Getting started with Video – Home Vlogging Kit

Posted 22nd March 2020
by Mark Robinson

Hello! In case you didn’t see it I made my first ever video post this week after realising I have become my Dad! I had started off down the ‘do as I say not as I do’ route. 😱  I often tell people not to worry about being on video.  Your contacts (the people most likely to see your post) have probably already seen you looking less than perfect as you arrive at a meeting damp and dishevelled after walking across the car park just as the heavens have opened or alternatively, red faced and breathless as you’ve had to race to your meeting to avoid being late.

The response to my post was overwhelmingly positive (thank you 🙏) but, the one common thread in the responses was asking what kit I had used or how can they get start doing the same.  Firstly I want to point out that you don’t need any special kit – I had ordered mine before we went on lockdown as I realised I needed to Man-up and embrace video.

If you’re interested in seeing what kit I chose then take a look.  Firstly I knew I didn’t need to worry about a camera, as you may have heard me say in person, most of us have a perfectly adequate HD or 4K camera in our pockets, I have an iPhone 11 so to use this was an easy choice. Next I decided I would feel more comfortable stood up chatting to camera so I needed a tall tripod or device to do so.  I spent hours online looking for a cheap tripod and, whilst I saw quite a few that would do the job their maximum height was around 4ft – 5ft and I wanted it to be 6ft.  There were plenty available but not at the price I wanted to pay.  This Manfrotto tripod looked great and I seriously considered it but decided it was too expensive for what I needed.  Of course we use tripods for our filming but those are much more heavy duty so I couldn’t justify this just for holding my phone. I opted instead for this simple goose neck stand for my phone.

Now I have ticked the box for camera and tripod I decided I wanted decent sound, there’s nothing worse than poor sound and it’s guaranteed to make people click away from your content so I added a radio mic to my basket and an extension lead so I wasn’t tethered too closely to my phone – I know I am bound to forget and walk away sending my phone crashing to the floor so it just seemed sensible. Finally, because Apple like to be ‘innovative’ I realise the 3.5mm jack on the mic wouldn’t work with my phone.  I researched bluetooth mics but again decided it was not financially viable for what I wanted so I bought a lightening to 3.5mm jack adapter. All I had to do then was sit back and wait for the goods to arrive!

You may have seen the very first video earlier but here’s the one to accompany this post, remember you don’t really need any special kit, but if you do decide to buy some kit I hope you find this post useful.  Feel free to ask any questions you may have and I will aim to answer. In the meantime have fun experimenting!

See you soon,

Mark