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Super 16 vs 16mm

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Super 16 is a widescreen format of 16 mm film. Normal 16mm film has perforations on both edges of the film. However, except for the specialty high speed cameras, all 16mm cameras only utilize one row of perforations. Super 16 takes advantage of this by eliminating one of the rows of perforations. This allows the image to be extended an extra 2mm to the films edge. This translates into a few remarkable advantages for the film maker.
  • The film frame is in a wide screen 1.66 aspect ratio which makes for much cleaner, easier blow-ups for theatrical release.
  • A Super16 film frame is sharper and less grainy than regular 16.
  • The cost of stock and processing is no more than regular 16.
Unfortunately, you cannot shoot Super16 film on any 16mm camera, only one that has been specially made for that specific purpose. Also, not every lab develops Super16 film.

Super 16 is not best suited for transfer to video as well because the widescreen image must be cropped or letterboxed. Until HDTV arrives, the widescreen aspect of Super16 will not be fully exploited by the Video or Television Industry.

  • The film frame is in a wide screen 1.66 aspect ratio which makes for much cleaner, easier blow-ups for theatrical release.
  • A Super16 film frame is sharper and less grainy than regular 16.
  • The cost of stock and processing is no more than regular 16.
Unfortunately, you cannot shoot Super16 film on any 16mm camera, only one that has been specially made for that specific purpose. Also, not every lab develops Super16 film.

Super 16 is not best suited for transfer to video as well because the widescreen image must be cropped or letterboxed. Until HDTV arrives, the widescreen aspect of Super16 will not be fully exploited by the Video or Television Industry.

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