8mm home movies telecine questions

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Vince Maskeeper, Mar 19, 2003.

  1. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

    Jan 18, 1999
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    I have some really old 8mm films from my Grandmother's attic that I would like to restore as much as possible-- and have transfered to a digital format. My dream would be to find somewhere that could dump to 720p high-def-- but I think that my only chance might be a pro house- and we're talking mega mega bucks.

    So, I'm leaning towards NTSC DV. It seems most places are using the same basic box to do the camptures, and 3 CCD XL-1s... which this seems like something I could do myself- and I'm really hoping for something much nicer. Heck I'd love to find a negative scanner that could automatically feed each frame and scan them super high resolution... but that is also unrealistic.

    So my questions are as follows:

    1) Has anyone dealt with any pro house doing 8mm dumps to DV they were SUPER happy with, and seemed to be more than a schmuck in a closet with an XL1? Is there any places that could do 8mm to high def masters at a non-astronomical rate? Is there any negative scanners that can do super 8 a frame at a time?

    2) I would like to do a lot of the negative cleaning myself if possible. Are there any guides to 8mm cleaning/lube anywhere? I have done some 35mm still photo negative cleaning- and wondered if the same chemicals and tools are acceptible?

    3) Is there anything I should look for in terms of services offered? It seems there is some debate on the best frame rates to dump 8mm film without roll and without serious speed up. I was under the impression that 8mm was designed for 15fps, so a 30fps telecine would be pretty easy to achieve.

    Any help or discussion on this topic would be greatly appreciated. Maybe Robert Harris would take on my family memories as an important moment in cinema history and supervise a negative restoration and transfer. [​IMG]

  2. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

    Aug 23, 1998
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    I'm also interested in his. A fire destroyed a good number of my family's home movie footage, but what remains is still somewhat damaged. A frame by frame scanner could work, since it is the perf side that is damaged. I don't have a ton of footage, but enough that it would be far too expensive to transfer, especially given the amount of work that would now be required.
  3. Peter Apruzzese

    Peter Apruzzese Producer

    Dec 20, 1999
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    Real Name:
    Peter Apruzzese
    Some answers.

    1. I doubt there is anybody doing this in HD at a non-astronomical rate. I don't think there are any scanners that can do a frame at a time as you envision. It's more likely you'd find somebody with a Rank Cinetel that's set up for 8mm films. It'll cost you plenty, though (think hundreds of dollars per hour - and that's not film running time, that's machine time).

    2. Go to www.film-tech.com and read up about a product they sell called "Film Guard". I use it for 35mm theatrical movie prints and have been very happy with it. It should do fine with your films. One thing to remember, your films - if properly stored - will far outlast any digital version you make today, so take care of them.

    3. Frames rates do vary. Super 8mm film used 18fps for silent and 24fps for sound; standard (sometimes called "regular") 8mm usually used 16fps, but since most of the cameras were spring-driven, this varies as well. Safe bet is 18fps. Most telecine projectors are modified to run at either the 18 or 24 fps speed and it's the special 5-bladed shutter that makes the film synchronize properly.

    I used to do 8mm film transfers professionally back in the 80s, so this info is based on some experience.

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