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Devoted Super 8 Filmmaker
Matt Hulse
Devoted Super 8 Filmmaker

The most widely available and affordable Super 8mm film is called Kodachrome 40 which is colour reversal & process paid. You can get this in Jessops or from the Widescreen Centre. Processing times can be up to a fortnight. This film stock has rich, distinct colours (the 'home movie' look) and is best used in good daylight. Indoor/studio filming is possible with decent lighting, but don't forget to disable the camera's daylight filter. There is a more sensitive colour reversal stock called the Ektachrome 125 (7240) but the processing costs are not included (instantly doubling the price!). If you're going straight to TELECINE (transfer to digital video) then you might choose to take advantage of the faster speed and latitude of the EXR200T KODAK Vision Negative (not process paid).

If you're looking for black and white film, then you have three choices. Kodak 200ASA Tri-X is fast enough to cover most 'available light' situations, including low light if you have a bright lens. It produces a high contrast, grainy, seductive image. Kodak 40ASA Plus-X is slower so needs good daylight - the result is lower contrast images with finer grain. For an interesting but somewhat unpredictable 'historic' look (circa 1930?) try the Russian QUARZCHROME 50ASA stock, which is very 'silvery' and creates plenty of its own quirks and characteristics. Remember, with black and white films, you can disable the daylight filter at all times, giving you a little extra light to play with. These stocks are all available from the Widescreen Centre - processing is on top.

Remember this: the cartridge will run out before you know it. You'll get around 3'20'' shooting at 18fps. It's a classic mistake to go on shooting for hours after the film has run out - it's pretty frustrating to have shot the film, but only in your mind's eye. So be sparing with your shots, be discerning. This is not video - consider it a privilege! On the face of it Super 8 film making can seem expensive, but once you've rationalise your technique, you'll be enchanted by how much beauty you can create for so little outlay. (If you'll looking for the full range of available Super 8mm stocks, please visit the site of PRO8).

Various Film Stock
(Including: Quarzchrome, Ektachrome 125T and Kodachrome 40)
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