Bolex H8 Deluxe


8mm Camera


  • OVERALL DIMENSIONS: 8 1/2" x 6" x 3"
  • WEIGHT: Approximately 5 1/2 lbs
  • OUTER CASE: Highly polished duraluminium body, covered in genuine Morocco leather. Metal parts are chrome-plated.
  • FILM CAPACITY: 100ft (30m), 50ft (15m) and 25ft daylight loading spools of double run 8mm film. When a roll runs through the camera, only half the width of film is exposed. The spool is then reversed and run through again, exposing the other half. When processed, film is split and spliced together giving twice the amount for projection.
  • THREADING: Automatic threading and loop forming. The end of the film is simply placed in a channel leading to the feed sprocket. The release is pressed and the film is then automatically threaded throughout the entire mechanism.
  • MOTOR: Constant speed, spring motor mechanism; governor controlled. Large winding handle folds downward and attaches to camera when not in use. Spring cannot be over-wound. 8:1 external drive shaft permits the attachment of an electric motor.
  • TURRET: Rotating turret accommodates three interchangeable D mount lenses. The top position allows for critical focusing through a magnified groundglass screen.
  • VIEWFINDER: Eye-level focuser allows for critical focusing through a groundglass screen. Parallax correcting Octameter gives an exact viewing field for lenses of 8 focal lengths: 6.5mm, 9mm, 12.5mm, 25mm, 36mm, 50mm, 63mm and 75mm.
  • VARIABLE SPEED: 8, 16, 24, 32 and 64 frames per second
  • Octometer RELEASE BUTTON: provides for the making of continuous exposures by a finger-tip release on the front of the camera. A side release allows for locked, hands-free running or single frame exposures.
  • SHUTTER: 190 degree aperture shutter
  • FOOTAGE COUNTER: adds and subtracts accurately in forward or reverse motion and automatically returns to zero when film is reloaded into the camera.
  • AUDIBLE FOOTAGE INDICATOR: A distinct click announces the passing of each 10 inches of film through the gate. This mechanism may be disengaged, if desired, by simply moving a lever.
  • FRAME COUNTER: Twin dial counts frames individually and in total; Adds frames in forward motion and subtracts when film is wound backwards. Dial may be reset manually at any time.
  • SINGLE FRAME: Time lapse and animation is possible by using the side release button or an accessory cable release and adapter; I-T lever allows for timed or instantaneous single exposures.
  • MANUAL REWIND: Clutch disengages spring motor and permits forward movement and backwind without running down the spring; allows for dissolves and superimposition.
  • TRIPOD SOCKET: 3/8" thread

Notes and Comments

The H-8 "Deluxe" was sold with an eye level focuser and the Octameter viewfinder. The Octameter was introduced in 1950, and required a special bracket to be attached to the film door. The "Deluxe" and later H model cameras could be purchased with this bracket already installed; earlier models could be modified to accept the octameter by a Bolex service facility

Bolex cameras in the H8 non-reflex series:

H-8, H-8 Leader, H-8 Standard, H-8 Deluxe, H-8 T and H-8 S.

Serial Numbers and Dates of Manufacture

Because the "Deluxe" was simply a marketing term used for H model cameras sold in the US, it should be considered a basic H8 non-reflex camera. As such, I don't include a serial number range here. For more information, see this article on Bolex Serial Numbers to identify the year in which your camera was made.