it looks like i am one of the first ppl to take the plunge and to purchase the new Reflecta Super8 film scanner. For those of you who dont know, this is the worlds first consumer-priced Super8 film scanner. Everything up to now has been in the 5k or more price range, and this puppy is $1500..finally something that is reasonable to do this job. its fairly amazing. it scans a frame at a time (takes about 2 seconds per frame) , in HD, moves to the next frame, and saves the images as jpgs to your hard drive via a usb connection and then re-assembles the jpgs at the end into an avi file with the custom software that comes with it. heres the link:
as there seem to be no threads on the net anywhere that i could find for users to discuss this unit i thought i would start a thread here.
The software is still in its fairly early days, and has a few interesting "quirks". but overall after my months and months of fiddling with old projectors to do this same job with an SLR (and mostly failing) i am just rediculously happy with this unit. i just start it scanning a reel, and go to work. when i get home i have an avi to play with further.
Anyone else purchased one yet?
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some bugs i have found in the software so far:
1:/ sometimes (im not sure how to replicate 100% yet) it seems to look like its scanning ok but on your hard drive all you get is 1000s of identical jpgs, usually of the first picture. annoying. means rescanning required.
2:/ if you hit "Calibrate" then it seems you can load your previous sessions but you cant output the jpgs to make an avi anymore. Well, thats whats happened to me (even after PC reboot etc) and i cant figure out what is causing the popup error window, the only other thing i have done is hit "Calibrate" since it was working for me last time so i am scratching my head.
3:/ the "Calibrate" function still makes for a very YELLOW picture. ie. there really is no white color on any picture. it all looks VERY warm. Even white leader tape looks yellow. its wierd. Its down to pulling out tons of yellow from the avi later in Premiere or Vegas or whatever to balance the picture again (no biggie but not ideal).
4:/ there is an "Enable" tickbox on the software, that seems to do *something* but its not labelled that it really Enables anything specific. It does seem to be under the "Calibrate" button but the Calibrate function works regardless of this mysterious "Enable" tickbox setting so who the hell knows. The manual shows pointers to the software screen settings...the Enable box is shown but even more strangely....is passed over for an explanation.
5:/ there are settings on the screenshots in the manual such as "B/W, Cartoon, Color" and what looks like a profile dropdown selection box that is no-where to be found in the software. Including missing from the latest version direct from the reflecta website. hmmm.
6:/ when you hit "Make AVI" the sofware DELETES all the jpg files of the frames. this is really shocking to me. maybe i want to use Virtualdub instead to make an avi? maybe i want to process them further? but theyre deleted by the software. So you need to grab them and copy the folder on your hard drive immediately before you hit "Create AVI". there really should be a tickbox option here "keep jpgs".
its early days for the software. so maybe they are going to work on it further. but it has not technically crashed on me once yet (win7 x64) so thats a good sign.
a few things about the hardware:
1:/ my god the foldout spool arms are so weak and flimsy including the actual spool pins to attach your film spool to, that they are constantly threatening to break off and fall to the ground at any second just from their own weight. The arms are wobbly as hell. The spool pins are so loose that there is a good few centimeters of twist wobble in a film roll. i would say knock anything, rush putting anything on or off...and its broke.
2:/ leave the unit running for a day or so, then hit Calibrate on the software. The first day or so the scanner light changes considerably...it seems to need a day to "burn in".
3:/ you still need a projector to capture the sound track, with its own pass at another time. This is kinda understandable and i was aware of this during purchase. i recommend doing the sound second, every pass through any projector seems to leave more and more black vertical "scratches" on old film that is falling apart so grab the picture first, and then you can fiddle around with the sound later. But something to be aware of. And its good to have a projector just to run the film back and forth through before you start to clean the film if you want to save the reflecta.
3:/ you cant seem to be able to "overscan" with the relfecta. When i play a film in my Emuig projector i can see there is more picture running right up to the film socket hole and even around it. but it gets cropped hard with the reflecta to be an almost square 1:1 ratio picture. so you may lose a bit of your original film picture. i noticed that commerical Super8 films dont have picture "bleed" across to the film holes. and some camera recorders dont let it happen either. I guess my father just had a camera that let some light leak across more. shame i cant scan that bit of picture either. I guess i have to live with that.
anyways just some of my thoughts.
Last edited by Blackout; 24th Jul 2014 at 08:45.
Can you upload any unprocessed sample clips or image series? Also samples of the same clips using a projector/camcorder setup, like most people use, if you have them.
Very good thread, im interested on the outcome and how nice the samples look by the end of things, good work.Status - Attacked by mold spores. - Pour out a lil liquor for all the homies lost in the format wars. Sanlyn will live again, a Sanlyn v2.0 if you will
hi guys, actually i have one section of film that i tackled the "optical" way with my Emuig projector with modified lens directly into my Canon EOS550D body (lens removed). and it was the first thing i scanned with the Reflecta to compare. so i have it both ways to compare directly. i will up the comparison to youtube in HD for you and post the link here soon.
in summary, with the "optical" way, it was just impossible to get it looking great for any period of time, more than a few seconds. My father used a few cameras over the years, but they all sped up or slowed down slightly based on how the batteries were that day. slightly flat? frames ran slightly slower. And even more disturbingly, when he would start or stop filming, i remember it had this big black trigger button you would depress/squeeze and it seems it would plonk frames in slightly different locations along the fium as he would "ease off" on the trigger before stopping. Because using the "optical" method i would manage to get the film finally running at 24ips to sync with the 24ips of my Canon SLR, and then the next scene would start and i would get scrolling of the picture again. And then i would re-adjust the speed again, and towards the end of every scene i would get black bar scrolling for a few seconds, as the frame positions went slightly wonky as the trigger button was eased. None of this was obvious with just a projector shooting against the wall. but trying to transfer this was a COMPLETE NIGHTMARE. and by the 10th attempt at capturing a piece of film, i could see the scratching running up the film as the 40 year old film just was falling apart forever. it was just heartbreaking. And then for my very best capture,, on my very best day, after months of fiddling with lenses and backlights, positions, etc i still had a lack of focus on the sides of the image. so the centre was sharp but the sides just looked blurry. i pulled apart at least 5 lenses to try and get things to improve.
compared with the reflecta which just looks....amazing. im fussy. but now im comfortable that its looking as good as its gonna get, and i can just scan the whole box of films once and for all and they can turn to dust and ill have the lot digitally ...safe.
vid to come
Not on yt pls. That will be re-encoded.
I, for one, would prefer the original scanned video.
One thing I can not get my head around is that a super8 frame is 3:2 at most. How does that translate to a 1920*1080 conversion ?
The other thing is the quoted price. You stated $1500 whereas the link is 1500 euro. That would be nearer $2500 ??
DB83, the "Cyberview S8" software creates a 1920x1080 avi at the end that is in 16x9. the image is plonked in the middle. so you get a full 1080 vertically but there are black bars off to the sides.
interestingly, when the software is scanning it says on the screen "Frame - 1190 x 874". So i have a sneaking suspicion that this is the real size. yes it makes an avi that is full HD but i think it is only scanning at 1190x874 in reality. slightly sneaky possibly. But the quality is very high. i can see film emulsion. its well good enough for me.
the jpgs that it makes are between 100k and 150k each. it just numbers the jpgs sequentially and puts them in one big folder. Very nice. you can actually load the jpgs in Virtualdubmod. Just click "open video" and click on the first jpg and set the framerate to 18fps (or 24 if thats your speed) and hit play and Virtualdubmod plays your video also! so you could in reality bypass using their Cyberview software for the second half of the process, and use Virtualdubmod filters and settings. im going to do this actually because then i can use the "uncompressed" avi codec.
re: price yeah its 1500 Euros. but i did find it here for 1244 Euros including Vat:
but they wouldnt ship it to me. so i ended up getting it from the reflecta website directly. they were very nice and followed up on my order, it was sent via Fedex and VERY well packed, it was in lots of foam, in a box, that was in a carton, that was then surrounded by packing material and then in another big box.
Last edited by Blackout; 25th Jul 2014 at 08:11.
The Pixmania price is UKP = £. The equivalent euro value will be higher. I did a quick current conversion which came to 1569 euro.
Vat is also different in Germany and the UK so there is little difference in the two prices. Not as much as you had thought
Thanks for clarifying the AR issue.
Sounds like a nice little unit and a good adventure and learning process, look forward to the samples.Status - Attacked by mold spores. - Pour out a lil liquor for all the homies lost in the format wars. Sanlyn will live again, a Sanlyn v2.0 if you will
Of course the scanner method was as expected to be an improvement - you already stated this.
But, I as previously inferred, the yt presentation does not give the real story. You only get that from the original capture/scan.
Yeah we need the original caps, but already from what you've posted a much better improvement so far. Keep us updated, id say your purchase was worth the money.Status - Attacked by mold spores. - Pour out a lil liquor for all the homies lost in the format wars. Sanlyn will live again, a Sanlyn v2.0 if you will
Yes, the scanner version is much better. But I also would love to see the earlier JPG sequence. Bright parts of the picture are a blown out. There is some possibility of recovering some of the bright detail with the JPG images. There are some other processing possibilities which would benefit from that too.
sorry DB83 thats all im posting unfortuantely. i think its more than enough in HD and it gets the point across re:quality.
holy crap jagabo! what did you use to do that with?? that is amazing! please let me know. i have some footage of my first steps at 12 months old on a second reel that would really benefit from that! and to me its priceless footage (of course)
perhaps someone else can post their experiences with the reflecta as well?
Last edited by Blackout; 28th Jul 2014 at 09:13.
just out of interest, maybe one of you guys will know of a plugin that can help remove a static vertical black scratch down the film? looks like a black line down the left hand side that stays pretty much in the same spot for the whole film. i asked my dad and he said he played some of the films at a few other peoples places on their projectors in the 70s and they "developed" some of the scratches from their (crappy) projectors. fairly gutted to see the scratches on quite a few of the films as im transferring things here...
(i know i can do it in Photoshop to each jpg frame one at a time, but that might take me...like a million years. a Sony Vegas plugin would be really awsome)
Last edited by Blackout; 28th Jul 2014 at 12:04.
there are a few issues with this scanner, hopefully they can be fixed with firmware or software updates asap. heres what im experiencing....random skipping of frames:
here is someone else having the same prob:
then theres this....not spooling properly:
and heres a video of how flimsy and wobbly the arms and pins are....ready to break with any kind of pressure whatsoever (possibly not a firmware update will fix this one!)
VirtualDub. I think it's primarily designed for standard definition material so you'll probably have to fiddle with it a lot to get it to work for high def (ie, to handle wider, longer scratches).
Regarding skipping frames: my guess is they are driving the film with a stepper motor, triggered by a digital pulse. Sometimes a system interrupt occurs in the middle of the pulse causing the pulse to last longer than one frame. One way around this is to disable interrupts for while driving the pulse. Another way is to use a hardware pulse generator (most microcontrollers have them).
Sorry, I meant DeScratch for AviSynth. Yes VirtualDub and AviSynth can handle HD. But the DeScratch plugin is looking for scratches of a particular size in an SD frame. In an HD frame the scratches will be wider and longer.
Oh, another possibility with the frame skipping: they are using a physical switch to drive the motor and that switch is not debounced. Adding a capacitor to create a low pass filter will eliminate the bounce.
hi jagabo. thanks for your response and suggestions.
the motors are able to be incremented by one frame at a time (back and forth) via the software. i do not think it is a physical switch. from what i can surmise, the Reflecta scans 2 frames or more at a time, and then uses the software to "choose" the middle frame and center the picture. then the software increments forward the motors a certain amount. But something is getting screwy. i think its a firmware or software update that is needed. there could also be a memory leak in the software that slows it down, it seems to perform better after a reboot every time once scanning a reel is finished.
so back to your amazing "processed" file...what software did you use to do this and what plugins? you seem to have "invented" frames in between the actual 18fps, the telegraph pole scrolls across smoothly like its video! not like an 18fps movie. aside from the stabilization you have performed. please tell me how you did this its unbelievable!
AviSynth, and VirtualDub for the deshaking. But there are plugins that can do those things in the better video editors. The cleaner the source the better these filters work.
A motion interpolation filter (SmoothFPS) was used generate in-between frames. I think I sped the original video to 20 fps then tripled the frame rate -- 60 fps plays very smoothly on a computer monitor running at 60 fps. I also used a spot remover (RemoveSpotsMC) to remove some of the spots. For stabilization I used the DeShaker plugin in VirtualDub -- with the option to fill in the edges with data from other frames, and without cropping the frame.
I don't think I'd do all of that if this was my precious home video. I just wanted to give you some ideas of things you could do. Motion interpolation works pretty well for panning shots, but not well with complex motions. Notice, I cut off the end of the clip where it didn't work so well! Spot removers sometimes remove details that are supposed to be there (I once had a cartoon with stars scrolling quickly across the screen -- most of them disappeared after spot removal). When the camera shakes you often get motion blur. Your mind accepts this as normal. But after deshaking the blur is still present. So the video get blurry now and then for no apparent reason. The edge fill (eg, if the stabilizer decides the frame needs to be shifted to the left it needs to fill in the right edge with something to maintain the frame size) doesn't always work perfectly. You can see artifacts at the edges of the frame. You can crop the edges to alleviate this but then you lose part of the picture.
thank you jagabo for the info!
on the contary, because it is my precious home video i am prepared to spend the time to make it look better!
i will investigate some of this further, especially a motion interpolation filter. I know Vegas has a "Blend or Interpolate" settings in the session properties but i assumed this was only ever for interlaced video that is being turned to progressive? or perhaps this setting will be valid here also. I have played with the Video Stabilizer in Vegas 10 but , as you mention, it tends to zoom in and crop. not ideal.
ps there is an update to the Reflecta Super 8 Cyberview S8 software, i recieved an email from support today. it is ver 184.108.40.206. it contains (apparently) better frame detection, and a setting bar to adjust the frame position offset. from my intitial testing however it still seems to skip frames randomly.
For the motion interpolation I used SmoothFPS2(). You can find the function here:
You'll need the mv_tools package.
I think the blend/interpolate feature you're talking about in Vegas is for deinterlacing, not motion interpolation. Vegas has a pretty poor frame rate converter. It doesn't do motion interpolation. I just duplicate/decimates or blends frames.
"blend vs. interpolate" in vegas is for deinterlacing. The frame rate conversions are governed by "smart resample" on or off. On=blend, off=duplicates/decimation
Vegas doesn't do motion interpolation out of the box, but you can get 3rd party plugins like Twixtor ($) . Avisynth/mvtools2 is free
RE: scratches - usually very difficult to remove with good results "automatically" . When you "remove" a scratch, you have to replace it with "something".
You can do a photoshop batch action with context aware fill /heal brush or similar fill techniques, but results aren't always that good, only on certain types of content and backgrounds. Similarly, in avisynth you can do inpainting with mask, but results usually aren't good with motion
If it's a small static scratch, a horizontal blur with mask might be good enough. Won't work for medium to large scratches
hi poison. thanks for your advice. re: scratches yes i was thinking about just dragging the jpgs through Photoshop manually and dragging the clone brush tool down the screen hehe. Batching this would be a lot more useful you are right. i think i need to give up on finding a plugin for this and doing it in photoshop. im likely to get a better result as well. Cheers!
ok i have found a problem and fix for the Reflecta, i have been scanning some films a few times and after just a few passes they have developed a scratch down the film picture, like this:
taking a good look at the film travel through the Reflecta Scanner, you can swing open the scanner light like this:
there is a spring-loaded little silver clip that is sitting there, that squashes the film as it passes through the scanner. Its obviously made in China....
it just wobbles on there so loose. anyways clip it off like this and remove it....
run your finger over it. see how poorly made it is. and how sloppily it has been cut. INCREDIBLY...it has this really sharp edge, that actually sits up with a slight ridge, and this ridge is cut so that it runs THROUGH the SIDE OF THE FILM! I am pointing at this edge here:
and you can see where it lines up here:
not surprisingly, it is about 1/3 of the way across the frame, exactly where I have been developing the scratches in my film. so you need to take a very fine file and give it a rounding off, finishing off the job that was meant to be done in the factory if they really cared....smoothing it out like this:
then re-install. everything else seems to treat the film rather well. I would recommend doing this from the very start when you receive the unit. Hope this helps a few ppl and saves some precious films from being damaged.
Wow that's inexcusable . Maybe this is just a bad batch ?
Best thread in a while, i like the updates so far.
i have just figured out that there is also an issue if you put the Reflecta in reverse (to rewind the frames) whilst loaded with film, the take-up reel S-N-A-P-S hard and really pulls your film at an alarming force. the film is then pulled DAMN TIGHT backwards through the Reflecta Scanner. The problem is, there is some turns that the film makes that are not on roller guides, they are just up against plastic. And when the film is made this tight, some serious scratching of the film occurs. SO if you have this unit DO NOT PUT IT INTO REVERSE! your film will be scratched badly.
the pressures on the non-roller film turns are not the same when in forward mode.
I decided to buy one and the spec states that it works with Mac 10.5, 10.6, and 10.7, . I have OSX 10.5.8 and every time I launch the software it crashes and gives me the message "The application Super8 quit unexpectedly." Does anyone know how to fix this or if there is a software update available for Mac OSX 10.5.8.
hi KS, i use it on a PC so i cant help you with this one. However i do know they just released new software this week.
it is version 220.127.116.11 (for PC) and is on their download page.