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Very Frequently Asked Questions On Amateur Movie Making.
The questions, and answers, are the most frequently asked enquiries that we receive. On a daily basis we are invariably asked these 20 times or more. We could almost make a recording and play it on a tape on a premium telephone line, but we're not like that. If by any chance the question you want to ask is not here then please either call or eMail us.
Question: Where can I find more information?
Answer: Motion Picture Division and The Filmmakers Guide.
Question: Is there a service available for transferring my cine film to an electronic format?
Answer: Yes, The Widescreen Centre can transfer your Super-8, Single-8 and Standard-8 to the popular electronic formats of DVD, MiniDV, DvCAM and MiniDVCAM using their SuperScanTM machine. This is broadcast standard at a price everyone can afford.
Question: How many feet of film are in a cartridge of Super8?
Answer: 50 feet or 15 metres.
Question: How long does this last?
Answer: At 18 frames per second, 3 minutes 20 seconds. At 24 frames per second 2 minutes 30 seconds.
Question: How long does 30m/100ft of 16mm last?
Answer: At 24 frames per second 2 minutes 30 seconds.
Question: How long does it take to process?
Answer: About 12-14 days for all the stocks. However, we operate a very special EXPEDITE service with a Monday to Friday turnaround. Elena in our Motion Picture Department can explain this to you.
Question: Is Super 8 the same as Standard 8?
Answer: No, the only similarity is that they are 8mm wide.
Question: Are there Colour and Black & White cameras?
Answer: The type of result depends on the film you put in the camera, not the camera itself. Cameras can shoot either.
Question: Is it available in Black & White?
Answer: Yes, 100 and 200ASA reversal.
Question: What is reversal?
Answer: This means that the image on the film looks as it is in real life. Reds are red, the sky is blue etc. The opposite to reversal is a negative.
Question: Do I have to set my camera to my film speed?
Answer: Generally no, as the cartridges are notched for different speeds and the cameras can recognise this. Check the instructions of your camera to see which film speeds it can run. Some of the really simple cameras will not accept the faster film speeds.
Question: Can I use the film indoors?
Answer: The 64ASA Colour is really too slow (insensitive to light) for any decent indoor use without extra lights. Use the Ektachrome 125T VNF for indoor colour shooting and the Tri-X for Black & White. If you intend transferring your film to video then there are also a range of negative colour stocks with faster ratings. For example Kodak Vision 200 and 500 which you can probably use even without additional lighting.
Question: On Super 8 cameras, what is the Daylight/Indoor switch for?
Answer: The Super 8 colour films are all Tungsten balanced. That is to say that the film is designed to be used under artificial lighting (not fluorescent). When using the film outside in daylight, with the switch in the sunny position, the 85B conversion filter built into the lens is in position, changing the light entering the lens to artificial light. This effectively makes the film speed about 1 stop slower, Ektachrome-64T becomes 40 ASA, whilst Ektachrome 125 becomes 80.
When using the films inside they are at there full speed with the switch in the Indoor setting. This is important as there is generally less light available inside anyway. The meter will automatically adjust for the different switch positions.
Question: Why has my film come out all blue?
Answer: A common problem. The reason is that the Daylight/Indoor switch has been set to the wrong position, Indoors when shooting outdoors. When changing from outside to inside always remember to reset the conversion switch.
Question: I have some really old film. Is it worth using it?
Answer: We would have to say no. Kodachrome 40 film lasts for ages and quite often this can be used well past it's use by date but any other is not worth it. Not just because the colours deteriorate but because many of the old films can no longer be processed.
Question: Is Sound film still available?
Answer: No, but any professional film maker automatically uses a double-system for his/her sound as this offers much more flexibility at the editing stage....especially where the film is being transferred to video.
Question: Can I put a Silent film in my Sound camera?
Answer: Yes you can. this is useful because many sound cameras have additional facilities.
Question: Can I put sound on silent film?
Answer: Yes. Shoot the silent film and process it. Edit the film and then send it away to companies that put a magnetic stripe onto the film. This you can then put onto your projector and record your sound onto the film. The projector you can think of as a reel to reel tape recorder.
Question: Can I record synchronised sound?
Answer: Yes, obtaining sync to a DAT or some other recorder. However, we would advise you to seek professional advice on this.
Question: Are there many cameras available?
Answer: Only second-hand and anything could be available, just contact us to find out what we have. Prices go from about £99.00 to £2500.00 approximately. It just depends on what we have in when you call.
Question: Is Single 8 the same as Super 8?
Answer: The cartridges are completely different. The film though, once processed, is EXACTLY the same format and could be interspliced. Not a good idea in reality as the Polyester film base used in Single 8 film is thinner than the Super 8 so the focus would change.
Question: Is Standard 8 the same as Single 8?
Answer: No. Standard 8 or Regular 8 or Double 8, depending where you come from, is completely different. The only similarity is that the films are 8mm in width. There are projectors around that will show both formats, though obviously not at the same time. Standard 8 was superseded by Super 8 in 1964, but even today over 30 years later it is still popular....and The Widescreen Centre continues to supply film for these cameras.
Question: Which film do I need for a Hi8 camera?
Answer: None of them will fit, as a Hi8 camera is a video camcorder and takes a tape.
Question: If a film has been cleaned does that mean the image has been erased and the film can be used again?Answer: No. Cleaning a film means cleaning as in 'to wash'. It does not mean cleaning a video as in wiping the image so the tape is blank.
Question: Can I ask some questions?
Answer: Sure. Simply CALL us on 0207935 2580 or email at email@example.com