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Boris Belay

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Everything posted by Boris Belay

  1. Hi Tom, Yes, the big limiting fqctor with photo lenses is tha they are meant to cover a 24x36mm frame and will thus appear to have twice their focal lengths when used to shoot 16mm. Combined with the fact that it's difficult to build a wide angle for a wide format like 35mm photo, this leaves you with hardly any affordable choice for wide angles, or even standard lenses. Help could come from the lenses designed for the smaller sensors of digital SLRs, but a lot of them don't have an aperture ring and the cheap ones are... cheaply made to say the least. As for searching eBay for cine lenses, don't do your search by the mount, but by the brand name (or series name, like Kinetal instead of Cooke, since you probably wouldn't want to pay the price for their 35mm format Speed Panchros anyways). Make the search as broad as possible so you also get the results from those seller who don't know the technical details of what they sell (quite common in the 16mm format, and not necessarily a bad sign for the shape of the lens). Also, since you have an ACL, don't overlook the C-mount lenses - some of them are quite good, and you won't compete with the owners of Arris, Aaton, CPs, etc. for those. Most Angénieux C-mounts are so-so to ok as they can be quite old (50's even), but brands like Cooke and Kinoptik offered their excellent lenses in C-mount too. And Kern also made excellent lenses in their Switar range, including a good 10mm that covers S-16, but you have to make sure you get the Kerns that do not bear the inscription H16RX or RX on them, since those are specified to correct for the Bolex H16 RefleX's fixed prism (non-RX Kerns should be engraved with AR). As a rough rule of thumb, you can expect most fixed focal 16mm lenses of 15mm focal length and more to cover the S-16 frame. Some 12mm do, a few 10mm too, and below that is very rare (the Kinoptik 9 and even 5,7mm do, and both were made in C-mount). And yes, the Arri B mount is the Arri Bayonet mount. Arri designed three mounts : Arri Standard, Arri Bayonet (same dimensions but with locking lugs) and Arri PL (large Positive Lock). Best, Boris
  2. Hi Tom, There are in fact a lot of lenses available in CA/Eclair and Arri Bayonet (or Arri Standard) lens mounts. Look for them on eBay, they're all over, in varying conditions, but some of them are real gems for the price. One of the great adavantage of the ACL is its lens mount system, and the flexibility it gives you. Readily available are the ACL mounts Eclair made : the CA, of course, the Arri Bayo, the Arri Standard. They also made a Nikon mount for the ACL that is quite rare (but far more solid and precise than a Nikon-to-C would be). Custom-made ACL mounts have also been made by different shops : PL, Aaton,... also quite rare and expensive. Photography lens are fine for filming, but the ergonomics might not be the best, nor their construction (unless you go for high-price lenses). Look for traditional cine lenses of good quality and you may find them surprisingly affordable as more and more people rush for the PL mounts. Since you shoot Super-16, you may have trouble finding an affordable zoom lens (besides the Angénieux 15-150, which is sometimes -- but not always -- poor), but the Cooke Kinetal series of fixed focal lenses can give you very good picture quality at a cheap price in Arri St mount. Kinoptiks are very good too, but a bit cultish and quite expensive. Zeiss tend to be more expensive because of their reputation as the sharpest. My advice with an ACL is : find the good and cheap lens that you want, than locate the adapter, if you don't already have it. Best, B.
  3. They are just plugs indeed, but they open right onto the inside of the camera. While the Bolex body is not airtight, you are exposing the mechanism to possible damage (water, etc.). Why would you want to leave them out ? Boris
  4. Hi Nicolas, They do exist, as Eclair made them for the NPR (some NPRs were made with two C-mounts, custom ordered, or in case you wanted two CA mounts.) I may have one somewhere. Otherwise, yes, a custom-made one would cost a lot. Les Boscher would be one person to ask. Best, B.
  5. Hi Sean, This may be old at this point, but I wanted to post this info for anyone still trying to understand Angénieux's system for older lenses (and forget about getting info, and above all parts from Angénieux at this point, they just don't care, and mostly don't remember they made the 12-120 for 30 years or so -- or should I say, the 12-120 made them...). So, for all the classic Angénieux lenses, from the early 60's up to about 1980/85, each zoom lens has a description giving the focal variation multiplied by the widest focal setting (10x12 in the case of the 12-120 lens) followed by a type, for example your 10x12B. the types are as follow : Type A is the model with a built in viewfinder (and generally a C-mount). Type B is the regular model with various standard cine mounts (C, Arri, Eclair, Aaton, CP...). Type C is the model collimated for Bolex Reflex (whether in C mount or Bolex Bayonet mount). Other "types" were added in the 70's to match video camera mounts, but I don't know much about these. So, a 4x18 A lens is a 18-64 Reflex zoom. A 20x12B is a 12-240 zoom in any of the common cine mount, and so on. This is helpful to know to identify lenses that were adapted later on (some reflex lenses lost their viewfinders, for example), or generally messed with (non matching type indication), since it's very easy to switch the fron element on one of these lenses with another from the same family (even though changing the front element should not matter optically, since they were the same across the 3 types). Fixed focal Angénieux lenses also have Type indication, which describes the type of lense design they have (for instance, all Type R fixed focals are retrofocus design, and so, mostly wide-angle). Lens mount is not indicated in this type-system either. Some fixed focal Angé cine lenses in C-mount have an engraving across the barrel that states 'Special P.' which stands for Special Paillard and indicates the lens is collimated for Bolex Reflex. These are very rare, and all other Angénieux fixed focals (including the very common 10mm.) should not be used on a Bolex Reflex without first checking its optical performance at wide apertures. Hope this is helpful and clears out some of the confusion out there on these very common lenses. Best, B.
  6. Hi Tom, That makes yours just a few cameras younger than mine, and the latest one I've traced so far, so definitely send those photos, if only for the record. I imagine yours was produced in '84 or '85. Send me the serial on the motor, and on the Kinoptik viewfinder, to see if the serials match mine. Not sure production ever went past the 3000 unit line, so the first person with a 3000+ serial number gets a bonus present ! Best, Boris
  7. To get the ball rolling (see my last post), I thought I would send on my *preliminary* history of the ACL. If you have any comments, don't hesitate ! -- Boris The evolution of the ACL is a bit of vexing one to figure out as it has not been well documented, even in Eclair literature. First complication is the French/English double history and different timelines. At leat one thing is simple about the British ACL : it did not evolve beyond the original model except for the addition of the Brit 120m. mag (developped before the French mag), but production extended into the mid-70's, overlapping all the while with the French production. The French camera evolved progressively, and even as improved features were available, the older ones remained as an option (viewfinder, lightmeter, etc.). As far as I can figure it out so far, the history of the French ACL is something like this : 69-70 : Filmaker Jean Rouch is given a pre-production prototype to test during the filming of a 10 part television series and continuously gives feedback to Eclair engineers Coma and Lec?ur. The camera is officially introduced in October 1970 at Photokina 70. Very early models (prototypes) have a traditional toggle switch to start the camera. No "Eclair" or "Eclair ACL" on front of camera or side of magazine. Spring 1971 - original model : small base, small motor (MIALA), small Angé viewfinder (with visible split lines), 60m. mag only. The handgrip has no provision for filter holders. Camera illustrating the 1971 sales brochure has body # 446 1972 - production stops in France for about a year, then starts again under the SOREMEC parent company. Camera illustrating the 1973 Soremec manual has body # 418, but pictures are probably reprints from 1971 manual. 73/74 - progressive introduction of : a) the French 120m. mag (after the British made their own), b) the optional built-in lightmeter (both announced in sales brochure 7301 and '73 manual), c) the heavy-duty multi-speed motor (first model MIMUL does not have mirror parking feature, silver speed rotary switch) and matching mid-size base (announced in '73 manual as forthcoming, depicted in brochure 7405 and introduced in October 74 according to Parts Manual), d) high-speed modified 60m. magazine roller design, e) the new magazine release protection system (which is not a feature introduced with the ACL II, despite what is said on the Super-16 ACL site), and finaly f) the improved Angénieux VF. The model incorporating all of these improvements is officially known as the Type 1974, but it's what people often call the 1.5 ACL. Sometimes later, the heavy-duty motor is upgraded to the MIVAR model, which includes the mirror-parking function (mirror sign engraved on motor side, black speed switch then black and silver locking switch). French serials of cameras range in the 1200-1700 or so ; the camera illustrating the 1976 manual has body # 1615 and motor # 1133. 76-78 - Eclair releases the rare "Single System" MOS sound ACL with a larger base needed for the sound electronics (French serials begin at 1700). The (optional) small Angénieux viewfinder changes to a tubular form. The motor is upgraded to be externally synched (model MIPIL with a bevelled plate that protects the inching knob, serial # begin at 2001). Meanwhile, the 'silent' camera gains the large base "for future electronics" to match the base of the MOS model (base is empty and does not have Lemo synch connector in). The camera illustrating the MOS ACL manual has body # 1700 and motor # 2001. 79-85 - Eclair comes up with the name ACL II for the camera including all of these improvements and a new set of Kinoptik viewfinders (two kinds : the well-known large, orientable kind and also a small, non-orientable one). The large base now houses the Lemo connector for external synching (unfortunately, the Eclair Botex synching box is a very, very rare accessory today) The camera also comes with an on-board battery holder and the magazines have 2-part pressure plates. Strangely, Eclair never printed an ACL II manual, only a 4 page insert that is meant to replace the central pages in the 1976 manual. The insert describes the Kinoptik viewfinder, the large base and its connections, and the new ergonomic grip. ACL II serial numbers run from about 2300 to 3000 or so. The camera illustrating the US ACLII brochure has body # 2516. I own an ACL II wth body # 2939, which is the highest that I have encountered so far. July 1985, production has stopped after bankruptcy of the Soremec/Eclair company, and in April 1986 Aaton buys out the remaining stock, parts and patents. In the mean time, further models based on the ACL had been developped but hardly produced : the famous S-16/reg-16 Panoram (3 or 4 working prototypes built), but also an EX-16 model, which is basically a modernized version of the original ACL concept of a light, minimalist camera (60 m. mags, small Kinoptik VF, unobtrusive motor designed by Aaton). The last ACL IIs produced are basically the same as the 1979 version, with the MOS option still offered, as well as an undocumented time-coding system. The lightmeter remained optional throughout production, so an ACL II does not necessarily have a lightmeter. A factory Super-16 option was also offered at some point in the late 70's, but I have yet to identify any such model. Incredibly enough, internally the camera was changed only in very minimal ways throughout its 15 years history, and despite the ACL's growth from a light, minimal sister-model to the NPR to a full-blown (and much heavier) very versatile production camera -- a testimony to the excellent original design of Coma and Lec?ur ! After the Aaton buy-out, service of existing cameras is left in the hands of the main French service center renamed Epifac/Eclair SCOP (the remains of which are owned by Gérard Gallé of ART & MEDIAS in Argenteuil), while Aaton retained the control over all electronic parts. A new motor (that of the EX-16 ?) and a set of new options (lightmeter, etc) were announced by Aaton, but I don't believe many were delivered, if any at all. Understandably, Aaton chose to concentrate on the production of its own cameras, after the demise of the company that first hired Beauviala to adapt his quartz-controled motors to the Eclair NPR.
  8. Hi everybody, and happy new year! OK, this is a big one : I want to build a website dedicated to the ACL, info, specs, details, and history. It's not easy as Eclair has disappeared without leaving much in the way of archives. Plus the publications it put out in the period were quite sketchy... no real manual for the ACLII, for instance. But I already have a lot of info accumulated : I have been collecting manuals, adverts, tech docs, pictures of cameras and their serial numbers, etc. Still, I want a bit more info so that whatever I put on the site is solid and definitive. So I would be interested in hearing from anybody who owns an ACL (I would like pix and serial numbers of camera, motor, and viewfinder to date cameras by their serials), or who has documentation of any kind about the ACL (except for the two pdfs of manuals that everybody already has), especially tech. docs, or sales fliers, or from anybody who has first-hand experience with the Eclair company when it was still active. You can write back on here, or directly to my personal mail (with pix, for instance) : eclair.cameras@coditel.net Thanks! Boris
  9. Hi again Evan, How is the camera doing ? Could you send me some pictures of the viewfinder, as well as the serial number on it, if any ? I'm trying to compile all the info I can find on ACLs to make a website with real info and docs, and your viewfinder is a rare model. I believe it's the last kind Angénieux designed for the ACL, in '76/77 or so, based on the original 'small' viewfinder. It basically looks like a trimmed down version of the earlier angular model, but I've never seen detailed pix of one. A bit later, Angénieux stopped making V-Fs for ACLs and Kinoptik came out with the well-known improved orientable V-F as well as their little known non-orientable one. Thanks for any info you can provide on it!
  10. Hi Marc, I have those : write me directly. Happy new year! Boris
  11. Boris Belay

    25 fps position?

    Yes, on top of the variable speed motor is a switch that can be moved forward (24 ips) or back (25 ips), and corresponds to the N (Normal) position of the speed dial. Perhaps your motor was repainted and those engravings are not visible anymore. Best, B
  12. Hi, Congrats on your new ACL -- a really great 16mm. camera indeed ! To answer your dating/model questions : no, your camera is not an ACL II. It's an early-mid 70's French-build model with a later model added (the synchro function on the motor and the bevelled plate around the inching knob are late 70's additions). That motor should have no problems with 400ft mags. If you want to know more about the history of that actual camera, it was sold on ebay by a Canadian shop (pseudo abcnet.com) a few months ago to the guy who sold it to you in turn. Perhaps the original seller knows more -- he may even have changed the motor on it. The power connector was also changed to the standard XLR-4, which is a nice practical improvement. And yes, you need to remove the film spool on the take-up side of the mags if you want to use a daylight spool on the take-up side. You could also wind those 100ft rolls on cores, but you need to unload the camera in a changing bag. One of the great qualities of the ACL is the ability to use 400ft/200ft/100ft rolls on either cores or daylight loads, with emulsion either wound in or out, and of sourse with either single or double perf. You can't get much more flexible than that ! You may want to let your lab know that the exposed film comes out with Emulsion Out, though. Good luck with your tests and don't hesitate to ask more questions! B.
  13. Hello Dirk, I'm interested, but what do you consider a reasonable offer ? Bauer P7's can be found on ebay for 150-200 Euros, but the double system model is rare, so I wouldn't know what to offer. Best, B.
  14. Boris Belay

    Two more

    Sorry, that should obviously have been : To answer your two questions...
  15. Hi Ray, Sorry if I'm responding too late... Did you buy the camera in the end ? I don't think CA$1300 is a bad price for an entry level ACL kit in good running order. If the camera was indeed serviced recently and you get to look at it hands on, you're probably getting a better deal than you would on eBay, where these kits may be cheaper (sometimes), but without the convenience of meeting the seller and so on. As for the camera itself, it is an early model with the original motor. The 400 ft mags have proven troubelsome for these motors sometimes, but in my opinion, if they are properly maintained and loaded (which was not necessarily the case with the news crews of the 70's), they should function well. The seller should be able to tell you anyways how much he's shot with that combination of camera and mags, and all may be fine as it is. As for 200 ft mags, they're great because they make the camera so small, so they're definitely worth you're looking into them. I wouldn't expect to pay more than US$200 for one on eBay -- sometimes quite a bit less. Best, B.
  16. Boris Belay

    Two more

    To reply to your two answers : There is no low battery indicator on the camera itself as it's a modular design with self-contained sub-parts. The low battery light is in fact the out-of-synch warning light on the motor, which basically tells you you don't have enough power left to run the motor up to speed. And the motor will stop pulling film way before the battery is so drained that it gets damaged, so no risk to go too low by simply running the camera. As for the light meter, Eclair opted for a deviation principle light-meter : it tells you that the light is changing by up to 3 stops up or below a given measured level, rather than telling you how much light actually comes in. So in practice it works like this : you point your camera at the subject and frame it as you want to shoot it (in the correct focal position in case of a zoom) and with the electrical circuit on (leds lit up in the viewfinder), you set the leds to the middle position with the dial on the base of the camera. This is your 'light measurement' and the lightmeter will then move if the light changes in your viewfinder, indicating a possible over- or under-exposure and allowing you to correct it with the diaphragm on the lens. This metering system was made with the idea that the camera would be used in uncontroled light situations (like news gathering and such) and that the operator needed a simple system to make sure the light variations would remain within an acceptable range (or else, be corrected manually). Of course, you still need an external light meter ('proper' kind) to tells you what your beginning f-stop should be. The camera's lightmeter is thus just a monitoring device while filming. So keep that Spectra by your side ! Best, B
  17. Hello Kazu, Besides the techies mentioned in the previous response (good choices), I know that Eclair used to make these adapters. They are quite rare but you should look for them on eBay regularly. And yes, if you plan on using a heavy zoom lens on a C-mount camera, think about supporting the lens with some kind of support. Also, make sure the apapter you get clears the back of your specific lens. For example, if you have one made, tell the technician what lens you want to use with it so that they make sure the back of the lens will fit in the adapter. Best, Boris
  18. Hi Dave, Get the primes, and save the time and money on the 9,5-95. It's an older design (late 50's), based on the 12-120, which wasn't great to begin with (at least not those up to the 70's). But most importantly, if you want portability and you have an Eclair for the 'big' shots, definitely go with the primes. A Rex-5 with three primes fits in a shoulder-slung bag and is just the best carry-everywhere pro-16mm. kit around. I have ACL's galore, but I'll never give up my wind-up H16 + Kern primes. It's not just picture quality and portability, it's also about how conspicuous you are when shooting. As soon as you get those big lenses out there, you're back on the production line. But as Brian points out, this doesn't mean you have to give up on zoom lenses. The Berthiot/RTH 17-85/3.8 mini-zoom is great, especially since you can mount it on the turret with two primes : it's designed to fit where the tele usually goes and clears even the 10mm. It's a great combination. Look for the improved but rare Kern version (17-85/3.5) if you can. Good Bolex shooting ! Boris
  19. Test your magazines over and over with spent film, then shoot a roll or two with fresh film, until you're more confident about them. I for one have had no problem so far with my Brit mags, that's what I was trying to convey. As for what will make you feel secure when that important shoot comes, I can't tell... But why don't you get back to Bernie and ask him to elaborate, then post his detailed answer here so we have an opinion based on his long experience ? That would take one step further in that old vexing debate, no ? Then we could ask Les Bosher, and get a British opinion too ! By the way, here is a picture of the prototype French mags as announced in the 1973 French ACL manual. You can clearly see that it's the principle of the British design, but modified probably to incorporate the French style footage counter. I don't believe these ever went into production, as the brochure announcing the "Type 1974" ACL with its new 120m. mag shows the final design of the French mag (and does not tout the benefits of the Brit design anymore...).
  20. Boris Belay

    ACL Mags

    Test your mags with film when you get the camera back : that's the best way to know whether there is a problem with them. But beforehand, look them over carefully : is the film path clean ? Do all the rollers turn smoothly ? Does the film run through the mags smoothly ? You can run the camera with film with the mag doors removed to observe the film motion. Also, it ony takes 3 or 4 screws to remove the film channel leadind from the feed side to the receiving side : this should be inspected as it could have hidden dirt or film bits, or stuck rollers inside. The srews are the ones with the rounded heads, not the ones with the flat heads (which are for roller axles and such). Also, if you remove that film channel, the spring-loaded rounded piece of plastic that pushes the mag door open will come off with the film channel, so expect it to jump out (it's easy to put back, though). But of course, try it out with film to be sure it doesn't get scratched, or bunched, or whatever else. ACL mags are well designed, so yours may well be in useable shape as you got them. And yes, you can use Aaton Minima loads in your mags. Both the 200 and 400 ft mags take either Emulion In or Emulsion Out winds, since the feed side is not driven but just pulled (and the rollers are placed in such a way that both are acceptable).
  21. Trying to stay away from broad generalization -- even those about broad generalization ;) --, I would take Bernie at his word, as I trust he has a lot more experience with these cameras than most of us here. If you say that he says they are 'risky', but not that they should be put in the bin, perhaps they are indeed of a less reliable design than the French mags in the long run... I don't mind British magazines myself, but I service all of my mags, and of course, they work when they are serviced (Eclair-Debrie UK would not have released mags that simply don't function). This reminds me of people who keep harping on the 'falling magazines issue' of ACLs. Anyone who has spent two seconds thinking about the physics of how ACL mags are attached to ACL bodies will understand that 30 years down the line you can't mix and match any mag to any body without some kind of adjustment. This is not even related to the question of where they were built, but simply of considering that the ACL was produced over a 15 year period and any one camera and magazine will have had a very different life since 1971 (or any year until 1986) than the next. So, get those mags matched to your camera, or sell those that are a few microns too used for your body back on eBay, where somebody with a differently adjusted camera will pick it up ans use it happily. And get your mags (Brit or French) serviced first, try them out on your camera with spent films 10 times over, and either calm your fears down or get the best and latest. But don't question a recognized tech with several decades of experience on a statement he did not make. Brit mags have a very different design to the French ones. In fact, Brit mags were designed first, and when the French decided it was a good idea to expand the ACL to 1o min. of shooting, they began by copying the Brit design : the prototypes shown in early announcements of the French 120m. mag show a very similar design to the Brit mags (and tout their low torque winding arm). Yet, by the time they went into production, the French mags were completely redesigned to what we know them to be. So perhaps there is a worthwhile reason to the French redesign, and still no reason to throw away Brit mags altogether... I'd take Bernie at his word here, and perhaps even ask for more details on his position straight from him. And to add a bit to the original question, yes, there was a complete redesign of the pressure plate late in the production of French mags. The plates have four small guiding posts on the sides, but more importantly, the pressure plate is in two parts : the bit just behind the film gate is independant and has a spring with a lower pressure than the rest of the plate (on which it is mounted). Here is a picture :
  22. Hi Dave, No, sorry : not much info on the NPR/Coutant. That would take even more research, as that camera had such a long lifespan and just as little clear info from Eclair on its evolution. My info is culled from all the Eclair manuals, brochures, and price lists that I could get my hands on, as well as scanning both the French and US specialized press (American Cinematographer) for news, pictures, ads, etc. Web-sites and eBay is a very good source of info too, but these have to be cross-checked with period info. Anyways, I should post all of this on a site, and all my info on Bolex too. Then perhaps the Cameflex, and the NPR... Cheers, B
  23. Ooops, first edit... The ACL sound model is obviously not MOS. It's a Commag single-system camera with the possibility of using either the built-in recording features or an outside recorder. Older ACL cameras could even be adapted for the latter option.
  24. Hi Allen, Your camera is indeed an ACL II model. Somehow, it's lost its Kinoptik VF somewhere along it's 30-or-so year life (all ACL VF are switchable, provided you have the matching base, which mounts with two screws). Since you ask that question, here is my long answer regarding the dating and the history of the ACL. The evolution of the ACL is a bit of vexing one to figure out as it has not been well documented, even in Eclair literature (I'm trying to find out all the information I can before posting it on a website). First complication is the French/English double history and different timelines (at leat one thing is simple about the British ACL : it did not evolve beyond the original model except for the addition of the Brit 120m. mag, but production extended into the mid-70's, overlapping with the French production). The French camera evolved progressively, and even as improved features were available, the older ones remained as an option. Basically, the order is something like this : Spring 1971 - original model : small base, small motor, small Angé viewfinder, 60m. mag only. 1972 - production stops in France for about a year, then starts again under the SOREMEC parent company. 73/74 - progressive introduction of : a) the French 120m. mag (after the British made their own), b) the heavy-duty multi-speed motor (first models did not have mirror parking feature) and matching mid-size base, c) the optional built-in lightmeter, d) the new magazine release protection system (which is not a feature introduced with the ACL II, despite what is said on the Super-16 ACL site), and finaly e) the improved Angénieux VF. The model incorporating all of these improvements is officially known as the Type 1974, but it's what people often call the 1.5 ACL (French serials range in the 1200-2000 or so). 76-78, Eclair releases the rare MOS sound ACL with a larger base needed for the sound electronics (French serials around 1700). Later, the motor is upgraded to be externally synched, the large base ("for future electronics") is adopted on all ACLs, and Angénieux stops making viewfinders for Eclair, replaced by Kinoptik (two kinds : the well-known large, orientable kind and also a small, non-orientable one, more rounded than the original small Angénieux model). By 1978, Eclair comes up with the name ACL II for the camera including all of these improvements. By then the ACL II motors have been further improved with a bevelled plate that protects the inching knob, and the large base of the camera houses a Lemo connector for external synching (unfortunately, the Eclair Botex synching box is a very, very rare accessory today). Strangely, Eclair never printed an ACL II manual, only a 4 page insert that is meant to replace the central pages in the 1976 manual. The insert describes the Kinoptik viewfinder, large base, and the new ergonomic grip. ACL II serial numbers run from about 2000 (or perhaps 2200) to 3000 or so. By 1986, production had stopped after bankruptcy of the Soremec/Eclair company, an attempt at reviving the company by its main engineers and employees, and the final Aaton buy-out of remaing stock, parts and patents. In the mean time, further models based on the ACL had been developped but hardly produced : the famous S-16/reg-16 Panoram (3 or 4 working prototypes built), but also an EX-16 model, which is basically a souped-up return to the original ACL concept of a light, minimalist camera (60 m. mags, small Kinoptik VF, unobtrusive motor designed by Aaton). The last ACL IIs produced are basically the same as the 1978 version, with the MOS option still offered, as well as an undocumented time-coding system. The lightmeter remained optional throughout production, so an ACL II does not necessarily have a lightmeter. A factory Super-16 option was also offered at some point in the late 70's, but I have yet to identify any such model. Incredibly enough, internally the camera was changed only in very minimal ways throughout its 15 years history, and deespite the ACL's growth from a light, minimal sister-model to the NPR to a full-blown (and much heavier) very versatile production camera -- a testimony to the excellent original design of Coma and Lec?ur ! After the Aaton buy-out, service of existing cameras was left in the hands of the main French service center renamed Eclair SCOP (the remains of which were bought by Gérard Gallé of ART & MEDIAS in Argenteuil), while Aaton retained the control over all electronic parts. A new motor (that of the EX-16 ?) and a set of new options (lightmeter, etc) were announced by Aaton, but I don't believe many were delivered, if any at all. Understandably, Aaton chose to concentrate on the production of its own cameras, after the demise of the company that first hired Beauviala to adapt his quartz-controled motors to the Eclair NPR. If anybody has any information or corrections to add, or any questions related to the history and dating of ACLs, don't hesistate to ask !
  25. Hi, Could someone recommend a lab for overnight processing of a couple of 100ft rolls in NYC ? I'm passing through town and setting up a couple of Bolex for time-lapse and would like to run a test first. Fast processing (neg dev. only) is what I really need, but friendly and cheap service would be a nice plus. Boris
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