Hi again, I think I’ll st


Hi again,

I think I’ll start at the end of you last post, on firestore.

It’s a great tool, but a spendy tool. On the pro side, you can record up to three hours on it at a time, and it’s fast for dumping onto your PC. On the con side, it costs almost $700 for the cheap model, and about a grand for the fancy model.

I’ve never used them before, but I have used other products by Focus, the company that makes the FireStore. They’re a good company from what I’ve experienced. Yeah, you’ll never have to buy another MiniDV tape again, but if you buy three cameras and put one on each of these, you’d have to buy about 1300 tapes before you broke even.

Besides, letting the video dump in realtime gives you the chance to review it right before you edit.

The other option is to buy a super laptop for editing, and plug the camera directly into it and record live. That’s all the Firestore is.

They have nothing. No cameras. No computer. No lights. Zip. This is from the ground up.

Do they have any sound equipment? Mic’s, cables, anything? Some of that might reduce your need to buy more equipment.

We will be filming all kinds of things… Weddings? Maybe… kids plays, musicals, services, all that kind of stuff will probably get filmed at some point… I’m sure I’ll be asked to make videos of anything and everything, but the #1 function is to film original productions. I would rather spend more here though to get the right camera… I also can envision a few years down the road trying to setup a 3 camera shoot for webcasting the services. I’d like to buy a camera that I can use in that setup when the time comes.

The GL-2 is actually capable of this. If you plan on someday getting a switcher, you’ll need to buy MA-300’s for each GL-2 to convert your composite video into a bnc style connector, but aside from that, you’d be set.

Seriously, if you are sold on Canon, I would say get a couple GL-2’s for now. They’re not bad. They don’t work as well under low lighting as the Sony VX-2100, but since your primary purpose is production of short clips, that’s not a problem. And then next year, you can buy an XL-2, which would be a good camera for what you need.

Does the XL1 & XL2 have XLR inputs to where I can just plug mics right in?

Something to know about the XL-1 is that it’s an old model, and is being phased out by Canon in favor of the XL-2. That being said, the only prosumer camera Canon produces with built-in XLR jacks is the XL-2. But that camera costs 1/3 of your total budget. Hold off on buying it til next year’s budget.

(Re: Bogen 503 vs. Boge 516) How much are we talking here for this?

For the 503, you’re talking 275 bucks. The 516 is about $550. Sticks will run anyplace from $200-$600 for a fair set. The 521 controller is usually about $190.

Any brands you recommend here? We’ll need this to be portable… we won’t really have a "studio" to film in. Everythign will be done on location.

I don’t really have any one brand I use or love. The lights I currently use are a Frankenstein’ed collection form who knows how many light kits. I almost never use them, because I mostly do events where lighting is a bad idea, like weddings.

Lapel mics are going to have to be a reality for us at first, because we just won’t have the crew or manpower / know-how to start using shotguns right off the bat. I could see us moving to that in the future.

Honestly, for the cost of it, you’d probably be better off buying a nice shotgun mic and paying somebody $8/hr to hold it than to go wireless for productions. The price difference is huge.

But if you do want to go wireless, Shure has a series specifically for videography. You can see them at their website. I have a set of Azden ULT200 mics I use from time to time. They’re okay, but because they’re not true diversity, they drop out every now and again. Not often, but it happens.

Really, for most of this stuff, you can either get great quality that’s not the most convenient, or you can get acceptable quality that’s far more convienient, and carries a price tag to prove it.

I got started in a big church that had a TON of equipment. Seriously, if they liquidated their entire AV department, they would easily make over a million dollars. They actually were rated as the second best editing suite in Omaha. Believe me when I say, coming from that background, it’s easy for me to want to buy the top of the line stuff, but the reality is that like you, when I started this business I had a budget, and as much as I wanted to get the pretty toys, I’ve had to put that off to get the sensible stuff for now. But hopefully soon, the toys, they will be mine πŸ˜‰

I’m interested to see how this all turns out. Keep us informed!

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