This guy strapped a Super 8 movie camera to an FPV drone

May 11, 2023

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

This guy strapped a Super 8 movie camera to an FPV drone

May 11, 2023

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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There are times when YouTube presents us with something so insane and cool that we not only go, “Wow!” but also, “How has it taken this long for somebody to do this?”. This is one such video. The creation of Australian film photographer Jason De Freitas – whom we’ve featured here on DIYP before – this is an FPV drone with a Super 8 film camera strapped to the top of it.

Making the two things work together involved a little CAD and 3D printing to create a mount and a servo to trigger the record button. It also meant using actual movie film, developing and scanning it – which is not cheap. But the results are so worth it.

Jason doesn’t go into much detail on how the entire system is built, and the plans don’t appear to be available to download anywhere. This isn’t much of a surprise, as the chances of getting hold of the exact same camera and the exact same drone setup are pretty slim. But the video shows the principles and the tasks that need to be done in order for you to have a go at doing this yourself. And if you can’t figure it out from the clues in the video, it’s probably not a project you should be tackling.

Despite the amazing results shown in the video, Jason says that this is not a practical device by any means. It’s simply a fun passion project. He had to make a few compromises and sacrifices to work. For example, the extra weight added means that the battery has a flight time of only four minutes. And that’s with very gentle flying. He says the camera he used is also very unreliable, and the Kodak Ektachrome film he chose isn’t exactly straightforward to shoot when you aren’t easily able to adjust the exposure.

In the future, he hopes to fly with a much larger drone and a more reliable camera to take this project further. And I can’t wait to see the results when that happens!

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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One response to “This guy strapped a Super 8 movie camera to an FPV drone”

  1. BrandyBarrett Avatar
    BrandyBarrett

    Very cool. Integration of old technology)