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Old May 7th, 2003, 01:14 PM   #1
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Film and DV, DV and Film

I have been doing a ton of research into film.

Are you a filmmaker as well as DV maker?

I feel I am missing items in cinematography because I have been working in DV only. So, I am moving my studies into film/film cameras and film cinematography as well as DV.

I have some experience with 16mm and Super 8mm and would love preserve my work in film.

An article I read spoke volumes regarding storage of digital media and film. The tapes that we use deteriorate at a higher rate and if damaged, the data is unretrievable. Film, however, you can still view the captured images in all their resolution. Hence, the 70mm "King John" that is/has been restored.

Using what I have in this pay-as-you-go production(s).

Best Regards,

Derrick
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Old May 7th, 2003, 03:53 PM   #2
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Personally I will burn any serious project to DVD, both the source
files and the final results and everything that needs to go with it.
Those discs should last longer if carefully preserved. And should
be more easy to put on a future recording format.
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Old May 7th, 2003, 03:58 PM   #3
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The plain fact is that digital media has not been around as long as film... so no one knows FOR SURE how it will look in eighty years or so.

One assumes that in optimum storage conditions, it should last as long as film stored in optimum conditions.

But in the real world, optimum conditions are hard to come by and difficult to maintain.

I recently transferred eight hours of Regular 8 film footage shot in 1952 to my computer. The look of the kodachrome was AMAZING after fifty years.

The vhs copies of my son I ot in 1983have deteriorated beyond watching. Both of these media were stored in typical "Back of the closet" fashion.

Draw your own conclusions.
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Old May 7th, 2003, 04:27 PM   #4
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Rob,

Definately, probably burn about 5. For several different locations.


Richard,

I recently did that also from 8mm (1965-1977). The images are very vivid and color range...! Bottom/Back of the closet storage.


Cheers!
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Old May 7th, 2003, 04:36 PM   #5
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Richard, VHS is Analog video stored in a magnetic medium. DV is zero's and one's also stored in a magnetic media so it is the medium that risks damage and not actual information. My daughter's Spongebob VHS is unwatchable after watching it repeatedly for months.

DVD, however will out last me and two generations after me provided it doesn't get scratched up, but that goes for any medium.

But, the future may certainly provide a solid state backup of the zeroes and ones to preserve the footage and keep it in a better, more durable medium, after all silicon lasts for a long time.
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Old May 7th, 2003, 05:19 PM   #6
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Derrick,

If the article you read is the same one I read (on a Kodak film preservation site), be aware that it is full of distortions, omissions,and outright falsehoods. They spend a lot of time discussing problems with old video tape and completely gloss over problems with film preservation, like the old nitrate films which can become explosive or the problems with color dyes fading rapidly in 60s and 70s movies or the acetate stock that was supposed to last forever but shares many of the nitrate stock's tendency to deteriorate. (At least acetate doesn't blow up.)

The real truth is that it is possible to preserve film, it just takes a lot of work and money. If anyone took a fraction of the money necessary to preserve film to preserve video, it would last forever too. (If someone spent that much time and money pampering me I might last almost as long, who knows?)

If you really want to preserve your work, convert it to ones and zeros and progressively copy it onto whatever the current data storage medium happens to be.
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Old May 7th, 2003, 10:13 PM   #7
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Sony just came out in Japan with blu-ray HD DVD recorder. It is expensive, but the price will be coming down fast. This will be the best way for you to store old flms through 16 mm. DVD's too have a limited ife, but it is a lot longer than tape. Actualy he HD DVD's my have a shorter life than DVD's, but with all the advances in this field I am suret that in 20 years or so the format may become absolete, at which time you'll be able to transfer it to another medium. The DVD format wil become absolete before the blu-ray format will. From all the HD DVD formats coming out, the blu-ray HD DVD will probably be around the longest. It also has backing from more companies han the oter formats.

As to geting into film now, if you do not need to do it at this very moment and you can wait till next NAB, I'm sure that there will be interesting MPEG2 HD camcorders based on the blu-ray format. Even JVC will at that time probably come out with a better HD DV camcorder that you'll be able to use a lot more inexpensively than film equipment/stock.
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Old May 8th, 2003, 06:01 AM   #8
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Derrick,

Indeed... I burn multiple copies.
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Old May 8th, 2003, 09:34 PM   #9
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Actually, almost any videotape will outlast the format it was made on and the machines available to play it. But now that we live in a digital world, in effect a tape can last forever--because you can clone it to the new format du jour just before your old format becomes obsolete. I've seen 50 generations of a dV50 format with no noticeable degradation in quality. So all you have to do is store your tapes properly and before DV devices become obsolete, transfer the tapes to the new stuff.
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Old May 8th, 2003, 10:11 PM   #10
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<<<-- Originally posted by Bill Pryor : and before DV devices become obsolete, transfer the tapes to the new stuff. -->>>

But I wonder what we'll think of DV's quality when we view it in our new 3d holographic sense-immersion tactile aromatic virtual reality chambers? ;-)

But seriously, you make a good point. I have files on my computer which migrated from my Apple ][ in 1981. God knows what happened to the original 5.25" floppies (or even cassette tapes). I know I wouldn't have the patience to find a working unit and try to access them that way!

A number of years ago I read a historian bemoaning the computer revolution. For one thing, that pile of 8" floppies they find in a closet somewhere may have been written on some long vanished proprietary word processor. But their other point was that when working on a computer people generally just overwrite their old files as they make changes. So they don't have boxes of first draft manuscripts with handwritten notes in the margins to study.
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