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Shooting sound with 8mm and Super 8

  1. Ektagraphic
    Hi Guys- I would really like to be able to shoot sound with my Super 8 and 8mm gear. What is the best way to do this? Would getting a sound camera help? If I used some type of recorder on the side, how hard would it be to sync the sound?


  2. Marco Gilardetti
    Marco Gilardetti
    If you mean by using a normal cassette / reel recorder, forget it: the projector and the recorder will always go out of synch after a minute or two. In the past, there have been made some 8mm projectors that had a built-in reel tape player, but I would rule out this solution as well. They were hard to find, operate and keep "in tune" even back then, go figure today.

    Getting a super8 cine camera with sound and projector is by far the easiest solution in my opinion.
  3. Ektagraphic
    The problem is the availability of super8 sound film.
  4. Dan Fromm
    Dan Fromm
    Um, some S8 and 8/8 cameras can have crystal sync added, there are recorders with it or that can have it added.

    Google "double system sound." And get a copy of Lenny Lipton's The Super 8 Book.

    Getting a sound camera makes no sense unless it has other features you want. But for all I know EKCo still makes striped S8 film in sound S8 cartridges, checking whether they do is cheap. No striped film in sound cartridges, noS8 single system sound.
  5. Europan
    Since you write 8mm I can suggest the following.

    3¾" of magnetic tape correspond to 25 frames of 8-R. film. By recording sound at the speed of 3¾" per second and shooting the action at the rate of 25 fps you will stay “in synch” for some time. It’s trial and error but I can imagine you’d manage to keep picture and sound parallel fairly long. What would resolve the slip problem is perforated tape. There was the Paillard-Bolex Synchromat together with the M 8 projector. A sprocketed drum on it and you stay in synch for eternity. Or so.
  6. btaylor
    These days most people trying to do this on a budget use a digital recorder to record the sound while shooting with a S8 camera. You can hold sync for awhile this way. Of course this is only going to work if you're matching up the sound and picture on a computer with a digital video end result. If you're going to try to stay analog and project film, it's going to be tough going. A modified crystal sync camera and a digital or digitally controlled analog recorder will get you the raw materials, but editing and projection are going to be a nightmare-- there isn't enough of the gear and materials (full coat mag S8) left to get you there. Kodak stopped making the S8 sound cartridges years ago. But many people have had success with a digital sound recorder, a good steady S8 camera and synchronizing digitally.
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