Moviecam Compact

Moviecam Compact is a movie camera product line created by Moviecam in 1990.[1] It was developed by Fritz Gabriel Bauer as an improvement on his Moviecam SuperAmerica.

Moviecam Compact
Variant modelsCompact
Compact MK2
Introduced1990 (Compact)
2004 (Compact MK2)
Gauge35 mm
Weight6.3kg/13lbs without magazine
MovementCompensating link movement with dual registration pins and dual pulldown claws, 3 or 4-perf pulldown, interchangeable aperture plates; pitch adjustment.
SpeedBoth models 1–50 frames per second (forward) and 12–32 frames per second (reverse – Moviespeed box needed). Both models crystal accurate to 0.001 frame/s.
Aperture sizefull range available
Aperture plateremovable
MotorDC with quartz crystal control
Operating noise levelBoth models <20 dBA
Indicatorsspeed, run, counter (ft or m), shutter angle, time code (user bit and sensitivity level), voltage, incorrect movement, asynchronous speed, low battery, film end, heater, film jam, loose magazine
Lens mountArri PL (Super 35 compatible)
Shutterelectronic reflex mirror; Can adjusted between 45° and 180° while in standby; manual model stops at 45°, 90°, 120°, 144°, 172°, 180°
Viewfinder6.1x magnification; viewfinder is rotatable 360° while maintaining an erect image; 12" viewfinder with 2.4 x magnification zoom is available; heated eyepiece.
Video assistFlicker-reduced color or black-and-white CCD camera; on-board 1" monitor available.
Ground glassinterchangeable
Magazines500' (150m) and 1000' (300m) displacement style; all have built-in heaters and torque motors; mechanical and electronic footage counters. 400' (120m) lightweight Steadicam magazines with vertical displacement.
Magazine loadingactive displacement mags; takes up emulsion in (9P design).
Film coresstandard cores


Its potential applications are widespread, and it is regularly used on music videos, for commercials, in second unit work on features, for special effects shooting, and for motion control. It became the most popular 35 mm movie camera in general use because of its intuitive design, wide range of applications, high reliability and retail availability. In recognition of the Compact system's achievements, AMPAS awarded Moviecam a Scientific and Engineering Academy Award in 1993.[citation needed]

In 2004, Moviecam released the Compact MK2, with an updated drive system to improve longevity.[2]

The Compact was used to film the horror movies Vampire in Brooklyn and Scream, directed by Wes Craven. The Compact MK2 was used to shoot The Ward, photographed by Yaron Orbach and directed by John Carpenter.[2]

The Arricam systems, co-developed by Arri and Bauer, were inspired by the Compact[1] and Arriflex 535 series in their design and mechanisms.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Broughall, Nick (26 August 2015). "The high-tech cameras that make the movies you love". TechRadar. Archived from the original on 6 March 2023. Retrieved 11 March 2023. The 35mm MovieCam Compact, originally launched back in 1990, was one of three cameras made by MovieCam that saw significant success, before the company was bought by ARRI. These days, many of the MovieCam Compact's truly innovative developments can be seen integrated into ARRI's camera lineup.
  2. ^ a b "The Ward" (PDF) (in Italian). Torino Film Festival. Archived (PDF) from the original on 28 October 2021. Retrieved 11 March 2023. Girando con due macchine da presa 35mm, due MovieCam Compact MK2 che utilizzano il sistema a 3 perforazioni per avere una durata più lung

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