Video Blogging Tips – Equipment Guide!

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Recently, we touched on the basic information for starting a video blog and how it can be profitable for your Raleigh SEO campaign.

Today, we are focusing on the equipment that will maximize your budget.

Most small business owners get nervous about producing high-quality video. It’s natural. With endless advertisements for equipment and software ... it can seem overwhelming. But guess what? It doesn’t have to be. With a little knowledge and research you can start creating amazing videos next week without breaking your bank account.

The necessities: Camera, Microphone, Tripod, Lighting and Software. These are the basic elements to start a video blog that looks and feels professional. You will also need to think about your recording space. Where is the actual recording going to take place? It needs to be a quiet area where you will not be disturbed by either outside or inside interruptions.

Camera – This is the most expensive piece. We suggest purchasing a DSLR that shoots both photos and HD video. This way you'll be able to use the camera for multiple purposes instead of just recording video. The Canon Digital Rebel T4i ($600.00) and Nikon D3200 ($500.00) are not the newest models but are ranked great for beginners.

Raleigh SEO Super Tip: Make sure to hold each camera before buying. You want to make sure it feels comfortable as each camera body is different.

Can’t afford a DSLR?  The Samsung MV900F and Canon PowerShot SX260 HS are both fantastic cameras that record in 1080p for under $200.

Microphone – You have a few different options here. You can go with internal, on and/or off camera or USB. Internal and on camera mics are the easiest to use but can pick up camera noise. Off camera typically requires a second person or extra gear to hold the mic close to the person without it being in the frame. USB typically has the best sound but it will not plug into the camera. These are normally used for recording audio straight to your computer. Here are the best, budget friendly, microphones in each category.

On Camera: These three will meet or exceed your needs.  Rode Stereo VideoMic Pro- $300; Rode VideoMic - $100- $200; or the Audio-Technica PRO 24 - $60.

Off Camera: The Azden ECZ-990 - $70 - $100 is a great for beginners but if you have some extra budget room then the Sennheiser MKE 400 at $200 is a great buy. Just remember that with off camera you will need a boom, a pair of headphones and probably an extra person.

USB: Blue Microphones Yeti - $100 or Snowball - $70. These seem to be well received by consumers and obtained high ratings from most reviewers. These are great if you plan to podcast or create graphical videos with charts and information with audio in the background. Internal: This is your on-board microphone inside the camera. You should do a test run first to see if this will work for your needs.

Raleigh SEO Super Tip: The  internal microphone should be your last option for quality concerns.

Tripod Pearstone VT-2100 Fluid Head Video Tripod - $80-$150 is really nice for the sub $200 category. Don't spend a lot of money on a tripod. Just make sure it’s light weight, sturdy and expands to the height you need.

Lighting - This is important. You want to make sure your audience can see your face so the recording space should be well lit. We suggest the CowboyStudio Photo and Video Studio Umbrella Continuous Lighting Kit - $70.

You can also drive down to Lowes or your local hardware store and purchase a set of work lights. You can bounce these off the wall or a foam core.

Raleigh SEO Super Tip: Work lights are inexpensive but intense. Don't shine them directly on you because they get pretty hot.

Software - Go with free. If you want no frills and easy on beginners then Windows Movie Maker or iMovie for macs should be your first choice. Great for first timers who are not looking for tons of expert features. 

Feeling tech savvy? Then download either VSDC or Filelab’s free video editor.  Both offer plenty of features that even professionals would be proud to use.

Got a great tip for the first time video blogger? Please comment below. We would love to hear them.

Happy Holidays! Have a great week and stay positive!

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