Every day there are new advancements and ideas presented to us in the world of filmmaking. Be that from in narrative or non-narrative productions, filmmakers and creatives alike are always on the hunt for something fresh to revitalize their vision. We recently came across the Fragment 8 Retro Camera, a new crowdfunded camera from the folks over at Hong Kong-based company Lofty Factory LTD. Focusing on the nostalgia of the Super 8 camera experience, the Fragment 8 aims to recapture the authenticity of that aesthetic in a digital world, whilst enabling the user to capture GIF format images in real-time.
Here is what Lofty Factory LTD have to say about the camera:
“Introduced in 1965, Super 8 cameras launched a home movie revolution by giving regular people the ability to instantly capture a moment of their lives using a small, affordable hand-held film camera. The nostalgic feel of Super 8 movies is instantly recognizable in their characteristic faded color tone, graininess, slightly jerky motion and the short lengths (typically 3 minutes max per Super 8 film cartridge) which made them feel so spontaneous. A new Kickstarter project called the “Fragment 8 Retro Camera” has launched for a new camera that not only duplicates the visual look of Super 8 movies – in MP4 or GIF output so they can be shared online in seconds – but faithfully recreates the actual act of using a Super 8 camera itself, complete with clacking shutter sound.
Produced in Hong Kong by the Lofty Factory, Ltd., the “Fragment 8” camera uses modern digital technology to faithfully recreate the authentic look of Super 8 home movies, but with the convenience of USB output in either MP4 or GIF formats at 720p resolution. The Fragment 8 can shoot in either 9 frames per second or 24 and options include three different add-on lenses – Kaleidoscope Six, Star Filter and Radial Filter – for specialized effects – as well as a standard 17mm lens mount.
The camera is faithfully made with a simple built-in viewfinder and focus-free operation. The artfully crafted curves are accented with optional genuine leather and there’s a standard tripod mount on the bottom. The camera weighs only 250 grams – easy to carry anywhere, all day.”
What intrigued us at JumpCut Online and JumpCut Studios is the ability to use various lens attachments in tandem with the GIF orientated format. It is always fun to experiment with new ways to create and the Fragment 8 seems to be another tool in the bag of filmmakers to aid with that.
“The Fragment 8 camera was developed by Hong Kong software artist Manhin, who completed the ID & MD design and software development, in cooperation with the graphic and film director Chun Yin.
“There’s nothing quite as uniquely beautiful as a Super 8 movie,” said Fragment 8 camera co-creator Manhin.
“And the short Super 8 format makes perfect sense with today’s popularity of GIF loops and TikTok videos. Inspired by natural aesthetics, your story can be shared with friends at a new level with romantic and retro effects. You don’t have to fiddle around with aperture, IOS, or white balance. All you need to do is experience the gorgeous vintage feel in your own videos.”
As we mentioned before, this camera is crowdfunded and has already exceeded its $20,000 goal vastly with over $60,000 in pledged funding. Three days remain on the campaign, which the camera expected to ship out in May of this year.
Would this be something you’d pick up in the future? You can find the full technical specs below.
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• 1/3 inch CCD sensor
• 720p HD resolution
• Built-in viewfinder
• 9 or 24 frames per second
• MP4(H.264) or GIF output
• F/2.5 with a 4-Element Lens
• 17mm mount compatible
• Electronic shutter
• Li-ion battery pack
• Aluminium, metallic printed ABS and Leather
• 110 W x 90 H x 40 D mm (body) • 250g (body)