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Do Your Own Video Resources Page

Equipment to Buy

Simple Kit to Supplement your
iPhone, iPad, and Similar

  • My favourite mount for a smartphone to attach to a tripod is the Joby Grip. It is well build and astonishingly lightweight.
  • I also have something very much like this mount, if you want something a little cheaper. It's good, but not as 'nice'.
  • If you really want to go cheap, I have one of these smartphone mounts. It hasn't broken yet, but I stopped using it. It doesn't feel too tough, but it cost virtually nothing!
  • This Nootle iPad mount is what I use to fix my iPad to a tripod. But if you want to get the angle right (if your tripod doesn't have a rotating head), you may need one of these too.
  • If you want to record from a lapel microphone onto your iPhone, you'll need one of these connectors. Unless, you have a powered microphone, in which case you'll need this version.
  • There are lots of small table-top tripods for phones and tablets. Get one that is suitable for the size of your device. Some come with a mount for devices, but do get one that allows you to unscrew the mount and use other mounts with it, or attach a camera directly. A friend has one of these and loves it.

Cameras and
Video Cameras

  • I make my videos with a Canon 700D DSLR with an 18-55mm lens. There are many equivalent spec cameras, and Canon has higher spec versions too. Indeed, new upgrades are coming out all the time, so shop around. I think the 80D is getting good reviews if you have a bigger budget. Sony and Panasonic also do good DSLRs. I don't know of people using Nikons for video, but I expect you can.
  • If I were going to get a video camcorder, I'd probably go for the Panasonic V770 because its predecessor comes highly recommended by a friend doing business training videos with it. But I haven't researched that market.
  • If you want to use a point and shoot camera for your videos, just use the one you own. If you don't own one and want to get one for videos, rather than stills, the Canon T111 comes highly recommended to me.

Studio Kit

  • You will need a tripod. Go for a mid range. The cheapies do break, buckle, and generally collapse under their own weight when the screws go. And get one tall enough to support your camera at head height for the tallest people you know. I like Hama tripods. They are far from a pro level, but are solid enough for my use, and have detatchable plates which make taking your camera off quickly is easy. I have the Hama 63.
  • If you need small lights, get battery powered LEDs that can fix to the top of your camera, onto lighting stands, or pretty much anywhere with ingenuity. I have lights similar to these.
  • If you want to go large and have mains powered lights, I found LED options too pricey and went for budget softboxes. The light stands are not great (a bit wobbly) but the light is good for a small room and close up work. These are the ones I bought.
  • If you want a green screen, buy the right colour sheet and be prepared to iron it. I clamped mine to a 2m length of 2x1 timber top and bottom and hang it on the wall. If you need free-standing support, try one like this.
  • I also wanted more lights, and bought this kit. It comes with two lights, a chroma-green cloth, and a backdrop stand. Also flimsy light stands, but good value if you are not going to give it hard use.

Audio Kit

  • My first recording was done with an Olympus digital recorder and their lapel microphone. It does very well. The microphone also records onto my iPhone using this adapter.
  • If I were buying now, I'd get the Rode Smart Lav and plug it straight into my iPhone.
  • One of the most widely recommended USB microphones for recording to your computer and doing podcasts, webcasts etc is the Blue Yeti. It's lower cost cousin, the Snowball also gets great reviews. Other microphones are also well regarded, but I have a Yeti and love it.
  • Two valuable accessories for my Yeti are a desk arm and a pop filter (to reduce the popping sound when you say 'peter piper'.
  • Now I have gone big time, I much prefer to record videos using a field recorder and shotgun microphone. I use the Zoom H5 recorder, with the SSH-6 microphone, and feed the sound directly into my DSLR to save having to sync the sound in post production.

The not-so-small print: The Amazon links above are affiliate links. If you buy through them, I get a tiny kick-back as recompense for creating this page for you. I hope that's okay with you. Mike

Editing Software: PC

  • Free: Movie Maker - comes with Windows. I have used this.
  • Screen recording and decent editing capabilities: Camtasia.
  • Strong editing capabilities: Adobe Premier Elements. I have used this.
  • High end editing capabilities: Adobe Premier.

Editing Software: Mac

  • Free: Movie Maker - iMovie comes with Macs. I have used this.
  • Screen recording and decent editing capabilities: Screenflow is my recommendation, but you can also get Camtasia for Mac. You can get Screenflow direct from Telestream, or from the App Store. I use Screenflow.
  • Strong editing capabilities: Adobe Premier Elements. I have used this.
  • High end editing capabilities: Adobe Premier.
  • Strong capabilities and designed by Apple - an obvious upgrade from iMovie - Final Cut Pro X - from the App store. I use Final Cut.

Learning More...

  • Lots of great video-making videos free from video hosting specialists Wistia.
  • Caleb Wojcik, the DIY video Guy has lots of good free videos on his site. He also has training courses on video production and on editing with Final cut and Premier
  • I recommend learning with Ripple Training. I love their courses. They cover Final cut, iMovie, and Premier. Their short tips videos are also great.
  • A while back, I tried to get a one-day seminar off the ground, for small group of local small business people to learn about video making and play with some of my toys. I didn't get enough interest locally, but if you are interested in this kind of event, let me know. If I get enough enquiries, I will set something up. It would be in Hampshire. Drop me a line on mike(a)mikeclayton.co.uk