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Old September 19th, 2004, 03:18 PM   #1
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A-cam Sp-16

Anybody knows anything about this camera?? Is it bad or good ?? I saw a sample footage from their webpage which looks good to me but may be you guys know more about this.It looks like a perfect choice for HD but I could be wrong....

http://www.ikonoskop.com/acam/index.asp
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Old September 19th, 2004, 09:52 PM   #2
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It is neither bad nor good, it is what it is. What it is, is SMALL. They designed it to be tiny. And it is.

There are some compromises made to get it that small, such as no reflex viewfinder, that many professionals today will not accept. I certainly wouldn't pay $5,000 for a Super16 camera that gives me the same basic functionality as my Super16 Filmo, which I bought off ebay for $300.

If you want a tiny camera, they don't come much tinier than the A-cam. If you want a Super16 camera, you can buy something used that will have much more capability than the A-cam, at a lot lower cost. But it'll be used, not new.
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Old September 20th, 2004, 11:44 AM   #3
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And don't expect to be doing any long, or complex takes as the a-cam only takes about 50 ft. of film. That's about a minute and a half, then you've got to reload.
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Old September 20th, 2004, 12:13 PM   #4
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Thanks guys for the info...I dont know much about these cameras yet I just downloaded a sample clip from the website of the company who makes these cameras and I just loved the look of the film even at this "low" resolution.I just started to think that how nice it would be to use this kind of camera and scan the film at HD resolution it would really goof and look like film since it is film of course at a higher cost.
What kind of camera you guys can suggest for me which is not so big but would be a good buy.
Joshua,
I think it takes 100 ft film but it is not a big difference anyway...
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Old September 20th, 2004, 01:13 PM   #5
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Depends on what you want to shoot. The Eclair ACL is a very tiny 16mm camera, especially when loaded with a 200' magazine, and is very, very quiet (for shooting sync sound). You can find those on ebay for around $1500.

The B&H Filmo 70 is one of the smallest cameras around, has the same non-reflex viewfinder system as the A-cam, and can be bought off ebay for less than $300. Noisy and no sync-sound capability however.
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Old September 20th, 2004, 01:20 PM   #6
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Barry is the Eclair Super16 or regular 16? What would you recommend for a cheap super16cam silent enough to run sound with it?
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Old September 21st, 2004, 06:39 PM   #7
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Barrys' right on - the acl , s16 or r16 , can be bought on ebay- an r16 acl can be professionally converted. another cool option is ultra 16- you can convert a larger variety of 16mm cameras , it has a wider aspect ratio and you can use normal lenses- & I've seen some frezzolinis' converted to u16 going for less than a grand- do a google on ultra 16- hope you find something useful- Kurth
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Old September 21st, 2004, 07:06 PM   #8
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<<<-- Originally posted by Michael Struthers : Barry is the Eclair Super16 or regular 16? What would you recommend for a cheap super16cam silent enough to run sound with it? -->>>

Eclairs were manufactured as Regular16, but can be converted to Super16.

Eclairs come in two varieties, the ACL and the NPR. The ACL is smaller and newer... the ACL 1 was designed as somewhat of a "stripped down" model, but the ACL II brings it back up to where both the ACL II and the NPR have pretty much the same basic functionality.

For shooting sound you need two things: a silent camera, and a crystal-sync (or AC synchronous) motor.

The cheapest sync-sound camera you can get is an Auricon, with its AC sync motor, you can usually pick one up for $300 to $500. Very quiet, but extremely heavy and no through-the-lens viewing. I don't know if they can be converted to S16.

You could look at a CP16/A, that could easily be converted to U16, I'm not sure whether it can be made S16. Problem with those is, again, no through-the-lens viewing.

The CP16/R is a dynamite camera, and *some* of them can be converted to Super16. Basically you have to look for one with a half-moon shutter, not the bowtie. I think they're serial #1956 and up, but I don't remember.

Next up the price scale is the Eclair, or its follow-up the Aaton. If you can swing an Aaton, go for it, otherwise the Eclair ACL is probably going to be the one you're looking for (or the NPR). Many Eclairs have been converted. I thought the ACL was a bit fragile (I'm used to the CP16, which you could use to drive railroad spikes while filming and it wouldn't skip a beat). IIRC Aaton bought Eclair and so their ProD and LTR-7, etc., are outgrowths of the Aaton design.

The other choice is the Arri SR series, but there you're starting to look at $10,000 to $30,000, and a Super16 conversion for one of those might run $3000.

Les Bosher over at http://www.lesbosher.co.uk does some of the finest camera work (S16 conversions, lens mount conversions, etc) that you'll ever find, he's very affordable and a great guy to work with, so if you find a camera that's not S16 yet, ask him what it'd cost to get it converted.
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Old September 21st, 2004, 10:26 PM   #9
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<<I just loved the look of the film even at this "low" resolution.I just started to think that how nice it would be to use this kind of camera and scan the film at HD resolution it would really goof and look like film since it is film of course at a higher cost.
>>

Gabor:

My recommendation is that (if you haven't already) you look closely at the per-minute costs of film stock, processing and telecine of shooting film. Especially telecine: a cheap "film chain", if even still available, will not produce the results you expect. Nearly all of the film material that you may have seen has been transferred to video at great expense.
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Old September 22nd, 2004, 10:20 AM   #10
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If you're still interested , check out www.moviestuff.tv - he has highly rated personal telecine equipment for 8 & 16 mm - there's alot of info at www.8mm.filmshooting.com.Another new option is super duper 8mm- You can modify a super 8 cameras' gate giving a 14:9 screen ratio and transfer the full frame on a Workprinter ( the telecine at moviestuff ) and apparently from reviews get great results. You can find info at filmshooting-just do a search on their forum for " super duper ". Kodachrome s8 cost about 15 bucks including processing and , if you don't want to buy a Workprinter , they're alot of people with them that do transfer services. Right now , I believe Roger Evans , the owner and creator of the workprinter is working on hdv solutions. There's no reason film and video solutions are not complementary . Barry , one small point . The cp16 or the frezzolinis are not reflex but most have lenses with elbow thru the lens viewfinders that are quite adequate for framing focusing etc. and make gate modification much easier . And Gabor , I think you would find the resolution for 16mm exceeds any of the cheaper hd solutions but as Charles points out , the cost is the main issue. SuperDuper 8 captured frame by frame might be worth considering as a cheaper alternative to the filmlook. Kurth
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Old October 6th, 2004, 01:59 AM   #11
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Gabor, having watched the footage on the site, I think you can do much better for the money. I've been looking at the 35 mm Konvas 2M a lot lately. It's typically cheaper, and the footage I've seen from it is far superior. However, if you're specifically looking for HD, check out the upcoming Sony HDR-FX1. Even the compressed footage I've seen from it boasts resolution beyond any other consumer HDV or DV cam out there.

I'm not sure how much you know about cams, but film cams are a lot of work to use. Unlike digital camcorders, whose footage can be reviewed and edited on the fly, film first has to be developed, then transferred to video for digital editing. This whole procedure will cost a lot more than just buying a couple miniDV or DVCAM tapes, then simply plugging your camcorder into the PC. And unlike camcorders, which can typically record decent audio, you'll need to buy a DAT to record audio while shooting with film.

This leads me to a question. Exactly what about the A-cam is HD? Maybe some of its technical specs make it comparable to the HD standard. But would the HD consortium recognize this product as HD? My guess is hell no.
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Old October 6th, 2004, 09:21 AM   #12
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Charlie,
thanks for your the info...i actually own the JVC HD10u HDV camcorder which records in 720p...I am thinking about the new Sony HDV camcorder but the picture of this cam doesnt look like film at all and i love the look of the A-Cam for example...it looks like film because it is film.I know it is more hassle to shot with a film camera but the picture for me is much better.
I think they say that the A-cam is HD because the Super16mm format will meet with the 1920x1080 resolution requirements.
I am looking for this kind of resolution which is HD but with the look of film....I am not considering the A-cam any more but looking at some Eclairs which are better priced with good lenses.
Still looking....
Gabor
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Old October 6th, 2004, 10:13 AM   #13
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Does anyone know of a website or msg board like dvinfo.net for info on 16mm or super 16mm.

Having looked at ebay the prices range from 150 to 7,000 so I'm totally confused.

This one looks interesting for 895 www.k3camera.com/k3

Any info would be appreciated
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Old October 6th, 2004, 10:32 AM   #14
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Jed,
try www.cinematography.com There is a lot of great info there on film just like here on dv and hdv...
Gabor
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Old October 6th, 2004, 01:08 PM   #15
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Gabor,

That clears a few things up. I'm actually planning to shoot my next (well, first serious) project on film too. I'm looking at 35 mm, but I haven't yet ruled out the new Sony for sure. It has a really high res shot, and after converting to true 24 fps (using DVFilm maker or Twixtor or whatever compatible program), it might look a bit closer to film than you'd expect.

Anyway, check out this site for a bunch of info on some Russian film cams:

http://www.commiecam.com/

Also, these guys make some recommended modded Konvas's.

http://slowmotioninc.com/

Also, there are a good amount of 16mms on Ebay, but I don't really know anything about 16mm, so I can't say if any of them are good.
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