Digital Super 8

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Digital Super8
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Digital Super 8

Post by Digital Super8 » Fri Oct 09, 2015 4:20 pm

First Prototype of the Digital Super 8 Cartridge. I managed to make it real! Look at first footage and images on https://twitter.com/Super8Digital.
The cartridge fits into your super 8 camera, you have to take out the plastic window at the side to allow the mini-USB connection and you have to remove the filmgate with 2 screws (reversible if you pay attention). The cartridge has an external module connected via mini-USB. The module is designed to have a touch screen and software to controle the cartridge. Currently it is based on a Minnowboard-Max Single Board Computer. Our software is in early stages but does the job to capture footage.
Key challenge was full synchronisation with the camera shutter. But solved this and the Digital Super 8 can capture 18fps and 24fps at VGA as well as 6fps and lower framerates at semi-HD and full HD. If your camera allows single shot you can capture that at full sensor (5Mp).

Digital Super8
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Re: Digital Super 8

Post by Digital Super8 » Tue Oct 13, 2015 6:23 pm

Further successful tests done with 18fps at 960 x 544 (quarterHD).

Will2
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Re: Digital Super 8

Post by Will2 » Wed Oct 14, 2015 11:22 pm

Congratulations. Any possibility of just making it drop into any camera without modification or does it have to connect to something via the USB cable?

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Re: Digital Super 8

Post by mr8mm » Thu Oct 15, 2015 5:58 pm

Nice job of engineering but why when good filming can be done with a cell phone or a small inexpensive HD digital camera? On the downside it means that less film will be used. Another nail in the coffin of film when not even film cameras use film. J.S.

Digital Super8
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Re: Digital Super 8

Post by Digital Super8 » Fri Oct 16, 2015 10:11 am

Will2 wrote:Congratulations. Any possibility of just making it drop into any camera without modification or does it have to connect to something via the USB cable?
It connects to a unit that contains a Single Board Computer, much like a Raspberry Pi, in this case Intel Atom based Minnowboard Max. And a touch screen to control the cassette (settings, engaging/arming it for filming, viewing captured images, developing the digital 'film roll'). Looking into Raspberry Pi 2 and Beaglebone Black as alternatives as these are cheaper.

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Re: Digital Super 8

Post by Digital Super8 » Fri Oct 16, 2015 10:25 am

mr8mm wrote:Nice job of engineering but why when good filming can be done with a cell phone or a small inexpensive HD digital camera? On the downside it means that less film will be used. Another nail in the coffin of film when not even film cameras use film. J.S.
The results you get are very different from cell phone or HD digital camera. With this solution there is no 'steady shot' and other digital tricks. You get the real Super 8 feel to the images, fully leveraging the mostly very good optics of the super 8 camera. And the super 8 camera characteristics imposed by its shutter, exposure time and iris and lightmeter are all giving the material a real feel. Think about it that a film roll nowadays costs €50 including development for 50 feet or 3 minutes and 31 seconds of film. If you can still get your hands on it and find a good lab to develop.
So if you want to experiment with your camera or test it the Digital Super 8 cassette makes sense and it gives you endless film resource.
But agreed it also does take away a few things: when shooting real film you always think twice because you only get one chance to take the shot or you waste valuable film. And there is no lines and scratches on your image (could do via post processing if you like). And if you want to project real film this solution will not give you that, but you can always use a video beamer.

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Re: Digital Super 8

Post by doug » Sat Oct 17, 2015 10:43 am

Congratulations also... This seems like a good idea for trying out things before the actual filming is done with film, therefore saving on filmstock. Although I suppose you could achieve moreorless the same by strapping a small digital device to the camera. I can see the cartridge idea might be good if the camera is locked on say a rostrum or for trying special effects.
Doug
www.filmisfine.co

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Re: Digital Super 8

Post by timdrage » Mon Oct 26, 2015 11:51 am

Looks interesting, many people have talked about (and naysaid about) this over the years but congrats on actually doing it! I'd be interested to get one if/when they become available if the price is right. Are you planning on crowdfunding this at some point?

No replacement for the real thing but it looks very promising and would be a nice way to make use of some cameras which are gathering dust at the moment.
Tim Drage
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"It's cheaper to shoot someone with a gun than a film camera." - amishman35

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