8mm Film to DVD transfer (Do it yourself)

Discussion in 'Video' started by eugene_gekhter, Jul 23, 2002.

  1. Instead of dishing out hundreds of dollars to have 8mm film
    transferred professionaly, what's the optimal way to do it yourself?
    I already have a DVD-burner and firewire and capture cards on my
    computer. How can I transfer the 8mm film? Is there a way to go
    straight from 8mm film to computer or do you have to go to vhs, and
    then from vhs to computer. If anybody knows of a device that
    can "scan" 8mm film or a method that can acomplish the same result
    I'd be forever grateful. Thanks in advance,
  2. I assume you mean you have a 8mm camcorder that you want to transfer to computer? If so this is what I do. I have a ATI video card that has a video in port that I plug in my camcorder to and capture the movie. Depending on the quality you save it as determines the size of the file. There are many video cards that can do this and mine was only around $50.00. I dont have a DVD burner yet so I am still burning my home movies to CD
  3. There are several ways to go about transferring 8mm, super 8mm, 16mm, etc. to digital, and ultimately to DVD if that's your goal. You asked about 8mm, so I'll just answer for 8mm.

    Elmo used to make an 8mm telecine transfer machine. They show up on ebeigh from time to time. They usually sell for $1500 to $2000. You run the film just like in a normal projector. The machine projects the film onto a ccd cell, and the output is typical VHS quality output. You can feed this just like a live TV broadcast into something like the Phillips DVD burner that has recently come available, but the quality won't be very high (typically around 250 to 300 lines per picture). The Elmo units have a frame per second and shutter blade combination that synchs the film to the TV signal. The closest easy synch for 8mm is to run it at 20 fps with a 3 blade shutter, but I don't know for sure that this is what the Elmo unit does.

    Goko used to make a Telecine Player model TC-20. There are 8mm and Super 8mm models. You can pick these up on ebeigh too. They usually sell for $1000 to $1400. The Goko units are also similar to projectors, but instead of projecting the image onto a ccd cell, they project the image so that it appears to be floating in air inside the machine. You use your own video camera to capture the image by alligning it with a little window on the back of the TC-20. The interesting thing about the Goko units is that they use a 24 facet prism as part of their projection system, and for some reason they will synch with the TV at any speed. The range of speeds on the unit is typically from about 16 fps to about 24 fps. If you use the Goko approach, you can get a 3ccd cell camera, like the Canon GL1, XL-1s, or similar, and you can then get a digital file that you can run into your computer via the fire wire port. Resolution for miniDV is about 500 to 525 lines per picture. It holds up pretty well, even on a 54" TV. The Goko units are still supported in the US, so if repairs are needed, there is a place to send them. If your Goko and camera are properly adjusted and properly lined up, you can get very high quality by this approach.

    Another approach is to use an 8mm projector with an adjustable speed control. If the unit has a 3 blade shutter and you can adjust it to run at 20 fps, you can synch with the TV. Normal 8mm projection speed is 18 fps, so this is only a 10% difference, and it isn't noticable to most viewers if there's no audio to deal with. You project the image onto either a telecine transfer box (mirror and ground glass), or onto a white screen, and you capture the image with your digital camcorder, like with the Goko unit. You typically project the image to a size of maybe 4" or 5" square. With the high quality digital camcorders, if you use the ground glass approach, resolution can be high enough to show the ground glass texture, so some people prefer to forget the telecine transfer box and just project onto a clean white sheet. If you're using the telecine transfer box, your camera will be at an angle of approximately 90% to your projection. If you used the clean white sheet approach, your camera will be located very close to the axis of the projector lens.

    If you are interested in this general area, you can go to Google and do a search using the key word "telecine." There is another method that I have not used that involves frame by frame capture using a specialized set up that is being sold over the internet. I haven't looked at it recently, and I've never tried their gear. They are very negative about the Elmo and Goko methods in their literature - but my experience with the Goko is that the negative hype that this guy publishes is based on the results you get when your Goko lamp and camera are misalligned. The web page where this method is discussed is at http://www.moviestuff.tv/8mm_telecine.html.

    FWIW, I would pass on the Elmo telecine transfer units just because of the modest resolution. The video camera chip in these units is about 15 year old technology. My prefered method is via a 3ccd mini DV camcorder and either the Goko or the variable speed projector. You can get good results with either method. The one thing to watch out for is that most of the folks who are selling projectors on ebeigh seem to be overly optimistic about the functionality of their unit. These old projectors can eat the film and ruin your stuff pretty quickly. It is for this reason that I finally settled on the Goko TC-20 for my own 8mm film to DVD transfers.
  4. If you would like to transer your old V8 or Hi8 tapes in DV formate to computer, the best way is to get a Digital8 camcorder. Sony D8 backward support V8 and Hi8, so you can just simply insert the V8/Hi8 tapes into the D8 camcorder, then transer them to computer in DV format through firewire cable. The price of cheapest Sony D8 is about US$500. If you are interested in buying a analog-digital converter to connect your Hi8 and PC, you can try Sony D8 video walkman for US$600. Of course, you also can buy a univeral analog-digital converter to convert RCA/S-VHS signal from you V8 to DV format like Dazzle's Hollywood DV-Bridge for US$300. However, the video qulity will not be as good as the other two.
  5. Just a quick note that I saw a different piece of equipment that was touted as being better than the Goko. Here is the web address:
    The equipment to do it was only $700. You need a camcorder to record the video though, but I assume you have one. Not a bad price considering how expensive it is to have a company do it for you. I have not used it but am looking into getting one as a possibility.
  6. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=1946122152 I'm selling a GOKO TC-20 R8 However, a variable speed projector slowed down a little from 16fps to 15 fps does just fine and is quite easy if you have a rear projection screen.
  7. If we speed up the film how will that effect super 8 sound?

    how does the Goko unit work with sound? I see a ds-20 on ebay

  8. I worked transferring home movies to video for about 18 years, about 8 years in my own business (now out of the business). This is my opinion about these issues.

    I tried many types of projectors, but ended up only using Goko Tc-301s and Tc-302s. These projectors replaced the Goko Tc-20s and are far, FAR, FAAAR superior in image quality. This is understandable because the Tc-20s were based on a cheap revolving prism just like a low end consumer film viewer. Every time the corner of the prism went by you would get a little "pull" in the picture. This pull as the edge goes by 18 or 20 times a second can be noticed in any film viewer, and in transfers made with the Tc-20s. I suffered with these sh#tty machines for two years in the mid eighties before the TC 300 series replaced them. The image in the Tc20s was also not very bright cause the light had to go through the entire prism (about 3 inches thick).

    We were getting a lot of complaints with the tc20s and the new units really saved us. No more complaints after the 300 series came on.

    Goko never really overcame the bad rep for consumerish quality generated by these early machines. I'm amazed that people are actually buying them still. I can't believe the prices people are paying for these things. They're just crappy modified viewers.

    The Tc301s and Tc302s on the other hand are typical telecine projectors with aerial imaging systems (no screen, just like the Tc20s) and they run at 20 fps (with almost no flicker and much brighter images than the TC-20s). In order to handle super 8 sound at this speed (the chipmunk effect) you need a pitch adjusting device like a digital pitchtraq. Speed issues aside these projectors were for me real workhorses and I was very successful for many years using them. They almost never break. Just don't let the tail end of the film go through the gate at the end of the roll as this sometimes results in bent film claws.

    Elmo made very good telecine projectors but the transvideo (built in camera) units had horrible quality ccds, even for their day. The units without the built in camera are far superior.

    Don't waste your money on Goko Tc-20s or Elmo Transvideos. Buy Tc301s (reg 8) or Tc302s (super 8) or regular Elmo telecine projectors (not transvideo).

    Just my two cents, hope it helps someone.
  9. I recently started to explore this as my mother-in-law has a bunch of old Super 8mm film that she was wanting to transfer onto DVD. I use a decently old Sony Digital Handycam DCR-TRV315 with a DV (firewire) port. There is a setting with this camcorder to where you can record the projected film with little to no flicker. I used the Program button on it and just kept pressing the switch/select button until the flicker went away. I have to looke at the manual for what it is exactly, but looks like an alien space ship icon ... :p. I use a Canon Cine S-400 projector to a white board about 2 feet away. With just the right settings, the film transfered nice. Decent enough to put on DVD. I'm exploring with lighting, exposure settings and distance before I'm happy. I transfered a few to DVD ... well, VCD format since they are the 3" (3.5 min) films ... so practice will be perfect.
  10. I've been copying reg 8 and super 8 and super 8 sound movies to VHS for several years using Bell and Howell autoload projectors using DJL bulbs (150w) , a piece of white stationary taped to a black music stand, and a Panasonic PV 800 full size VHS camcorder. Today, I cleaned all lenses and was surprised at how dirty they had become. A friend turned me on to other sources of paper to project the image on. All white paper is not equal and I had no idea the copier paper / printing paper had a Whiteness Number - My friend gave me a piece of white printer paper with a 92 number and when I compared it to what I had been using, I was quite surprised and pleased and just how much whiter the paper was. He told me that it comes up to a # 99 number - which I'm going to try and find. I know that the # 92 paper will give me a much better picture. It was such a difference, you'd think I'd put a new bulb in the projector ! I plan on obtaining a MiniDV camcorder in the near future for a higher quality picture. My setup gives me very good pictures from very good film. I'm surprised at the quality of reg. 8mm films shot outdoors from the 60's. I'm not so happy with the look of Super 8mm sound films shown on my sound projector. I have a Super 8 silent projector that gets a sharper image than the sound one. I think the zoom projection lense may be part of the problem. I'm going to look for a fixed lense for the B&H 626R projector. It has a 1" barrel facing the apeture with a groove around it. I've copied many 16mm films with the setup and I'm very happy with the end results - even on VHS ! Good lighting and good photographing skills make all the difference in home movies. I just did a 94 film job of Super 8mm sound and it was horrible. Every scene was improperly focused. Every zoom was out of focus, the lighting was deplorable - only the sound saved the project. But, it earned me $5 per film just the same. I think that people who order VHS copies of their home movies are glad to see ANY picture from their old films. Quality seems to take back seat to the CONTENT of the films. I've yet had a complaint regarding my film transfers to VHS. And, some have been transferred from VHS to DVD - the 94 film job was. Someone else did the DVD for the client. I'm a retired Audio recording engineer having worked in Nashville area studios since l968, and prior to that worked at KING Records in Cincinatti, and Criteria Recording in Miami. Email me directly if I can be of help. Leehazen@aol.com Hendersonville, TN
  11. Eugene,
    A true scanning device will set you back at least $1500 USD.
    The Workprinter by Moviestuff.tv is an example. We tend to feel that all the advice about Goko and other less capable things such as Buhl or a Laird multiplexer is a bit mythical since they are as rare as hens teeth. No matter what device you try to obtain or do get you need to be aware of a few things as none of it is straight forward or simple as some make out and the results may satisfy those who think they have a great set up using VHS systmes. VHS systems are fine on most PC's however if using DV you better look at the expense involved for RAID and a decent CPU and high end video card.
    If you have a small amount of film take it to a pro for scanning, they know what they are doing and have ALL of the gear and software that works and the know how to give you a great result.
    Nothing is simple and requires not only hardware and MONEY, but knowledge skill and ability, why? you have only started to look at the sharp end of the stick, there is so much more to it than instamatic point and shoot including videoscope analysis colour balance since film is so different from video, then there is contrast range, saturation and authoring a DVD seems simple, but with film, frame rate and camera capability is just part of the equation. I could go on but I really think I have said a lot.
    If you are looking for the challange and satisfaction of doing it your self be warned the learning curve is steep, some get lucky and obtain acceptable results. it is rewarding and very stimulating challenge.

    Good luck

  12. The usual DIY way (note, the projector is ideally variable speed, adjust the speed knob until flicker is gone). Keep the camera and projector as close to eachother as possible, do your transfers in a room that is dark.
  13. BTW, Clean your film with something like Film Guard and a soft cloth, also lube the projector with Film Guard, as it is a good lubricant as well. Ebay has Film Guard or similar movie film lubricating/cleaing fluids.
  14. A good film cleaner is Filmrenew. It is sold by Urbanskifilm online at urbanskifilm.com. The best results are from a telecine using an aerial image. Aerial images are sharper with better color than projection on a white card or using those boxes with the mirror and frosted glass screen. A good unit is the Cinemate20 manufactured by Moviestuff. I use this unit in my film transfer business.
  15. Thanks for the tip on Filmrenew. You are right, aerial image is probably better than the paper matte screen, but aerial image units are difficult to find, although possibly you can rig one up using a 5" magnifier and using a video camera that has at least 12X zoom. The white paper, while not ideal, works quite well. And it's just more fun to DIY than to have someone else do it.
  16. Is it possible to loop the signal from the camcorder into a computer thru firewire at the same time that you're recording the film transfer?
  17. We use a piece of equipment from moviestuff. Heare are some sample images of captured 8mm film. We are very pleased with the frame by frame capture method.

    Thanks for looking.

    Dave Stoneburner
  18. I made the unfortunate decision to pay over $600 to have my 8mm movies transferred to DVD by Film-To-Video.com / Film-To-DVD.com. Their manager, Carol, demonstrated the most astounding rudeness that I have ever experienced. Indeed, she was so shockingly ill-mannered that the only place I can imagine such behavior going unnoticed is in New York City. Lack of professionalism aside, the quality of the finished product was no better than what I could have obtained locally for a fraction of the price (and without being subjected to anyone?s appalling lack of manners). Buyer beware.
    B. J. Lowe, Phoenix
  19. Well it's been four years since I started this popular thread. I went on to start a successful film transfer business based on some of the input I received - so much appreciated to everybody that helped along the way. While I would wish the best of luck to anyone that attempts to take on this project themselves, much like I did, there's several caveats. I've compared my quality over the years to different film transfer techniques, including the old Elmo and Goko machines and the new Workprinter machines with high-definition optics. Everytime we would upgrade the quality would get better and better, and I would start to wonder - how many people out their have VHS, MiniDV, or DVD versions of their 8mm/S8mm/16mm films and are content with their quality. A lot of companies that offer these services (with below par equipment) bias the public into thinking that due to the age of their film, the quality is not good to begin with. That's how I thought until I saw what a good high-definition transfer can offer. The colors are subtle and true, the focus is pixel perfect, and the 1080p resolution makes you feel like you're back in the decade that the film was shot. I'm not saying to go with my company over any other, but I just want people that have their films transferred to know just how beautiful their digital version can be if done properly. So to anybody that has transferred their films or is thinking about transferring their films, be sure to store the originals well, in dry, cold conditions. As technology evolves, you will still have the victor over the question of time and quality: 8mm, super 8mm, and 16mm film.
  20. I read Jose T's comments about a home telecine with the website of www.saveyourmovies.com, but when I went there it would not open. Does someone know what the correct website is? It purports to use a digital video camer and a computer and gives good quality.
  21. I googled goko tc-301s and could not find a source to but one. Does anyone know where to get a new or used one? Thanks, Alan
  22. Oh my gosh you guys are complicating this way too much, I did this for my grandmother the other day. I took all of her 8mm tapes, and made them in to dvd's in a 1,2,3. And you dont even need a Computer to do this. Okay, first all you need is a VCR, which probably everyone has in a closet somewhere, a VHS tape from the 99 cent store, A TV, a DVD R/W, a couple of blank DVDs, oh and your old 8mm camcorder. Although it takes a few steps, its super easy to do. *First connect your VCR to your TV, place a blank VHS in to the VCR.
    *Take your 8mm tape, place it in your camcorder.
    *Take the AV in and out, and connect it to your camcorder and the other end to your VCR, (make sure you have your VCR NOT set on LP, because of picture quality)
    *Turn on VCR (Make sure you fastforward a little of the blank tape, just about 3 secs, you dont want any thing to get cut off)
    *Turn on your camcorder(Make sure your 8mm tape is completely rewinded)
    *Press RECORD On the VCR, Press PLAY on the Camcorder.
    *Now go get a bowl of chips and sit with your family to watch the home movies. (Aaaa, memories)
    *After youre done watching or done doing something else, Stop the camcorder, and turn it off. Take your, VHS and Rewind it.
    *Leave the VHS in the VCR. This time place your blank DVD in the DVD player, and Record, every thing off the VHS. THE END.
    ***If you also want, you can also, Connect your Camcorder to the
    DVD R/W.
  23. Hi, Dude, you misunderstood the topic here, the question was about Transferring 8mm Film to DVD, not the modern 8mm video TAPE, again you could go to: http://canaanmedia.com/16mm-film-transfer-8mm-film-to-DVD.htm to see what a 8mm film should look like.
  24. I just had some early 1960's 8mm film transferred to DVD. I used the YesVideo service at Ritz
    camera. While the DVD is very nice, there does not seem to be any way of importing the files
    into IMovie or any other Macintosh movie editing program. Any suggestions?
  25. Very dramatic and novel length ad there, Philip.
    That is one piece of literary work there. I also noticed how after I posted how to DO IT YOURSELF which is what this thread is about, all of these fly-by night transfer services (no offense intended) started coming out of the woodwork like lawyers chasing an ambulance. See, I can type dramatic pablum too. Fly by night you say? Yeah, check out the post by "jose t" and go to the website. Some sort of website is there, but the transfer biz isn't.

    First Rule Of Marketing : What you already have is unsatisfactory.

    Suck on this:

    Tired of paying to have transfers done? Annoyed by marketers trying to bilk you for something you can do yourself? Insulted by their insinuations that you the customer are too stupid to do it correctly? BOTHERED BY THE THOUGHT OF MAILING YOUR PRECIOUS AND IRREPLACEABLE FILMS THROUGH THE MAIL? Afraid that the fly-by-night company may lose your films if the mail doesn't? Well then DO IT YOURSELF! The info is in cyberspace, so you can look up how to do it, but only between 12 am - 12 pm, every day of the week, every week of the year, every year until your demise. Not only that, but you can do your own transfers MANY different ways, learn about video equipment, optics and when you are done you can feel a sense of accomplishment that you would never get from risking losing them in the mail or getting lost when the fly by night business goes out of business. Cost is up to you, time is whenever you feel like it, and you get total control over the process! You can even use FREE software like VIRTUALDUB to clean up and edit your transfers if you chose to record them via computer.
  26. always try and do it yourself.
    research the internet and take your time.
    the Retired Film Guys
  27. The point of this forum is to 'do it yourself' but the point that comes up again and again here is that why reinvent the wheel people. Sure, have a go, but ruin your film in the process with a crappy old projector like I did, spend a small fortune and immense time and dire frustration with unsatisfactory results. Do your research on companies, don't just take there word for it on websites, spend a few bucks on a sample transfer, compare the results of what you are getting, with that, you will get a feel for not only quality of transfer, but quality of customer service, turn around time etc, then work a deal, if you have quantity, ask for discounts, free copies etc.

    Sure, some people have to mail, but with fedex/ups, it's old school ignorance to think that technology & tracking capabilities haven't far surpassed risk. The odds are far greater of your car blowing up on the way to the UPS store than them losing it. You either mail them or let them rot in the closet.

    As for the lengthy reply of 'Philip' above, that shows passion and a belief in what he and his company achieves, not 'fly by night' Sure, companies come and go, do your research before you use any company. We all have passion, passion for preserving our memories and getting the best quality and service.
  28. Whether its done "in house' or "do it yourself" one has to deal with rotten dried out film splices. Lets say you have a "Europe Trip" from 1963 shot with regular 8mm; the complete movie might be on a 500ft reel; the work of say 2 dozen or more rolls shots; with 50% + editing. Its easy to have 100 splices; the bulk of the splices done in 1963/4. The darn movie might have last been shown/projected in the 1970's or 1980's. Now Mom and Dad pass away and the kids want the "Europe Trip" vacation movie they all thought was boring on a DVD. The mvie reels might have never been projected for several decades, have been stored in the basement in a shoebox, the box being wet once when the sump pump failed. The "in house' or "do it yourself" convertor has to deal with a long movie that might be stuck together, that every 5th splice fails. The project then evolves into converting a dozen or two segments.:) A real poor movie reel to convert is going to take more time. DIY for conversions is over 1/2 century old; its in the "how to" collumns in Pop Photo back in the 1950's. Then folks were often converting to another film format; later in the late 1970's converting to Beta tapes evolved; then VHS tape; now its to a DVD.
  29. I'm DIY-ing it and having something like results. I have several large reels of Regular 8 and Super 8 that I've managed to collect over the years. I found them at thrift stores and yard sales and have no idea who the people in the films are, but they made some great films! So, with a 2400 optical dpi flatbed transparency scanner, vcr parts, a PC dedicated to the task, and automation software, I present the following: http://youtube.com/watch?v=s3YsPZGC1-U Automating image processing tasks can be challenging. I'm trying to teach my computer to find the sprocket holes and grab each frame. About 8000 in a 50 foot reel. A very slow, painful process, but it seems to work. A vacation at Gitmo might be more fun.
  30. I've updated the link to view my sample:


    Just abit of semi-perfectionist tweaking.
  31. That was a lot of fun to watch, Ken!! I don't understand how you did it, but it's very interesting. Are you saying that you scanned the film frame by frame, then used some sort of animation software to make it play again? Cool. I have a scanner that can do that, but it seems to me that it would be a very, very long process!

    I started a VHS, slides, and photos to DVD business about 2 years ago. I'm constantly being asked if I put 8mm or Super 8 on DVD. (No one in my area does it, and, sorry, but people just don't want to send their films out by mail or carrier. Too many things can and have happened to them.)

    As a result, I decided to bite the bullet and add that service. Since I've actually never done it (but have a lot of other experience with film and with transferring other things to DVD, I have been doing a lot of research on what method I should use, the costs, the ease of transfer, etc.

    I've finally decided to go with one of the moviestuff's machine. I'll probably start with the less expensive and as my business grows, I'll upgrade as Eugene Gekhter, the originator of this thread, has done. The reason I've decided to go with moviestuff is because I've read a lot of forums with people talking to each other about the machines and I've never read or heard one negative thing about his machines (except that you have to wait a while to get one)... also, from what I read, he is very supportive and very nice--even walks people through repairs (his machines can be repaired with parts at radio shack) and helps people learn how to use the machines....I can use that sort of support starting out. I'm really excited about providing this service in my area and learning how to do this....and of course, my family has its own movies from the 60s that need to be saved, so my first "batch" while I learn will be ours....then for Christmas Gifts to everyone, I'll be making the DVDs!

    I wouldn't recommend someone who is just going to DIY their own films to spend a lot of money on a moviestuff machine, because they are expensive, but I think that for a small business such as mine, they are an excellent product with excellent support...in any case after I get mine, I'll let you all know how it goes.
  32. For DJ Gibbs. I am curious if you are happy with your decision to buy moviestuff's machine. I am thinking about it. Want to check with you. Appreicate your reply.
  33. I just wrote a short 'how to' article on how I transferred my 8mm to DVD. But I sent it out to have it done -- the DIY route was too expensive and not as good quality as I wanted.
  34. Hi guys, just thought I'd post an update on my progress making frame-by frame digital transfers of 8mm movies using a flatbed scanner and home computer. I'm moving up to Hi Def, which seems like overkill since 8mm film comes nowhere close to HD resolution, but that's the hot thing these days. It's still a slow process, but it works. Total investment: maybe a couple hundred bucks, plus 50 cents.
    Investors, anyone?
  35. I enjoy reading your posts. I find them informative and educational. I'm taking on a project of transferring 8mm & super 8mm, this is a first for me. Any recommendations on dual film editors, any I should stay away from? Also, where is the best place to purchase Film Guard?
    Many thanks.
  36. Perhaps I wasn't clear enough in my post when I asked for recommendations on dual film editors. I am NOT looking for someone to do the work for me because as I stated, "I'm taking on the project of transfering ..." I'm asking for recommendations for a machine called a, DUAL FILM EDITOR that is used for editoring 8mm and super 8mm. To reiterate, I am NOT looking for a company or individual to transfer my film, I'm asking for recommendations and suggestions on how, " I can personally transfer the film."
    Thank you.
  37. Go to http://www.moviestuff.tv They sell some fantastic equipment at reasonable prices. I bought their Cinemate. I've been extremely busy with other aspects of my business, but I will be adding 8mm and super8 transfers to DVD services by the end of the month to my DVD business. The Cinemate does both for me, and the results are "shake free" and quite clean and remarkable. I think that the Cinemate will give you the best bang for you buck--and you might even end up with a little "cottage business"on the side for extra money!
  38. Howdy everyone,
    The photo.net forums are not to be used as some sort of "free advertising" location for you to push your business. I hav egone through this thread and deleted all of the ads and all the suggestions that came from users who just "happened" to only have one post to their name on photo.net and that post just "happened" to be suggesting somewhere to spend your money.
    Suggestions of professional services from active members are welcome. Word of mouth is the best way to find good service providers. But using the forums for advertising is a violation of the site's rules and is an annoying insult to the site's members.
  39. I have found that using my dry erase board at a distance and slight angle higher than my projector works amazing. I use my JVC Everio GZ-MG255U hard disc camcorder with a shutter setting of 1/15 to capture the home movies with firewire to my computer's hard drive and my projector is angled up very little the results have been nice rich color, and a really nice clear picture.
  40. After many attempts at transferring 8mm film to digital media and not being quite satisfied with the results, I believe I have hit on the most cost effective manner to perform what is essentially a frame-by frame transfer, and it is surprisingly simple. I purchased a dual Super8mm/8mm projector on ebay which is capable of projecting in a “step” mode (2 frames per second). My particular model is a Bell&Howell 471A but there are a lot of different projectors out there which will do the same. I paid $70. I then purchased a stop motion software package (StopMotion Maker HDMI) which is capable of time lapse capture from a firewire device and hooked my Panasonic PGVS-120 camcorder to my PC. I removed the tape cassette and plug in the camera to AC which makes the camera work similar to a web cam.
    If you project the film onto a white surface at 2 fps and then activate the time lapse capture at 500 msec (0.5 sec), the stop motion software captures one digital frame for each frame projected. The stop-motion software reassembles the captured frames into an AVI motion picture and, Voila- you have a frame by frame transfer.
    There are some limitations in that the AVI format used by my software limits the AVI file size to 2GB which translates to roughly 2000 frames at NTSC resolution. This means you will have 3-4 separate AVI files for each 50 foot roll of 8mm film, and the transfer does take time and patience. However, once the AVI files are edited and converted to MPEG in your favorite editing software, the results are noticeably superior to a camcorder capture of the film running at normal speed. Also, having many small AVI files to work with can be an advantage in some editing software packages when it comes to applying filters and enhancements.
    Best of all, if you have the hard disk space, you can maintain the uncompressed AVI files so that is you ever need to re-edit the films for a new DVD presentation you will not be working with a compressed MPEG file.
    Anyway, it works well for me. And it only cost $140 for the projector and the stop-motion software (plus a lot of free time on several weekends)
  41. Phil, that is essentially what the fancy pants telecine machines do. Only for a lot more money (and in better quality most likely).
  42. Dwayne's photo will transfer 8mm and Super 8 to DVD for $9.00 for a 50 foot roll.
  43. My plan was to project onto a smooth white surface, project the film onto it. Then place a digital video camera in front of the projector, frame in and focus on the projected image. And capture directly to hard drive with firewire. I use a Panasonic PVGS-65 with Sony Vegas 6 software. My B&H projector was re-worked to sync with the video. I don't have a line running through it but the image pulses. Except for that last bit, the procedure that many others have followed works. Any idea why the pulse?
  44. In the DIY category, see the link below for an interesting article where the author uses a flatbed scanner to capture 7.7" of film at a pass and then stitches them back together with a computer. He says it takes 2 hours to process a 150' roll of film.
    He also includes some good background information on the process of digitizing old film.
  45. Why not transfer from VHS to blank dvd with dvd recorder?
  46. We're talking about 8mm FILM that runs through a projector. Not VHS tapes.
  47. When you say film do you mean what is called Hi-8 that is used in camcorders? If not, does anyone know the best way to transfer 8 mm (Hi8) to a dvd other than transferred to a video and then to a dvd. I'd do that but because of the one transfer it will lose some of it's quality. Any way you to do it directly from the camcorder/hi 8mm film to a dvd or directly to a computer where I can then burn it?
  48. No--we are talking about the old film that ran through a projector--8mm and super8. Through a projector--like this:
    There are several ways to transfer Hi-8. I have a Sony multi-function DVD recorder. I simply hook up the Hi-8 camcorder (or any other camcorder or camera) to it and play the tape I want recorded and the DVD recorder does the rest. This machine has made my business more money than anything else I've done so far because it is so easy and does such a great job. I use printable discs so I can print images onto the DVDs. The machine I use is this:
  49. I have been experimenting with copying 16mm films to DVD using my sony handicam DVD108 camcorder. The challenge I have had may be the "flicker"mentioned elsewhere in this forum. The projected image is fine. When recorded with the camcorder I get periodic "blackouts." If I adjust the film speed, I can minimize the speed at which these occur to some extent, but I cannot get rid of them. I am supposing that these are the result of some sort of pattern based on the projection speed and the camcorder recording speed. I can only adjust the projection speed so much...or the image begins to look like a Keystone Cops movie (which, hey, I enjoy but perhaps is not a good way of archiving the rare family footage). My questions are:
    1. Is this the "flicker" that has been mentioned?
    2. Is there a camcorder option that allows for the speed to be adjusted?
    3. Is this a problem with all projectors, or is my projector the problem?
    I would love to be able to send the films out to be done. There are no funds available to do that.
  50. Thanks for the years of wonderful info in this thread!
    As to the 'flicker question', it may be the shutter speed setting on your camera that's to blame. This from the Cinemate 8mm site;
    Your camera must have the ability to lock the shutter speed to 1/60th of a second for NTSC or 1/50th of a second for PAL or you will get flicker.
  51. Here is all the information you need below that will give you everything you need.
    Film transfer equipment videos:
    Super 8, Regular 8: http://www.blip.tv/file/2381157
    Super 8 Sound: http://blip.tv/file/2380247
    16mm : http://blip.tv/file/2396753
    Sample transfer.
  52. http://www.howtotransfer8mmfilmtodvd.com/8mm-movie-film.html
  53. hi everyone.
    i have a diy setup for 8mm transfer that's almost identical to philips post:
    the only thing i'm missing is the camera.
    i would like a recommendation for an inexpensive camera that will take still pictures in HD quality.
    I don't want a video camera as I will be doing a single frame by frame capture similar to ken does on his flatbed scanner.
    any ideas?
  54. Hi Everyone - Can anyone recomend an easy to use free High Definition video editing software? I have recorded some 8mm film with a Sony HD SR12 camera and wish to add a soundtrack and perhaps experiment with altering contrast, colour etc.
  55. DIY Guide, http://web.archive.org/web/20080405015930/homepage.mac.com/onsuper8/diytelecine/
  56. I have some 8mm film that i am trying to project. I borrowed a sears easi-load super eight to play them. But i believe the film was shot with a bell and howell camera. Was the film back them proprietary? Because it plays fine, but is upside down. I believe i am loading it correctly for the sears projector. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
  57. Although I'm a novice when it comes to 8mm film transfer, one thing I'm certain of, is the reason your film shows upside down in the projector; because it's backwards. What you think is the beginning is actually the end of the film and vise-versa. You'll need to rewind the film. You mentioned 8mm film and super 8mm projector, unless your projector is dual 8mm, hold off viewing it on the projector because you can damage your film. Visit this web site, http://www.goaggressive.com/8mmFAQ.html it's informative, easy to understand and you'll learn something. Please let me know how your transfer goes, I'm still learning. Good luck.
  58. Does anyone know the ins and outs of transferring Super8 to Digibeta? Luckily I had my done free by a film lab in 2001.

    Today how much would it cost to transfer 5 hours of Super 8, and is DigiBeta the preferred way to go?
    Also another question. I am about to be uploaded to a film stock house. Most of the clips are short clips. Does anyone have an idea of the demand of 1973 Super 8 film in the global marketplace? In other words, what is the fate of my 1973 Super 8 films? I've logged in 68 clips. mostly a few seconds long.
  59. Costco has a unit they are advertising now that will convert 8 MM and more to DVD. $89.00. Check it out.
  60. Could you please give me information about this unit from Costco? I looked at their site and could not find it. What is the brand or name of the unit and/or what section is it in? Thanks so much, I have been looking for something like this.
  61. The machine I have is a Sony DVDirect. I payed $89.00 for it on EBAY, but it runs up to $250.00 elsewhere. I run the 8mm film through my Cinemate, record it on my DV camcorder, then run the camcorder through the DVDirect machine and it converts the video to DVD. This same unit also converts photos, VHS, and other media to DVD as well, but it DOES NOT convert 8mm to DVD directly.
  62. Please allow me to correct some information that has been posted on this forum. In response to the 8mm to DVD transfer machine at Costco and the Sony DVDirect transfer machine both machine's are for 8mm CAMCORDER tape. THIS FORUM IS NOT FOR 8mm CAMCORDER TAPE. This forum is for 8mm film that is viewed with a projector not a camcorder. 8mm film and super 8mm film was used primarily from the 1950's through early 1970's. Please read above posts before responding or posting any suggestions. Thank you
  63. That is correct. I run my projector film through the Cinemate machine and film it with my DV camcorder, then use the DVDirect to convert it to DVD. It's easier than doing it through a computer.
  64. Keep it simple. Since 8mm and super8 mm films are fairly low resolution compared to today's 3-chip camcorders, you can forego the expensive process of using a telecine (film chain) by simply setting up one of these camcorders as close as possible to the projector and recording the movie off the screen. Don't waste your time with older video cameras and formats like VHS which are only going to degrade the quality of the original film. Of course, the better the screen, the better the image. Also, make certain the room is completely without light and avoid people walking around since that may shake the camera. Even the slightest shake will be very noticable, particularly if the projector/camera are a good distance from the screen. The two respective lens, projector and camera, should be at the same height. Definitely use a good solid tripod. Even though super8 is 18 frames per second (fps) and video is 30 fps, I have not experienced any problems. The video material looks surprisingly good. www.anomalymedia.tv
  65. Hi Jay, thanks for this input. Luckily I had my Super 8s transferred to DigiBeta by Time-Life in 2001. There were hours of Super 8s. I sent a 17min VHS sample to a major film stock house and they said, "send the rest!" They were pleasantly surprised to see the product on DigiBeta. In fact they told me they had to break out a rarely-used machine they have.
    Ok, so that's cut and dry. As long as I've got you on the line let me ask you this: What is the demand for Super 8s from the early 1970s in today's film markets? Check any stock house and they'll probably tell you "vintage film is highly in demand." Even though you point out it's only 18 fps. I thought it was 24 fps but I certainly go on your word.
    The firm rummaged through all the film, with a committee, and wound up cutting 68 clips. One of the clips is less than 4 seconds long. That leaves me wondering, what is anyone going to do with a 3second clip? So I'm asking you, and anyone who can answer, what is the commercial use of Super 8s from the early 1970s? The telecines are superb, and I know you have to have good subject matter. Just as one example I have footage of the stage the Beatles played off August 28, 1964 and all the ancients, including Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, the Who, Momas & Popas, Peter Paul & Mary, Lil' Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, Frank Sinatra, the Doors and a whole lot more played off this exact same stage. It's not them actually playing, it's just the crew setting up the exact same stage for that night's Chicago/Beach Boys concert.
    I have captured many other unique corners of Americana on these films that no one else seems to have. Many others. What is the end game here?
  66. Thanks to you all for your information about transfering super 8mm FILM to DVD media. Does anyone know if I get the right HD Cam or Vedio Camera Recorder and shoot my super 8mm FILM shown on a screen or white paper or other surface, will I sill get the fluttering effect I am now getting with my Sony Digital Camera which uses tapes and was purchased new in year 2000 Model No. DCR-TRV27, purchase price around $1,100.00? I am running the super 8mm film through my old 1970's kodak auto feed projector. My goal is to get ten 700 foot reels (shot in the 1970's) on DVD's before they are unusable. I can't afford the best quality that would be done by a professiona for over $1,800.00. I figure if I have to spend some money, I may as well get a HD digital recorder which I can use for other photography needs. After I get the 8mm films on DVD's I will splice the various mixed sceens up and make more DVD's and send them to various relatitives and friends for their children and grand children to have. I figure any quality might be okay as long as the fluttering it gone. Thanks to anyone with any advice that you know works.
    George Kucera
  67. Yes, you'll still get the fluttering. A variable speed projector will allow you to match the speeds of the two devices.
  68. Modifying that last... the fluttering can be significantly controlled if you can set your shutter speed on the camcorder to 1/60. The variable speed on the projector can fine tune out the last little bit.
  69. there are analog to digital converters, I forgot the name of the one that I have, bought itseveral years ago to transfer all my home movies to digital, need a fire wire for it, will also transfer the none copyrighted analog videos.
  70. Because of the combination of high contrast, pretty terrific resolution, and small frame size, it is hard to create a do it yourself telecine transfer system that will work with all types of film density situations. I would like to add a nice concise section about do it yourself systems to my super-8mm.net website, does one exist?
  71. DVD Movie Converter is currently the most powerful DVD converting program for customers to convert DVD movies with superfast speed and great output quality!
    Sound editting functions are offered by the DVD Movie Converter for you to customize the export file by trimming segments, cropping area size, adding effects and merging files!
  72. No matter how the 8mm movies get transferred to DVD, HOW LONG before the images start to deteriorate? And then what...will I have to do it over again (or will there be better technology by then)? I've heard that DVDs only have a "life" of about 3 years.
  73. Just using DVD to High-Definition Video Converter to make a wonderful try! It can not only supports convert to hd videos, but also supports convert DVD to some common videos including AVI, MPEG4, MPG, MP4, DivX, XviD, ASF, Youtube video, VOB, 3GP, MOV, etc for enjoy on popular devices such as Xbox360, PSP/PS3, Apple TV, iPhone, iPod Touch, Mobile Phone, Zune, Gphone...
  74. As a versatile conversion software, HD Converter is good at converting HD video files to almost all popular video and audio formats, and also to mobile devices. With it, you could convert hd to AVI, MP4, WMV, MPEG, VOB, 3GP, FLV, DivX, XviD, MP3, WAV, WMA, AAC, AC3 and more formats. Portable players like iPod, iPhone, Apple TV, Zune, PSP, PS3, Xbox, Blackberry are all supported.
  75. First time on here. I am trying to transfer 8mm film to digital. I'm using a variable speed projector, telecine box, and a Nikon D90 in video mode. I've also tried a Canon digital camcorder but the Nikon is giving better results. I don't have any problems with any flicker. But captured video is out of focus.
    Camera is set to manual focus. The camera is on a tripod and the tripod is not touching the projector table. The projector and camera are both focused as perfectly as possible. The image from the projector onto the telecine screen looks good (in focus). Looking in the side window of the telecine the image still looks good. Even looking thru the camera viewfinder during recording the image still looks good. But after removing the memory card from the camera and viewing the .avi file on the computer, the image in not in good focus. Does anyone have any suggestions for improving the focus?
  76. I have an old Videotec box that we started to transfer our super8's with, but found the recording quality was better being projected off a piece of white paper on the wall.....
    I can not adjust the speed on my video camera, so I have increased the speed on the projector, that has helped a fair bit with the flicker issue, however I have another issue and I have no idea of how to resolve it.
    All the white and light colours once recorded are really bright and it is ruining alot of the footage. It also appears that as the white/light colours get closer to the edge of the frame they are not as bright. I know that all indoor footage was taken with the light on the movie camera (the brightness of the light was a bit of overkill.... lol), so I expect some brightness but certainly not what I am getting once recorded on my camera. It is also the same on footage taken outside.
    Can anyone suggest anything to try and minimise this. We simply don't have $1200 to get them all done professionally.
    My camera was not cheap when I purchased it 3 years ago, it is a Sony Handycam DCR-SR80.
    Thanks so much :)
  77. I was very lucky to have my many hours of early 1970s Super 8s transferred by Time-Life in 2001 for gratis. They had a giant machine they just loaded the old reels on and did what they had to do. Anyone who wants the best results I suggest you go the pro method.
  78. Another hopefully better-lit photo from my telecined Super 8s. The same summer camp from the same batch.
  79. Great thread! So I just started doing the DIY poor man's version of 8mm film transfer to DV tape using a variable speed projector (Sankyo 2000H), DV camcorder (JVC GR series) and projecting on white paper. The primary problems I'm having so far are:
    1) For some reason my camcorder has focus issues primarily when the film is transitioning from dark footage to bright footage, or when there is a lot of movement (like a crowd of people moving forward) or when there is a short splice of white leader between scenes (short splicing between scenes must have been common for home movie film-makers in the 50's/60's). The only way I have found so far to correct for the out-of-focus between transitions is to manually ride the variable speed control on the projector while filming. This doesn't always work and certainly isn't ideal though. My camcorder is set for manual focus and 1/60 shutter. QUESTION: Is there another setting on camcorders to correct focus problems like this?
    2) Loss of brightness, i.e., the video is considerably darker than the film. QUESTION: Is there a camcorder setting to increase the brightness or maybe this can be done later on the computer via software? I played around with the "iris" and "exposer" settings on my camcorder, but didn't help.
    3) Color is duller on video than film. I played around with the "white balance" setting on my camcorder, but didn't find anything to correct for this.
    So maybe all of the above are normal for this process, but I'll keep trying. The focus problem is the biggest issue, at present. Any advice/comments appreciated, particularly with camcorder settings as I believe that is where most of my problems lay (and where I have the least experience). Thanks!
  80. Fascinating thread! For DIY enthusiasts build yourself an aerial transfer unit, then you can cam right down the lens of your projector and squarely capture your film without any keystoning effects. If you can afford it get yourself a stroboscopic variable speed projector or equivalent, otherwise flicker will keep creeping in and out of your capture. But for home movie capture there are softwares which can minimise flicker at the expense of some contrast. You will end up - via good edit software - with a film on dvd which looks like a film. If you want a film that looks like a digital video then you need a frame-by-frame set up, ultra expensive of course, but strokes for folks I guess?
  81. Turn off everything AUTO on your camcorder. It will constantly lose focus/exposure and even white balance as the film runs along. If there is a dark scene on the 8mm film the camcorder will try and compensate for it then when the next scene is properly exposed you'll get a big blow out in your exposure while it tries to compensate again. You want whats on the film so just set exposure for the best lit scenes and let the dark shots remain dark and "maybe" you can fix them in post.
  82. Best is a cam with manual settings so you can let it focus on your movie then switch to manual focus which will stop the cam trying to focus unnecessarily. If you must choose a white balance just flick through the options till you find something which most matches what you are after then stick with it. Depending in which country you are in or system you are using select a manual speed on the cam. For me it's 1/50th shutter speed on a film running at 16 & 2/3rds fps. That takes out the flicker on a film shot at 18fps on a 3 blade variable speed projector.
    My cam is a now veteran Canon MV830i, dream budget number with stacks of manual overrides and choices of fixed shutter speeds. Many budget cams are totally auto these days which means they are useless for fixed shutter speed capture. I guess the state-of-the-art dv cams which go for many $1000's [drool] also have complete manual control if needed.
    But cine-dv transfer is possible DIY. Obviously the more sophisticated equipment you use the better can be the result.
  83. I tried the transfer boxes and projection onto a white paper and did not like any of it. You definitely need a camera with manual settings for focus, exposure and shutter speed if you plan to go this way. The projector has to be variable speed with three blades. If flicker still present, you can try my method that removes most of it via postprocesing. The method is documented in my book (but I can share it here if there is interest):
    I personally prefer a direct method by projecting directly into the camera. The quality, sharpness and colors are much better. This is also described in the book along with the equipment and mods required.
    Here is a sample tansfer:
  84. That looks / sounds really impressive :)
    I use a three blade projector at 16 & 2/3rds fps for an 18fps film, with cam set at 1/50th shutter speed, but I may start shooting at 16 & 2/3rds as well.
    Other combinations of blades / speeds are also possible - 5 blade projectors were especially made for vhs cams to capture cine film but the exact speeds used are unknown to me ... probably 25fps ... some of the later, better cine camera models actually had a 25fps setting in addition to the standard 24 I think?
  85. Thanks Ric,
    Projecting the film directly into camera gives superior quality. The light has to be replaced with the led array and a diffuser. I do it frame by frame and use a still camera to capture high def stills which I then combine into an avi file. This method is however very slow. I possibly could try your setup for flickerless fast transfer but then would have to use the camera in video mode which in my case gives somewhat lower resolution. In my case I would need to run a 3 blade at 60/3 = 20 fps. I actually have another fast transfer method. Remove the blades altogether and run at one third frame rate. I then break up the video into individual pics and then run the fiffdiff program that I wrote that removes the bad and duplicate frames. Then the frames are assembled back into avi. The drawback is the time required for postprocessing.
    Here is the picture of one of my setups for direct projection:
  86. Looks good. I prefer my aerial transfer set-up though, taught me by Martin Baumgarten, because it seems to capture the nature of cine projection. I find that if transfers get too high tech the result begins to look like dv anyway, but I guess it's strokes for folks?
  87. Can't argue with that :)
  88. Hello ,
    I am currently in the process of transferring my father's super 8 sound films to digital.
    I'm using his Bolex SP8 to do the transfers. On some of the movies he used the TRIC (sound on sound) recording to add background music. In some places it's loud enough to obscure the original track and I was wondering if I could disconnect the positive lead from one side of the playback head so it would only play the original track recorded by the camera. Please let me know if this would work.
    Thank you
  89. I know nothing at all about sound movies, by the time I caught up with ciné film making as an adult the bulk of sound stripe film had been discontinued. Over to the rest of the gang.
  90. Hi Brent, I am not familiar with sound movies either, but what I gather from your input, the sound track got dubbed with music over the top of sound. If the movie has one sound track and both sounds are mixed there, then there is no easy way of separating them. You can possibly try some of the sound filters that can separate music from speech but this is not perfrect by any means. Another possibility may be getting the original music track that was recorded there (if that is at all possible). It has to be the same original music that you father used. Then you can try dubbing it over with phase reversed. Can you post a sample and I will look at it.
  91. Stan wrote: "Another possibility may be getting the original music track that was recorded..." If this is indeed a possibility then transfer the movie to digital then dub the soundtrack on using a digital editing software like Adobe Premiere or something, that way you have complete control over synching the audio to the visuals.
  92. Hello, I've been using a flatbed scanner to digitize my 8mm films. My most recent results can be seen here:
    Seems to be an ongoing process of incremental improvements, but it keeps me busy.
  93. Thank you, I enjoyed watching that. Here's a transfer I made a while ago - the details are with the movie at Vimeo
    I no longer use the ZC1000 because no current film stock sits comfortably in the Single 8 film cassettes. Which is a shame because the ZCM was probably one of the best 8mm ciné cameras ever made. You can run extant stocks through this camera but they are likely to jam so I just hope someone starts up a Fujichrome replacement film some day - oh! what a day that would be ;)
  94. Hello everyone,
    Just stumbled into this thread out of a long interest in S-8mm to video transfer. Went the DIY route after buying a 2002 Workprinter. First system was SD. Current system is 1080p HD.
    For a 2 minute, 720 HD demo and some technical details:
    The page also contains links to the earlier SD system, some A/B demos and two special "tricks" I developed. Pages also mention how to request a free 22 page "SD System Description".
    Hope these pages are of some interest and possible use.
  95. Ted I think you're an amazing filmmaker. Please take a look at my Super 8 from 1973. I had these bumped up by Time-Life Warner for possible commercial use which never materialized. What do think of the quality of this transfer, and the work itself?
    The link doesn't seem to catch. Please go to GettyImages.com> footage> keyword Lifshine thank you.

  96. This is an example of some of my bumped up Super 8 film. Ted, how does it rate with yours? The image is a screen grab from my world exclusive film of the most important outdoor music arena ever, the Forest Hills Tennis Stadium soundstage in Queens, New York.
  97. All,
    First of all I would like to thank you for this long thread. I'm thinking about transferring my parents old 8mm myself
    I don't have the money for a real telecine and I was looking around.
    I saw this company in france selling this micro camera that replace the lens of the projector. What do you guys think about this ?
  98. that plugs straight into where the lens was? raises some questions: will it fit the projector? what distance from the film gate should it be? how do you focus with it? what level of illumination can it handle? - most projector bulbs are brighter than car headlamps. sounds like a good idea in theory but you are still going to have to synch the digi capture to the projector unless we are talking single frame work?
  99. Thanks a lot
    I talked to the supplier in France and he told me that there was no issue with the sync. They have the shutter speed adjusted. They also have a LED bulb in the kit with a potentiometer to adjust the brightness. The camera slides in a tube so you can focus. On paper it sounds good.
    Thanks for your feedback about the 1CCD compare to 3CCD.
    I'm still unsure about the HD stuff. The original 8mm are to start "not HD" so can you really turn it to a sharp nice HD movie ?
  100. Hi, I have my own setup with macro lenses and extenders. I used both Olympus Pen (1280x720) and Canon Mark II (1920x1080) cameras in video mode and direct capture (projector into camera) and did not see that big difference.
    The final video is in avi format and the lower res video covers only 1/2 of my monitor screen but I blow it up by 2X to cover the whole screen. With HD I do not have to blow it up. I expected more pixel noise with the lower res due to the 2X magnification but did not see that much with bright scenes. With darker scenes, the difference is more pronounced. So that is another factor to consider, it is not only the quality of the original but also the pixel noise that you will be magnifying when watching the lower res final video. Not sure if the difference is worth the $$$ though.
  101. In the UK you transfer film to dv at the ratio 16.667fps : 1/50th shutter speed. You need a three blade projector. In the USA the speeds are different. Over to you.
  102. Greetings,
    I want to thank all the helpful advice on how to transfer 8 and supper 8 to digital. I have put it to use to impressive effect. However, I have run into difficulties that have stalled my project, which I was hoping you could help me with.
    1. I bought and am using a Panasonic hdc-sd40m camcorder to capture the film.
    2. The camera came with Panasonic software “HD writer LE 1.0”
    Now I can get the one film I recorded to play its card via Veracast on my HDTV or to play from my laptop, I had installed the Panasonic software through to a USB projector. What I cannot do is to get DVDs I have burned the movies to, using the Panasonic software, to play on other computers.
    My questions are: there a way for me to upload the recorded video to my computer in a nonproprietary format that I may edit and burn to DVD using non Panasonic software?
    I have noted a loss in picture quality from DVD as oppose from the direct source when showing pictures. How does one get a burned DVD which has equal quality to that of the computer or card, plugged into the HD screen?
    Thank you in advance,
    John B.
  103. I haven't got HD software so I can't advise on the HD. If you are videoing your 8mm footage you need to have your cam wired to your computer by usb, firewire or however your cam prefers it. That way you are streaming what your cam sees direct to your hard drive.
    Experiment. Once you have established 'direct capture' as above then you are moving in the right direction.
    Apart from that a little supporting information might help others to assist you. Like what country you are in, what shutter speed have you set your cam at, what speed (frames per second) is your 8mm film playing at, and so forth?
  104. Instructions convert 8 mm to Mini DV:
    1) Connect the 8mm camcorder to the RF modulator with an S-video cord.
    2) Connect mini DV camcorder to the RF modulator in the output Audio/Visual cord (red, white, yellow).
    3) Set mini DV camcorder to VCR setting and press "record".
    4) Set 8 mm camcorder to "play" =)
  105. And all this time i've been juggling with single surface mirrors and rheostats - duh!
    Happy Holidays!
  106. Hi, I've been reading everyones input with great interest because I now have possession of all of my parent's 8mm home movies as well as my own super 8mm ones I took of my kids! I am a novice to this and do not profess to know much of anything in this field, however my goal is to transfer all of them to dvd, as well! I'm not planning to do this as a business, as it appears some of you are doing, however I also do not want to send these out to someone whom I don't know, and risk them getting lost or damaged! Based on what I've read so far, I'm thinking that the way to go, is to purchase one of the "8mm transfer boxes" they are selling on ebay now for around $100 and an 8mm projector. I believe I have everything else! First let me tell you what I do have and you can tell me if it's anything I can use in this process or should replace it. I obviously have a computer (we have a few and my husband is an IT person, so he or my daughter whom is also very computer literate, will be taking care of that end of the spectrum. My daughter also has the "vegas" program, I don't know if that is something that can be used in this process, but I'm throwing it out there. My daughter also has a Sony 12 mega pixel cypershot camera and I have a Sony Handicam. We also have dvr's, burner's etc! I also have a Sanyko Super 8 sound movie projector (and camera) which I purchased in 1980 which still works great, just tried it out a few months ago. So, from what I can see, all I need besides the transfer box I plan to get on ebay, for $100, is an 8mm movie projector, to transfer my parents movies. Therefore, my questions- !. which is the best 8mm projector to get for this sort of thing or 2. should I get a dual 8 projector with variable speed, to transfer my super 8's as well? Also, will what I have and the "transfer box" be enough to do an adequate job, or should I look into replacing something, or doing it some other way? Thanks for you help, and as I've said, I've already learned a lot from reading all the comments, but like I said, I'm a novice, so please don't get too technical, as I'm having trouble understanding what 3 blades vs 5 blades and all that means. One other thing, I obviously do not want to put out a lot of money for this project, because it will be a one time thing, I'm hoping my biggest expenses to be th "transfer box for around $100 and an 8 mm projector, for about the same or less.
  107. Hi Betty,
    Before you go ahead and purchase another projector I suggest you try the transfer with your existing super 8. You did not state which model you have. It is very important that the projector has variable speed which allows you to minimize flicker. I would try it with a white screen or wall first. Project your movie onto the wall or large white paper and record it with your sony camera which can be positioned above the projector. Set the speed of the projector for minimum flicker in the camera. This way you do not have to spend any extra money up front. Keep in mind though that this type of capture is not high quality. The colors will look washed out and the final video will not be in very sharp focus, but that is ok for some folks. BTW - the transfer boxes are a waste of money in my opinion, but maybe the newer ones are better from what I used a while back.
    Hope this helps,
  108. Stan,
    Thank you for the advice, however the projector I own is a Sankyo Sound 500 which probably won't do me much good, since it does not have variable speed on it. Therefore, I'm considering getting a super 8/8mm projector that will hopefully handle both. I've been hesitant there, as I've read that it's better to have seperate projectors, because the combination projectors do not have spockets which can cause some trouble. However the combination 8mm/super 8 that I've narrowed it down to are-a Chinion 2000GL, Bell & Howell 456A, Anscovision GAF 688, Sears 9270 Revere, Bell & Howell Lumina II QX80 or a Chinion Whisper. Do any of these work better than the other or is there something better than these? I've noticed 3 blades pop up a lot in topic's, do any of these have 3 blades?
    I figure I will probably do a lot of experimenting, once I get all the right equipment, and I'm actually very interested in your "direct method" of projecting into the camera. Does this just require the removal of the projector lense, or is it nessesary to purchase extra's for the camera or projector? Also, are you doing it frame by frame with this method? I'm not sure if I want to get that deep into it, since I've got over 50 reels to process, but I would like to get the best quality possible as well.
    I noticed you have a book out which appears to discribe how to do everything, and I'm thinking of purchasing it, but is it written so that a novice can understand it, or do you need to know all the jargon? I'm sure I can figure it out if the terms aren't too technical, as I've already picked up a few things just reading everone's comment's here, but if you have to know a lot about camera's already, it's probably over my head at this point.
    Again that's for the help
  109. Hi Betty,
    I have been using the Chinon Whisper projector with super 8mm film for the past few years and am happy with it. The projector has a switch to change from 8 to super 8. I do not have experience with the other models that you listed but possibly some other forum members may be able to help you here. The Chinon Whisper model does have 3 blades and motor speed control which will help you synchronize the projector and the camera and reduce flicker if you plan doing the transfer at full speed. The projector does not have sound, so if any of your super 8 reels have sound you will have to record it separately from video and then combine it back. The direct projection definitely requires more work and know how and it is covered in my book, but I suggest try the simple method first with the screen and then go from there.
  110. I too am on a limited budget and am going the project on wall and video capture. I have a variable speed ELMO dual 8 projector and a JVC Everio camera. I noted in a previous post that I should turn all auto functions off on the camera. Shutter set to 1/60th, and have no flicker, I do have occasional "over exposed" scenes. The focus is fine. I am projecting on a professional movie screen with my image about 6" square. By ALL auto functions does it mean ALL? Any suggestions on setting the manual settings on the camera.
  111. It depends on the cam. You can hold a frame (care not to melt it) and focus on that with cam's auto focus, hold it, switch & lock to manual focus when it's sharp - then you've fixed the cam focus & don't need to touch it any more.
    But tell more please - what country are you in, and why 1/60th precisely?
    You will lose some definition capturing on the bounce but you can still get some nice captures. I'm working on a new (budget) aerial transfer unit but will say no more until I have some results.
  112. I have really enjoyed reading the posts on this subject. I have recently been given boxes and boxes of family movies ( 8mm and Super 8) dating to the Stone Age. (Well, it feels like that....). I was looking for the best method to do this myself for a minimal cost. After reading all the posts, however, I am beginning to think it would be worth my time (and money) to invest in a DVDirect and a Cinemate 20. My plan would be to use my family movies for my learning curve, and then move ahead with doing others. I currently have a good demand for my ProShow Producer Slideshows, and could see adding this as an additional service. If I am thinking of heading this way, what advice do those of you already doing this have for me? I appreciate your advice and suggestions.
  113. Hi, Cinemate 20 looks like an aerial transfer unit, it should work; you can build your own for a fraction of the cost however. Capturing film is tricky but it can be done. This type of unit will capture the 'cine nature' of your footage; digital frame-by-frame captures can be much steadier and these units are more expensive. Pro transfers are often thought to be of the frame-by-frame method. Transfer requires a great deal of time and dedication so it becomes something of a hobby in the end, a fascinating hobby. A lot of people prefer to send their film away to have it digitalised by someone else, it's different strokes for different folks ultimately.
  114. Thanks, Ric, for your comments. But you left me with a confused look on my face. If you were in my position, where would you start? Am I better off to figure out how to build my own aerial transfer unit, or look into a digital frame by frame method. Cost is, of course, a big consideration, but not a deal-breaker in any case. This is not to say I can spent $thousands on a start up unit. But if I'm going to do this, I do want to do it right. If I were to go the way of the frame by frame idea, where do I start with that?
    Thanks for your comments,
  115. Hi, I finallly got my 8mm projector and when I went to test it, of course the film gathers up and breaks off since it's so old. (Luckily I chose to use an old popeye cartoon to test with rather than a home movie) Anyway, I had heard about some various ways to clean and lubricate the film, so I sent away for some silicone cleaning cloths, which I used on a strip of the cartoon, and tried running it through again, and it worked perfectly! It also seemed to bring the film back to a healthier looking state! However, when I recieved the cloths I noticed they were the type sold for cleaning guns and reels (it actually states this on the package) Tne reason I did not buy a bottle of "filmgaurd" is because I had read it is not safe to use on home movies which you want to preserve, and that it was meant for the movies that are shown in theaters and then discarded after several uses. Sooo, before I get carried away and start cleaning (and possibly ruining) home movies, can anyone give me some educated advice on these wipes and the filmgaurd?
  116. Kathy, sorry to confuse. I can only give you detailed information on aerial transfer because this is the method I use. All the bits & pieces you need are DIY store or on the Bay. As for frame-by-frame, I daresay computer buffs can do this - it is well within the realms of what can be done by the enthusiast. Otherwise you'd be looking at something like a DV8 Sniper HD or sending your reels out to be done by someone else. PM me if you want more on DIY aerial transfer units.
  117. Stan,
    Thank you very much for the links, I found them to be very informative and useful, and saved them for future reference. I'm still curious as to the products that this website http://8mm16mmfilmscollectibles.com/supplies.htm is promoting ie-the "gun" clothes and goo gone (at the bottom of the page) have these products been tested on 8mm film by anyone? Btw, I will probably invest in the filmrenew, if no one can backup this site's claims.
    One other bit of advice I need- does anyone know of any places that still develop old 8mm/super 8 film? And, would it even be worth while to try to do so, with film that's obviously at least 25-35 years old? I had heard that Ritz camera still might, but when my husband took it in, they didn't even know what it was. Yes, I guess you could say I procastinate sometimes!
  118. Dear friends,
    I would like to transfer my father's old 8mm films to DVD and I don't know which method to use... I can understand that the cheaper is to project to a piece of paper but I hate the keystone effect.. I prefer to use a kind of a telecine device but I don't know which is better: the ones with a flat screen or the ones with a condenser lens?
    I've read mixed comments about them but I can understand that the flat screen type is easier to align, but the condenser lens type gives better quality transfer since it provides an aerial capture. Just to be clear to what I've found in the market:
    Condenser lens type:
    Flat screen type:
    I also couldn't clarify which is better to the hot spot problem... Are there any other advantages between the two I should take into account?
    I've also found some telecine boxes, but are very used.. Are they better?:
    While on the subject of the new / used devices, I would really like the flat screen type of the above photo, since it is the only which is new. Their site is:
    Their advertisment is very good with a lot of (and only...) advantages!
    They say "anti-glare", but is the condenser lens type better in this respect?
    They say "without hot spots and image washout"; is it or not the condenser lens better to these? I think the condenser lens type would give lesser image washout being an aerial capture; as for the hot spots, I really don't know as I said above...
    They also say "First Surface (Front Surface) Mirror"; OK, I already know that this is good!
    Anyway, since whatever I buy will cost me a lot of money (shipping to Greece costs a lot), I would like any opinion about any other disadvantages of each type/method I can't imagine...
    Thank you all in advance!
  119. The top example you can build yourself for a fraction of the cost of whatever the companies will charge you. It's just a single-surface mirror and a large powerful magnifying glass lens. This will give you an aerial transfer. What the seller doesn't tell you, in either case it seems, is that you will need:
    a) a projector which has a variable speed control (to eliminate flicker)
    b) a less powerful and diffused lamp to eliminate 'hot spot'
    b) a camcorder with shutter speed control, or a shutter speed which matches or will synch with a speed setting on your projector.
    A more direct way to capture film to dv is to add a macro-reverse lens to your cam (turning it into a microscope) and video your film straight off the film gate. Once you have the capture you can turn it right way round in your edit software. You will need to experiment until you get the result you want. You will still need a variable speed projector and cam which synchronises cine : dv shutter speeds.
    Here's an example in Super 8. This is oldish film, rather 'moth eaten' but because it was damaged in processing, however the good bits, without holes in them, give you some idea of what can be achieved by the home user on a DIY basis:
  120. Thank you for your answer! Before I asked all these I had made my test:
    a) my projector has variable speed control (Canon Cine Projector S-400)
    b) my camcorder, well actually DSLR (Canon 550D in Europe or T2i in America), has full manual settings (not only for shutter speed)
    Projecting at a wall and capturing gave me very good results (camera at 1/60 and projector at around 20fps) with absolutely no flicker. Isn't that enough as flickering testing is concerned? Or maybe using a more quality method than the wall projection will show me any flicker left? Oh, by the way, I had the camera connected to a TV for better (than its LCD screen) testing of the (absense of) flicker.
    I used the original projector's lamp, but I imagine you are saying that the "wall method" doesn't shuffer from hot spot, am I right?
    I also eventually think that the 1st method (aerial transfer) should be better quality than the flat screen; but is it so much more difficult? I've heard of the need of at least 10-12x optical zoom. My DSLR's lens is a Canon EF-S 15-85 (which is actually a 24-135, since 550D/T2i is a crop camera with an 1.6x factor). Would it be enough?
    Which of all the methods (1st, 2nd, 3rd, wall, macro-reverse lens) is better to the hot spot problem, in case I don' want to modify the projector? To the overall quality?
    Could you please give me a macro-reverse lens example? I've only found macro-reverse rings in ebay to put your lens in your camera the other way round... Could this work with my lens above?
    Thank you very much again, it's not that I'm bored to test myself all of the above... It's because I'm trying not to spend a lot of money only to find out that a specific method is crap and have to spend again... Thanks and I'm hoping for an answer from you again wich hopefully will help other members as well!
  121. Hi George,
    If you are getting no flicker on your tv connected to the camera then I think it is pretty reasonable to assume that the aerial capture will have low flicker. It is still possible that the areal capture flicker will be worse than screeen projection since the video is more saturated. Although you are saying that you see no flicker at all, it is still possible that you have some but do not see it with fast moving frames.
    Yes, the aerial capture is more complex to set up and you will need to use an led lamp for that because the original projector lamp is just way too bright. Another advantage of the led lamp is that it runs cool so that you can run the film slower or frame by frame without danger of burning the film.
    As Rick suggested the easiest way of getting the aerial capture is by using a macro lens. I actually would not recommend reverse lens method because you ar pushing the lens limits and could get image distortions in the corners. But you never know. For that method you will need a reverse macro adapter.
    A better way in my opinion is to get the macro lens. I use a 100mm FD macro with extension tubes and a FD/EF adapter for my MarkII. FD macro lenses are still available and are very reasonable cost, whereas EF macro lenses are very expensive. If interesetd, let me know and I can send you the macro lens calculations for your camera.
  122. Hi George,
    As Stan said basically. The way to see if you have eliminated flicker is to monitor your capture on a CRT not a flat screen, flat screens disguise flicker. Wall captures will not necessarily eliminate 'hot spot'. Wall captures will slightly distort your imagery [key stone effect] & lose you definition, possibly making your result more contrasty than the original. Here's a picture of the reversed lens on my Canon MV830i. You can get virtually any reverse ring on the Bay. Even though my cam is solid state with no external moving parts I still support the macro extension just in case. Note the white perspex lamp house screen & low wattage bulb [15/25W] in place of the much more powerful projector bulb. Be very careful with electronics - unplug the projector whenever you are working on it. Hope this helps?
    http://i124.photobucket.com/albums/p32/r_i_c_2007/8mm transfer unit 2012-/IMG_6433.jpg
  123. Hi again, Well after finally getting moved into our new place, I started setting up to begin transferring my parent's old home movies. Problem is, when I went to eject the tape from my Sony Handicam, I couldn't get it to close again. Since it sounds like a few others also use these to do their transfer, has anyone else experianced this? Is there an easy or semi easy fix, or am I looking at needing to replace it? The rest of the camera works, and I'm still able to record to the card, but I have several tapes that I'd at least like to get the stuff transferred off of. Thank you!

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