Posts filed under 'Super 8'
I’m not sure how I missed this news item, but Kodak recently announced they will be releasing 100D in the super 8 format. What was not clearly stated was two current super 8 stocks will be dropped: Plus-X, a low speed B&W reversal, and 64T, a color tungsten balanced reversal. While 100D has been offered by a couple of boutique film dealers, this will be an official film from Kodak. A lot of us super 8 users have been waiting for a daylight balanced reversal from Kodak, it’s a shame it comes at the expense of two other film stocks. Plus-X is a classic and it produces a really contrasty picture. 64T is a stock I wasn’t crazy about when it was released, but I’ve grown to like it’s quirks. This stock really shines when used for open-shutter timelaspe at night, so I’ll miss it for that mostly. But I’m looking forward to using 100D on my Cold War documentary project. This stock seems really suited to Oregon, since it makes colors really “pop” even when shooting under overcast skies. My only hesitation is around grain. I’ve seen some of the super 8 100D test footage shot, and it does look a little too grainy for my tastes, but that could be due to improper exposure and development. Ultimately, I probably won’t know how useful this film stock will be until I shot some myself.
On another super 8 related note, I still have about a half dozen K40 Kodachrome carts sitting in the fridge. I think this is the summer I’ll finally shoot those and get them processed.
May 18th, 2010
Tony was kind enough to transfer some of my recent super 8 footage last week on his Workprinter XP. A lot of it was open shutter timelapse shot at night with my Nizo. There is also a short clip of some footage I shot with a modified Nikon super 8 camera I removed the shutter from causing weird vertical streaks across the frame. I’ve been fascinated with shutterless footage after watching Steven Soderbergh’s The Limey back in the day. I’m still fine-tuning the technique though — I think in the future I’ll need to stop the lens down more to get the pronounced streaking and sharper image. BTW, that ambient “music” on the timelapse clips is me rockin the Kurzweil K2000VX and a Lexicon LPX-1 digital effects box.
June 30th, 2008
Tony recently completed a video for a track off of the new Tea for Julie album. Check it out on YouTube in all its super 8 glory.
December 21st, 2007
Here are some pictures, mostly swiped from Filmshooting.com, of tricked-out super 8 cameras. I wanted to find more pics featuring homebrew video taps and steadycam mounts, but most folks tend to pimp their cams by adapting them to use anamorphic lens.
Nicely designed car mount using a cheapo bike rack.
Super fly Nizo (black!) pimped by the guys who made Sleep Always. Love the carry handle.
Leicina attached to boom w/ video tap.
Another Leicina — this one w/ sync sound, MD digital recorder, and anamorphic lens.
The ultimate homebrew car mount. Where can I get suction cups like that?
Canon w/ anamorphic lens and custom support rod.
July 27th, 2006
For the longest time, I’ve been editing Super 8 and regular 8mm footage with a small light box, scissors, and press tape. This has been an extremely frustrating process, especially since Kodak press tape didn’t seem to want to cooperate with my junky splicer (I’m convinced only the fingers of a five-year-old could get this to work). I finally decided to do all my editing using a viewer and make my splices with a good cement splicer. So back in February I bought an Elmo editor on eBay and a nice Agfa cement splicer at a thrift store. Well, the editor was stolen off my porch, so I bought another one, this time a Vernon. It’s taken a while to get adjusted to threading the film through the Vernon, but I’m liking the way it works. The viewing screen is kind of small, but the image is nice and bright. Take a look at my editing set-up below. Note the Grundig radio tuned to KPSU 1450 — one of the only AM college radio stations left in the States.
May 17th, 2006
Well, Kodak finally pulled the trigger and announced the end of Kodachrome (K40) super 8 this week. This is a real bummer, since they decided to replace it with the color reversal film Ektachrome 64T (tungsten balanced) instead of the anticipated Ektachrome 100D (daylight balanced). At first I didn’t think any of my cameras would notch these new 64T carts correctly. But as it turns out, two of my lesser used cams should recognize the new carts, so not all is lost. Also, some of my favorite cameras that do timelapse have manual exposure control, so it’s possible I could use 64T and just adjust the exposure by 2/3 a stop or so.
What really bums me out is that Kodachrome was my gateway into super 8. Any super 8 camera out there will notch a Kodachrome cartridge correctly in a plug-and-play sort of way. And Kodachrome was cheap to buy and process. I’m afraid that with the demise of Kodachrome at the end of the summer, less people will find their way into amateur filmmaking like I did.
Kodak claims they’re discontinuing Kodachrome for environmental reasons. I don’t have any issues with that, because Kodachrome does require all sorts of dangerous chemicals to process. However, for some strange reason, Kodak will continue to make Kodachrome for 16mm, so their reasoning for discontinuing super 8 is just bizarre. My only guess is that Kodak wants to transform super 8 into a professional film format by moving us over to negative film.
May 12th, 2005