"Super eight millimeter film" is the newest amateur film gauge. It was introduced in 1965 by Eastman Kodak in order to invigorate its home moviemaking market. It was readily embraced by home movie makers, industrial users and independent film artists. They all hailed Super 8 as an improvement on old 8mm film with a great deal of enthusiasm for its instant loading film cartridge. In Super 8, the image area was increased. Super 8 has a very small sprocket hole that was repositioned alongside of the image. (Standard 8mm has its holes on the frameline). The Super 8 format is 4:3, or 1.33:1, slightly wider than high, just like 8mm film and regular TV.
Kodak's competitor, the Japanese corporation Fuji, introduced a product called Single 8 just a month prior to Kodak's launch of Super 8. Single 8 prevailed in Japan and many other parts of the world while Super 8 dominated the North American markets. Fuji's Single 8 was engineered in a different cartridge going into its own cameras; many filmmakers found its cartridge design superior. Once processed, Single 8mm is compatible with Super 8 in image area and sprocket design and it will play in a Super 8 projector. Single 8 is characterized by a different film support; it came on a hard-to-tear and durable Estar base while Super 8 is acetate based. Both are safety film and non-flammable.
Both Fuji's Single 8 and Kodak's Super 8 film are still available for filmmaking in speciality photo shops, or direct from the manufacturer. Super 8 is enjoying something of a revival today among music videomakers and independent film artists.
Please do not project your films unless you have determined they are still in good condition. Store film cool and dry. Your original film, when well stored, will last far longer than any of today's electronic media.
Super 8 |