.


    It could be some sort of disconnection between the aperture ring (that's not on the actual lens but on the smaller meter lens) and the aperture. You should see a difference as you manually move it. You can still shoot a test roll and make notes of the aperture as you shoot to see if it's really changing or not.

  2. That's what I expected. It would seem more time consuming for the scan house to try and figure out what was needed vs. just running the whole reel down. I think I may need to do it locally and sit with the scanning guy to make it move more quickly for them.


    The only reason I would pursue this method is that I only need like 20 seconds of some of these 400' reels. Hoping the reel will show off "what's possible" when shooting film that I can use to sell clients so scan quality and color is going to be important.


    Film seems to be an easy sell for me with music videos but I'd like to broaden it's use with my clients where possible.

  3. I'm in the process of putting together a film DP reel. I have scans/telecines of all the material but they are of wildly differing qualities...from SD to 4k.


    If I know I only need 45 seconds of a particular reel, is it practical to tell the scanning house exactly what to scan from each reel...by approximate time or by frame grabs and only scan that vs. scanning an entire 400-800' reel?


    I'm not trying to cheap out, but I also don't need everything on the reel.


    My goal is to get quality and consistent 4k scans of everything and work locally with a colorist to make it shine.


    Is that just a standard request or should I expect to pay a slight premium due to finding the part I need scanned then loading and unloading reels so much? (not opposed to such a fee.)


    Thanks for any insight,


    Will Montgomery


  4. If you're scanning negative, you get better highlight detail and roll-off in grading with HDR. You see virtually no sensor noise when you really push the grade to the extreme. With reversal, you eliminate sensor noise in the shadows, and in some cases you can even pull out marginal shadow detail that wouldn't be apparent with a single-pass scan, while mantaining your highlights.


    As a general rule, I find that grading 2-pass HDR scans is much more flexible than single pass scans (which still look great, but if you're really pushing it, HDR makes a big difference).


    So you really can see a difference with negative? May have to try that next time. Is it the kind of thing you notice once you start grading (more info to work with) or is it apparent right from the flat scan?

  5. or is super 16 not intended for projection,

    just video hd transfer/35 blow up-


    Super 16 is intended as a "capture only" format. 16mm film prints use that space for sound.


    If you really wanted to get into it, through some fancy optical printing tricks you could probably take a S16 negative, crop it a little top & bottom then make it cinemascope anamorphic and print to a standard 16mm release print that would be anamorphic widescreen. Those lenses are fairly common for 16mm projectors.


    I'd talk to Tommy at Video Film Solutions in Maryland if you really want to get your S16 image onto a standard 16mm print.



  6. Focus has always been my weakness with Super 8, but out-of-focus shots kind of make it look more Super 8 anyway.


    Stabilization is not quite intuitive in Resolve, but there are undoubtedly some good YouTube videos to help you through it. At one point it wasn't available on the free version but I think they've changed that now.


    A wise colorist once told me, whenever you have the lighting setup just right...double it. It always easier to remove light in post but not so great putting it in.

  7. I have a closet full of 8mm, Super 8 and 16mm (and a little 35mm). I'm so glad I shot 16mm of the kids when they were little...huge difference from the Super 8...which I still love...but that 16mm just looks amazing 15 years later scanned in 4k.

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  8. Rule of thumb seems to be in the U.S. Arri parts are more available, including with the odd part still available from Arri NY (I had an Arri SR1 motherboard repaired about 5 years ago there).


    Aaton/Eclair parts seem to be more available in Europe.


    Every city in the U.S. had Arri camera rental houses at one point. Still quite a few rental houses around the U.S. will dust off an SR3 for you if you ask nicely.

  9. Cameras like the K3, ACL or Scoopic are great. They let you run & gun and capture things that would be really hard with an SR...they really are wonderful home movie cameras and can supplement a big camera shoot well in some circumstances. Especially in music video performance shoots. I recently hauled an SR 2 all around town for a music video and was really happy with the footage but I was thinking it would have been so much easier with a Scoopic.


    The issues you run into are steadiness, sync and general reliability. Can you make a feature with one? I guess you could try but not sure if you'd want to try... but for what they do they really are wonderful and can be amazingly sharp with the right lens, lighting and exposure.


    The question of whether or not to move to an ACL or SR is kind of confusing; they are totally different cameras for different situations. If you do move to one of those cameras I'd definitely keep the K3 and you may find you'll use that more often for the type of shooting you do.

  10. If I buy a new one, that'll be my third... and who knows if that one will work properly... I rather get this one fixed and shoot my upcoming short film with it and in the meantime save money for a better camera.


    Some cameras just aren't made for fixing...to find a part for a K3 someone would have to take apart another K3 so why not save a couple hundred dollars and buy THAT K3 for $200? Then maybe you'll get lucky and find one that doesn't break. I got lucky on my first one and it was great.


    Repairing a K3 could be a minimum of $250 from a decent repair person and only if they could find parts.


    I have about 12 Canon AF310XL Super 8 cameras that I've purchased over the years for $10-$50 each and I hand them out at events I'm covering to attendees to get really cool "home movie" footage. They have old plastic gears and at least one fails at every event. I have a pile of 4 or 5 dead ones but it's just not practical to repair them when I can buy another for less than $50.


    Also keep in mind that once you step up to a pro level camera you'll need a good camera tech to send it to for maintenance once a year depending on how much you use it. Think of them more like a fine Swiss clock that you're constantly shaking and rattling rather than a solid state camera that will live forever if you don't drop it. So add about $300/year to your cost calculations for a clean & lube.

  11. If you're K3 dies, just by another one. Cheaper than trying to fix it for sure. You may have missed the best buying opportunities for pro level Super 16 cameras, but keep an eye out for an ACL or Arri SR 2/3 if you want to shoot with sound.


    Blimping a K3 seems like kind of a futile gesture...once you get it setup you'll have to take it apart to change your 100' reel out...not very practical for most shooting and that camera was never meant for that; it was meant as a step up from Super 8 for home movies and is great in that way.

  12. Kodak's new processing and scanning service will define what Super 8 costs will be while it lasts. I can't imagine they could sell the film, process it and scan it to 4k for less than $80 per roll+shipping...probably more like $99. For three and a half minutes? It will die quickly and be lampooned on the internet forever.


    We all know that's pretty much the cost of Super 8 with a decent scan, but the world doesn't know it yet. Is it worth it? Sometimes...guess it depends on what you're shooting.


    They SHOULD offer a budget service for just film and processing of Ektachrome for $50 or less. That might let it have a chance.

  13. the main purpose of the tape is to identify that the magazine actually has film in it and what stuff that is and which reels etc.




    Big ugly bright colored tape means "think twice before opening."


    Old 2C mags might benefit from a little light leak protection honestly.

  14. 4. I do understand that old cameras sometimes needs CLA. But i dont have another 350$ for it. How can i figure out do i need CLA or not?


    If you don't have $350 for a CLA you're in the wrong hobby. Just one 100' roll of 16mm (~3.5 minutes) will cost you close to $100 to purchase, process and transfer.

  15. I keep seeing pro8 dis in here, but so far, the people I've emailed have been really cool, including Rhonda Vigeant.


    Pro8mm can be just fine. From what I've seen over the years they seem to have an "A" team and a "B" team (maybe interns or the overnight crew?) so either your stuff comes out great or has big issues. Once you've been burned its hard to forgive, but honestly it would probably be fine to try Pro8mm. At least they can do the processing and transfer in one place.


    If you're in LA I'd check out Spectra as well...they can process and transfer Super 8 negative and reversal in one place too.


    Lightpress folks are great colorists. Their machine might not have the best specs but the result will be amazing.


    Gamma Ray Digital will give you an amazing scan (probably the best machine available) at a reasonable price. They love what they do and it shows. Great company. My flat scans from the have been great and while not cheap, good price for the high quality you get.


    I would suggest sending one roll to a place like Lightpress or Cinelicious to see what really good colorists can do for your film. Makes all the difference in the world but of course you pay for it.

  16. If Super 8 dies, film could very well die with it because you lose that cheap, accessible entryway into the world of celluloid.


    Unfortunately it's just not as cheap and accessible as it used to be. If Kodak comes up with an inexpensive HD transfer then that may go a long way to keeping film alive...although it will drive other companies out of business and I'm sure they are sensitive to that.

  17. I'm more interested in their processing & transfer system. If they can keep that reasonable I will shoot more Super 8. Right now I'd rather shoot 16mm since the transfer costs me about the same anyway.


    As far as the $2500 price point, it is high compared to all the used cameras we have but with good DSLRs costing $3000+ and the best Super 8 cameras back in the day costing a similar amount its really not out of the ballpark. They may not sell a ton of them but its not unreasonable for what's involved with making them.


    But if they wanted a hipster film revolution boost they need to get that down to $500 or so.

  18. With K3s you can just buy a new one when its time for service...less money than sending it in for service. :)


    Bernie at Super 16 Inc can work on those...his Laserbrighten process is particularly good on those to brighten the viewfinder. Don't know anyone in LA that works on hobby cameras but I'm sure there's someone.

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