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Old October 17th, 2006, 03:07 PM   #1
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Ok I need answers

I am kinda sorda a beginner in the video world. I have been doing it for maybe 3 years.

I have lots of questions and I have been searching and searching for answers to some of my questions but I just have so many and I want to get it right.

By references I have been getting jobs. But all I have at this time is sony vegas and a GL2. That is what I have been working with.

Things are starting to pick up and are going to require me to get some more equipment and I want yall's expert opinion on what equipment to get.

For some shoots comeing up they will require an extra camera, lavalier mics, and lighting.

So, in yall's opinion what should I get that will get me by.

Camera: What kind of second camera? Budget around $500 if I can get away with that because I am guessing it just needs to be minidv and just a nice zoom.

Mic: I actually have a mic but sometimes it seems better to use the onboard mic on the camera. I have the Sony WCS 999. What wireless mics are good to get and how much?

Lighting: I am reading you can spend a lot on this or a little. For now all it looks like is that I will be using it for interviewing. I have watch DIY where they did that 3 light setup. Pretty cheap. Would something like that work or do you guys have something better in mind?

Thanks, Jason
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Old October 18th, 2006, 08:37 AM   #2
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Somethings aren't making sense. "Jobs" and $500 camera don't match for me.

At the very least get another GL2. You can look for used at reliable sources like B&H.

Wireless mics - Sennheiser G2 series including Lav and base for handheld. If you need more, rent if possible.

Onboard camera mic and "Job" also doesn't match in most cases. It's usually the WORST way to capture audio. See Wireless mics above or Boom poll (an assistant to hold it) with shotgun but depending on config this can be pricey.

Lights - People do home made if they're broke but it certainly won't look nice for some paying clients. Lowel lights like a Rifa, Pro Light and a bounce card with appropriate gels and stands should be good for most interview type setups.

I'm thinking of equipment that matches the "class" and price of a GL2. Even as a low budget 3 chip I'm not sure why you'd think a $500 camera would match that. I think you need to do a bit of reading first and practicing or you'll find a tough time trying to match cameras and fix bad audio. If your budget is really low consider a wired lav and wired handheld mic so you can get good audio for example.

Work with a friend with a consumer DV camera and do a few test shoots and you may see the troubles ahead.

Personally I think it's a bad business model when you buy equipment that results in having to work even harder and make less money per hour on jobs that already get you very little.

Maybe do a friend's or relative's wedding gratis and compare that to a local wedding videographer's result and see where you might need to go to match that.
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Old October 18th, 2006, 11:46 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Simpkins
...
Camera: What kind of second camera? Budget around $500 if I can get away with that because I am guessing it just needs to be minidv and just a nice zoom.

Mic: I actually have a mic but sometimes it seems better to use the onboard mic on the camera. I have the Sony WCS 999. What wireless mics are good to get and how much?

Lighting: I am reading you can spend a lot on this or a little. For now all it looks like is that I will be using it for interviewing. I have watch DIY where they did that 3 light setup. Pretty cheap. Would something like that work or do you guys have something better in mind?

Thanks, Jason
I think you left a zero off the expected price of that camera if you're planning a purchase an entry level camera for professional level work. Maybe not $5k, but you implied that a $500 consumer camera would probably be "good enough." But if you aspire to becoming a working professional you have to make your credo "good enough, never is" and resolve to deliver the very best possible work you're capable of to your clients.

I'll echo Craig's advice about mics. On-camera mics or mics even at the camera position are almost never the best choice since the best place to put a lens to capture the best images is rarely if ever the bst place to put a mic to capture quality sound. If you want that theatrical film or network TV drama or MTV music video sound quality in your productions, You need to think about wired lavs, boomed mics, or wireless lavs in that order.

Lowel makes several video lighting kits that are worth examining. See their website or B&H's.

Hope this helps
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Old October 18th, 2006, 12:24 PM   #4
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500.00 is a really good one day rate ( rental ) for a camera but . . .
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Old October 18th, 2006, 04:25 PM   #5
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Hey all thanks for the info.

Ok for the camera issue. I have had the GL2 for about 3 years and have never bought nor had the money for a second cam. I have this possible gig coming up that would require a second camera. Why I don't know it's a seminar. They said it does not need an operator so I thought well then I will just get a mini dv cam set it up. I was wondering about quality. I have never really paid attenting to a 3ccd versus a 1 ccd or less.

Mics yeah I need to look into something. These sony's do the job but they just don't quite seem to do the job. On the mic note if you are running 2 mics and you want them seperated how do you get them on the own channel. Such as on mic on left and the other on right? Is there like an adapapter or something? Sorry, I don't do a lot with mics.

Lights. I haven't even looked but it sounds expensive. If I was to do an interview with a person and I walked in with some home made lights would this just not work? If it can be done I can do it. I don't care what they think about my setup. It's about how it looks. Also if I did do this I am guessing flouresent bulbs are out of the question.

Enough for now thanks for the help.

Jason
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Old October 18th, 2006, 04:42 PM   #6
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I've used a 1ccd and a 3ccd in the same situation you seem to be talking about. The footage definately doesn't match and makes it hard to cut - but I had what I had, not much I could do about it at the time.

You might look into renting a GL2 from a local shop though, just for the day. I don't know how old you are, but if you are in school, does the school have a 3ccd you can check out for a day? Just some ideas.

You also might want to check locally for used GL1 cameras, you can pick one up for under $1000 (varies 500-1000 usually). Craigslist, local paper, ebay (local deals only though). I haven't been able to find a used GL1 on B&H's site yet, and I think another GL2 is out of your price range.

As far as lighting - check out your local DIY shop. I went to Home Depot to pick up lighting. I got 4 600w lights (that can be switched 300w or 600w each) and 1 1000w light, all that for under $120 - with the stands (i did have to do some simple rewiring, to make each light work as a separate unit). I managed to create a very usable 3 and 4 point lighting setup with these. It's also simple to use heavy foil in place of barn doors (for shaping the light) and you can attach gells to them too. I find they are great when on a tight budget. You can always upgrade as you go. The lights are Halogen, so the light temperature is the same as with the more expensive stuff (though the lights definately are not the same thing, the light color is the same though). Hope that was't too confusing to read.


Mic - definately you should get off the onboard mic. I'm pretty new to sound myself, but I know that the camera mic sucks - even compared to the cheapest of prosumer mics. Check out used mics on B&H site. Also, your local paper or craigslist may have some used ones for sale. For attaching 2 mics, you can get a Beachtek DXA-4P XLR adapter that will work well with your camera. It has line in for 2 XLR mics with control dials for each.


Well, I hope that is some useful info.
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