F. and S. Marriott 140 Newbegin, Hornsea, England, HU18 1PB

May 2010. Stephanie died peacefully on 19th April after a short stay in hospital. She had been suffering from acute cervical cancer. Fred will continue to run the business to the best of his ability. The web site is slowly getting under control again as he tries to take over some of Stephanie's responsibilities, and learns some of the mysteries of Dreamweaver.

Pieces An on-line look at cameras etc. by Stephanie Marriott


Beaulieu 2008S

Beaulieu 4008

Beaulieu 5008S

Beaulieu 3008

Beaulieu 1008XL

Beaulieu 5008MS

Beaulieu 6008S

Beaulieu 6008PRO

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January 2000

Beaulieu Super-8 cine cameras are very popular with amateur film-makers. The Beaulieu range includes the only Super-8 cameras to have a C-mount allowing the cameras to accept a wide range of cine lenses more usually seen on 16 mm. cine cameras. The cameras typically have an Angenieux lens which will give excellent performance and the camera specifications are good.

So why do I dislike them so much?

The answer is simple - batteries. The best of the range are the French-made models with interchangeable lenses, but these require special rechargeable batteries which are difficult to replace and which can be very costly. There is no alternative; standard batteries will not fit. Fully charged, the batteries are supposed to be good for about 10 films at 18 f.p.s. but this performance is seldom achieved.

I understand that there are both camera repair facilities and replacement battery suppliers for Beaulieu cameras but I do not know where they are to be found and, as I have not used any of these services personally, I cannot make any recommendations.

Even though I dislike Beaulieu cameras, I have to admit that many film-makers do use these cameras and are very happy with their choice.

The Beaulieu cameras first appear in the UK soon after the introduction of Super-8. The 2008S is not a sound camera., despite the 'S' designation. Like all of the Beaulieu cameras, it has t.t.l. metering and a reflex viewfinder. It offers speeds from 2 to 50 f.p.s. plus single frame using a cable release fitted to the single frame socket. Several lenses were offered and the camera has a variable shutter; the Angenieux 8 mm. to 64 mm. f/1.9 offers fully automatic exosure as well; in 1967 the camera with this lens cost over £320. Alternative lenses include an Angenieux with semi-automatic exposure and two f/1.8 Schneider Variogon lenses.

In about 1970 the Beaulieu 2008 was superseded by the 4008ZM. The specification is very similar to that of the 2008; the speed range is extended to 70 f.p.s. and the camera has a power zoom and macro focussing device. With the Angenieux 8 mm. to 64 mm. f/1.9 lens, the 4008ZM cost £475 in 1970.

The 4008ZM was soon superseded by a Mark II version with provision for sync. pulse. In 1971, this model cost almost £500. Alternative lenses for this camera were introduced; the Schneider 6 mm. to 66 mm. f/1.8 for example, and the Angenieux 6 mm. to 80 mm. f/1.2.

The 5008S is a sound camera; it has a similar specification to the 4008ZM but has 8, 18, 24 and 45 f.p.s. Single frame requires a special accessory. In 1976 it cost over £800 with the Schnieder lens and over £900 with the Angenieux lens.

The 3008MS is another sound camera. It has a Schneider 8 mm. to 50 mm. f/1.4 zoom lens, and offers 12, 18, 24 and 36 f.p.s. Single frame requires a special accessory. Unlike the 5008S, the 3008 has a single speed power zoom. In 1977, it cost almost £700.

The first Japanese-made Beaulieu to appear in the UK was the 1008XL, a sound camera with a Beaulieu 7 mm. to 45 mm. f/1.2 lens with two-speed power zoom. It gives 9, 18, 24 and 36 f.p.s and single frame. Unlike the French-made cameras, the 1008XL is powered by six AA batteries housed in the grip. It has automatic exposure with manual override (in which case an LED in the viewfinder illuminates), and fade for both picture and sound. In 1979 it cost about £350.

Compare the price of the 1008XL with the £900 required to buy the 5008MS, a silent camera with synchronisation facilities. The 5008MS has a 6 mm. to 70 mm. f/1.4 variable speed power zoom and offers 8, 18, 24 and 45 f.p.s. as well as single frame.

The 6008S sound camera first appeared in the UK in 1980, when it cost about £950. It has a 6 mm. to 70 mm. f/1.4 lens focussing down to 1 cm. using the macro facility. It has 200 ft. film capacity, time-lapse facilities (1 f.p.s., 1 frame every 10 seconds and 1 frame every 30 seconds), variable shutter and electric reverse wind (up to 90 frames in the standard Super-8 cartridge, the whole film if using 200 ft. reels). Filming speeds are 4, 9, 18, 24, 36 and 56 f.p.s. The camera will do fades and lap dissolves, fading sound and picture.

A silent version, the 6008PRO, appeared the following year with a very similar specification to the 6008S. Among the changes, the 6008PRO has an extended range of filming speeds, with the 56 f.p.s. being replaced by 80 f.p.s. and a quartz oscillator to control the filming speed. This camera cost about £775.

This is not an exhaustive list of all Beaulieu cine cameras; there were other Japanese-made cameras for example, as well as variations on the main models which I have not tried to list for the sake of clarity.

Note: I like to give price information in both sterling and American dollars. However, this information is not always available to me, in which case I use whichever I can get. I do not convert from one currency to the other; market conditions vary and camera prices were often very different in the U.S.A. and Britain, so conversion would not give an accurate picture.

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