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Scanning 8mm/Super8 Home Videos
#1
Hi folks,

My father has about 20 reels of 8mm/Super8 home videos that he would like to capture.

I've tried to convince him to get it done by a professional, just to have something that will work as a proper master for the long term.
I can understand him, costs are about 1000€ to get it done by a local professional. We did find some companies from whom you can rent a scanner for about 100€ for ten days, but then you're doing all the work yourself (with all the time it takes). Either method has its pros and cons.
He does have a projector from which to play back the reels, but recording the screen is my least preferred method (even though the cheapest).

I am all for doing the work with him, but I currently reside in the UK whereas he's in France.

Does anyone have any recommendations for what they've done or would do in this situation?
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#2
Just a thought, could you buy something like this:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Digitnow-8mm-...SwJ9Re08HP)

and do the scanning yourself, then sell it once you are done? In theory, as it's bids not buy it now, you should get a similar amount back when you sell it so it might end up costing you very little. No idea if this is a good scanner however, and it mentions it cannot do sound - but unlikely you have sound.
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#3
Forget about those buyable/rentable units if you want good quality. They are absolute trash and you will regret wasting money on them. Their dynamic range is horrible, so lights get clipped and blacks get crushed to no end. You only get JPEGs and the resolution is a lie, you only get upscaled garbage out of them. And they aren't properly stabilized with the registration pin like a projector apparently so your image comes out shaky as all hell. If you don't believe me, search for example videos made on the Reflecta/Wolverine/whatever brand they happen to use that time.

Facing a similar dilemma after buying some Super 8 and 8mm material on ebay, and the only alternative being extremely expensive services, I'm now working on constructing a scanner myself using a modified projector and an attached camera. This to me appears to be the only workable solution.

See for an example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ruo9Ln30H8I

My suggestion for you would be going the same route. If I manage to get this to work (could take some weeks or months) I'll be offering to do it for others as well for a (at least initially) reasonable price, so I could offer it for you too. But I can't make any promises at this point since my DIY skills are moderate and I might not be able to do it in the end.

If you want to go for a scanning service, I think I saw good example videos made by pro8mm.com:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X_Tejr-T2aA

Or by Ocho y Pico in Spain:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v6vxklx38DI

There's lots of other good scanners probably, but I would only judge them by the samples they upload. Many of the cheaper ones don't have any samples uploaded, which should be a red flag. I worked with one of those and he ended up being a scammer and his work really bad quality.

Also maybe request a ProRes sample before ordering anything, because the Youtube compression may be hiding issues with these sample scans that are only visible on a high bitrate encode.

Edit: If you want to find good samples search for scans of Kodak 50D 7203 negative film, it's an extremely high resolving film stock that will clearly show any flaws of the scanning procedure I think. Those two examples I posted are from Kodak 50D.
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Thanks given by: Kynch
#4
(2020-06-02, 06:28 PM)alleycat Wrote: Just a thought, could you buy something like this:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Digitnow-8mm-...SwJ9Re08HP)

and do the scanning yourself, then sell it once you are done? In theory, as it's bids not buy it now, you should get a similar amount back when you sell it so it might end up costing you very little. No idea if this is a good scanner however, and it mentions it cannot do sound - but unlikely you have sound.

So I considered getting one of those. I assumed that for the price tag, they would be sufficient. It's impossible to know until it's been tried. I think my father didn't want to spend that much, but you're right, it could easily be sold again, even if at a little loss. Basically paying to rent it indefinitely.

(2020-06-02, 07:00 PM)TomArrow Wrote: Forget about those buyable/rentable units if you want good quality. They are absolute trash and you will regret wasting money on them. Their dynamic range is horrible, so lights get clipped and blacks get crushed to no end. You only get JPEGs and the resolution is a lie, you only get upscaled garbage out of them. And they aren't properly stabilized with the registration pin like a projector apparently so your image comes out shaky as all hell. If you don't believe me, search for example videos made on the Reflecta/Wolverine/whatever brand they happen to use that time.

Facing a similar dilemma after buying some Super 8 and 8mm material on ebay, and the only alternative being extremely expensive services, I'm now working on constructing a scanner myself using a modified projector and an attached camera. This to me appears to be the only workable solution.

See for an example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ruo9Ln30H8I

My suggestion for you would be going the same route. If I manage to get this to work (could take some weeks or months) I'll be offering to do it for others as well for a (at least initially) reasonable price, so I could offer it for you too. But I can't make any promises at this point since my DIY skills are moderate and I might not be able to do it in the end.

If you want to go for a scanning service, I think I saw good example videos made by pro8mm.com:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X_Tejr-T2aA

Or by Ocho y Pico in Spain:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v6vxklx38DI

There's lots of other good scanners probably, but I would only judge them by the samples they upload. Many of the cheaper ones don't have any samples uploaded, which should be a red flag. I worked with one of those and he ended up being a scammer and his work really bad quality.

Also maybe request a ProRes sample before ordering anything, because the Youtube compression may be hiding issues with these sample scans that are only visible on a high bitrate encode.

Edit: If you want to find good samples search for scans of Kodak 50D 7203 negative film, it's an extremely high resolving film stock that will clearly show any flaws of the scanning procedure I think. Those two examples I posted are from Kodak 50D.

Thanks a lot for your feedback, some very valid points. I'm obviously either looking into home solutions, or outsourcing. I'd be very interested to know more about the work you're planning to do and what you would offer.
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#5
As mentioned in the PM, I'm still in the building phase but if everything works out and the quality is satisfying to me, I plan to do some introductory offers of 50 cents to 1 EUR per minute or so. Long term it's probably going to be a bit more expensive due to the slow digitization speed of around 1 image per second. But I don't want to make any promises I'm not sure I can't keep, so if you want to get it done quickly better build something yourself or pay a good established company to do it.
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#6
TomArrow, if you ever come across people with German Super 8 versions of Mountain Of The Cannibal God, Dawn of the Dead, City Of The Living Dead on any other italian genre horror I'd be very interested in using your scanning service.
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Thanks given by: LucasGodzilla
#7
(2020-06-06, 04:08 PM)alleycat Wrote: TomArrow, if you ever come across people with German Super 8 versions of Mountain Of The Cannibal God, Dawn of the Dead, City Of The Living Dead on any other italian genre horror I'd be very interested in using your scanning service.

Funny you mention it, there seem to be two auctions of Dawn of the Dead Super 8 on ebay, they're both the German versions ("Zombie"):
https://www.ebay.de/itm/Super-8-Film-Zom...4748311006

https://www.ebay.de/itm/Super-8-Film-Rar...4183219684

It's only a 48 minute version despite needing 3 reels. See a German review here: http://www.super8rezensionen.de/rezent293.htm

About my scanning services, as I already said, the scanner is not yet running and I haven't even received all parts yet (lens adapters from Russia take over a month of travel, go figure). But if I get it running someday, I'd gladly do it.

Edit: Also found some Fulci movie I think https://www.ebay.de/itm/NON-SI-SEVIZIA-U...3347687936

But Google says it's a thriller
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Thanks given by: LucasGodzilla
#8
(2020-06-06, 04:15 PM)TomArrow Wrote: Edit: Also found some Fulci movie I think https://www.ebay.de/itm/NON-SI-SEVIZIA-U...3347687936

But Google says it's a thriller

Of all things to stumble across, the last thing I ever expected to hear about is a Super 8 version of a Lucio Fulci giallo–a good giallo at that too–on the market LOL


Gotta admit though, I am curious as to how the colors look on it if it hasn't faded yet. I would certainly be willing to sync the English dub from my Arrow blu-ray if anyone decides to dip on getting that print scanned. Side-note, I wonder if there's a 16mm IB Tech print floating on the market of the movie.
[Image: ivwz24G.jpg]
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#9
Well it's pretty cheap so you could grab it. Wink Or send me the money and I'll grab it and hold on to it for you until my scanner works or you decide to have it scanned elsewhere or shipped to you.

Was gonna say you should be aware that these tend to be cut down versions but this one actually appears to be the full length, judging by the length in meters he gives (580m) and http://www.scenesavers.com/content/show/...calculator

Fits to a T.

Sadly appears it's a Spanish version? Assuming "Spagnola" means Spanish.

Edit: I also must add that I don't know if the projector I ordered will be able to play such long reels, so if I should attempt to scan it, I might have to cut it to smaller reels.
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#10
(2020-06-06, 11:17 PM)TomArrow Wrote: Well it's pretty cheap so you could grab it. Wink Or send me the money and I'll grab it and hold on to it for you until my scanner works or you decide to have it scanned elsewhere or shipped to you.

Truth be told, I'd consider it. The only problem is I have no idea what condition it's really in. It's listed as "Acceptable" but for all I know, I could be completely faded (like the one here for example), rendering any potential ideas I have with it null quite frankly.
[Image: ivwz24G.jpg]
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