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Author Topic: Young collector 8mm films = vinyl collecting scene
Winbert Hutahaean
Film God

Posts: 5423
From: Nouméa, New Caledonia
Registered: Jun 2003

 - posted August 21, 2011 02:15 AM      Profile for Winbert Hutahaean   Email Winbert Hutahaean   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Hi all,

This discussion is separated from the original thread (about the Derann closing down) to avoid shifting the topic.

I have a thesis that young collectors of 8mm do not look for new prints but instead those old ones.

My thesis is based on the fact that young collectors (or we can also say new collectors) are mostly interested with this hobby because they want to go to the past.

Because they have DVDs at home, therefore they see 8mm projector NOT as an entertainment unit like we do but more like collectible items. To accompany this situation they prefer to screen old films than new ones because that what they see on many pictures/photos/films.

On the original thread I described this situation was similar to Vinyl collecting scene, and Adrian replied as follows:

I'm not sure if I'd entirely agree with the comparison with vinyl, as quite a lot of new vinyl is currently being produced, some of it aimed at young consumers.

It would be interesting if any young (e.g. aged up to about 30) collectors here could tell us if they are entirely happy to look out for old releases - or do new ones make it a more attractive hobby. If when I'd started collecting around the start of 1980s, eveyone had been saying "you won't see anything new, but don't worry, there's plenty of old stuff around", I would have found that very offputting. Subsequently, films released in the 1980s and 90s became some of the gems in my collection.

Yes that's right that new vinyls are still produced, but they are mostly bought by old collectors or DJs who already knew the quality of vinyl.

However young collectors do not buy vinyls for the quality but more to be used as a "time machine" where they can hear all pops and noises. Beside, they like to see big artworks on the cover as opposed to those small CD covers.

I can say that because back home (in Indonesia) I am a vinyl dealer. Here is my place where I am trading vinyls:


Many young collectors bought vinyls from me were because the above mentioned reasons.

When they are using "time machine" with their record players, they do not want to listen to new vinyls with those digital synthesizer or keyboard, but they prefer to listen to Beatles or Rolling Stones with all analog equipments.

So this is what I say that the absence of new prints does not mean the demise of 8mm film collecting scene.



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Christian Bjorgen
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 996
From: Kvinnherad, Norway
Registered: Oct 2009

 - posted August 21, 2011 03:56 AM      Profile for Christian Bjorgen   Author's Homepage   Email Christian Bjorgen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
For me it's all about the share enjoyment of it. I don't care if the prints are old or new, as long as I enjoy them. That's why I bought "Ice Age", not because it's a new print, but because I love the film! Same goes for most of my reels, it's the content, not the date stamp, that decides it for me.

As for vinyl, it's the same thing. I don't care about original pressings and whatnot (with exceptions of course), as long as it's an album I enjoy and like, and that I know that I will listen to.

For both however, quality is a must. A dirty vinyl and a dirty 8mm reel is equally annoying, which I think is why many go to the new prints. To avoid fade, damage, dirt etc, and the same goes for vinyl. No snaps, pops or hiss.

Well who’s on first? Yeah. Go ahead and tell me. Who. The guy on first. Who. The guy playin’ first base. Who. The guy on first. Who is on first! What are you askin’ me for? I’m askin’ you!

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Lee Mannering
Film God

Posts: 3201
From: The Projection Box
Registered: Nov 2006

 - posted August 21, 2011 06:26 AM      Profile for Lee Mannering     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Its always interesting when I read the words young film maker or collector in our hobby as one day many moons ago I was also a young boy coming to this hobby as I am sure many of you were as well. For me it was the attraction of being a film maker and shortly after a film collector. These days I can see a new generation of enthusiasts coming through but they are more interested in the retro scene which is where cine comes into it for them. Only yesterday I visited an art Cinema only to hear what was probably an 18 year old enthusing about Super 8mm as he waited going to see Super 8 again. What a lovely experience it was to hear and reminded me how lucky I was to have enjoyed my time in the hobby and the many experiences film making with other like minded people, let alone the endless film shows here and around about. Thanks to that magic buzz word retro and the film Super 8 Cine is enjoying a minor revival which we can all pick up on the opportunity to help newcomers embrace the scene. Cine has been a continuous part of my life for around 40 years now with no letup in either film making or projection and I see no reason youngsters retro or otherwise should not continue to enjoy the medium.
Carry on projecting folks! [Cool]

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Mikael Barnard
Film Handler

Posts: 85
From: Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire, UK
Registered: Jun 2009

 - posted August 21, 2011 08:55 AM      Profile for Mikael Barnard   Email Mikael Barnard   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
For me it's a sort of combination. Yes I'm a bit stuck in the past but I think the main reason I collect film and projectors (as well as video machines and other things such as my 1956 Sobell television and Akai reel-to-reel tape deck) is that I enjoy the physicality of it. Indeed I based my entire dissertation for my second master's degree on this very point. Old technology has a tactility and corporeality that is mostly completely absent from the soulless boxes of technology today where the size of the medium bears no obvious relation to the quantity of data it contains and everything happens out of sight inside the box. With film you can see it and touch it and repair it in ways you just can't with a disc.

Similarly even the worst projectors are an interesting assemblage of gears and moving parts and it's fascinating to see all the different ways that manufacturers have engineered their machines to do the same basic job. Yes modern machines have microswitches and circuit boards but we have beater movements, maltese crosses, claws, sprockets and all sorts of other interesting things that just aren't to be found in the same way in 'new' technology.

I admit I am probably the exception and that most young people who bother with this stuff at all may well do it, as you suggest, simply because it's 'retro' and it's their way of making a statement against the modern, a sentiment I can well appreciate, but for me the main hook is pure fascination with the technology.

Similarly whilst the same may apply to vinyl for me it IS all about the sound quality!

As for new or old prints I will as happily screen Edwin S. Porter's 'Great Train Robbery' as I will 'Aladdin'. I collect films I enjoy regardless of age.

But then I am nearly 27 so I'm getting too old to comment on how young people feel anyway...!

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Osi Osgood
Film God

Posts: 10084
From: #399R K.O.A. Mountian Home, ID. 83647
Registered: Jul 2005

 - posted August 21, 2011 09:30 AM      Profile for Osi Osgood   Author's Homepage   Email Osi Osgood   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I agree with much of your thesis, Winbert. I think I could still be classified as a "young" film collector, (though 45), comparitively, and I think the main reason for the purchase of used prints is this ...

cost ...

A lot of young people are feeling this wonderful nolstalgia for super 8 and all things film, but they can't see the logic of spending hundreds and I mean HUNDREDS of dollars for a brand new print ...

... especially when new super 8 prints are like new cars. Once they have been purchased, thier actual financial value is dropped by at least a few hunbdred dollars right there. If it wasn't for the used film print market, I definitely would not have the collection I have.

I could never have afforded a brand new print of "Alien", "Logan's Run", "STARWARS" and such. Now, buying those for around 200.00 to 300.00 (and that was a few years ago when I actually HAD that much lying around), it was a viable option for me.

So, while there is a fun nolstalgia, there is also the harsh realities of weighing value against nolstagia.

"All these moments will be lost in time, just like ... tears, in the rain. "

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Mikael Barnard
Film Handler

Posts: 85
From: Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire, UK
Registered: Jun 2009

 - posted August 21, 2011 09:53 AM      Profile for Mikael Barnard   Email Mikael Barnard   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Ah yes, should have read that bit a bit more carefully really, yes I've only ever purchased one 'new' print and cost is indeed the reason. Oh to be young AND rich...!

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Gerald Santana
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1058
From: Cottage Grove OR
Registered: Dec 2010

 - posted August 21, 2011 10:17 AM      Profile for Gerald Santana   Author's Homepage   Email Gerald Santana   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Like Lee, I started collecting films because of my interest in film appreciation. As a filmmaker, there are many forms of media that inspire artists. Vinyl records in my early 20's proved to be a stepping stone for my own collection of vintage items and inspiration to make my own record -- someday, somehow. I bought old records, some obscure ones, occasionally a new one made it onto my shelf.

I must say that ten years later, I face the same thrill in collecting older and obscure titles for lower prices than new. Again, my interests are in amateur film preservation and projecting -- perhaps a stepping stone into something unknown. I only buy the older films for one reason alone: cost. While Derann is closing it's doors, I only hope a new one opens for someone else that will rise to the opportunity to keep new prints moving. I will want those in the future, when they become "old prints".

One last comment I have to make on this topic is the endurance of vintage media. Preservationists and collectors know that the lifetime of films will out-perform many technologies today that store media. I've said this before but, film on mylar already has such a strong head-start on other formats. I doubt that the hobby will end any time soon. In fact, I have to say that it is growing (I've introduced home cine to friends and family who only heard of it) in my parts, and they prefer those films to anything prerecorded on a disc at the end of the night. That is unless the pre-recorded disc is vinyl!


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Chris Punzi
Film Handler

Posts: 34
From: Manassas, VA 20110
Registered: Jul 2011

 - posted August 21, 2011 11:27 AM      Profile for Chris Punzi   Author's Homepage   Email Chris Punzi   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I have been a vinyl junkie for about 6 years now. I started just listening to classic rock and buying up old records from thrift stores for a dollar apiece. I also started a band and have written and recorded a bunch of songs, and my ambition is to one day release a vinyl record of our music. But around a year ago I realized that a lot of people who were around in the hay-day of records only had a few (less than 100 or so) records that they held dear. They bought them new, usually, and since they cost a lot of money nobody had anywhere near 1000 of them (the amount of albums in my itunes) they each meant more. Digital media is so easy to come by, and old records too, that I have decided to only collect new records (or re-releases) that I am extremely fond of. They mean more to me than the second hand ones I've purchased, and I have some really cool second hand albums.

I can see people drawing some parallels between vinyl and film collecting. The effort of taking the record and putting it on the platter, cleaning the dust off and setting the needle down is similar to putting the film on the spindle, trimming the leader, and running the projector. Flipping from side A to side B of the record is like changing reels halfway through the movie. It makes the analog formats more special and more of an experience than any digital format will ever offer, IMHO.

I like the idea of collecting old films, but that's because they are the only ones I can possibly get my hands on for a reasonable price, and I don't have any already, and I don't have any money. I think that if new films were available within my price range I would prefer them, just because there's probably not going to be any color shift, and I would treasure them more as "my" collection. That's just where I'm at right now with my point of view on things.


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