lunes, 17 de agosto de 2020


A Super-8 camera whose existence was doubted, the almost mythical Arriflex DS8 (for Double Super8 film), a kind of Holy Grail of the S8, really did exist.
Arri only made 14 of these cameras, for professional television use. The operators shot with them news, in Europe, that was sent to the United States: film being revealed on the plane!!!
One of these camera, this one, is in the office of Manfred Jahn, Arri's top executive, and who has made his treasure known in the group dedicated to the Double Super-8 thanks to the Italian director of photography, and good friend, Alfredo Betro'.
Of the 14 Arriflex DS8s produced, Manfred Jahn guards no less than 3!!! No one knows the whereabouts of the other 11.
Like the Pentacon Pentaflex Super 8 DS-8, produced behind the Iron Curtain, the Arriflex DS8 has a rotating mirror shutter. Mirror shutters, whether rotating or oscillating (Fujica ZC1000, French  made Beaulieu), are the most interesting option from a cinematographer's point of view.
Photographs by Manfred Jahn

This type of film presentation comes in 16mm wide rolls with S-perforations on both edges. To shoot on DS8, one side is first exposed longitudinally, flipped over, and, then,  the other side is exposed.
After development, it is cut in half and two strips of Super-8 remain. It is, the DS8, the format of several beautiful cameras: the Bolex DS8, the Canon DS8, the Pathe DS8 or the Elmo Trifilmatic.
Also, using the DS8 to its full width, without cutting, I can use this type of film with my Bolex Ultrapan camera which provides the amazing 3.1 format without the need for anamorphic.
DS8 production is cheaper, first of all, as it is an intermediate pitch form
at that is manufactured in-house, at Kodak, prior to Super-8 production, when the 35mm master roll is divided into 600 meter 35mm pancakes: one side is perforated for 16mm and the other for Double Super-8 which is subsequently cut in two to be inserted into the cartridges. 
Of course Kodak can supply these DS8 Ektachrome pancakes in 120 meter rolls or 30 meter reels, but the minimum order is many thousands of dollars, payable in advance, and at the moment there is only one company that has taken a chance : Pro 8mm from Los Ángeles, California.
Kodak also can supply these pancakes without perforations. In this case, perforation must be done by the reseller. 

Foma sells, in Europe, its Double Super8 film in black and white, available locally in each country of the European Union. But, for color, whether it is reversal (Kodak Ektachrome) or negative (Kodak Vision range), there is no other option than Pro 8mm.
The extensive Pro 8mm catalog can be found at the link below. They serve in Spanish and English, and shipping to Europe takes only 3 days!
Take a look here: 

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