We don’t do cine film transfers ourselves, but our clients like us to oversee the process for them and prepare the final product for DVD, video editing or even for iPad playback.
Getting cine film like Super-8 and Standard-8 films transferred requires highly specialised equipment. Achieving high quality transfers of 16mm and 35mm film requires an even higher level of sophistication.
We specialise in video transfers and pass your cine films to associate companies for the actual transfer while we then undertake the digital file processing, transcoding and packaging.
About your cine films
Super-8mm cine films, along with Standard-8mm that preceded it and even 16mm for private users who could afford it, were the most common means by which families captured those special moments before the advent of the video camera and camcorder.
For over three decades, 16mm was the standard format for filming outside the studio and there are millions of miles of celluloid in the world’s film libraries.
Moreover, many businesses used 16mm, too; companies with large enough budgets commissioned films for training and marketing support purposes. If they were really flush, they commissioned 35mm production to a standard that matched the big-screen movies. How many fascinating old training and promotional films are languishing in vaults or film library with no prospect of ever being seen again?
However, celluloid really does deteriorate with time; it’s reckoned that as much as 50% of all film stocks pre-dating 1950 have now been lost forever, and even 16mm film cans hold spools of film that have suffered scratches, breaks, tears and sprocket damage. Many films are literally falling apart – but we don’t notice this until we try and play them.
Home movies, usually shot on 8mm spools, may still be playable – but how many people have well-serviced Super-8 or Standard-8 projectors to play them on? And what about the large number of 9.5mm and early 16mm prints that are languishing in dusty attics or dark vaults?
Transferring films to video – the right way and the wrong way
One very common (and, therefore, low-cost) method of transferring reels of film to video is to simply point a projector at a white wall or piece of bright card and record the image with a camcorder.
However, this produces far from satisfactory results – with the video sequences being flickery and very low resolution – and should be avoided at all costs.
The proper way to transfer film of all guages to video is to employ professional-standard telecine systems; these pass the film over a CCD image sensor which scans each frame of the film in a continuous motion path.
Unlike a projector, which claws the sprocket holes down and then holds the frame in front of the light source at a frequency of 16, 18 or 24 frames second, a telecine machine is a sprocketless action which is much less likely to damage the film.
We can handle the whole range of film formats for you, including:
- 16mm (SepMag, ComOpt, ComMag, Pos and Neg)
- 35mm (SepMag, ComOpt, ComMag, Pos and Neg)
On receipt, all films are closely inspected for wear and tear and, if necessary, are manually cleaned and repaired where possible prior to running on a telecine machine.
Telecine output can then be digitally mastered to either digital videocassette (MiniDV, DVCAM, etc) or direct to HDD (hard disc drive) in any mainstream video format and codec in order that the MOV or AVI files can be later imported into either Apple Mac or Windows PCs for editing and post-production.
Project managing each assignment for trouble-free service
Please note that, being video specialists, we don’t directly undertake this highly specialised telecine work ourselves – but we do project manage commissions for those who require a professional standard of work in order to achieve the highest quality digital master.
Please feel free to Contact Us in order to discuss your specific requirements.
Local to you: Video tape and Cine film to DVD and computer hard disc transfer and copy service
We specialise in VHS video tape cassette, S-VHS, VHS-C, Betamax, Video-8, Hi-8, Digital-8, Betacam, Betacam-SP, U-Matic, BVU, BVU-SP transfer / copy to DVD and encoding to Quicktime, MOV, AVI, MPEG-4, MPEG-2, WMV formats for Windows and Apple Mac on HDD (hard disc/disk drive, SD memory card media and for online downloads). We serve all areas in the UK but particularly Milton Keynes, Aylesbury, Buckingham, Bletchley, High Wycombe, Amersham (Buckinghamshire / Bucks), Northampton, Wellingborough, Kettering, Corby, Oundle, Rushden (Northamptonshire / Northants), Bedford, Luton, Dunstable, Ampthill, Woburn (Bedfordshire / Beds), Hemel Hempstead, Berkhamsted, Watford, St. Albans, Harpenden, Welwyn, Letchworth (Hertfordshire / Herts), London and Home Counties.