Full set up ready for shooting.

Finally it is here. And, to your relief another post not about running. I’ve been asked and been threatening to put up a post about my current equipment for filming for a couple of weeks. Before we get into the details I just want to point out a few things. Bear in mind that I’ve had to go for equipment that keeps everything as light as possible for every gram I add to my backpack adds up! Don’t laugh, some people are so obsessed and dedicated to keeping their pack weights down that they’ll even cut a toothbrush in half. Also, I’ve tried to get reasonably decent equipment for what I can afford. Even a shoe string budget would be considered as a lot for me. So, let’s jump in and get shooting. 

First of all, my ‘camera’. For how I am currently filming it was quite convenient that I didn’t have to shell out some of my non-existent money for a camera. All I am actually using is my iPhone 5. Simple. I have bettered its filming capabilities by downloading an app (which did cost money) instead of using their standard camera app with limited features. It’s called FiLMiC Pro and it retails for £2.99. That’s far cheaper than a camera! I’m not going to go into detail here but you can change the definition, frame rates, audio, and you can see exposure and focus to different points to name a few. I’m sure there are very knowledgeable reports online for the app. I won’t even try because mine would be laughable.

 

Next up we have the lenses. These bad boys I got from a crowd called Photojojo. I was unable to find them in the UK, even second hand off eBay so I had to import them from the US but their turnaround time was great. I ordered a set of 3 (4) lenses. One of them is a 2-in-1 lens. They retail for $49.00. This includes the Wide Angle/Macro lens (yes that is the 2-in-1 lens), a Fisheye lens, and a Polarising lens. I do, really, like these little goodies.


3/4 lens set. The uncapped lens is the 2-in-1.

There’s no point in having great footage if you’ve got shi…, rubbish sound. It is amazing how often audio is overlooked by us amateurs! The internal mic on the iPhone just sucks in sound from everywhere. I stand to be corrected, but I think it has a 360 degree ‘pick up’. So I got myself an affordable directional microphone, or a shotgun mic. I picked up a new Belkin LiveAction Mic for about £16.00, even though their site say £44.99!

Still on audio. Considering all of my filming is going to be done outside, yes I still class being in a tent as outside in terms of audio recording, I need to do something to negate the wind. A gentle, cooling breeze on a sunny day will sound like an arctic blizzard on the recorded audio. Instead of forking out some cash for a cover I made my own ‘dead cat’. It came to a grand old total of about £2.50 and I still have enough material to make another 3. Score! I’ll throw up a blog post soon on how to make one of these.


Shotgun mic and my homemade dead cat.

Next I need my filming gear to be propped up and steady while shooting. For this I got myself a GripTight GorillaPod. They are as cool as their name. This came in at about £15.00. The only thing is I should have instead got the one for ‘panning and tilting’, but it’s still a good product none the less.


The GripTight GorillaPod and its lack of resemblance to a gorilla.

Last on my list is a wireless shutter remote made by Muku. I picked it up from Photojojo (same guys who make the lenses). On the site it says they are $40.00 but I remember paying far less but can’t remember the exact amount. I might be wrong. This little goodie helps me save time and space on my phone by allowing me to wirelessly hit record so I don’t have to be standing at the phone to start and stop the recording. I’m trying to cover as little extra mileage as possible!


Muku's Shuttr.


There you have it, the basics of my basic filming equipment. For all you experts in the field please shed some light on what I should go for when getting a proper video camera? Also, what advice you might have on filming better video, editing better and various other nuggets of gold involved in your industry? Well, South Downs Way is fast approaching with a video to follow. Let’s see if I can make a better video than the last. Followed by more blogs, blogs on the run. Until then….

Cheers.