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Re: Eclair ACL thinking about purchasing an acl.
Hi Rafael. Like anything else, the trick to being happy with a used piece of
equipment is to buy one in really good condition rather than a fixer-upper.
If you buy an ACL II in mint condition that is really quiet and works up to
specs, then you should be quite happy with the ACL. The ACL 1 had motor
problems which gave it a bad reputation. But the ACL 1.5 solved this with the
heavy duty motor, and the ACL II added a good handgrip, on-board battery
holder, and brighter viewfinder.
As for the ACL being "unable to be correctly converted to Super-16," this is
an area that strikes a special chord for me --- since I created new computer
engineered parts for this purpose, as you will know if you've been following
the list. I've never used an ACL converted by any of the fine Techs who
perform their own "in house" conversions so that I am not in a position to
tell you anything about those conversions --- although many on this list
certainly can --- but I will say at the very least that the HD-144 GOLD
conversion will "correctly" convert the ACL to full Super-16 Specs with brand
new parts. And because it also re-centers the mirror, if you have an ACL
motor with Shutter parking, the mirror will be correctly centered per Eclair
factory specs. Check out www.members.aol.com/Super16ACL.
I have been shooting a feature for 4 years with a S-16 ACL HD-144, and
previously used a S-16 ACL for added scenes in a feature shot with an Aaton
and blown up to 35mm by Du Art. There was no difference between the Aaton and
ACL footage. With a well-padded Barney (see the Barney page on my site), an
ACL at proper specs is totally quiet for sound work on close-up interiors.
The registration is beyond steady, it is like a rock. And when using a 200'
mag it is the smallest, lightest S-16 sound camera available outside of the
A-minima. In the last 2 years there has been an explosion of third party
accessories. And Les Bosher makes just about any lens adapter you can think
of, and will custom make any part that you can describe to him.
The only downside I see compared to the SR or Aaton is that the viewing
system is less bright. But you can't have it all, and the price can't be
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