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Daniel D. Teoli Jr.

Where are things at with a Telecine for both 8mm and super 8?

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I see B&H has a projector scanner for about $1400, but it only does super 8. They also have a cheaper dual 8 machine for $300 that may do lower grade scans.

 

I am looking for high quality scans with a budget about $2000. Any machine out there in that range for dual scans?

 

 

Thanks

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The Reflecta is probably your best best for that budget. The $300 scanner is garbage. Otherwise the Retroscan Universal is the only option I believe. But it's around $4500. It's probably the best you can get before going to a pro lab to scan. Tony Schilling who's active over on the Super 8 forum has one and loves it.

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Your budget is far better suited to just pay someone else with a good system. Perry at Gamma Ray Digital on his laser graphics scan station is very reasonably priced and will by far exceed any possible results you will get with a home $2000 system. You will have to transfer a lot of film at very high resolutions to get to $2000.

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The Laser Graphics Scan Station is pretty much the top dog right now for Super 8 & Regular 8 scans. You WILL notice a major improvement from the machines you're thinking about purchasing. $2000 would go a very long way with Perry, especially with 2k scans.

 

If you're looking for something you can own but still does a decent job you may want to look at these:

 

http://moviestuff.tv/moviestuff_home.html

 

But they start at $4500.

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Perry/Gamma Ray Digital Super 8 scan examples using ScanStation:

 

(reversal)

 

(negative)

 

Be sure to watch them in their full 2k or 4k settings even if you only have an HD monitor. It increases the bit rate and lets your browser downscale.

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Great color job on those two.

 

It's good to know now that with scanner's like Gamma Ray Digital's there's no more limitation on quality we can get out of Super 8. Now the ball is back in the colorist's court to take all that info and make it look as good as it can.

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Great color job on those two.

 

It's good to know now that with scanner's like Gamma Ray Digital's there's no more limitation on quality we can get out of Super 8. Now the ball is back in the colorist's court to take all that info and make it look as good as it can.

 

 

Thanks!

 

The color grading is a lot of work, unfortunately. I probably spend more time doing that than anything else.

 

It would be great if there was an HDR multi flash option for Super 8 reversal/print as it is hard to get all the fine details in shadows in E100D, Velvia, Provia, etc. The blacks do get muddied. But, it's still miles ahead of any other Super 8 scanner out there. Also, the camera options for the ScanStation continue to improve every year and new software for it makes improvements frequently too.

 

For negative, it's pretty much perfect unless you significantly over expose the negative or have excessively bright highlights relative to your midtones. In those cases you can get some sensor noise in the highlights... but these are extreme cases. Also, being a color Baer sensor, it's technically not a true RGB scan. But, we're talking extreme details that would be nearly impossible for anyone to perceive, especially after grading.

Edited by David Cunningham

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Agreed David. My results below were fantastic from GRD. Almost 16mm if I stabilized it a bit more. But sharp as hell! Looks fantastic. For another project I got scanned at GRD, the client thought it was almost too sharp. Ha. He was used to getting crappy SD telecines. But this is so much more true to the format and how it looks projected. I got some Ektachrome and Provia 100D scanned by Pro8mm at 4k and while it was really sharp, I think the GRD scans were better and easier to grade. Have yet to post those online yet. You're definitely right about spending a decent amount of time color grading. Sometimes Premiere's Auto Color ain't half bad but other times it's insane. But worth the time spent in the end.

 

 

Also I shot the below Vision3 500T in a Nizo 801M in auto therefore exposing at 160T and got it scanned at 2k at CineLab and was pleasantly surprised at how well it still came out. Definitely noisy but still not bad for 500T in beach daylight no less... So much latitude! But still not quite the GRD quality I must say.

 

 

I now get everything done at GRD at 2k overscan like the first film I posted. The 4k scans I've gotten from Pro8mm weren't any sharper than 2k scans but 2k was WAY better than 1080p telecine. I know the whole mantra for 4k scans is to not upscale when displaying on 4k screens but for now, the cost savings are worth it over the very marginal improvement in that situation.

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On the Scan Station (GRD, Pro-8, Metro, I have one for 16-35 too) there are three settings for scanning, focus calibration, base calibration and degree of sharpening. If you send some film to anyone with a Scan Station and the two setup cycles are run and the sharpening is set the same the scans should be identical.

 

The CMOSIS CMV-20000 5K CMOS sensor used in the Scan Station has a ton of pluses, it is extremely fast at 30FPS full resolution but it has fixed pattern noise in the shadows. This is a flaw that Lasergraphics is very aware of and there is no software "Fix" for it.

 

I love my Scan Station and plan to be running 8mm on it by the end of the year. 90% of the scans that come out of it are really really great but it is not a finishing scanner and that is why Lasergraphics has the Director which is a true RGB scanner with HDR.

 

The Xena dynamic perf 5K uses a On-Semi (Kodak) 16070 CCD in single tap mode 14-bit and that machine can capture a much larger range especially with reversal stocks like Kodachrome than the cmosis sensor can, without showing any noise and in single flash.

 

I have two Xena Dynamic Perf (sprocketless pinless) chassis and one Pin Registered Xena chassis. I think when we upgrade the Scan Station to be able to do 5K Super-8mm on it I am going to convert one Xena Dynamic Perf to a 4K or 5K Kodak monochrome sensor based on the 5.5micron CCD which will allow for true RGB 4K or 5K super-8 scans and multi flash HDR.

 

YMMV.

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On the Scan Station (GRD, Pro-8, Metro, I have one for 16-35 too) there are three settings for scanning, focus calibration, base calibration and degree of sharpening. If you send some film to anyone with a Scan Station and the two setup cycles are run and the sharpening is set the same the scans should be identical.

 

One would think. But as you said:

 

YMMV.

We have seen scans made on a ScanStation that I couldn't believe were made on the same machine we have. We rescanned the same film and it looked completely different (better). Much like the old days with telecine, where every facility had a different setup and you really couldn't compare the output in an apples-to-apples way even if they were using the same telecine, not all data scanners are the same. There are subtle differences based on firmware revisions, software versions, calibration, and scan settings. While it seems like Scanner A and Scanner B should result in the same thing with the same scan settings and the same film, that's typically not the case in my experience.

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Really?

 

I have seen films that Pro-8 or Metro or Cinelicious have scanned with the Scan Station and and they all looked pretty good to me.

 

Here is a recent job we did with Scan Station:

 

 

I don't see that there is much difference Scan Station to Scan Station as long as the few basic parameters are set up right.

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"all look pretty good" is different than what you said before - that different machines will result in the same thing, given the same input parameters. They won't unless they're all running identical cameras, firmware versions, software versions, and used the same grading settings in the scanner when scanning. I'm not saying each one can't do a good job, but what I am saying is that we worked extensively with Lasergraphics to try to deal with some of the noise issues, and led the push on getting those problems addressed. Not everyone has up to date systems, so one can't say that they're all going to produce the same thing. Considering these machines have been out there for about 4 years now, there could be dozens of permutations of software/firmware versions, camera versions, etc.

 

And I wish I could post an example of one film we did recently that came from another scanstation, but I can't so you'll just have to trust me. It was night and day, and they even sent me a screen shot of their scan parameters so I could try it on mine. My hunch is that the problem was a combination of camera version, firmware version and software version. because ours had recently had all of those upgraded, and we were able to produce a completely different (cleaner, easier to grade) scan, using mostly default settings.

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I found the Fools Errand video sort of invigorating and frustrating at the same time. As is, I hated the hard edged, literal, deliberateness. I decided it was best seen in glimpses through a shop window at night while walking, a busy street in Beijing, with pulses of light, neon color.... Basically, invent one's own imaginative, subversive collage...

 

I stopped watching at the white wolf, husky and wrote a page of good ideas....

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Perry you may be right about camera versions with the JAI Spark20000 which has gone through several revisions, but as far as I know those revisions on the JAI side have little to do with imaging performance. The CMOSIS CMV20000 was designed primarily (as many of these camera are) as a traffic light camera and for other specific high res machine vision applications. This sensor just has a sideline as a motion picture scanner sensor, it has that because it is high resolution and fast, but the sensor itself has some very specific issues and those can be masked to some degree but just cannot be overcome totally.

 

Chris the Fleet Foxes MV is 35mm 3-perf

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Great scan and color on the Fleet Foxes video. Very interesting artistic piece.

 

I like a camera push as much as anyone, but for every single cut? Guessing they scanned at 4k, finished in HD and used that extra resolution to zoom in. If not that's some insane focus pulling.

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