16 mm is a size of motion picture film. Film may not be in common use anymore, but 16 mm film still totally blows away NTSC television, and gives HDTV a pretty good beating too, simply because of the increased resolution that film tends to have. Of course, 35 mm film is even sharper and brightier, and is what is used in commercial movie making.

Until recently, 16 mm film was used extensively in television production. The aspect ratio is the same as television, and the resolution of the film makes it appropriate for TV (unlike 35 mm, which is overkill, and 8 mm, in which film grain becomes apparent even in an NTSC image)

Now that the world has shifted to videotape, old 16 mm film reels once used by television stations are becoming popular collector's items. Especially popular are 8 to 10 minute cartoon reels from companies such as Warner Bros and MGM. You ain't seen these classic cartoons right until you've watched them from real film.

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