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Bolex 8mm Vintage Movie Cameras

What You Need to Know About Bolex 8mm Movie Cameras

Historically, 8mm movie cameras have been a common format for recording home videos, whether youre filming your children playing in the backyard or guests gathered at a holiday celebration. Bolex offers several different camera models for creating your own 8mm films.

What is an 8mm film movie camera?

This type of camera takes 8mm film and records videos on a frame-by-frame basis. It quickly takes photographs on the film, with each image creating one frame. A fascinating trick of the human mind causes people to view it as a video when the film is played back on a movie projector. Bolex 8mm vintage movie cameras are available with features like spring over-wind protection, end of film signal, and an adjustable frames per second of 8-64.

How do you load this type of camera?

The loading process may vary slightly from camera to camera, but typically the steps are as follows:

  • Step 1: Wind the camera up by turning the wind-up spring motor knob or key. You only need to turn it a few times to sufficiently wind it. At least three times is a good rule of thumb.
  • Step 2: Open the film compartment. You will see two spools - one is the supply spool and the other is the take-up spool. You will be inserting the 8mm film into the supply spool since film advances onto the take-up spool.
  • Step 3: Put the film on the supply spool and make sure that the emulsion side will be facing the lens once you feed it to the film gate.
  • Step 4: Open the film gate and feed the film into it.
  • Step 5: Once it has moved through the gate, feed the end of the film into the notch on the take-up spool.
  • Step 6: Close the compartment to begin recording.
What are common features of the 8mm movie camera?

The precise features of this type of camera vary among models. Common features youll find include:

  • Aperture dial: When you adjust the aperture dial, it determines how much light enters the camera. Some devices have a light sensor that automatically opens and closes the aperture depending on how much light there is.
  • Speed dial: When you turn the speed dial, it adjusts the speed of your recording.
  • Wind-up spring motor: Youll usually see a key or lever on the side of the device that you can turn to wind up the motor.
  • Shutter speed switch: Move the shutter speed switch to set the shutter speed.
  • Frames per second dial: Similar to the aperture dial and speed dial, turn the frames per second dial to set how many frames per second the camera records. Many people like to record at 16 frames per second on this type of camera.
Do you need to load the camera in the dark?

A common question that 8mm camera owners have is whether or not they need to load it in the dark. While this isnt necessary, the lighting of the room should still be subdued. Dont load it in a room with bright lights. If youre outside, then load the camera in a shady area such as under a tree.

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