Holiday Gift Ideas

Not sure what sort of video toys to ask for this December? Here are some suggestions to make sure your wish list is complete. It’s that time of year again.

Your spouse and kids will soon scramble to the mall to find the "perfect" present for you. What’s that? You say you have enough neckties? You don’t need another sweater? Why not give your poor family a few helpful hints? You’ll get what you want, and they won’t have to pull their hair out trying to decide whether you’d rather have a new pair of slippers or a nose-hair trimmer.

You know, it’s not too late to start dropping hints. Maybe you can get some fun new toys for your video bag! Videographers are easy to shop for if the shopper knows what to look for. And gifts can be found at all price points. So take out your pen and start making that shopping list. Here are a few ideas to get your list started.

Low-Dollar Ideas

  •   Blank Tape

    Every videographer needs tape. In fact, you can never have too many on hand. Be sure your shoppers know what format you use and if you prefer one brand or grade to another.

    Cost: $2 – $20

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  •   Connectors and Adapters

    It never hurts to have a good selection of adapters in your video kit. Barrel connectors, XLR to 1/8-inch stereo audio adapters, line attenuators, BNC to RCA video adapters, two-prong to three-prong AC adapters. There are lots of them that you might need. Make a short list of those that you want and tack it up on the fridge.

    Cost: $1 – $25

  •   Audio and Video Cables

    When was the last time you bought new audio and video cables? The holidays are a great time to upgrade. RCA audio and video cables are affordable gifts that you’ll be sure to love.

    Cost: $1 – $25

  •   Backup Batteries

    Whether your loved ones want to buy you 9-volt batteries for your wireless mike or NiCads for your camcorder, extra batteries are always a good idea.

    Cost: $2 – $75

  •   Assorted Accessories

    There are tons of random accessories that videographers need. Mike stands, pop filters, windscreens, gaffer’s tape, light reflectors, extension cords, power strips and pancake makeup are just a few.

    Cost: $.50 – $50

    Mid-Range Items

  •   Editing Software

    Ready to upgrade your editing software? Maybe it’s time to step up from the entry-level program that came with your new computer, or to upgrade to a high-end program. Editing software is cheaper than ever, and packs a lot of power for the dollar.

    Cost: $49 and up

  •   Tripod

    A well-made tripod with sturdy legs and a fluid head is the best tool for shooting steady shots. What shape is yours in?

    Cost: $50 – $1,500

  •   Microphone

    The well-equipped videographer uses different mikes in different situations. Consider adding a new lavalier, shotgun, hand-held, or PZM mike to your audio arsenal.

    Cost: $100 – $1,000

    Big-Buck Buys

  •   Camcorder

    How’s that old camcorder holding up? The new models are more affordable and record better images than they ever have before.

    Standard grade analog models can be had for as little as $350. High-end digital models can cost the consumer anywhere from $2,500 – $6,000.

  •   Light Kit

    Good lighting is the biggest difference between amateur and professional video, and is the number one factor in image quality. Maybe it’s time to add a light kit to your production gear.

    Portable three-light kits range from

    $300 – $2,500.

  •   Turnkey Computer System

    If money is no object this winter, why not ask for a whole new pre-configured video-editing computer system? Whether you want a simple system to edit home video or a full-blown professional model, there’s surely a turnkey system out there with your name on it.

    Cost: $800 – $25,000

    What’s Important

    Remember, as you unwrap your new videography gear, large or small, to consider any gift an act of love. And even more important, your new present shows that someone close to you recognizes the importance of video in your life.

  • The Videomaker Editors are dedicated to bringing you the information you need to produce and share better video.