The type of video you are hoping to create, will determine what equipment you will need. The best place to start is to read through your shot list and figure out what you will need to get each shot.
Let’s think about the camera. What camera and lenses are best suited to what you will be filming? Are you filming a TV commercial and need a larger, high quality camera? Or do you need something smaller and more mobile? The content of your video will give you an idea of what camera is best for your shoot. Once you have decided this you can start thinking about other camera assessors like tripods, steady cams, dollies, sliders, and even cranes.
Next, consider lighting. What lighting equipment will you need? If you are shooting an interview you might need studio lights. Or maybe you are filming outdoors during the day so you will only need a reflector and diffuser. Even if you don’t think you will need any lighting equipment, it is good to have a small kit ready just in case. This could be a few LED panels. They take up very little space and can make a big difference to your footage.
Finally, let’s talk about sound. What audio equipment will you need? Most video production companies will use a microphone positioned above the actor. This can be done using a tripod and microphone arm attachment if the person on camera will stay in the one spot. The other option is to use a boom pole and operator if the actor needs some room to move. In some situations you could use a lapel mic and transmitter (preferably wireless). This can make filming less challenging and gives the actor more freedom to walk around, especially if you are working with a small crew.
An autocue, or teleprompter, is a screen which is attached to the camera. It displays the video’s script and is controlled by the autocue operator. The autocue allows the person who is on camera to read and perform the script. This is very helpful for people who do not have much experience being on camera. It is also helpful if the talent has been cast shortly before the filming and had little time to rehearse. An autocue can also improve the performance of an actor by allowing them to focus on the delivery of the script, and not about saying the lines perfectly.
In an ideal world, you would be able to use whatever video equipment you want at any location. Unfortunately, this is not always possible. When choosing your equipment you need to consider logistics. Think about accessibility. How easy or difficult will it be for your cameras crew to get the equipment in and out? Will there be power, or will you need to work with batteries and portable equipment only? If so, how many batteries will you need to last the entire shoot? If you are shooting outdoors, what surface will you be on? Will it be level ground, rocky, muddy, will there be sand? All of these things need to be taken into account to make sure your shoot runs smoothly.
Chances are you won’t have everything you need for your shoot. Fortunately there are many video equipment suppliers in Melbourne that you can hire from. Places like Borge Imaging in Port Melbourne, and Videocraft in Burwood, have a huge range of audio and video equipment to choose from.
Choosing video equipment for your shoot is an important step in getting your video done right. Keep reading to learn about Camera Operators.