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Author Topic: Super 8 optical sound.
Allan Broadfield
Master Film Handler

Posts: 452
From: Bromley, Kent
Registered: Nov 2010


 - posted June 04, 2014 05:27 PM      Profile for Allan Broadfield   Author's Homepage   Email Allan Broadfield   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I have never actually seen a section of super 8 optical sound print. Have searched the forum backlog without success. Can anyone supply a pic?

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Janice Glesser
Film Goddess

Posts: 3468
From: Sunnyvale, CA USA
Registered: Sep 2011


 - posted June 04, 2014 06:02 PM      Profile for Janice Glesser   Email Janice Glesser   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Here is a section of a S8mm optical sound film print.

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[ June 06, 2014, 04:42 PM: Message edited by: Janice Glesser ]

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Janice

"I'm having a very good day!"
Richard Dreyfuss - Let It Ride (1989).

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Allan Broadfield
Master Film Handler

Posts: 452
From: Bromley, Kent
Registered: Nov 2010


 - posted June 04, 2014 06:13 PM      Profile for Allan Broadfield   Author's Homepage   Email Allan Broadfield   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
That was quick! Thanks very much Janice. I had an Elmo 1200 briefly some time ago but never got round to optical.

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Janice Glesser
Film Goddess

Posts: 3468
From: Sunnyvale, CA USA
Registered: Sep 2011


 - posted June 04, 2014 06:50 PM      Profile for Janice Glesser   Email Janice Glesser   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I have a Yashica P810 Magnetic/Optical projector.

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Janice

"I'm having a very good day!"
Richard Dreyfuss - Let It Ride (1989).

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Lars-Goran Ahlm
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 205
From: Åmål, Sweden
Registered: Jan 2010


 - posted June 04, 2014 08:14 PM      Profile for Lars-Goran Ahlm   Email Lars-Goran Ahlm   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Here is a slightly sharper picture of a optical 8MM film.

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"The trouble with these international affairs is that they attract foreigners"

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Winbert Hutahaean
Film God

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From: Nouméa, New Caledonia
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted June 04, 2014 08:59 PM      Profile for Winbert Hutahaean   Email Winbert Hutahaean   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Lars. a Fish called Wanda is relatively a later film.

I am curios to know what sort of the color quality for prints from this era.

Could you please scan more further to the scene where we can compare human skin tone with other colors.

BTW what sort of scanner you use for that resolution? and what is the resolution for it?

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Winbert

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Mark Todd
Film God

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From: UK
Registered: Aug 2003


 - posted June 05, 2014 06:06 AM      Profile for Mark Todd   Email Mark Todd   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Its aweful to think that billions of feet and up to 100 copies or more of thosands of film titles on optical all went in to the ground or up in smoke. A Wasteful tragedy really.

Best Mark.

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Lee Mannering
Film God

Posts: 3216
From: The Projection Box
Registered: Nov 2006


 - posted June 05, 2014 06:42 AM      Profile for Lee Mannering     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Another for you Allan from a short full of colour.
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So many prints were sold so plenty are about but most have pretty bad colour changes now, good prints are still about as well.

Classic Home Cinema are leading lights at the moment with Optical features for sale. [Cool]

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Lars-Goran Ahlm
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 205
From: Åmål, Sweden
Registered: Jan 2010


 - posted June 05, 2014 08:29 AM      Profile for Lars-Goran Ahlm   Email Lars-Goran Ahlm   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Winbert, I made that scan several years ago to print out and send to a fellow collector here in Sweden who had never seen a S8 optical print ever.
I'm not 100% sure, but I think it might be scanned in 1200dpi. The scanner is a HP 4890.

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"The trouble with these international affairs is that they attract foreigners"

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Lee Mannering
Film God

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From: The Projection Box
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 - posted June 05, 2014 08:48 AM      Profile for Lee Mannering     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Opening scene from Bugsy Malone
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Guy Taylor, Jr.
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 606
From: Galveston, Texas, U.S.A.
Registered: Mar 2007


 - posted June 05, 2014 10:04 AM      Profile for Guy Taylor, Jr.   Email Guy Taylor, Jr.   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Were airline prints the only source for optical sound super 8?

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Guy Taylor

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John Skujins
Expert Film Handler

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From: Greensboro, NC, USA
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 - posted June 05, 2014 10:13 AM      Profile for John Skujins   Email John Skujins   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
No, I have some Super 8 car dealership films that have optical sound.

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Osi Osgood
Film God

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From: #399R K.O.A. Mountian Home, ID. 83647
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 - posted June 05, 2014 12:54 PM      Profile for Osi Osgood   Author's Homepage   Email Osi Osgood   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Hey Janice, is that "Starbird and Sweet William" you've got there?

Also, Disney super 8 and other studios, (Columbia) experimented with they're 200ft releases as optical super 8. I've ran into quite a few Disney's over the years, fewer Columbia optical shorts.

Wonderfully, MGM did a grand thing with their South African super 8 optical film library. Along with the main feature, "The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing", for instance, MGM would have before the feature began, a classic era MGM short, in sepiatone, and in most cases, it was one of those "Pete Smith Specialies".

The funny thing is that the shorts were absolutely spot on sharp super 8 opticals, while the 70's feature would often be grainly and hard to focus. They probably made a print from a 16MM flat print of an original scope feature, which meant that you came in on the image for the flat print, hence the very grainy look.

I've always felt that the optical super 8 films are a grand adventure. To this very day, new optical (old) optical super 8 titles still pop up for films I never knew existed on super 8 optical!

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Paul Adsett
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 - posted June 05, 2014 01:09 PM      Profile for Paul Adsett     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Were any prints ever made with an optical track on one side and a mag track on the other?

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Pasquale DAlessio
Film God

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From: Bristol,RI, USA
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 - posted June 05, 2014 02:09 PM      Profile for Pasquale DAlessio   Email Pasquale DAlessio   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
No

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Dominique De Bast
Film God

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From: Brussels, Belgium
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 - posted June 06, 2014 09:01 AM      Profile for Dominique De Bast   Email Dominique De Bast   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Does anyone know why airlines companies choosed optical sound rather than magnetic one ? Was it for economical reasons (is it true that it costs less to manufacture ?) or to reduce the risk of stolen films ? And did they use special projectors in the airplanes or the same we use ?

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Dominique

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Jon Addams
Jedi Master Film Handler

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From: New York, NY, USA
Registered: Apr 2007


 - posted June 06, 2014 10:58 AM      Profile for Jon Addams   Email Jon Addams   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
Does anyone know why airlines companies chose optical sound rather than magnetic one?...


You may find some answers by reading these superb articles.

The History of Sound in the Cinema

A History of Inflight Entertainment

Jon

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Osi Osgood
Film God

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


 - posted June 06, 2014 11:27 AM      Profile for Osi Osgood   Author's Homepage   Email Osi Osgood   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Dominique ...

I really wish I knew. I'm betting it was cost effectiveness as, being that, even with two passes on the print (one pass to print the image, the second to print the optical track), it would cut the costs and least to an extant, as you would have to have a laminate mag stripe, and then sync up and record all of those soundtracks after it comes back from the labs.

That's just an honest guess, but I can't be all that sure. Quite frankly, I would prefer mag stripe for it's obvious audio fidelity benefits, but hey, history is history.

By the way, great screenshots of those frames!

Another problem with optical sound print, (depending when they were manufactured) is that, as some of the screenshots show, the side without a optical track (sprocket side), has that dark purplish coating that totally obliterates the film stock markings, making it very hard to ascertain what kind of film stock was used.

Obviously, various forms of Eastman were first used, (there's still some debate as to whether any were actual techinoclor super 8 prints, as there have been memo's or letter stating that Technicolor experimented with super 8 and after all, many optical sound prints were placed in Technicolor cartridges which, usually, were filled with fadey Eastman, but I have a few prints in my collection that are 1969 optical, and yet, haven't faded a bit).) ...

During that period of late 60's to late 70's Fuji was also used, primarily in japan for they're optical prints, (I have a print of "Hooper" that has Japanese subtitles, perfect color and Fuji film stock) ...

and then KOdak SP started to be used a lot, which has tended to be brownish these days. Around late 81 or early 82, LPP started to be used and, of course, those print have perfect color.

They did, however, use as much of the poorer stock as long as possible. "Gorky Park" (until I learn different) was printed on a TERRIBLE Eastman "quick pink" stock, (such a shame), and they continued to use old Kodak SP film stock all the way to the end of super 8 optical sound, as I have a print of "Stand and Deliver" 1987/88?) that is on Kodak SP, apparently, and already has a slight brownish quality.

On the plus side, however, especially after the mid to late 70's, all optical sound super 8 seem to have impeccable focus, really sharp! [Smile]

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

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Dominique De Bast
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 - posted June 06, 2014 11:24 PM      Profile for Dominique De Bast   Email Dominique De Bast   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Interesting articles, Jon, thanks. I would not have imagined that the airlines started do show films on planes in the twenties !

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Dominique

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Allan Broadfield
Master Film Handler

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From: Bromley, Kent
Registered: Nov 2010


 - posted June 07, 2014 03:57 AM      Profile for Allan Broadfield   Author's Homepage   Email Allan Broadfield   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Osi, in all labs I worked in the pic and sound were normally printed in one pass on 35mm and 16mm, but don't know about super 8.
Janice, your replacement pic seems to show two optical tracks, or is it the grog I'm drinking?

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Winbert Hutahaean
Film God

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From: Nouméa, New Caledonia
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 - posted June 07, 2014 04:02 AM      Profile for Winbert Hutahaean   Email Winbert Hutahaean   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Optical sound is printed at the same time with the picture since the negative optical is placed on the same master with the negative picture. So everything is done in one way route. So it must be a lot cheaper than magnetic one which need to be striped and later recorded for the sound.

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Winbert

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David Ollerearnshaw
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From: Penistone Sheffield UK
Registered: Oct 2012


 - posted June 07, 2014 04:03 AM      Profile for David Ollerearnshaw   Author's Homepage   Email David Ollerearnshaw   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Nice find Jon, enjoyed reading them. I think the

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David Ollerearnshaw
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From: Penistone Sheffield UK
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 - posted June 07, 2014 04:07 AM      Profile for David Ollerearnshaw   Author's Homepage   Email David Ollerearnshaw   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Nice find Jon, enjoyed reading them. I think the 'Dion' one does have one bit of wrong info though. I always thought that "Sensurround" was a Universal system not Paramount and the war film is not Tora! Tora! Tora! but Midway. Still an interesting read.

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I love the smell of film in the morning.

http://www.thereelimage.co.uk/

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Maurizio Di Cintio
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From: Ortona, Italy
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 - posted June 07, 2014 05:48 AM      Profile for Maurizio Di Cintio   Email Maurizio Di Cintio   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Hey - Allan is right!!! Double optical track on S/8???? Never heard of such a thing! Can somebody shed some light on this? Especially what projcector(s) was/were able to play back such tracks???

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Maurizio

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Allan Broadfield
Master Film Handler

Posts: 452
From: Bromley, Kent
Registered: Nov 2010


 - posted June 07, 2014 07:15 AM      Profile for Allan Broadfield   Author's Homepage   Email Allan Broadfield   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Winbert, in my experience the normal practice for all new features and many old was to have a seperate sound neg which was printed together with the pic. The reason being that the pic neg and print stock was of lower contrasts and the sound needed a suitably high contrast neg to achieve acceptable frequency response. When made, the sound neg was exposed at a very exacting exposure which when printed at an equally exacting exposure cancelled out the different contrasts on the print.
Old features had often lost their original sound negs (perhaps for reason of archive space) which had been replaced by dupes with the sound on the same neg. These were 'com-opts' or 'combined dupes' which were frowned on but achieved surprisingly acceptable results in some cases.

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