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Author Topic: Film vs Digital ... Lets put this one to bed.
Steve Klare
Film Guy

Posts: 7016
From: Long Island, NY, USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted August 19, 2016 06:19 PM      Profile for Steve Klare   Email Steve Klare   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
You don't want the Bel-Air going to work in traffic in a snow storm. The brakes are lazy, the tires are slick as ice skates and you don't even have seat belts!

-on a nice day when you have nowhere in particular to go and you want to roll down the windows and just go for a ride, you may want nothing else!

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

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Adrian Winchester
Film God

Posts: 2941
From: Croydon, London, UK
Registered: Aug 2004


 - posted August 19, 2016 06:22 PM      Profile for Adrian Winchester   Email Adrian Winchester   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
David -

"Do you ever get bored and fed up debating with others flogging
this old warhorse to death ?
I do."

I couldn't agree more! [Smile]

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

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John Richard Almond
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 103
From: England
Registered: Feb 2012


 - posted August 19, 2016 06:41 PM      Profile for John Richard Almond   Email John Richard Almond   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
This is going to be difficult to put into words but only the other day my eldest granddaughter picked up a 50 foot kodak yellow spool and asked "whats this Grandad" and fortunately it was a reel I shot of her dad when he was three years old. I said to her that it was film of her dad and she just looked at me totally blank with her head tilted to one side like they do at that age, (she is 9 by the way).
But not having the old eumig to hand and the fact it was 2 o'clock in the afternoon I could not set it up and show her. I oppend the the reel and let her have a look at the frames and her eyes being much better that ours she could see little tiny pictures of her dad 6 years younger than herself and was totally gobsmacked.
So this being the case I decided to set up the projector the following evening and show her the film...................the look on her face was just simply amazing to watch, and between looking at the screen and looking at the projector she could still not understand how it worked so I ended up explaining what was going on.................Im glad I looked in now on this thread because I wasnt going to post this little episode.

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Andrew Woodcock
Film God

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From: Manchester Uk
Registered: Aug 2012


 - posted August 19, 2016 06:45 PM      Profile for Andrew Woodcock         Edit/Delete Post 
A moment of pure magic John! A simply wonderful tale of what will now become a lifelong etched precious memory for you both, no doubt [Smile]

"Keep it with Kodak", was never more poignant! [Wink]

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

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John Richard Almond
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 103
From: England
Registered: Feb 2012


 - posted August 19, 2016 07:18 PM      Profile for John Richard Almond   Email John Richard Almond   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Thanks Andrew, it was indeed a moment of magic.
Just to add though, she then later asked how the film was made...........so I dug out one of my cameras, the Nizo pro that I have, and she instantly said "it feels like dads Iphone, only its bigger" I think she meant it feels smooth and is the same colour that an Iphone looks and feels.
Maybe this could be a different thread about how our grandkids react to our hobby.

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Andrew Woodcock
Film God

Posts: 7477
From: Manchester Uk
Registered: Aug 2012


 - posted August 19, 2016 07:25 PM      Profile for Andrew Woodcock         Edit/Delete Post 
Paul,Graham & you here John, could certainly start one! [Smile]

Going back to David's initial question here, I think you've explained precisely the reason we all here, love real film despite all of it's criticisms and short falls at times, far better than 10,000 words from the rest of us John, with your tale. [Smile]

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

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Kevin Clark
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 978
From: Bapchild, Kent, UK
Registered: May 2004


 - posted August 20, 2016 03:00 AM      Profile for Kevin Clark     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Oh dear - the 'Old Turkey' had raised its ugly head again - not talking about you David, just the subject heading!

My simplest way to put it from someone who enjoys projecting all formats of real film and digital projection at home:

Reel cine film = hands on hobby

DVD / Bluray = casual pastime

There is nothing wrong with either way of watching and enjoying the movies at home and one often compliments the other perfectly, but real cine film and equipment has so many hands on facets it is still my personal hobby preference, with digital projection ideal for watching recently released movies and restorations inexpensively at home.

In the past this subject has caused some heated debate amongst members so lets hope Betty Pickering doesn't kick off in this one!

Kevin

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Andrew Woodcock
Film God

Posts: 7477
From: Manchester Uk
Registered: Aug 2012


 - posted August 20, 2016 03:33 AM      Profile for Andrew Woodcock         Edit/Delete Post 
One things for certain Kevin,despite David's initial wish here when raising this one, nothing whatsoever is ever likely to be put to bed regarding this subject.

No matter how digital technology evolves, looking through all these comments from everyone here, no digital media or hardware kit is ever going to diminish our fascination for the handling, splicing, editing and simply watching real film.

The thrill of the reel!

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

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Kevin Clark
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 978
From: Bapchild, Kent, UK
Registered: May 2004


 - posted August 20, 2016 04:50 AM      Profile for Kevin Clark     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
You are spot on there Andrew - 'Sprockets In The Blood' as they say for all us cine die-hards, a bit like classic car and bike owners, steam train enthusiasts, antique furniture buffs, etc. etc. nothing wrong at all in using the best of old and new tech.

Kevin

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Brian Fretwell
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1785
From: London, UK
Registered: Jun 2014


 - posted August 20, 2016 05:28 AM      Profile for Brian Fretwell   Email Brian Fretwell   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
News item in Britain today.

BAFTA is to consider including digital only releases for awards, they define this as films not shown in cinemas. In this case "digital only" means those distributed as paid for internet only releases!!!!

It would seem that digital cinema is, to them, just cinema.

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Joe Caruso
Film God

Posts: 4105
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted August 20, 2016 08:04 AM      Profile for Joe Caruso   Email Joe Caruso   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
This is always a tough topic to reply on - Let's remember there is the Jeffrey Selznick School for Film Preservation in Rochester NY - Film, not Analog - I like to "see" film, frame-by-frame, can't do that with a digital hangup - It is simply a matter of preference - Being a kid from the 60's, all we had was the television and the movies - We bought films and played with them - Todays so-called "films" are fascinating, however there is the pleasure in hearing a projector whurr along as it projects a sharp b&w noir image - I'm sorry, I understand the images can be cleaned up and look "as new", but I prefer them older, a bit used and charmingly attractive - We started with film, and we'll end with it, no matter the technology because everything traces back to its origin - Even a decent copy analog to analog doesn't cut it - It must be from the source; celluloid - You will never see this with records, comic books, toys or paintings - Restored, yes, but virtually left intact - But I digress - If you like the new look of motion pictures, so be it and if some are of the other presuasion, even better - Personally, I could never see "The 1st Annual Digital Film Collector Show", replete with tables of unitarian plastic cases and no more original artwork boxes - I'm sorry again, it was a glorious time and will always be - Nowadays, anything that is created is just a follow-through - Shorty

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Osi Osgood
Film God

Posts: 10204
From: #399R K.O.A. Mountian Home, ID. 83647
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 - posted August 20, 2016 12:32 PM      Profile for Osi Osgood   Author's Homepage   Email Osi Osgood   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Good points Joe ...

I had a little fun with my post yesterday, but in truth, I see no compariosn between the two. Digital is disposable, where film is something well worth the time to search for, and the great pleasure of finding that treasured print is well worth the wait ...

even if it takes years in the waiting ( ala "Grizzly Adams" )

For instance ...

I, like any other number of film collectors, also buy DVD's (rarely nowadays) and Bluray (almost as rarely), but I diligently search for film and when I find that print, YAY!!

I just won, for instance, a film print of an episode of "The Mighty hero's", Ralph bakshi's firth venture into directing aniamted cartoons, while he was still with Terrytoons, (mid 1960's).

I have seen many prints of these films and usually, they have been faded to various degrees. I just found a print that has pristine color (eager to find out which stock!), and I can hardly wait to see it. I just never have that same feel when buying something on DVD, whether the film is restored or not.

... but I also have to admit that part of this whole collecting thing IS nolstalgia. maybe it's because i like to think that I'm like these old films i collect. They are ready to throw away and are worth archiving, hopefully I'll be worth archiving someday. [Smile]

One thing is very true however ...

With nearly anything, the quality to modern materials is not better, it's cheaper and in most cases, more affordable, but it's not better. Things are made to be good for today and tossed aside tomorrow, and digital falls into that category.
Digital was never mneant to be something to be archived. It's convenient, nothing more.

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

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Joe Caruso
Film God

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From: USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted August 20, 2016 12:54 PM      Profile for Joe Caruso   Email Joe Caruso   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
The "experience" between formats is, with digital; sharp and brand-new - Film is the basis by which all is technologically advanced - That's all - Beauty is in the eye of the beholder - Contrast; A slip-covered new, illustrated, up-to-date edition of Les Miserables is released - Does that mean all bookophiles will argue or discard those earlier editions? - No - Bedtime now - Shorty

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Graham Ritchie
Film God

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From: New Zealand
Registered: Feb 2006


 - posted August 20, 2016 04:03 PM      Profile for Graham Ritchie   Email Graham Ritchie   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Frankly I cant understand people using the term Analog as film.

Analog...Signals in which information is encoded in a non-quantized variable, as opposed to a digital signal [Roll Eyes]

Well that's a mouthful don't you think? Imagine telling someone that you are going to watch an Analog tonight, they would think you are nuts. [Big Grin]

Here are a couple of photos of some of that analog stuff taken at the cinema when we were running it... long long ago.
 -
 -
 -
Ah! the good ole days

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Joe Caruso
Film God

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From: USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted August 20, 2016 05:33 PM      Profile for Joe Caruso   Email Joe Caruso   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Then what is the use or scope of the Selznick School of Film Preservation? We're helping film, not a synthetic re-creation (now watch me get flack about that too) - Granted, digitation helps with film restoration, but again it's a matter of your pleasure - Case never closed - Shorty

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Paul Adsett
Film God

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From: USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted August 20, 2016 08:04 PM      Profile for Paul Adsett     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I think a good argument can be made that the Derann Disney prints have an exquisite beauty that is absent from digital versions of the same material.
Also, there is something about watching vintage films, such as Laurel and Hardy's, on a film projector, it just adds something indefinable.
Digital projection in the home is now as good as anything you will see in a digital cinema, which is great for the home showman. For me, the ability to also be able to show reel celluloid just adds to the interest and enjoyment of this whole home cinema hobby.

--------------------
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

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Tom Spielman
Master Film Handler

Posts: 339
From: Minneapolis, MN, USA
Registered: Apr 2016


 - posted August 20, 2016 10:19 PM      Profile for Tom Spielman   Email Tom Spielman   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Graham, I agree that the terms analog and digital get muddled. It seems that to some people analog refers to anything that's not digital. However, depending on the context some things share both analog and digital elements, while others are really neither.

It probably goes back to "digital" clocks. Traditional clocks where then branded as "analog". The term "digital" in those days just meant that the display used digits rather than hands. The first digital clocks were mechanical gadgets, not computerized.

Working in the computer world, I probably get overly pedantic about the terms, but I find it interesting when people say things like digital is not archive-able. My favorite picture of all time was taken over 15 years ago on a low resolution digital camera. It's of my then 2 year old son wearing a blue, red, and green snow suit, sitting on a pure white snow bank, his pink dimpled cheeks framed by a perfectly blue sky.

There were no SD cards then, you hooked the camera up to a computer and copied the pictures. They were erased off the camera, and then it was ready to go again.

That camera is long gone, and so is the computer the picture was originally copied to. The picture has probably be moved to 3 or 4 other computers since. It's also on a backup drive, and stored in a cloud service. So, yes, the different mediums that image was stored on had short lives compared to film. Yet the picture (the important part) lives on, just as good as the day it was taken.

I have some films that are 50 years old. They're kept in a refrigerator in the basement for two reasons. The 1st is that the cool temps help maintain the film, the 2nd is that stuff in a fridge is more likely to survive a fire.

The point is that with either film or digital, care has to be taken if you want the images to survive.

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David Hardy
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 955
From: Johnshaven Village , Montrose, Scotland
Registered: Jan 2015


 - posted August 21, 2016 04:33 AM      Profile for David Hardy   Email David Hardy   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Thanks to all you guys who replied to my question.
I can see this one is still a hot topic.

However the replies did go off on a slight tangent.
I was not asking about the hobby or the joys and fun
of handling and showing film but if any of you thought
that Digital was superior to film in a number of ways in
view of the fact that digital does not have the intrinsic
problems and flaws of film.

Daniel I have to disagree with you regarding digital images
looking flat and lacking depth of field.
Have you seen a Blu-Ray disc of " The Hateful Eight " via
a Video Projector on a decent sized screen yet ?
I for one was gobsmacked at the depth of field on this one.
I have never seen any of my film prints look this good.
Okay so it was filmed in Ultra Panavision 70 for cinema
release but hey this disc is amazing.

As regards film grain this is something we should not see
on a finished film print but we do anyway.
Companies like Kodak spent many years of research and
development try to eliminate this inherent problem but never
got there.
I know film grain is part of the magic of film for some though
but not me.

Graham your photos of those kids brings back fond memories of
my days as a Cinema Projectionist when I conducted the annual
projection box tours and hands on film experiences for parties
of school children.
They were always more interested in the film projectors and film.
They were very un-interested when I showed the Digital ones.

Maurice there is no reason why they could not put on a presentation in Digital Cinemas other than the fact they are
not bothered and could not careless these days.
In an un-manned projection box it is possible to do such
things via a computer.
The problem is most exhibitors would have to spend money
on screen tabs and adjustable screen masking and this they
wont do.

--------------------
" My equipment's more important than your rats. "

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Andrew Woodcock
Film God

Posts: 7477
From: Manchester Uk
Registered: Aug 2012


 - posted August 21, 2016 07:28 AM      Profile for Andrew Woodcock         Edit/Delete Post 
Only one is a hobby David, as a conclusion.

Every other alternative, is simply a means to watch a movie, full stop.

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

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David Hardy
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 955
From: Johnshaven Village , Montrose, Scotland
Registered: Jan 2015


 - posted August 21, 2016 08:18 AM      Profile for David Hardy   Email David Hardy   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Andrew ...Collecting DVDs/ BLU RAY discs alongside FILMS is now a
hobby regardless how intangible the disc means of projection
of movies may seem to some.
I mean just look at those brilliant presentation sets some
Limited Edition Blu-Ray Box Sets with extras such as books
that are available these days.
You can buy these for a fraction of the cost of a print and
and with a far superior screen image than any print.
Now that's a hobby in itself as its something i do in my spare time.
Its a bit silly to think that collecting silver discs cannot
be regarded as a hobby in itself.
In fact its just downright snobbery to think or suggest otherwise just because a movie is not on film.
In my world there is room for both mediums.
They are both merely a means to an end for watching a movie and
passing some time for an hour or two.
Nothing more nothing less.

[Wink] [Wink] [Wink]

--------------------
" My equipment's more important than your rats. "

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Andrew Woodcock
Film God

Posts: 7477
From: Manchester Uk
Registered: Aug 2012


 - posted August 21, 2016 10:01 AM      Profile for Andrew Woodcock         Edit/Delete Post 
David, there certainly wasn't any snobbery attachment meant by describing all of the challenges we try to face and overcome as film collectors.

I was simply meaning that for collectors such as myself, the final outcome to purchasing a new film (new to me of course, I mean), is the actual viewing of it.

What turns film collecting into an actual hobby for me are the endless hours spent recreating original boxes and artwork or when placed on bigger reels, making new designs based very much on the originals.
Or other tasks like bringing the recordings into the realms of 21st Century listenable standards.
This is not to mention the countless hours spent splicing in New leaders, adding on trailers, cleaning and checking prints.
The list is endless and I haven't even begun to mention the dedicated hours restoring or maintaining the machines themselves.

These are the attributes I was aspiring to when I said, to my of thinking, only one offers me a hobby.

Honestly, if i were to retire tomorrow, there still wouldn't be enough hours in a day for me to complete everything I like to do involving the hobby!

All of these aspects of film collecting bring me an enormous amount of exciting challenges at times, but I really love every part of all that I involve myself in. [Wink]

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

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Paul Adsett
Film God

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From: USA
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted August 21, 2016 11:18 AM      Profile for Paul Adsett     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Well said Andrew, you summed up exactly how I feel about the film hobby.
But to David's point, some of the packaging you get with BluRay and DVD is beautiful, such as the presentation sets and blu ray digi books, and collecting these can be very satisfying. As far as picture quality is concerned, home digital projection generally looks better than 8mm and 16mm film, but not always. Anyway, there is no way that I would want to go back 10 years and be without digital projection.

--------------------
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

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Mike Newell
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 826
From: United Kingdom
Registered: Jun 2003


 - posted August 21, 2016 11:27 AM      Profile for Mike Newell   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
It is funny some collectors are in to different aspects of the hobby. There are those who are completists who decide on a genre and hunt down every title. Some are into building a home cinema experience and the films movies are secondary. There are even people who like watching films /movies.

I must admit I was like Andrew in that I cleaned every film that came into my possession and bought more reels and cans and personalised artwork of more titles than I care to remember. Whilst there was job satisfaction a bit little painting I would not have classed it as an very enjoyable aspect of the hobby. More like tedium and heartbreak. My days of scratched and pink are over although I still get soft prints. Is there a decent print of Big Combo out there ?

DVD and Blu-Ray gives you the scope to collect titles that were either not available or within the price ranges of most collectors. I would proberably have enough titles to last me a lifetime but I still pursue new titles, rare titles or improve the stock by weeding out early inferior prints with better later releases. I can also afford to indulge in buying titles that I would not normally have bought such as cult film noir, Orson Welles films or most recently discovering Guillermo Del Toro as a director.

There is still the hunt search element for rare titles such as Hollywood and the Stars or titles only released as studio archives limited editions or politically incorrect titles like Tex Avery Hennessy etc that will never see the light of day in this country. You can also compile your own reels of coming attractions and trailers via technology and a bit of knowledge so you have the creative element too.I even have my own copy of Once Upon a Mouse on DVD with a bit of detective and creative work after much searching for years.

Anyway each to their own whatever rocks your boat.

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Andrew Woodcock
Film God

Posts: 7477
From: Manchester Uk
Registered: Aug 2012


 - posted August 21, 2016 04:23 PM      Profile for Andrew Woodcock         Edit/Delete Post 
Ten good reasons to own a digital projector:
1/ The Shawshank Redemption
2/ Saving Private Ryan
3/ Pulp Fiction
4/ The Green Mile
5/ Gladiator
6/ Apocalypse Now
7/ The Godfather Coppola Restoration
8/ Shrek
9/ The Lion King
10/ Toy Story 2 & 3

All on Blu Ray alongside thousands of others.

Ten good reasons to own a Super 8mm Sound Projector;

1/ Toy Story
2/ Star Wars
3/ Alien
4/ Its A Wonderful Life
5/ Way Out West
6/ Highlander
7/ Lady & The Tramp
8/ The Lion King
9/ The Smallest Show On Earth
10/ EL Cid

As above, not in any particular order and as above hundreds if not thousands of other reasons

[Smile] [Wink]

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

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David Hardy
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 955
From: Johnshaven Village , Montrose, Scotland
Registered: Jan 2015


 - posted August 21, 2016 04:55 PM      Profile for David Hardy   Email David Hardy   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I have prints of THE SMALLEST SHOW ON EARTH on both 8mm and 16mm.
I also have a DVD the same title.
To these eyes the DVD blows both my film prints into the weeds
visually.
My 8mm print of this title cost me £ 125.00. My 16mm print cost me £ 250.00. It is much better than the 8mm print released by DFS.
However my DVD cost me the huge sum of £ 5.00.
It is not scratched or worn or unsteady like my film copies.
One good reason to collect and project Digital formats.
Wash that film grain out of your eyes guys and just enjoy.

Andrew your reasons for keeping up the film collecting hobby
is just to much hard work for me these days and gives me no pleasure at all.
I guess after 45+ years working in the industry as a projectionist has disenchanted me somewhat.
I am fed up fiddling about trying to repair machines in order
to keep them running. I am also fed up having to be careful when
handling and showing the prints.
So I think the magic for me has gone somewhat.
These days I like to just sit back and relax and watch the movie
without the added distractions of keeping an eye and ear on the
projector and the transport and focus checks involved.
That for me makes Digital my Primary choice.

[Wink] [Wink] [Wink] [Wink]

--------------------
" My equipment's more important than your rats. "

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