Often a client (or friend or random stranger) will ask me to recommend a half decent, small video camera for simple projects such as recording an interview, getting some footage of an installed product or making a Youtube video. To answer this question I've made you a video showing the small lightweight camera kit I use, as this is what I would recommend most people should buy. This video doesn't really explain why I chose Sanyo over Sony and SD over MiniDV, etc but what other equipment apart from a camera you should also get your hands on.
More Than Just A Camera!
My professional kit (camera, lights, mics, etc.) weighs a ton, fills two large bags and costs many thousands of pounds. This small kit weighs only a few kilos and costs under £500. If it used with a little skill, and a bit of thought, it can achieve surprisingly good results which I hope you can see from the video above. Obviously, you're not going to shoot a feature film using a Sanyo Xacti but this kit is ideal for the smaller projects which make up the majority of videos businesses, schools, artists and individuals want to make.
Below I have included a list of all the items, the approximate price and links so you can buy them. If that still isn't easy enough for you, email me and for a little extra (15% plus postage) I can buy all the items you want, put it all together in a labeled case and deliver the kit to you home or business ready to use. If you want multiple kits (for classroom use, arts or youth projects, or for your business) there would be a discount plus some extra training and advice.
This is the first video in a series which will cover each piece of equipment in detail and how to get the best results from it. I'll also be doing some videos covering basic filming techniques, tips and ideas and mistakes to avoid. Subscribe to this blog or my YouTube Channel so you don't miss them. Also, contact me if you need advice, one to one training or want me to run a video making workshop for you and your colleagues.
Recommendations in order of appearance in video (Click for product info or to buy):
Sanyo HD1010 Camcorder £270 Amazon or Camerabox
Compact Lightweight Tripod £20 Maplin
SanDisk 16GB SD Card £30 Amazon or Camerabox
Spare Xacti Battery £10 Amazon or Camerabox
Hama Pro-Compact Case £15 Camerabox
Sennheiser HD202 Headphones £18 Amazon
Mini Tie-Clip Microphone £15 Maplin
Mono Jack extension £3 Maplin
2 Mono to Stereo Jack Adapter £3 Maplin
Condenser Zoom Video Microphone £25 Maplin
Lens cloth £5 Jessops
SD Card reader £2 Amazon
Rucksack £25 Costco or Amazon
Joby Gorillapod Original £12 Amazon
Ex-Pro 5-in-1 Light Reflector 32" £21 Amazon
Clamps £1 Poundland
Black cloth £5 Fabric Shop
Airtight Tub £5 Asda
Pen and pad and clipboard
Total £495 approx.
Remember, you may not need everything on this list, and there are cheaper and more expensive options for most items, but I think this represents the best value for money.
For more recommendaitons and more info check out the Small Camera Kit page on my website: www.nathanrae.co.uk/smallkit I hope this helps. If you have any comments, questions or feedback, or would like me to check out a peice of kit you recomend, email me or use the contact me form on the right.