The Super 16mm format was designed to provide the greatest possible picture area on a 16mm original for enlargement onto 35mm for wide screen theatrical presentations. It achieves a wide-screen format on single-perforated
16mm camera film by extending the picture area of the imperforated area of the camera original. The Super 16mm aperture produces an original image with an aspect ratio of 1.66:1. The blowup from this image can be cropped slightly in projection to yield the 1.85:1 aspect ratio. The increase in the useful picture area of a Super 16mm frame results in a substantial increase in the image quality obtainable in a 35mm wide-screen blowup.
To optimize image quality when shooting Super 16mm color negative for blowup to 35mm, follow the same recommended exposure practices as when shooting regular 16mm color negative for blowup to 35mm.
Super 16mm is a complete system requiring appropriately modified laboratory, editing and screening facilities as well as a modified camera. Principal camera modifications are: enlarging the aperture, remarking the viewfinder and re-centering the lens mounts. It may be necessary to modify the pressure plate and other parts of the film transport mechanism in both the camera and magazine to prevent scratching in the extended area of the frame. Lenses should be carefully chosen to be sure that they provide a wide enough coverage to accommodate the wider frame. Many wide-angle 16mm lenses cause vignetting in the Super 16mm frame. Cameras are available which have been specifically designed for adaptability to Super 16mm and some conventional 16mm cameras can also be modified for Super 16mm.
Super 16mm cameras and magazines should be thoroughly tested before use in production. Editing and projection equipment must be modified to display the entire Super 16mm frame. Super 16mm film sent to the laboratory should be clearly identified so it can be handled properly. When a picture shot in Super 16mm has a television or 16mm release, the Super 16mm image must be converted to an image with a 1.33:1 aspect ratio by sacrificing part of the width of the frame. This is achieved by re-centering the frame via an optical printer so that an equal amount is cropped on each side of the frame.
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