8mm Forum


Post New Topic  Post A Reply
my profile | my password | register | search | faq | register | forum home
  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» 8mm Forum   » 8mm Forum   » Listening to film soundtracks via headphones

 - UBBFriend: Email this page to someone!    
Author Topic: Listening to film soundtracks via headphones
Adrian Winchester
Film God

Posts: 2905
From: Croydon, London, UK
Registered: Aug 2004


 - posted July 17, 2017 12:21 PM      Profile for Adrian Winchester   Email Adrian Winchester   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I'd find this useful sometimes - e.g. a late evening when you're sitting near the projector and you don't want the volume to potentially disturb the neighbours. But getting decent sound through headphones may be challenging due to factors such as output levels and the need to (usually) split a mono output into two channels.

If anyone manages to get good 8 or 16mm sound via headphones, I'd be interested to know the projector they are using and how they approach this? I last tried with an Elmo ST180 and an adaptor I got at Maplins (to get the sound via both ears), but the quality was poor.

[ July 17, 2017, 03:46 PM: Message edited by: Adrian Winchester ]

--------------------
Adrian Winchester

 |  IP: Logged

Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 6916
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 17, 2017 12:31 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
You run into some interesting factors:

For example, especially with Super-8 you get often chatter from the lower loop being too short. It's really always there, it's just that the sound of the machine operating is very similar and when you can hear that it makes it easier for your brain to tune the chatter out. When you hear the audio track without it, it's much more apparent.

On my setup there's a phone jack on the mixer. It works very well, but since my hum filter is after the mixer, using the headphones there brings up the projector hum in all it's majesty.

I really should use the headphone jack on the Amp, but it's about 30 feet away from the screen! My wife is really good about all this, but if she did impose a cable limit, I'd probably be there already!

--------------------
All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

 |  IP: Logged

Rob Young.
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1621
From: Cheshire, U.K.
Registered: Dec 2003


 - posted July 17, 2017 06:05 PM      Profile for Rob Young.     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Ugh..I'd made myself a promise not to contribute anymore, but...

Quote,

"with Super-8 you get often chatter from the lower loop being too short. It's really always there"

No, it really isn't, say using a Beaulieu.

If it was, you could never realistically use a super 8 projector in a separate booth with an auditorium sound system...and why would the lower loop be too short anyway...

Quote,

"the headphones there brings up the projector hum in all it's majesty"

Whilst I appreciate that some super projectors introduce hum more than others, even an Elmo ST-1200HD with a clean mains feed can have any significant hum removed from mag sound reproduction by use of a 50Hz bass cut, maybe someway into 150Hz.

You'll never get digital quality, but getting good, tight bass response is very possible.

Using headphones, will however, depending upon the quality of said headphones, make you more aware of high frequency drop-outs and inconsistencies between magnetic stereo tracks, which your room acoustics will often absorb and drown.

Again, balancing the playback in a given room to acoustically mask imperfections at either end of the response is perfectly acceptable, although your headphones may reveal all.

 |  IP: Logged

Paul Browning
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1000
From: West Midlands United Kingdom
Registered: Aug 2011


 - posted July 17, 2017 06:25 PM      Profile for Paul Browning   Email Paul Browning   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I use beyerdynamic 8 ohm headphones, dt100, more than acceptable sound through them, but I'm talking the GS1200, not tried them with the beaulieu though....

 |  IP: Logged

Andrew Woodcock
Film God

Posts: 7477
From: Manchester Uk
Registered: Aug 2012


 - posted July 17, 2017 06:46 PM      Profile for Andrew Woodcock         Edit/Delete Post 
Thank Christ you do still post Rob, and talk some sense here!

And to Paul, The Beyer Dynamic DT 100's are 16 ohm headphones last time I looked.

I use my Sony MDR-V700 headphones through my din to phono connection on an equalized Numark CDN 200fx mixer with the Bauer or Beaulieu.

I find the results to be very satisfactory by analogue film standards using these headphones in conjunction with the mixer, but as Rob points out, every drop out in either track, is both noticeable and exaggerated when compared to listening to the very same track using a pair of loudspeakers.

This is something we simply have to accept by comparison to listening for the most part, to digital perfection nowadays.

--------------------
"C'mon Baggy..Get with the beat"

 |  IP: Logged

Paul Adsett
Film God

Posts: 4918
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 17, 2017 07:06 PM      Profile for Paul Adsett     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Most of my super 8mm viewing and listening is done with headphones. I use a pair of Sony headphones with built in ambient noise cancellation (as used for flying), and bass boosting control. Using these with my Eumig S938, I get superb stereo sound with great separation, much better than with any external speakers.

--------------------
The best of all worlds- 8mm, super 8mm, 9.5mm, and HD Digital Projection,
Elmo GS1200 f1.0 2-blade
Eumig S938 Stereo f1.0 Ektar
Panasonic PT-AE4000U digital pj

 |  IP: Logged

Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 6916
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 17, 2017 09:33 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
Quote,

"with Super-8 you get often chatter from the lower loop being too short. It's really always there"

No, it really isn't, say using a Beaulieu.

If it was, you could never realistically use a super 8 projector in a separate booth with an auditorium sound system...and why would the lower loop be too short anyway...

So you are trying to refute a statement containing the word "often" in it by stating an exception? Doesn't the word "often" tell the reader that they should expect exceptions? "Often" is not "Always".

-No Touché, not even Oneché!

I guess its fair to say any analog sound on film system is somewhat subject to chatter because you have the pulsating film motion at the gate yet the smooth motion at the head(s). You can be absolutely chatter free when the mechanism to smooth the motion through the gate reaches perfection (good luck). Super-8 has an 18 frame separation between picture and sound: the shortest in the business. Regular-8 for example has something like 54 frames. This means super 8 has a lower loop of only about 3 inches: not a lot of room to smooth things out. It makes it harder to put the pinch roller between the loop and the head for one thing, so most S8 machines don't have it there. Even the ones that do have it can't be perfect.

As I said: It's always there. Most of the time you can't even hear it, but if you hung a 'scope on the signal I bet you could measure it, -even say using a Beaulieu.

quote:
Quote,

"the headphones there brings up the projector hum in all it's majesty"

Whilst I appreciate that some super projectors introduce hum more than others, even an Elmo ST-1200HD with a clean mains feed can have any significant hum removed from mag sound reproduction by use of a 50Hz bass cut, maybe someway into 150Hz.

If you read my post carefully here. What I'm saying is that I would expect better sound trough the phones if I moved them from the mixer to my Amp...but why is this?

Simple: The connection scheme is like this: Projector-mixer-hum filter-Amplifier. The hum filter is an active 60 Hz. notch filter. On the mixer side I am hearing the output raw. On the amp side it's cleaned up: much nicer. I use it almost all the time (even more than "often"), so when I hear the signal raw from the machine it sounds pretty bad.

A lot of this is about what happens when you hang any better speaker on a signal, you hear more of the good stuff, and more of the bad stuff too. Love them or hate them: the little internal speakers hide a multitude of evils.

--------------------
All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

 |  IP: Logged

Rob Young.
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1621
From: Cheshire, U.K.
Registered: Dec 2003


 - posted July 18, 2017 02:39 AM      Profile for Rob Young.     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
"So you are trying to refute a statement containing the word "often" in it by stating an exception?"

Er, no, because I don't often get chatter and audio without chatter on my set up is not an exception, it's the norm.

Of course, if it were critically measured, it would be there to some degree, but I would not consider it "apparent".

 |  IP: Logged

Paul Browning
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1000
From: West Midlands United Kingdom
Registered: Aug 2011


 - posted July 18, 2017 06:50 AM      Profile for Paul Browning   Email Paul Browning   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Andrew, they are now, but I have 3 pairs of 8 ohm beyer dynamic headphones dt 100, plus some spare brand new drivers. They stopped making them sometime back.

 |  IP: Logged

Rob Young.
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1621
From: Cheshire, U.K.
Registered: Dec 2003


 - posted July 18, 2017 02:29 PM      Profile for Rob Young.     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Quote;

"I guess its fair to say any analog sound on film system is somewhat subject to chatter because you have the pulsating film motion at the gate yet the smooth motion at the head(s). You can be absolutely chatter free when the mechanism to smooth the motion through the gate reaches perfection (good luck)."

What about all of those engineers for over 100 years who tried and, as you must obviously think failed, to do so with projected film...

Steve, look, no sword points are trying to be scored here, niether whole or half arsed.

To me, you implied that chatter was an inherent problem with super 8 sound and whilst I acknowledge that it can certainly be an issue (together with wow), I disagree.

That may be your experience, but please don't pass it off as a general issue.

If I misunderstand in some way then (yet again) I apologies.

I always think that new, younger people may visit our forum here and wouldn't like to think that they read such comments and then think, "So, super 8 sound generally chatters then..."

Because it shouldn't and realistically doesn't with a decent set-up.

 |  IP: Logged

Andrew Woodcock
Film God

Posts: 7477
From: Manchester Uk
Registered: Aug 2012


 - posted July 18, 2017 03:31 PM      Profile for Andrew Woodcock         Edit/Delete Post 
I completely agree with Rob's assessment here regarding any "chatter" issue with Super 8mm sound. While Super 8mm sound can be far less than perfect it has to be said,..audibly hearing "chatter" certainly isn't the norm in my experiences with various sound projectors.

Sincere Apologies Paul, I hadn't realized Beyer Dynamic 100 headphones had ever been made differently to the ones available for sale now.

--------------------
"C'mon Baggy..Get with the beat"

 |  IP: Logged

Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 6916
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 18, 2017 03:37 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I know all about Engineers: I'm one of them.

I work on a machine that develops high intensity X-rays by wiggling an electron beam. The steadier the beam, the finer and more controllable the X-rays coming out, the higher resolution the image.

All sorts of work was done to reduce jitter: ultra high precision power supplies on the beam magnets, a minimum of 3 feet of concrete on all sides around the beam tunnel. The equipment racks are all on seismic mounts to isolate the cooling fans from the concrete floor underneath.

Did we reach zero jitter?...No.

It's down to the point where (for example) there is this highway like a mile away and every time a truck hits an expansion joint some seconds later the beam twitches a couple of microns.

It doesn't mean we failed: we still met the spec the rest of the system needed to function up to expectations, and we even kept the budget.

So no, I don't think the AV engineers failed either (obviously or otherwise). They did the best they could and made something that met all the requirements as best as possible given the limits they worked within.

Engineering is humbling that way: never perfect, hopefully good enough. (It's very human!)

I think it's fair to say Super-8 is more vulnerable to suffer chatter than the other gauges. I wouldn't (and didn't) go so far as to say it's constant, since if it was I would find a different format. I enjoy sound too much for that.

It still remains that even if it was on the high side of inaudible with the projector sound masking it and you eliminate the projector sound by clamping a set of phones on your head, it may break the surface: that's all I was trying to say.

It's kind of like this: when I'm running with the notch filter I'm tempted to say at normal volume levels there is no hum, but this isn't really true. The hum is always there, it's just too low to easily hear. If I put an ear near a speaker I can hear it, if I crank the volume up as I would for a low track, it becomes audible, but still low.

Much the same: there is always some 24 FPS chatter going on in the signal. The typical projector sound system rolls off in the 50Hz neighborhood, so if anything what comes through is the harmonics. The problem is it's not as far down in the mud as it really should be. It doesn't take a great deal for it to come to the surface.

I think the 18 Frame separation was in recognition of Super-8's role as a medium for sound home movies. If they kept the 54 frame separation it would have given two or three seconds of weird sound at a splice. They compromised it down to one second, and became more vulnerable to audible chatter in the bargain.

--------------------
All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

 |  IP: Logged

Paul Adsett
Film God

Posts: 4918
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 18, 2017 03:44 PM      Profile for Paul Adsett     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Super 8 sound separation should have been standardized at 24 frames, just like professional 35mm. The additional 6 frames would have made life a whole lot easier for projector designers.
That being said, I totally agree that audio 'chatter' is an abnormal situation, something I have never heard on any of my Eumig's. But I have occasionally heard it (along with WOW) on my GS1200's, due no doubt to the imperfect pinch roller design on these machines.

--------------------
The best of all worlds- 8mm, super 8mm, 9.5mm, and HD Digital Projection,
Elmo GS1200 f1.0 2-blade
Eumig S938 Stereo f1.0 Ektar
Panasonic PT-AE4000U digital pj

 |  IP: Logged

Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 6916
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 18, 2017 03:54 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
What would have been nice if there was a dual standard: a short loop for home movies and a much longer one for package films. The machines could be made to easily change back and forth like the Eumig dual gauge machines do.

--------------------
All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

 |  IP: Logged

Paul Adsett
Film God

Posts: 4918
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 18, 2017 04:09 PM      Profile for Paul Adsett     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I have to disagree with you there Steve. Just an extra complication. No reason at all that all super 8 could not have been fixed at 24 frames separation.

--------------------
The best of all worlds- 8mm, super 8mm, 9.5mm, and HD Digital Projection,
Elmo GS1200 f1.0 2-blade
Eumig S938 Stereo f1.0 Ektar
Panasonic PT-AE4000U digital pj

 |  IP: Logged

Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 6916
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 18, 2017 04:15 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Just a thought, Paul.

I agree 24 frames would have been better than 18, and 9 frames would have been worse too.

-all compromises!

There's this stereotype of Engineers that we aren't suited to marriage. I disagree: compromise is pretty much in our DNA!

(-besides, we can FIX things!)

--------------------
All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

 |  IP: Logged

Paul Adsett
Film God

Posts: 4918
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 18, 2017 05:51 PM      Profile for Paul Adsett     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Steve, I have often thought that we need more engineers in politics. Engineers take the solving of difficult problems in their stride, and almost always end up with the optimum solution. Politicians just flail around flapping their hands and exercising their mouths, and getting absolutely nothing done!
[Frown]

--------------------
The best of all worlds- 8mm, super 8mm, 9.5mm, and HD Digital Projection,
Elmo GS1200 f1.0 2-blade
Eumig S938 Stereo f1.0 Ektar
Panasonic PT-AE4000U digital pj

 |  IP: Logged

Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 6916
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 18, 2017 06:07 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Could we cope in a system so...non-linear as politics?

We love stuff that behaves exactly the same way every time given the same stimuli.

It's like this: my wife is a Social Worker at a hospital. Everything is crisis and emotion and chaos!

I hear about her day at work and I realize relatively speaking my roughly one thousand magnet power supplies are actually kind of...simple!

(Not one of them has ever threatened to stab me, for one thing!)

--------------------
All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

 |  IP: Logged

Bill Brandenstein
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1630
From: California
Registered: Aug 2007


 - posted July 19, 2017 04:45 PM      Profile for Bill Brandenstein   Email Bill Brandenstein   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I'm enjoying this conversation and have just one tiny thought to contribute: wouldn't the choice of 18 frames separation, instead of something a little greater and more sensible, have to do with the design of a Super 8 Sound camera cartridge? The larger interval would've complicated not only editing, but also the physical properties of the camera and carts.

 |  IP: Logged

Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 6916
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 19, 2017 08:43 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I've wondered that myself sometimes, but then again I'd imagine the whole design would have started with the standards of the format itself and progress into things like cartridge design later (form follows function).

I've seen designs where we had to start with the box it goes in and work inwards (usually military stuff...): it gets ugly pretty easily!

In a projector you have a pinch roller and a flywheel that weighs easily a pound to smooth the pulsations in the film flow coming from the gate. They should have the exact same problems in a sound on film camera. How did they deal with it there?

I've never shot S8 sound, but from what I've seen (and heard) I really wish I had!

--------------------
All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

 |  IP: Logged

Paul Adsett
Film God

Posts: 4918
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 20, 2017 12:27 PM      Profile for Paul Adsett     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Another factor has crossed my mind- optical sound. Presumably super 8 optical prints have the optical sound advanced the standard 24 frames. That means there is no room for the magnetic head at that 24 frames position. So the mag head has to go somewhere else, and no doubt the 18 frames position (for 18fps home movie film) now makes sense. Except its really too close to the claw for totally isolating the film jerk.
The discussion on the super 8 cartridge just makes one realize what a rotten design it was, and how the Fuji single 8 design was the logical engineering approach.
Steve, every military contract that I worked on started with an Interface Control Drawing, specifying the exact shape and volume, and other things like connector positions, that you had to design the device to fit. In some ways it helped as it rapidly helped to eliminate multiple options and finalize the design.

--------------------
The best of all worlds- 8mm, super 8mm, 9.5mm, and HD Digital Projection,
Elmo GS1200 f1.0 2-blade
Eumig S938 Stereo f1.0 Ektar
Panasonic PT-AE4000U digital pj

 |  IP: Logged

Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 6916
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted July 20, 2017 01:17 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Agreed, Paul

It's a shame in a lot of respects that Fuji didn't win out in the end. Even just by virtue of its simplicity their cartridge was a winner.

My last real Mil-Spec job was at an avionics subsystem manufacturer until about 1991. (-really more sub-subsystems.). We'd make things like "the power supply for the radar display for the instrument panel for the F-16 Fighter Jet". When you have that many "for-the"s in a row it means you are getting the scraps of what all the higher level guys already took away including the schedule, the budget and the remaining space. I saw some astounding shapes there: cheese wedges, spherical sections, boxes with 90 degree bends in the middle like it was going around a corner, and we made this one power supply that was shaped like a donut because something else aboard the plane needed to pass through the middle of it!

When I went commercial after that everything was nice rectangular boxes: kind of dull!

--------------------
All I ask is a wide screen and a projector to light her by...

 |  IP: Logged

Joe Balitzki
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 529
From: Charleston, SC, USA
Registered: Aug 2005


 - posted July 22, 2017 03:24 PM      Profile for Joe Balitzki   Email Joe Balitzki   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
For a short time Fuji sold only in Japan a Super 8mm OPTICAL sound camera. The soundtrack was exposed by a LED or something similar. I do not know how the sound quality was, but since magnetic sound striped camera stock is long gone I wish I had the camera! Because I think one can still obtain film for Fuji cameras. I imagine the camera was discontinued because it was not possible to do post recording onto the print which of course was a selling point for projectors.

--------------------
Movie Lovers Do It in the Dark

 |  IP: Logged



All times are Central  
Post New Topic  Post A Reply Close Topic    Move Topic    Delete Topic    next oldest topic   next newest topic
 - Printer-friendly view of this topic
Hop To:

Visit www.film-tech.com for free equipment manual downloads. Copyright 2003-2019 Film-Tech Cinema Systems LLC

Powered by Infopop Corporation
UBB.classicTM 6.3.1.2