Quick Guide to Film Production: Article 1 In this first article of our recently created blog, we are going to use our expertise in the field to elaborate a guide about video production that will cover some fundamental aspects. The idea is to help people interested in vdeo production enhace their skills, and learn certain techniques and tips that we, as professionals, use for our own work. The first part of this guide will cover a quite simple, yet important topic, what should you look at when thinking about buying a video camera? The transition of technology for video cameras into the digital age allows us to have a wide variety of affordable options. With this revolution, more people can purchase video recording equipment. To choose the ideal camera that meets the 3G's: Good quality (basic features for a good production), good looking (according to current standards of the market) and good price (if you have a budget between $ 200 - $ 500), I recommend take into account the following points:
1. HD or Standard: Which one to go for? The format is one of the main points that you should consider. You may wonder, if the latest technology is High Definition, why think of a standard format? HD is actually going to where the future of the moving image, but the market still find affordable options, and so you must not underestimate them. In perspective, it is important to understand what the difference is.
The format refers to the size in pixels of each frame, this will allow you to lower or higher image definition. The standard format refers to an approximate size of 720 x 480 pixels, 30 frames per second, which is the size that uses television and 4:3 ratio, so it gives a square. Meanwhile the HD (High Definition) has a wide aspect at 1280 x 780 pixels, at a ratio of 16:9. therefore more resolution, better detail in each image. This is the format that is currently being used and promises a much better video experience.
2. Recording System: should I go directly for the tapeless ones?
This is another important point to take into account in deciding on your camera. For many years the means to record video was done through video cassettes or tapes, in different formats, to home video, you could find VHS, Hi8, MiniDV, MicroDV and even cameras that record directly to DVD. Currently, you can find cameras that are 100% digital, storing everyting on memory cards or SDCards. The advantage of this technology is that you will save money and space on tapes, whose estimated life is relatively short (approximately 5 years). Another factor to consider is that you save time by scanning the contents of the tape to your computer for editing. Now, if you choose this technology, you must take into account is that you have to consider keeping enough disk space or buy external drives to store your recordings which might also be quite expensive. 3. Audio: so important and generally forgotten The audio occupies 50% in value of your video material. It is therefore important not to rest on your laurels and let the internal microphone of the camera do the job, because the result will be terrible, even in semi-professional cameras! Therefore, you should consider purchasing an additional microphone to record audio, which can be a shotgun or a wired or wireless microphone connected to the camera at the time of recording. Something very important is to check what kind of microphone input the camera has. Most of cameras bring a miniplug input so you can connect your microphone, but you should be sure about it before buying the camera, because it might be a big problem later on. Then, you must also make sure that the camera has a headphone jack as it's really important to monitor audio while recording. 4. Camera functions: When you review the video camera, I suggest you check you have the following functions: 1. White Balance: is the function that allows you to calibrate the colors of the image in relation to the type of ambient lighting. 2. Iris: is the lens opening for the light and allows you to manage the amount of light that will enter the camera in order to avoid that the images are overexposed (too light) or very dark. 3.Zoom: is the ability of the lens mechanism to approach an object in the distance. It is important not to make an analysis based on the famous Digital Zoom, because although it seems that has more capacity than naturally zoom the image quality is not reliable because what it does is to manipulate the image by increasing the number of pixels in the image.
5. What brand should I go for?
Many times we get carried away by the brand to decide our purchase, but my recommendation is to decide for a known brand like Sony, Canon, Panasonic, JVC and Samsung, as these brands guarantee the product you are selling, accessory compatibility and even you might check its compatibility with the video software you are using. I suggest you read expert reviews you can find on the site Cnet and Camcorder.info When you decide which camera to buy, I suggest you add in your budget to purchase an extra battery, a filter (UV) to the lens and a bag to store your gear. If you decide to purchase a tapeless camera, be sure to buy more cards with enough memory to save your video. Article by: Beyond 190 Studio
Published on Feb 11, 2013
This first article teaches you to pick the right camera and is an introduction for the upcoming posts.