Despite the switchover to digital, analog film remains popular among Hollywood’s big-name directors – so much so that J.J. Abrams, Judd Apatow, Christopher Nolan, and Quentin Tarantino are among those in the moviemaking industry who want to keep Kodak’s cinema film business going. (Kodak, as you know, has been streamlining itself by selling or shuttering various business units.) One of Kodak’s popular motion picture formats is the Super 8, which offers the vintage “home movie” feel that many directors desire for authenticity (versus using digital post-editing means). While old Super 8 cameras aren’t easy to work with, a new camera, called the Logmar S-8, blends the best of digital camera tech with the feel of analog film.
There have been many attempts to bring back Super 8 filmmaking, but they were either conversions of old analog equipment into digital (Nolab digital Super 8 cartridge) or a purely digital camera that shoots like a Super 8 (Chinon Bellami HD-1). The Danish Logmar, however, is an aluminum-bodied digital camera that pairs the modern convenience and capabilities of digital filmmaking with actual recording onto Super 8 film, for that real vintage feel. In fact, it’s the first true new Super 8 camera to be made in 30 years. It’s powered by the ARM Cortex M3 processor, and it has image stabilization; C-mount for interchangeable lenses; an LCD; Wi-Fi remote control via Android, iOS, and Windows Phone; and digital sound recording (onto an SD card) with inputs for headphones and microphones. According to Wired, the camera uses a Maxon D.C. motor to spool the film; it’s the same motor that’s used in the Mars Rover. You can shoot time-lapse films, as well as adjust the frame rates and exposure. Plus, the camera has the pistol grip and trigger button that’ll be familiar to anyone who’s used a Super 8 cam.
The camera has already received positive reviews from industry types who have tried it. For all you Super 8 home movie auteurs who want to relive the old days, it’ll cost you $3,500, and that’s if you preorder now via its distributor, Pro 8mm; lenses are not included. After that, the camera jumps to $5,000. Obviously, the S-8 is geared toward professional filmmakers.