Cassette Motion Pictures

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Cassette Motion Pictures


various systems for showing motion pictures on the screen of an ordinary television receiver by means of an attachment in which a cassette or disk with a recording of the motion-picture film is placed. Cassette films are promising for educational purposes, for individual rentals, and for the making of various motion pictures in the home (in any place where there is a television receiver).

Cassette motion-picture apparatus is arranged as follows: The image and sound are recorded on a disk or on a tape (motion-picture film, magnetic tape, and so on) that is wound in a special cassette. The cassette or disk is then placed in special apparatus (the attachment for the television receiver) that converts the image and sound into video signals and the associated audio signals, respectively. Several cassette systems are known at the present time (1973).

Super 8 system. The initial material in the Super 8 system is motion pictures made on Super 8 film or obtained by printing on it from 35-mm or 16-mm film. The film, with silent or sound movies, is wound in a standard cassette with a capacity of 20 to 120 m, which is then placed in the television receiver attachment (a television film scanner). The video signals produced by the attachment are fed to the input of the television receiver, and the viewer sees the images on its screen. This system also makes it possible to show the films by means of a motion-picture projector on an ordinary reflecting or transparent screen.

Electronic Video Recorder system (EVR). The essence of the EVR system is the production by means of an electron beam in a vacuum of a recording on special 8.75-mm motion picture film from positive images on 35-mm or 16-mm film, from a video recording on magnetic tape, or from a video camera. After the negative has been developed, a positive copy is obtained from the negative by a special contact printing method. The image of black-and-white film is arranged in two lines; the image of color film is in a single line. The sound is recorded on a magnetic track. A cassette loaded with black-and-white film is designed to be shown by means of the attachment for a period of 60 min (2 X 30 min); a cassette loaded with color film, 30 min. This system is intended only for the reproduction of professionally produced motion-picture films.

Selectavision. In the Selectavision system the original black-and-white or color image is recorded by means of a laser in the form of holograms on a special film. A nickel matrix that contains the hologram’s pattern is made for each hologram by the electrolytic method. About 1,000 copies may be produced on a thin, transparent 16-mm vinyl tape from one matrix film. The tape is then wound into a cassette, and its images are reproduced by means of a laser and transformed into a video signal in the television receiver attachment. The maximum showing time of the film (from one cassette) is 60 min. The system is intended only for the reproduction of professionally produced programs.

Video and audio recording and reproduction with magnetic tape. A system for video and audio recording and reproduction with magnetic tape consists of a portable video tape recorder, a small television camera, and a special unit for recording television programs, which makes possible simultaneous viewing of one program and recording of another. The image and sound are recorded on magnetic tape 19.05, 12.7, or 6.25 mm wide and can be used repeatedly (up to 30 times). To reproduce the video recording, the video tape recorder is connected to the input of any television receiver. Playback lasts 25–60 min. This system cannot only reproduce a purchased or rented television program but also record it under amateur (semiprofessional) conditions.

Video and audio recording and reproduction with a flexible plastic disk. In one system using a flexible plastic disk the television receiver is connected to special apparatus, similar to a phonograph, that uses a thin foil disk 210 or 300 mm in diameter with a mechanical recording (like the recording on a phonograph record) of the image and sound. The duration of a film showing is 5 or 12 min. The image and sound are reproduced from the video disk, which rotates at 1, 500 rpm, by an electromechanical method in the special phonograph when it is connected to any television receiver. The motion pictures may be reproduced from a disk as many as 1,000 times.

Another system, proposed by the Philips company, is based on a contactless optical reading method. The recording is done on a plate resembling a phonograph record with a succession of microscopic elongated depressions of identical depth and width but differing in length and spacing from one another. These differences encode the data on the sound and on the brightness and chromaticity of the image. A laser beam plays the role of the needle in the video phonograph. On one such video record, which is the same size as the ordinary long-playing phonograph record, there are no less than 45, 000 motion-picture frames. A showing of such a motion picture lasts 30–45 min. Such systems cannot be used to make image recordings independently.


Tel’nov, N. I. “Novye metody zapisi-vosproizvedeniia tsvetnykh televi-zionnykh izobrazhenii.” Tekhnika kino i televideniia, 1971, no. 5.
Sakmari, L. “Novoe v oblasti audiovizual’noi tekhniki.” Tekhnika kino i televideniia, 1971, no. 9.
Rot, V. “Novaia sistema mekhanicheskoi zapisi izobrazhenii na video-plastinkakh.” Tekhnika kino i televideniia, 1971, no. 9.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.