WorkPrinter-XP Set Up

You will need a Mac or PC with three internal drives. One drive should be your system drive and the other two should be set up in a Raid-0 drive array. Failure to use an internal Raid-0 array can result in a loss of sync on the captured file.

For the Mac, you will need the CaptureMate software. For the PC, you will need CineCap software.

Both are available only to MovieStuff customers that have received their WorkPrinter units shipped directly from MovieStuff. Please email us with the name and email address that was on the order form used to purchase the WorkPrinter unit and we will email you the private purchase link for either the CineCap or CaptureMate software. To maintain your warranty and customer support, we ask that you please do not publically post this purchase link on the web. Thanks.


If your unit has the new LED light source with toggle switches for lamp, motor and synch on the rear plastic cover in a vertical orientation, then your unit does not require a transformer of any kind to run on 220 volt, 50 cycles. You may plug your unit into the mains directly with nothing more than a plug adaptor.

If your unit has the original tungsten light bulb with lamp and motor push buttons on the center chassis, then you will need a transformer that supplies no more than 108VAC at about 250 watts. Do NOT trust the lable on the transformer that says "220>110" because the incoming power is always higher than 220VAC. You must measure the output voltage of your selected transformer with a meter before plugging in your telecine unit. Failure to do so may result in damage to the motor due to overheating. Ideally, a variable transformer should be used so that you may dial in the appropriate voltage. I recommend this transformer:

NOTE: If you have one of the older XP models that require a transformer, we can upgrade your old unit to the newer LED light source and DC motor. Contact us for more information.

North American and Canadian Customers operating on 60 cycles can ignore this warning.

NOTE: Some video cameras have difficulty white balancing to the new daylight balanced LED light source. If your image is too blue and you have already switched your camera to its daylight setting, then simply use an 85B conversion filter on the front of your camera lens. This will convert the daylight LED light source to tungsten balance. Your camera can then be white balanced in either the daylight or tungsten setting, depending on which provides the best results.

Make sure your camera is not set to any "high shutter speed" or "auto shutter" or “steady shot” positions.  The normal, 60th of a second speed should be used for NTSC or 50th of a second for PAL.  Avoid using progressive scan or "frame mode". Just the normal video mode is needed. Best results and best registration is achieved if your film has been freshly cleaned and lubed with good splices and no torn sprocket holes. Always use the take up reel provided as the unit has been tension calibrated  or use with that reel. Supply reels should be inspected for warpage or anything that will impede the even feed of film from the reel. Feed reels that bind or grab the edges of the film may cause registration problems or even film damage. Head leader should be fairly straight without a lot of "curl memory" that will impede proper loading.

Mount the condenser lens using the three provided screws. Some units may have spacers present. Mount unit on top of any spacers or washers provided. After mounting the condenser lens, please follow these directions specifically.

Step one
is to install the synch mouse provided and then turn on your computer. Make sure the camera is mounted on a tripod (column type is best) and is level and centered in height with the condenser lens. Also, make sure that you can see the resulting image on a large monitor. Using the tiny LCD monitor on the camera will make critical adjustments tough.

Step two
is to move the camera away from the condenser lens to about one half meter as a starting point and put the camera on wide angle.

Step three
is to turn on the lamp of the WorkPrinter and close the gate with no film in the unit. There is a knob on the side of the unit under the lens that is a multi-position knob with markings like "rewind" "play", etc. You close the gate of the projector by turning that knob to the up most clockwise position. That will bring the pressure plate into contact with the gate so that you can see the edges clearly during set up. Otherwise, the two surfaces are separated by about a quarter inch, making definition and focus hard to determine.

Step four
With the focus lever of the projector in the middle, vertical position, watch the monitor and move the camera away from the condenser lens until you begin to see a white area in the center of the condenser lens. Some side to side movement will probably be necessary as well. (It is helpful to have a lamp shining on the outside of the condenser lens so you can see the placement of the image relative to the edges of the lens.) When you first align the camera you will probably see a round white circle of illumination. As you pull the camera back, that circle will get larger until it reveals the rectangular edges of the gate. Once you reach that point, stop and adjust the camera up and down and side to side to get the illumination even. To do this, use the adjustable column on the tripod for up and down movement (as opposed to tilting the camera) and slide the tripod side to side (as opposed to panning).

Step five
once you feel you have aligned the rectangle of white in the middle of the condenser  lens, zoom in and focus (manual focus only) initially on the edges, which may look rough due to the enlarging process but are well outside the frame of film that will be inserted later on. Don't zoom all the way into the white area yet, as you want to use the edges of the gate as a reference. Just zoom in until the edges of the gate are near the edges of the monitor. At this point, it is okay to target your camera by panning and tilting to center the gate in the monitor. Doing so will not affect your alignment with the "sweet spot" that is critical to getting even illumination.

It should be noted that the focus can be adjusted in two different ways: your camera and the projector. In fact, because there is no screen, the lens of the projector, the condenser lens and the camera lens are all working as one, big lens. Moving elements to different positions will create different results. If you zoom in and find that you can fill the frame but can not focus at all or evenly via the camera, set the camera focus as best you can and then adjust the focus of the projector. If the projector focus seems to be at its limit, remove the knob from the side of the projector by pulling on it and that will reveal a small philips screw. Remove that screw and that will let you remove the plastic bonnet covering the lens. This covering is not necessary for the projector to operate and removing it will allow greater freedom on the focus lever though, nominally, it should really be close to center.

Step six
is to load the unit with some disposable film that you can experiment with. This footage should be bright with good contrast and detail so you can make accurate judgments about focus and even illumination. There is a Super 8 spindle adaptor on the feed spindle with a regular 8mm spindle hidden inside. To remove the Super 8 adaptor, grab the spindle by the black plast (do NOT press down on the silver metal clip) and firmly, but gently, pull. The Super 8 adaptor will come off revealing the smaller regular 8 spindle. To load the film, return the knob to the "off" position on the projector. The markings don't always line up very well so, to find it, turn the knob counter clockwise to the bottom most position, which is "rewind" and then turn it up one click, which will be "off". Use a pair of scissors and clip the end of the leader so that you get a nice rounded tip (like your fingernail) that does not cut a sprocket hole in half. Insert this film into the projector and shove it through and inch at a time until it either stops or comes out the back end of the unit. If it stops, it may be hanging up on the claw. “Bump” the motor switch so that the claw retracts out of the way and continue pushing the film through the unit. If the film gets caught at the bottom turn below the gate, turn the knob to “rewind” briefly, which will open the pressure plate more and allow the end of the leader to pass. Once passed that point, return the knob to the “stop” position. The leader should appear at the back end of the unit where it can be easily threaded onto the take up reel. The reel generally has barbs that will “grab” the film if you just lay it on the reel hub and turn.

NOTE: Do NOT attempt to load the film by taking the side cover off. This can cause the film to bind and possibly damage the advance claw. The side cover may be removed to clean the pathway but the film should only be loaded from the top with the side cover in place. Make sure the leader is good, without excessive curl that might hand up inside. It is best to push the leader through until it exits the rear of the unit before turing on the motor. "Auto feed" should be avoided as it has been disabled on these units.

Step seven
is to adjust the framing. There is a framing knob on the side of the projector but it should not be adjusted unless the unit is running. With the gate closed (knob turned all the way clockwise until it stops) turn on the motor and observe the image on the screen. The edges of the gate are still in view at this point, which is necessary as point of reference. While the film is running, adjust the framing knob until the film frame is centered in the middle of the gate with a partial frame above and below. Then stop the unit.

Step eight
is to adjust critical focus. Make sure that a single frame lands squarely in the gate. "Bump" the motor switch, if necessary, to seat the film or move the shutter out of the way. Again, the lens of the projector, the condenser lens and the camera lens all constitute one big lens. Furthermore, adjusting the projector lens will not only change the focus, it will slightly change the size and shape of the frame. If the image seems to have a "pin cushion" effect where the frame line seems curved, adjust the focus of the projector to attenuate that shape. Do not worry if it goes out of focus when you do this as you can re-establish the focus via the camera lens. Use manual focus only.

Ultimately, there is little I can tell you here about how to set your focus as every camera is different. You will have to experiment with your set up until you get it right. I can tell you that you should be able to get it sharp edge to edge with no chromatic aberrations and no distortion or pin cushion. Just remember that you have several ways to attenuate the image by using the projector focus and camera focus in combination. Once you feel you have achieved the desired result, zoom your camera in to rid the image of the edges of the gate and refocus. The image should be sharp edge to edge and corner to corner with no hot spot nor any chromatic aberrations. If the edge of the frame goes dark when you zoom in, just adjust the placement of the camera side to side (not panning, but actually moving the camera) ever so slightly until you restore even illumination.

Step nine
is to do a test transfer. There is a cable provided that should be attached to both the mouse and the synch socket on the side of the projector. That socket is found near the back of the unit with a switch marked "synch".

Once the cable has been attached at both ends, go to your computer and click off the first frame of the stop motion sequence manually. In Premier and many other stop motion capture programs, this is necessary to "prime" the system for subsequent captures. Not doing so may make the unit fall behind in captures. After clicking off the first frame manually, leave the cursor of the mouse hovering over the capture button. Turn on the lamp and motor and then the synch switch. The unit will start to advance the film. If all things are working normally, you will observe the on-screen capture button being depressed automatically for each frame that comes up in the gate of the projector. If your hard drive is set up correctly and has the proper speed for video, the numbers in the capture frame will advance evenly along with the projector. Again, the pulldown "streak" will be visible during capture but should not show up when you play back the footage as it is "skipped" by the discrete timing of the micro switch. If using Capturemate for the Mac, do not capture in the Quicktime mode. Use the DV stream mode and set the mouse/frame delay to "0". Use the timing disk inside the Workprinter if timing adjustments are required.

You are almost through but DO NOT SKIP THIS NEXT SECTION!

Step ten
is playback. Turn off the synch switch, stop the projector and play back your footage and look for signs of visible pulldown blur. There should be zero artifacts. The image should be crystal clear and have no vertical blur. However, if a test reveals any vertical pulldown blur, the black timing disk can be adjusted with the use of an allen wrench (not included).  The timing disk is located inside the back and is positioned between the motor and the LED assembly. Loosen the set screw on the timing disk and, while holding the pulley behind it, gently but firmly turn the timing cam a bit one direction or the other. I recommend moving it in about half inch increments until you see better results, then use smaller increments to fine tune the timing. Tighten the set screw snugly and do another transfer test. If the pulldown frames get worse, then rotate the timing cam the opposite direction. If they get better, then turn the cam the same original direction a bit more and do another test. NOTE: You will always see vertical blur during transfer. This is normal. However, no vertical blur or smearing should be present on playback.

All tests should be viewed on a normal, full size video monitor and not a computer monitor. Computer monitors can sometimes leave out fields during playback and will not give you a true indication of what your footage looks like. Use super 8 film to do your initial alignment and testing.

That covers the basic set up for the WorkPrinter . Let me know how it works out and if you have any problems that need trouble shooting. If necessary, you can email me with questions or call me at 830-966-4664 and I will be glad to talk you through any difficulties.

Hope you have spectacular results!

Roger Evans