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Arriflex ARRI 35mm Movie Cameras

When it comes to movie cameras, for decades, the only shooting format available was film. The digital revolution has changed that, and manufacturers such as ARRI now also produce digital movie cameras. ARRI's Arriflex 35mm movie cameras line has been around since 1937 and has been used by motion picture studios for decades.

What are the two types of ARRI 35mm film cameras?

The requirement of recorded sound, or a lack of that need, is the main determinant when choosing which 35mm film camera to use. The principal footage generally calls for recorded sound to accompany it, but that might not be necessary for supplemental footage. ARRI movie cameras are one of these two types:

  • MOS: A film camera is considered to be a MOS camera if it can't hold a constant speed and if it makes so much noise that it can't record usable sound. It's generally employed shooting footage where adding other sounds, dialogue, or music in post-production is planned.
  • Sync: Also known as silent film cameras, sync-sound cameras maintain a constant speed and don't make enough noise to interfere with whatever dialogue or sounds are being recorded.
How many 35mm MOS models are in the Arriflex line?

After ARRI's launch of the original Arriflex 35 model in 1937, the company constantly introduced updated cameras based on its design. That model was the first film camera to use reflex mirror technology, which lets the operator focus the image by eye through the viewfinder just as is done with SLR cameras when taking still photos. The 35mm was followed by these models:

  • 35-II, 35-IIA, 35-IIB, 35IIC
  • 35-IIIC
  • 435, 435ES, 435 Advanced and 435 Extreme
  • 235
How many 35mm sync models are in the Arriflex line?

The Arriflex product line's sync cameras include the following:

  • BL-1, BL-3, BL-4, and BL-4s
  • 535 and 535B
Can you lessen the sound these 35mm film cameras make?

It's possible to minimize the motor noise a MOS camera produces by blimping it, which is done by adding a soundproof housing to prevent the noise from being recorded. Some models of sync cameras need blimping around the lens to stop movement noise from being transmitted out the lens mount.

How do you compare one ARRI model to another?

When choosing an ARRI film camera, it's important to focus on the specific project for which it's going to be used and view the camera specifications from that point. For example, will you be needing a larger, steadier film camera, and what will be the trade-off for the extra weight? Make sure to consider:

  • The weight of the camera, both with an empty and with a full magazine.
  • The viewfinder.
  • The lens mount.
  • The aperture size.
  • The shutter design and adjustment, its location and the angles available.
  • The type of motor.
  • The movement type.
  • The frame rate.