Telecine Scanner MYTHS -- Dispelled

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Film Transfer Sales Traps

8mm Film-Transfer Mills™ do NOT want you to know:

  • Their Production methods deprive clients of Copyrighted Assets
  • Partial-frame formats are sold as "master files"
  • DVD discs are sold as an "archive medium" -- in obstruction of National Archive Warnings
  • Hyper-format tiny 8mm film to oversized video formats -- introducing artifacts.
  • Use Old-fashioned Pull-down patterns for small format films -- introducing "IMAGE™ judder"
  • Introduce Time and Motion Distortion - not in the client's movie film.
  • Omit Dual-Pass Rendering for DVDs -- robing clients of "master file quality" -- which clients pay for.
  • Pollute film images with "Raw Light"Scanners -- transferring "scratches" as "raw light", not "soft light"
  • Perverted Sales Pitch
    • re-direct long term "preservation and quality" issues
    • to over-rated "single-pass transfer equipment"


Many factors contribute collectively to the quality of your final video IMAGE™ from movie film.

Only ONE factor -- is "film transfer equipment" -- used to capture a film image.

When a company uses ONLY a telecine projector -- to produce a video image, they must over-sell the importance of this ONE FACTOR -- to "sell you the moon".



Do-it-all-in-one-pass (single-pass) film transfer equipment use

  1. Auto-White Balance that distorts ALL "near white" colors to "pure white" (like sky blue, noonday skys; and,
  2. Auto-Black Balance distorts dark colors (like navy blue, dark forest green) to unnatural BLACK.

The net effect of both AUTO-WHITE AND AUTO-BLACK BALANCE, is the dynamic range of ALL " natural, True-to-Life ™ colors " -- in between DISCTORTED WHITES and DISTORTED BLACKS -- are (you guessed it) DISTORTED!

Why does this happen?

Film images are created by shining artificial light (i.e., via a light bulb or LED) thru the movie film.

Both the light source and the movie film -- each have their own "color temperature". Over time the "color temperature" of movie film shifts -- as the dyes in the film deteriorate.

For example, MOST Super 8 film -- from 1960's -- NOW, in 2018 -- has a color shift towards a mangenta cast.

Between an artificial light source AND color shifts in the film, automatic white and automactic black balance only creates yet another layer of color distortion -- forcing some bright color to pure white and forcing some dark color to pure black.

Automatic "color correction" can NOT recreate "True to Life" colors -- from a distorted image; but, rather, automatic "color correction" only makes the resulting images WORSE -- by stripping out colors.

For Example: The yellow cast of sunlight on a sidewalk -- is lost forever; The light sky-blue of the sky - is lost forever; The rainbow colors of the "after glow" of sunset on the horizen -- are lost forever; and, all colors in the shadows become black -- again, colors -- lost forever.


Do-it-all-in-one-pass film (single-pass) transfer equipment does NOT correct Red and Green shifts. The dye in most legacy movie film has shifted colors with Reds and Greens toward the Blue spectrum.

2:3 PULL-DOWN JUDDER: Do-it-all-in-one-pass (single-pass) film transfer equipment use 2:3 PULL-DOWN shutter patterns that add extra frames to your SMALL FORMAT FILM which cause irregular, staggered-motion -- called JUDDER -- into the motion of your 8mm and 16 mm film images. This because these machines were originally designed for film shot at 24 frames per second. YOUR 8MM and 16MM film was shot at 16 FRAMES PER SECOND! YOUR Super 8 movie film was shot at 18 FRAMES PER SECOND! Some "8mm Film-Transfer Mills" actually charge extra for 2:3 pull-down -- taking the public for fools!

20 Frames Per Second Equipment: Do-it-all-in-one-pass (single-pass) film transfer equipment (not 2:3 pull-down) transfer both Super 8 movie film and Standard 8mm movie film at THE WRONG SPEED. 20 Frames Per Second Equipment introduces

  • Motion Distortion -- not in your original film
  • Speed Distortion -- not in your original film.

FILM GRAIN ARTIFACTS: Do-it-all-in-one-pass (single-pass) film transfer equipment "grossly over-sized" video formats -- like 4K and RED format -- is called "Hyper-Formating". Hyper-Formating pollutes your original, tiny 8mm images AND "large grain", legacy 16mm movie films. More on this in Dirty Little Secrets™ Page 2.
Why? Movie Film images work VERY DIFFERENT than Digital Video images. There is a very small window of compatibility between movie film and digital video -- ESPECIALLY WITH SMALL FORMAT MOVIE FILM!

RAW LIGHT POLLUTION: Movie film was designed to be view on a "silver screen". The silver screen "masked" and "diffused" all but the deepest scratches in the IMAGE™ -- as "neutral grey" Scratches. Most Do-it-all-in-one-pass "scanners" -- which are actually "old projectors with an enlarging lens and mirror" -- force "raw light" into the smallest scratches of your film. These "bright, raw light" Scratches are then recorded DIRECTLY FROM THE FILM -- into your video. Thus "Do-it-all-in-one-pass" equipment LIGHT POLLUTES SCRATCHES -- in a ways that film images were never intended to be viewed.

Dirty Film Transfer Secrets™ are revealed by only abusive "business models". We can only disclose our business model as a "leader in the industry", and let you contrast our "business model" within that of the "8mm Film-Transfer Mills".

"8mm Film-Transfer Mills™" want you distracted by the "decision making" process. Details -- which are distraction the uneducated -- from the important issues -- like the quality and preservation of your movie films. These details include:
  • Features of Do-it-all-in-one-pass (single-pass) film transfer equipment

  • "Service Levels" -- sold as colors -- like "Platinum, Aluminum, and Lead" -- which places the "level of quality" upon YOU -- not them.

  • Price Levels which "steer you" toward a service level "Transfer Mills" actually CAN provide -- at emotion provoking pricing.

  • Which Over-Sized Video format is right for you -- like 4K format.

  • "Archive" or "non-archive" type DVD discs -- despite the fact that The National Archives and the Library of Congress says, "DVDs should NOT be used for "archive purposes".

(Optional Reading)


For Example: With Small 8mm format movie film, an object, like a ball moving through the air, is exposed 16 or 18 frames per second. With large format film the same "ball" would be exposed 24 frame per second (more below).

That a big difference, which means, there are few frame exposures -- per second -- thus a greater TIME LAPSE between frame exposures. At 16 or 18 frames per second, the insertion of a duplicate frame -- here and there -- to synchronize the images to a video signal -- is very noticeable -- causing a "frozen frame" effect -- visible to the human eye.

With Large format movie film, the exposure rate is 24 frames per second. There are almost twice the number of frames of a moving object per second (16 compared to 24)-- thus a lessor TIME LAPSE between frames. At 24 frames per second, the insertion of an extra duplicated frame -- here and there -- is hardly noticeable -- and IS acceptable for synchronizing large format movie film to a video signal.

My Point: To "synchronize" large format movie film frames (24 frames per second) into video frames (30 frames per second), large format movie film equipment "insert 6 extra" video frames per second by capturing the movie film frames at irregularly timed intervals into the video stream of images.

The mechanical timing method of changing the rate of speed (timing) at which frames of film are "pulled into the projector" -- for capture -- at irregular intervals -- is called 2:3 Pull-down capture pattern.

  • 2:3 pull-down patterns synchronize INTERLACED video well with film, that was exposed at 24 frames per second -- where only 6 frames are inserted per second.
  • 2:3 pull-down patterns works very badly with film that was exposed at 18 frames per second -- where 12 frames (6 very noticeable judders) are inserted per second.
  • 2:3 pull-down patterns works very badly with film that was exposed at 16 frames per second -- where 14 frames (2 very very noticeable judders) are inserted per second.

Using 2:3 pull-down, judder is particularly visible and annoying -- when capturing film as "PROGRESSIVE SCAN" images.

Judder is obvious because the human eye actually can SEE

  • "frozen motion" of 1/8th (2/16ths) of a second for Standard 8mm film; and,
  • frozen motion at 1/9th (2/18ths) of a second for Super 8mm film
  • from duplicated video frames" --
  • which causes the motion
  • of the "moving images"
  • to pause --
  • and then skip --
  • every few
  • frames.

This creates a "staggered effect" which is called "judder". Adding "judder" -- to "hand-held motion" of your home movies -- can actually be so distracting that it gives some people "mild sea sickness" or "headaches and nausea". I am such a person.

Once judder is introduced to your film images,
judder becomes part of you images -- FOREVER!

This is a "damage" to your film images.

ALL equipment adapted FROM the "large format" Film-Transfer Industry -- uses some variation of 2:3 pull-down patterns and is profoundly ill-suited -- and wrongly re-adapted -- for" Small Format Film".

The alternative to 2:3 Pull=down capture, is to capture film -- exposed at 16 frames or 18 frames per second -- at the WRONG SPEED -- 20 frames per second -- which introduces both "speed" and "motion" distortion -- if left "as is". "Transfer Mills" leave it "as is", because they have your money.

We have literally "trashed" 2:3 pull-down equipment -- because of "judder" -- that most companies brag about using -- even charging you extra -- to do this to your home movies.

Small Format Film Transfer Scanners

Nice Film Transfer Secret ™:

Thanks to" State-of-the-art" Digital Algorithmic Interpolation (DAI),
for the first time in the history of" Small Format Film ",
you can now view VIDEO images of small format films as follows:

  1. At the same speed at which it was originally shot -- "True-to-Life™ Speed"
  2. With the same "fluid motion" of "True-to-Life™ Motion (For THE Times of YOUR Life™ )"
  3. With No more "judder";
  4. With No more "real-time distortion"
  5. caused by "telecine scanners" or "2:3 pull-down film scanners"!

Digital Algorithmic Interpolation (DAI), allows "post-production" options like

  1. "true slow-motion",
  2. "true fast-motion",
  3. "better incorporation of special effects",
  4. "digital frame stabilization", and
  5. less video generational loss --
  6. when transcoding to a diverse number of digital products -
  7. from a common master file.

This degree of "professional grade"post-production digital video manipulation has NEVER be available to" Small Format Film" clients -- before now. (Ditto for 16mm movie film - silent and sound)

Dirty Film Transfer Secret™ :

8mm Film-Transfer Mills™ want you to believe that old "telecine equipment" is" State-of-the-art".

Antique 16mm movie film and Standard 8mm movie film (shot at 16fps) should NEVER be film transferred with irregular "pull-down patterns", yet many 8mm Film-Transfer Mills™ sell "pull-down patterns" -- to" Synchronize" their transfer -- as part of their "premium" film transfer service.

Why? Because many "8mm Film-Transfer Mills™ " buy discarded "24fps EQUIPMENT" -- at pennies on the dollar -- and then modify it to accept "small format film ".

To throw you "off-track" with this equipment, they mount oversized 4K format cameras in these machines -- to "make you think" they offer something "new and better". The TRUTH IS, their technology is NOT new and their results create artifacts which are NOT in the original film !

Dirty Film Transfer Secret™ :

Since most 8mm Film-Transfer Mills™ -- mechanically inserting "extra frames" -- with "pull-down" methods -- into the video stream -- creating "judder" -- they also "profoundly limit" YOUR post-production options -- because of their "single-pass" same machines.

Dirty Film Transfer Secret™ :

Some 8mm Film-Transfer Mills™ give "consumers" a "choice of machines" -- to "hang themselves".
This "choice" removes liability for a "quality film transfer" FROM THE "8mm Film-Transfer Mills™ " -- and lays "quality of the film transfer" squarely -- and contractually -- upon the shoulders of their "consumers".

Dirty Film Transfer Secret™ :

These "8mm Film-Transfer Mills™ " claim -- in writing - results will be "better" than the "original film ", but
1) they do NOT back their claim -- in writing - with a "money back guarantee"; and
2) they do NOT offer -- in writing - "in home" evaluation of their work -- before YOU PAY.

NOTE: "Motion Judder" in the video IMAGE™ --
1) can never be removed,
2) it profoundly limits any "post-production" Special effect or speed adjustments,
3) gives some people head-aches and eye strain; and,
4) ONCE YOU NOTICE IT, it is forever a visual irritation.
5) People pay us to "re-do" their film projects -- just to "get rid of motion judder".

Dirty Film Transfer Secret™: Film-Transfer Mills™ will tell you "judder is normal" -- and accepted "industry wide". This is NOT true for "small format films". This IS true ONLY for films originally shot at 24fps or faster -- usually modern 16mm film and above.

News: "Film Scanning" technologies for small format movie film -- with 2:3:2:3 interlaced OR 2:2:4 "pull-down" technology -- WERE discarded "last century"!