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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old April 3rd, 2006, 12:03 PM   #1
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$300 Equipment Question

Hey Guys,
I've been shooting plays and recitals for a year and am now ready to attempt my first wedding (free) to build a portfolio. I'm actually doing two (4/21 and 5/6).

I've got $300 to add to my equipment collection and I wanted to get something that would be most useful for weddings. And I could really use some advice on how to spend it.

My current set-up is: (SonyVX2100, CanonGL1, Nice Sony Tripod, Crappy Tripod, 1 Beachteck, Audio Cables, 2 iRivers with Giant Squids, 1 Rode VM, 1 Wired interview Mic, will be editing with FCP5, Spider Brace- ouch can't hold camera long with that piece, Real Cheap Stick Brace, Cam Light w/ Barn Doors and 30 Minute Battery, Virtix Plug-In Filters for FCP).

Being so short on cash makes this decision overwhelming and I really could use a fresh perspective based on your guys experiences.

My affordable cheap wish list includes things like:

2nd Smooth Tripod
Body Rig Support
Wide Angle Lens
2nd Rode VM
2nd BeachTech
AT3031 Mic and Phantom Battery Power with Mic Stand
Sony MiniDisc Recorder
Plug-In Filters for FCP

So what do you think? If you could only pick one for your first wedding, which would it be, or would it be something else entirely?

Thanks,
Scott
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Old April 3rd, 2006, 12:20 PM   #2
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Where they should fall in your list of priorities depends on what and how you shoot, etc so I won't comment on that but I own a pair of the AT3031 mics and can attest to the fact that they are a very nice sounding microphone. You won't be dissappointed by them.
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Old April 3rd, 2006, 01:24 PM   #3
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Personally, I'd invest in another good tripod. They pay for themselves over and over. Also, the wide angle lens would appeal to me. Might want to consider a "dead cat" for your Rode mic. Don't know where you are, but the winds in S. Texas are brutal for video and outdoor weddings.
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Old April 3rd, 2006, 02:01 PM   #4
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If you work with a shooting partner or 2nd camera operator......a headset(intercom system) so you two can comunicate is so worth the money. for a little over 300.00 you can find one in b&h catalogue.
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Old April 3rd, 2006, 04:56 PM   #5
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[QUOTE=My current set-up is: (SonyVX2100, CanonGL1, Nice Sony Tripod, Crappy Tripod, 1 Beachteck, Audio Cables, 2 iRivers with Giant Squids, 1 Rode VM, 1 Wired interview Mic, will be editing with FCP5, Spider Brace- ouch can't hold camera long with that piece, Real Cheap Stick Brace, Cam Light w/ Barn Doors and 30 Minute Battery, Virtix Plug-In Filters for FCP).

Being so short on cash makes this decision overwhelming and I really could use a fresh perspective based on your guys experiences.

My affordable cheap wish list includes things like:

2nd Smooth Tripod
Body Rig Support
Wide Angle Lens
2nd Rode VM
2nd BeachTech
AT3031 Mic and Phantom Battery Power with Mic Stand
Sony MiniDisc Recorder
Plug-In Filters for FCP

So what do you think? If you could only pick one for your first wedding, which would it be, or would it be something else entirely?

Thanks,
Scott[/QUOTE]

My opinion (I am also new at this) is that you have enough for somebody just starting. What you have listed are nice to have but that should be when you are already getting steady paying gigs. I would however add the following.

1. Batteries for your camera. Lots.
2. Lights in case you find a need to light the reception.
3. Perhaps a Monopod to raise camera and get some nice shots.

Now back to $300. Realistically....I'd save it for better tripod/head. Also do not forget that you will also need
-DVD case
-DVD case insert paper
-DVD label paper
-Ink for your printer
Just these would probably cost you $100.

Just my 2 cents...

Good luck,
Joven
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Old April 3rd, 2006, 06:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Routt
Hey Guys,
My affordable cheap wish list includes things like:

2nd Smooth Tripod
Body Rig Support
Wide Angle Lens
2nd Rode VM
2nd BeachTech
AT3031 Mic and Phantom Battery Power with Mic Stand
Sony MiniDisc Recorder
Plug-In Filters for FCP
I would say not the Minidisc, AT3031, or beachtech or rode VM. A glidecam 2K would make a huge difference in your highlights/shorter clips, but little difference in the longer version. These smaller clips would probably be more influential in bringing in more work. A wide angle lens is absoutely crucial, in my opinion, if your doing preps, but otherwise that can wait. A monopod and raynox fisheye would give you some more style for your video plus a camera support and leave you with enough to pick up some plug-ins.
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Old April 4th, 2006, 12:22 AM   #7
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Hey Scott,

I'd go with a good 2nd fluid head for your other tripod like a Manfrotto/Bogen 503. I use one for my Sony PD170 and it is quite smooth. You should be able to fit it on your cheap legs until you can afford better ones, and it will help your footage tremendously - trust me. (and it's under $300.)

Of course if your second camera is static, the point is moot.

Then in that case I'd get a good wide angle lens.
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Old April 4th, 2006, 03:19 PM   #8
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Fisheye v Wide Angle

Hey Guys,
Thanks for all the great thoughts! The first thing I did last night was make a boring battery purchase. Not exciting but very neccessary- so thank Joven.

I'm getting another decent tripod as well.

The last purchase will be a Wide Angle Lens (WD-58). Will I also need to buy the lens hood for it ($34).

"Deadcat" and stablizers are for another day.

I have some other questions about lenses and how they're used. I'm going to check the archives to see if something similar has been asked. If not, look for an upcoming thread.

Thanks,
Scott
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Old April 4th, 2006, 03:43 PM   #9
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