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deejay2,903 posts since 5 Jan 2003
Central (South) Oxford
In my first job in 1995 I worked on processing rushes for many of those shows. Dalziel and Pascoe, KavanaghQC, Bugs, Dangerfield. A lot of them were shot on 16mm (poss Super16) and framed for 14:9 I think in order to ‘future proof’ them. However they were i believe 100% edited in the 4:3 domain so they’d have had to have gone back to the original prints to reversion them properly.
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VMPhil9,777 posts since 31 Mar 2005
Granada North West Today
In my first job in 1995 I worked on processing rushes for many of those shows. Dalziel and Pascoe, KavanaghQC, Bugs, Dangerfield. A lot of them were shot on 16mm (poss Super16) and framed for 14:9 I think in order to ‘future proof’ them. However they were i believe 100% edited in the 4:3 domain so they’d have had to have gone back to the original prints to reversion them properly.

Thank you, just what I wanted to know Smile Looking up Super 16, it appears this has an aspect ratio of 1.66:1, so could be shown in 16:9 with some cropping of the top and bottom of the picture.

I found this article a good read on the subject: http://cinematechnic.com/super-16mm/super-16
VMPhil9,777 posts since 31 Mar 2005
Granada North West Today
A little bit more on this topic - I know that years ago the BBC decided that Super 16 wasn't suitable for HD delivery due to the amount of film grain that taxes digital encoders, but I was surprised to find this old article from 2013 when it appears Super 16 was accepted by the main broadcasters including the BBC. Of course, I'm not sure if any programmes are actually still shooting on film, but interesting nonetheless.

https://www.broadcastnow.co.uk/uk-broadcasters-accept-super-16mm-for-hd-channels/5062859.article
noggin14,442 posts since 26 Jun 2001
There have been HD versions made of 16mm/Super 16 shows though of course. Including the BBC doing a Blu-ray of Pride and Prejudice. Though obviously none of those shows were made with HD in mind.


Yes - lots of Super16-shot shows have since been remastered for HD. The 1980s Joan Hickson Miss Marples have been released on Blu-ray in the US (but not the UK - and UKTV are still showing the old SD PAL versions) I think Morse has also been remastered now too.
james-20015,073 posts since 13 Sep 2015
Central (East) East Midlands Today
There have been HD versions made of 16mm/Super 16 shows though of course. Including the BBC doing a Blu-ray of Pride and Prejudice. Though obviously none of those shows were made with HD in mind.


Yes - lots of Super16-shot shows have since been remastered for HD. The 1980s Joan Hickson Miss Marples have been released on Blu-ray in the US (but not the UK - and UKTV are still showing the old SD PAL versions) I think Morse has also been remastered now too.


Same with The Professionals and the Sweeney (well, the first season of the latter, they never seemed to get around to releasing any more), but ITV4 still show the old SD transfers. And not only that, but for the last few months has been cropping them to 16:9 which makes them look even worse than they did before (and The Professionals in particular have always been very poor transfers, even uncropped).
noggin14,442 posts since 26 Jun 2001
BBC News 24 launched in full 16:9 production in N9 (though it wasn't really known as that then) in November 1997


Speaking of that, I've always found it unusual that N6, 8 and 9 (there was no N7 because they were worried about it being confused with TC7 apparently) opened in reverse order. N9 opening, as you said, in November 1997, N8 roughly a year later when News 24 moved there, and N6 in May 1999 when the main news bulletins moved there.


I may be talking complete rubbish here, but I'm pretty sure I read/heard somewhere that the last year/months(?) of the virtual era news came from N6. Is that right? I've never really been able to confirm it again. I know that TC7 replaced TC2 for some news programmes in 1997 and that N9 opened in November 1997. Stage 6 (the News Centre) opened in 1998 and this section included both N6 and N8. News 24 moved into N8 and World moved into N9. At this point, N1 and N2 were no longer used for News bulletins. So, did the BBC1 bulletins move into N6 in 1998 or not until May 1999 and the rebrand of BBC News? Can anyone in the know confirm what actually happened?


Yes - the Blue 'Virtual' set (and technology required to support it) was installed in N6, and the programmes moved from N2 to N6 without a major visual rebrand. The Lambie Nairn Ivory and Red relaunch came some months later.
Last edited by noggin on 14 September 2019 12:45am
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noggin14,442 posts since 26 Jun 2001

Speaking of that, I've always found it unusual that N6, 8 and 9 (there was no N7 because they were worried about it being confused with TC7 apparently) opened in reverse order. N9 opening, as you said, in November 1997, N8 roughly a year later when News 24 moved there, and N6 in May 1999 when the main news bulletins moved there.


I may be talking complete rubbish here, but I'm pretty sure I read/heard somewhere that the last year/months(?) of the virtual era news came from N6. Is that right? I've never really been able to confirm it again. I know that TC7 replaced TC2 for some news programmes in 1997 and that N9 opened in November 1997. Stage 6 (the News Centre) opened in 1998 and this section included both N6 and N8. News 24 moved into N8 and World moved into N9. At this point, N1 and N2 were no longer used for News bulletins. So, did the BBC1 bulletins move into N6 in 1998 or not until May 1999 and the rebrand of BBC News? Can anyone in the know confirm what actually happened?


Wouldn't that have meant they had to completely rip out the blue set and build the new cream one in the space of 13 hours? Last virtual bulletin ended just after 10pm on 9 May 99 and first appearance of the new set was 11am next morning.


I can't remember how the switch from the legacy blue look to the newer beige and red look was handled, but the blue look was the first one broadcast from N6 I'm sure. (N6 had upstream keyers on every camera channel, just as N1 and N2 had)
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VMPhil9,777 posts since 31 Mar 2005
Granada North West Today
There have been HD versions made of 16mm/Super 16 shows though of course. Including the BBC doing a Blu-ray of Pride and Prejudice. Though obviously none of those shows were made with HD in mind.

Well, yes, that’s what we’ve been discussing earlier in the thread Smile Correct me if I’m wrong but the Broadcast article seems to be about new programmes being made with Super 16 film, especially with talk about the commissioning process.
VMPhil9,777 posts since 31 Mar 2005
Granada North West Today
I think there have been some Super 16 HD shows, on ITV at least, if not the BBC.

There's been 2-perf 35mm ones as well. I saw some outtakes from one of the Royle Family specials which shows it was filmed that way.

That was ‘The New Sofa’ outtakes from 2008, not what I would call recent.


Reminds me though that the 2009 special ‘The Golden Eggcup’ had to be partially reshot due to problems with the film: https://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/100k-bill-for-royle-family-filming-936935
noggin14,442 posts since 26 Jun 2001
I think there have been some Super 16 HD shows, on ITV at least, if not the BBC.

There's been 2-perf 35mm ones as well. I saw some outtakes from one of the Royle Family specials which shows it was filmed that way.


I think one of the early BBC HD film productions (The 39 Steps?) was 3-perf 35mm. (The BBC, at the time, were suggesting that 3-perf 35mm may be a better choice with a similar cost, instead of Super 16 ISTR)

It is kind of a moot point now - as most stuff is shot on Arri Alexa or similar digital movie cameras (Red, Venice, F65 etc.)