Nikon Quality throughout. The lenses are very crisp and zoom and focus very smoothly.
The Nikon R8 and R10 models have something unique in Super 8 cameras. They have an actual iris diaphragm. This gives these cameras really accurate exposure control, plus they will produce lens flares with star shapes that are often used for creative effect. Here is the light control unit from an R8 for you to see.
The biggest problem on the Nikons is that they are covered in some beautiful leather like covering. Since it has been on there for 40 years or so the glue used to fasten it on has hardened to cement. Getting it off is nearly impossible, at least without pulling on it hard enough to stretch or distort it somewhat. When we put it back on after the repair is complete, it NEVER looks exactly like it did prior to removal. So if you expect your R8 or R10 to look factory fresh and new, do NOT have it repaired. Just put it on the shelf and admire it. If you want it to make great movies, send it to us and we will fix it.
THE GOOD STUFF
Like everything Nikon does, these are superb instruments. They are far above almost every other camera in lens quality and features. The meter is deadly accurate and the entire rig is very rigidly constructed. However, like every other Super 8 camera they do not have bearings, they used bushings. Bushings get dry. When they do get dry and you keep running them they start to wear out both themselves and the shafts that run in them. If you do it long enough they will self destruct and the camera will be ruined. Go ahead, use the camera until it squeals and then have us try to save it. Maybe we will be able to fix it but you will be talking big bucks. Don't get mad at us if we have to tell you that it is not fixable. Life will probably go on.