Beaulieu 4008 ZM 2
Beaulieu 4008 ZM II
Lenses (interchangeable): Schneider Kreuznach Optivaron 1,8/6-66 mm (Macro), Angenieux 1,9/8-64 mm (non-Macro) or other via C-mount.
Auto/Manual Zoom with Variable Speed (Auto zoom depending on lens)
Ground Glass Focussing
Macro focussing (depending on lens)
Manual/Auto Exposure (Auto exposure depending on lens)
Frame rates: 2 - 70 fps (step-less with markings at 2,4,8,18,24 or 25,36,50,70 fps) + single frame
Shutter degree: Variable.
Fades via variable shutter
Lap dissolve (rewind is manual with accessory rewind knob)
Remote control socket (triggers main power only), cable release socket (starts exposure only when main power is on)
Power supply: proprietary accumulator or external supply
Weight: 900 g
The later version of the model has a declutch button above the frame counter for lap dissolves and superimpositions.
There are rare models with black body and comes with 80fps and an Angenieux f1.2 6-80mm lens. From Bjorn Andersson of Beaulieu Sweden, "This Black 4008ZMII with Angenieux 1,2/6-80 was only produced in a very limited number in 1975, and we called it "S8 10 years jubilee model". Serial no 931500-933000."
Prices on eBay:
- eBay USA
- US$ 330 in 08/1999
- US$ 480 in 08/1999
- US$ 400 in 08/1999
- eBay Germany:
- EUR 116,00 in 10/2005 (+ 7EUR shipping) - was sold as "untested" and needed a new battery-pack
- EUR 112,00 in 01/2006 (+ ??EUR shipping) - for a camera without recharging unit
- EUR 123,00 in 06/2006 (+ EUR 8,00 shipping) - camera needed a new battery-pack
- EUR 251,00 in 06/2006 (+ EUR 9,50 shipping) - camera with bag, some filters, ... - needed a new battery-pack
- EUR 52,90 in 11/2006 (+ EUR 6,90 shipping) - camera with Optivaron 1,8/6-66, bag and a tripod
- EUR 97,00 in 11/2006 (+ EUR 9,00 shipping) - camera with Angenieux 1,9/8-64 - needed a new battery-pack
- EUR 96,00 in 01/2007 (+ EUR 7,00 shipping) - camera with Optivaron 1,8/6-66 - needed a new battery-pack
- EUR 51,50 in 04/2007 (+ EUR 7,00 shipping) - camera with Angenieux 1,9/8-64 - needed a new battery-pack (hence the camera was sold as "untested, most likely not working")
- EUR 100,99 in 04/2007 (+ EUR 7,50 shipping) - camera with Angenieux 1,9/8-64
- EUR 101,00 in 06/2007 (+ EUR 8,00 shipping) - "untested" camera with Angenieux 1,9/8-64 and without working batteries
- EUR 104,01 in 09/2007 (+ EUR 7,00 shipping) - sold as "not working"
- EUR 153,00 in 04/2012 (+ EUR 7,00 shipping) - sold as "probably not working", but with some extra lenses, a tripod, ...
- EUR 116,00 in 04/2012 (+ EUR 7,00 shipping) - sold as "working, but batteries nearly dead"
- EUR 51,00 in 06/2013 (+ EUR 6,50 shipping) - camera with Optivaron 1,8/6-66, was sold as "untested" and without battery-charger
Manual can be downloaded at:
|Exposure Time||1/7 s||1/15 s||1/30 s||1/65 s||1/86 s (s. below)||1/87 s||1/130 s||1/175 s||1/250 s|
- Double these values again, IF you use the shutter in the Half-Closed position.
- DO NOT FORGET: Never use the camera without film at more than 24frames per second or it could damage the camera (motor and speed governor and even the delicate shutter system).
Q: Is the camera's exposure time at 24fps 1/86 or 1/80 s?
- 1/86 makes sense when using the values stated in the manual for 18fps, 25fps and 36 fps!
- So maybe 1/80 s is the correct value for other versions of the 4008?
No other Super 8 raises stronger passions among the faithful. You either love it or you love to hate it. For a great many Super 8 shooters a ZM2 stocked with a Schneider Kreuznach Optivaron 6-6mm macro zoom represents nothing less than the Holy Grail of Super 8 cameras. Some consider the C-mount Beaulieus & the Leica M-mount Leicina Special the only truly professional Super 8 cameras because of their lens interchangeability. You hear a lot of banter about how the sharpest Super 8 footage obtainable comes from shooting with pro quality Super 8 primes lenses such as the Cinegon 10mm, the Switar wide, the Angenieux 5.9mm, or the Kinoptik wide. Curious about shooting with a quality prime but wary of the prohibitive going prices for quality European glass, I got my hands on a much cheaper but reportedly very sharp Pentax 6mm prime. The Pentax is a fast f 1.2, manual zoom, manual iris, C-mount TV lens manufactured in China from quality Japanese optical components. eBay price was $45, including shipping. I shot some E100D with it alongside the 6-66mm Optivaron. Although faster (brighter), the modern Pentax did not seem any sharper than the vintage Optivaron zoom. May very well be that that the Pentax prime is sharper but since it exhibits so little contrast the more contrasty Optivaron seems sharper than it really is? In any event, who cares really? Obsessing about optimal sharpness and resolution on a Super 8 is a silly. Seems to me that spending thousands of dollars on interchangeable lens Super 8 cameras and expensive European prime lenses in order to extract near 16mm quality from the Super 8 format is asinine and defeats the purpose of the format. You want 16mm quality? Shoot with a 16mm camera. My Canon Scoopic cost me under $500 and the quick and dirty DIY telecine results I get from it blows away any Rank Cintel Pro Super 8 transfers I’ve ever seen. I mean it’s like comparing VHS to HD! But getting back to the ZM2, I can certainly vouch for the quality of the Optivaron being on the same league as some of the best zooms I’ve ever shot with, including the 16mm Angenieux 12-120mm. The unique Optivaron capability of going into macro mode at any focal length from 6-66mm is definitely a big creative plus. The Flash Gordon ray gun styling is certainly distinctive and unique. But what the heck were the French thinking when they designed the sawed-off, two-finger, medieval hand grip? Obviously not comfort. Unless you can get your hands on the rarer than hen’s teeth grip extension not a good camera for hand held shooting. Don’t buy this camera if you like easy. The 4008 ZM2 uses tricky ground glass focusing, which takes some considerable getting used to. Battery system is proprietary and non-standard, which means you will have to fork over another two hundred bucks for a re-cell and a new charger. And don’t even dream of buying this camera if you like low-maintenance. The lucky few who end up with a reliable ZM2 will tell you routine yearly maintenance is all you need. Unfortunately, I wasn’t among the lucky few. My cherry ZM2 turned out to be a lemon which means it has spent more time in the shop than it has anywhere else - Geoval.
If you are just interested in this camera for collecting and display purposes, it is a great one to own. The unique craftsmanship is beautiful, the typical lenses you can find with them (Angenieux 8-64, Schneider 6-66, Angenieux 6-80) are very very good lenses and can be repurposed to use with other cameras that have the necessary crop factor. It would make for a very good talking piece. If you are interested in this camera to use, it's important to understand that it can potentially cost you 2-3x the price of the next best super8 camera to get it in working condition. Here I will list the expenses you are likely to incur while being the operator of one such camera. (These apply also to the 2008, 3008, 5008 and other 4008 models):
- Original Price: $50-350 on Ebay for one with a lens. Price varies depending on condition and optional accessories like rewinder, macro slide holder, handgrip extension, bag, lens adapter, original battery and battery charger.
- Maintenance: Right off the bat you will need to get it serviced. A professional job will cost you ~$350, that may not include lens collimation. If collimation is extra, you could be paying another $50-150. If the lens itself needs work it could cost you an additional $150 unless that's included with the service. There's no point in buying one of these and not getting it serviced, your results won't be as good as they could be.
- Battery solution: If you have a charger and a battery, you can get the original battery re-celled, otherwise you will need to buy a dummy, cable, charger and external battery, altogether costing you $150-200 no matter if you re-cell, buy the materials and make the battery yourself or have a pro do it.
So at the most you will be paying ~$1000 for a refurbished one of these cameras, buying an already refurbished one will cost you about the same. For a comparison, you could buy a Bolex 16 Reflex and get it refurbished / adapted to Super16 for $500-600, and a Scoopic MS can cost you $800-$1000 to buy one, get it refurbished and converted to Ultra16. A Bauer A512, Nizo Professional, Canon 1014 XL-S, Nikon R-10, Zeiss GS8, and Fujica ZC 1000 will cost $400-500 to buy one and get it refurbished. Only a Leicina Special can cost you about the same as a Beaulieu to get it refurbished. Note that some Beaulieus are unreliable and will require more service as time goes on; all the cameras mentioned above are more reliable. You should consider all these cost factors and whether it's worth more to you to go 16mm at the point of spending that much money. On the other hand, you are paying $1k for potentially the only Super8 camera you will ever need, and you are paying $1k for quality so good that you can do things like mix Super8 mos day exteriors with 16mm sync sound close-ups and save some money on film.