All About Mark I Video

Mark I Video is proud to present our new website featuring our extensive collection of railroad programs.

Mark I Video was founded in 1983 by Marc Balkin as a natural outgrowth of Custom Steam Productions, a well-established producer of railroad audio recordings. Mark I quickly gained a reputation for producing entertaining, informative programs combining top-notch video quality, expert camera work, intelligent narration, colorful maps and graphics, and creative editing.

Over the ensuing years, Mark I Video has released a number of titles which, in addition to their entertainment value, have made significant contributions to railroad history. These include Susquehanna Spectacular, FT-103 and Massachusetts' Maine Attraction, which combine rare vintage film with contemporary materials to present complete video histories of each subject.

Mark I Video has also established a fine reputation for its thorough, multi-camera coverage of major railfan events, including the National Railway Historical Society Conventions at Roanoke (1987), St. Louis (1990), and San Jose (1992), Washington Central's Steam Fest, the inaugural excursion of Santa Fe 3751 and C&O 614 (1996 - 1998).

Our Heritage Series programs, featuring carefully-restored vintage film footage combined with meticulous locomotive and environmental soundtracks, have been extremely well received and many, including The Magnificent GG-1, have become railroad video best sellers.

In an ongoing effort to constantly improve our programs, Mark I Video introduced the innovative new ChoochCam™, locomotive mounted minicams which provide incredible new perspective on steam locomotive operation. With the ChoochCam, exciting close-up views of drive wheels and valve gear, plus unusual down-the-boiler and outside-the-cab shots can now be integrated into our programs to increase your viewing pleasure!

We have also developed advanced techniques of locomotive videography, including the PaceCam automatic pacing camera, correctly-lighted locomotive cab ride sequences, night cab rides, and even beautifully illuminated night runby and pacing scenes. Our new MiniChoochCam has set new standards for miniature railroad videography.

Mark I Video is pleased to offer more than thirty programs written and narrated by distinguished rail journalist Jim Boyd, Editor Emeritus of Railfan & Railroad Magazine. Jim's association with Mark I's Marc Balkin dates back to the found of Railfan Magazine, when Marc was producing railroad audio recordings for his Custom Steam Productions label.

After entering the railroad video field, Marc asked Jim to serve as narrator and technical advisor for Mark I's first release, the classic documentary Lackawanna Legacy. Since then, Marc and Jim have produced such outstanding programs as Alcos, Iron Ore and More!, Circus Train, Railfanning the Silverton, Steaming to L.A., and Santa Fe 3751: The California Limited, and Northlandz. Jim's enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and often humorous commentary adds truly unique dimension to these programs.

All Mark I programs are shot with broadcast-quality cameras and edited in our state-of-the-art facility in Northern New Jersey. The Mark I Video Studio includes a fully-computerized, ten-machine interformat editing suite with advanced graphics, audio and effects capabilities; a film-to-tape transfer suite; videotape duplication facilities with full quality control; an audio recording and Archive facility; and corporate offices. In addition to railroad video production, Mark I Video boasts an impressive list of corporate and commercial clients.

When you purchase a Mark I Video program, you are assured of the highest levels of quality, creativity and value. We invite you to explore our website, and join us for the best railroad video action available today!