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Video Transcript: So now tripods. Everyone needs one, it’s a must thing to have aside from knowing the latest video production rates. Like I said before, people’s hands aren’t completely steady. Sometimes that hand held look is great for whatever you’re trying to do, but generally if you’re standing and delivering something, you want a steady camera, so a tripod is a must.

They range in price. The big ones that hold big film cameras are worth up to $10,000 and beyond. The one thing to consider is the height. Some tripods, you say, oh, it’s small and compact, it packs right down, but then you get it up and it won’t go to eye level if you’re standing. So you want to just think about what is the context, what are you going to be using it for? If you’re shooting weddings, you want to be able to capture from above, below. If you’re doing interviews, it’s got to be able to at the right height for someone sitting or standing.

A bubble level, so on these cameras, you’re not always going to be on steady ground. Sometimes you’re going to be on a hill or something like that. You need to be able to balance it out, so you get a float or a straight image. Most of them will have a little spirit level in there that you line it up for. I could not live without that on mine. This has what’s called a ball head, so it will move around to compensate for those kinds of things when you’re shooting outside on dirt or something like that.

They range, you can get ones that are made of aluminium, up to carbon fibre, made of basalt, really high end made of light material, great cameras. Think of what you need. If you’re shooting on Handycam, you just need a simple tripod.

David: I think that one I got from eBay and it wasn’t more than $200. So if you think about each stage of the way, you’re probably up for $200 for a camera, you’ll be up for $200 for a stand. Then once you start to make tons of money from the session I’ll go through later, then you can go back and start to invest in some of the other things or hire an A player like Ben.

Ben: Yes, because I will never stop getting more equipment even if this adds up to the video production cost. Ok, now audio. I was going to play you this. I’ll just play it really quickly. (video) How good is that! So, I don’t even need to talk about this section. How many YouTube videos have you watched where it’s really distorted audio and now matter how much you want to watch the content, it throws you off, you say, I cannot stand this, fingers down the blackboard thing. Having good audio, I think it’s more important than your camera. Like I said you can get a $200 Flip camera or something like that. But if people can’t hear properly, if it’s distorted, if it’s unclear, people will switch off very quickly. Ears are very sensitive things.

Know your purpose for the kinds of microphones that you need. There is a massive spectrum of microphones. I’ll take you through really quickly. There are camera mounted ones that you see here, this kind of thing, or here even, this is kind of a hybrid. Stand alone, you know when you see sets with big boom mikes and things like that and then you’ve got your wireless which I’m wearing now. I’m wearing a lapel mike which is really effective and then this one, a Bluetooth one which Dave uses. It’s a really good one. I guess I would really recommend this if you’re just doing a lot of your own work, interviews, presenting and so on. These ones are fantastic.

So what you’ve got, this one, this first one here, this one is the Sony. That’s just the next level. This is the one before.

Question: The connection for that Bluetooth one, it’s specific to the camera, isn’t it? It’s not a USB?

Ben: No. This particular one is a Sony proprietary one. What happens is, this is the microphone and when you buy it, it will come with a lanyard you put around your neck or an arm band or you can hold it or put it down in front of you. If you’re interviewing or holding it, try not to hold it like this. People fiddle, it’s a natural thing. I’ve been doing it with this thing since it started and they’re going to cover it up. That’s why when I’m doing testimonials with you guys I’ll get you to wear it around your neck and you don’t have to worry about it.

To your point, this is powered, this part, the receiver, is powered by the camera. So it’s made specifically to go on these Sony Handycams.

Question: So is there an equivalent that works?

Ben: That’s the one underneath. Not specific for a Sony. That one requires that you have a mike plugged in which most of these kinds of cameras and even the Flips or the Kodaks will have now, it’s just an external mike jack. It clips in. These things, basically one of these is the mike and one is the receiver. It can clip onto the handle or something like that and then that will do the same thing. So you can use it to put on any camera that has an external microphone jack. Really most of them will these days.

Those kinds of things are anywhere from about $100 to $200, probably $200 or $300. It’s money well spent. Quality audio will take you up a level. Camera mounted, I’ll just show you this. This is one I’ve been using. I use this on top of my Canon. It’s called the Rode Videomic. It’s only about $130. It’s a really effective mike. See it move like that? That’s to allow for any movement so it doesn’t shake and you hear that bumping sound and so on. It comes with a wind sock and it balances out any issues with outside wind when you’re shooting outside generally. It’s a great little mike.

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