April 09, 2013

Preserving vintage 28mm film with a digital telecine machine

 Anderson Li and Andrew Bornstein were tasked with a project to help restore vintage 28mm film strips that were created in the early 20th century. As projectors for this type of media are unavailable, and if they were - repeated playback would be damaging to the film ... it would require the use of a telecine machine to help transfer the films to digital video. A telecine is a device that displays film in a way that it can be recorded by a digital camera, and the creators made their own version which is controlled by an Arduino. It automatically feeds the film, frame-by-frame, for capture by a digital camera. Software is then used to compose a digital video based on the captured frames.

The device is quite compact and clever, taking care of tension and spooling of the film - and surely cheaper than paying a commercial film to video service. For more information and the Arduino sketch, visit the project page. And for more, we're on twitter and Google+, so follow us for news and product updates as well.

If you're new to Arduino, the first step is a solid board for your projects - our Freetronics Eleven - the Arduino-Uno compatible with low-profile USB socket, onboard prototyping space and easy to view LEDs:

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