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Recommendation for wide angle video camera for weddings

MartinH32

Prominent Member
Hi Everyone,
I'm a seasoned wedding photographer and recently decided to venture into videography. At the moment I'm putting a kit list together. I've got a Panasonic HC-X1 as the main camera, audio is taken care of by various mics, recorders etc, fluid head tripod etc and two D750 DSLR's (which I use for photography).
What I'm looking for is a wide angle camera that I can use to stick on a tripod in the corner of a church to basically leave running so I can cut in the footage where I see fit during editing. Currently I'll be shooting for 1080p, I don't see any need to go to UHD at the moment.
So any recommendations for such a camera? I'm possibly thinking a GoPro 4, but is there anything more suitable. I could use one of the DSLR's but with a 30 minute recording limit it's a pain to have to go and press the record button every half an hour!
 

Terfyn

Prominent Member
My suggestion would be the Panasonic HC-V770. The wide angle setting is 29.5mm and I can half that to about 15mm with a Neewer add on lens if needed. One advantage of the Panasonic is that it will run off a 5V USB supply so will run happily from an external battery such as the so called power supplies sold to recharge phones etc. I use an AUKEY 20,000mAh unit, lasts about 12 hours. That plus a SDXC card should work.
 

chrishull3

Prominent Member
Hi Everyone,
I'm a seasoned wedding photographer and recently decided to venture into videography. At the moment I'm putting a kit list together. I've got a Panasonic HC-X1 as the main camera, audio is taken care of by various mics, recorders etc, fluid head tripod etc and two D750 DSLR's (which I use for photography).
What I'm looking for is a wide angle camera that I can use to stick on a tripod in the corner of a church to basically leave running so I can cut in the footage where I see fit during editing. Currently I'll be shooting for 1080p, I don't see any need to go to UHD at the moment.
So any recommendations for such a camera? I'm possibly thinking a GoPro 4, but is there anything more suitable. I could use one of the DSLR's but with a 30 minute recording limit it's a pain to have to go and press the record button every half an hour!
You have a very good 4k HC-X1 camcorder even if you are not going to shoot 4K though personaly i would always as one day clients may ask for a 4K version,4k Panasonic consumer cams are not expensive so i would advise you get a 4K consumer camcorder,i still have an HD cam and my wifes mobile is 4K video and takes better detailed footage than that.
 

MartinH32

Prominent Member
My suggestion would be the Panasonic HC-V770. The wide angle setting is 29.5mm and I can half that to about 15mm with a Neewer add on lens if needed. One advantage of the Panasonic is that it will run off a 5V USB supply so will run happily from an external battery such as the so called power supplies sold to recharge phones etc. I use an AUKEY 20,000mAh unit, lasts about 12 hours. That plus a SDXC card should work.
Thank you I will take a look
 

MartinH32

Prominent Member
You have a very good 4k HC-X1 camcorder even if you are not going to shoot 4K though personaly i would always as one day clients may ask for a 4K version,4k Panasonic consumer cams are not expensive so i would advise you get a 4K consumer camcorder,i still have an HD cam and my wifes mobile is 4K video and takes better detailed footage than that.
Thanks - I know what you mean, I've just to be a little careful over finances too.
 

Emerton

Established Member
You should certainly use 4K for a locked off camera, it gives you the option to crop in post without the resolution taking too much of a hit.
 

12harry

Distinguished Member
I wonder if something like a GoPro (in 4K mode), wouldn't be the job? Certainly WA and if an external PSU is acceptable, it will run for ages ( depending on Mem-Card size) =positioned about 8ft off the ground.
The normal battery should run for ~1hr and to save on cash, you could try "Look-Alikes" which are much cheaper ( So buy two?). Being rather small, easy to strap to pillars ( using a mid-grey cloth strap ), or architectural features.
By having two you can cover both Bride/Groom sides, or employ a very tall person to wear one, ( =Mixing with the participants).....
Beware of anything unattended on a tripod - it represents a tip-hazard and folks just don't look where they are going..... that's why I suggested strapping it to a pillar, etc. It also mean bored children can't:- play with it/knock it /move it.
Also, being elevated, you get a far better view of the folks as they get seated/stand-up/ etc. whereas a tripod is probably too low . . . .
Lighting
As a photographer you will know about light-sources and I'd expect this would determine the fixed-positions you choose. GoPros are very capable, but primarily intended for Sport-Outdoor action . . . so a large window putting light onto the FoV would be my guide. You can boost brightness, alter contrast in the Edit.

The only problem I foresee, is that Edit.... having so many views available may mean having "Director's Cut" section for those buying the DVD+ up-front (say), so they get to see the masses.... more-or less unedited in a separate section on the DVD. This version should command a higher price, with little extra work, other than a review to check for/remove bad behaviour, etc.
and adjust light-levels . . . . is it worth cropping? it's more work, but the WA nature of GP can be tiresome for anything more than "Establishing Shots".


Let us know how it works.
 

MartinH32

Prominent Member
I wonder if something like a GoPro (in 4K mode), wouldn't be the job? Certainly WA and if an external PSU is acceptable, it will run for ages ( depending on Mem-Card size) =positioned about 8ft off the ground.
The normal battery should run for ~1hr and to save on cash, you could try "Look-Alikes" which are much cheaper ( So buy two?). Being rather small, easy to strap to pillars ( using a mid-grey cloth strap ), or architectural features.
By having two you can cover both Bride/Groom sides, or employ a very tall person to wear one, ( =Mixing with the participants).....
Beware of anything unattended on a tripod - it represents a tip-hazard and folks just don't look where they are going..... that's why I suggested strapping it to a pillar, etc. It also mean bored children can't:- play with it/knock it /move it.
Also, being elevated, you get a far better view of the folks as they get seated/stand-up/ etc. whereas a tripod is probably too low . . . .
Lighting
As a photographer you will know about light-sources and I'd expect this would determine the fixed-positions you choose. GoPros are very capable, but primarily intended for Sport-Outdoor action . . . so a large window putting light onto the FoV would be my guide. You can boost brightness, alter contrast in the Edit.

The only problem I foresee, is that Edit.... having so many views available may mean having "Director's Cut" section for those buying the DVD+ up-front (say), so they get to see the masses.... more-or less unedited in a separate section on the DVD. This version should command a higher price, with little extra work, other than a review to check for/remove bad behaviour, etc.
and adjust light-levels . . . . is it worth cropping? it's more work, but the WA nature of GP can be tiresome for anything more than "Establishing Shots".


Let us know how it works.
Thanks, you've pretty much got the same thinking as me. I was just wondering before I got a go pro if anything else would work. It's certainly more for cutting to scene setting than anything else - ie. bride walking down the aisle before cutting in close. That kind of thing!
 

12harry

Distinguished Member
Cheers.... That's probably the best-use for such WA gear.... but with two placed in a ?Fitting? you would get even wider coverage and ( With care ) the ability to pan from 1-2 as the bride moves past the "join" - giving you an unpaid second-operator.
+++Would be good to see any quick-edit results.

This "Fitting" would be in two pieces, allowing the pillar-strapped part to remain while the cameras can have battery-changed, etc... then repositioned exactly as before. With a laptop PRIOR you can walk through to check the scene and be certain the Event will be the same.
Ver-2 has a "micro-adjust" so you can move the fixed-point both up/down and across by set numbers of degrees - perhaps using pre-set steps. When you detach the cameras, point them at the settings ( or use spoken Audio ), so you can work-out if any changes are needed.
This makes the "fitting" more complex, but far more useful; since it's almost certain the first-try will not be right ( and might include a light-source that wrecks the exposure for the whole shoot ).
I'm guessing you'd get the "Fixing" in the Right Place ( Esp. with WA coverage), but it wouldn't hurt to shift the whole a few 20degree steps Horiz, maybe 10 degree steps Vert..... if that was noticeable on checking.

...Good Luck...
 
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MartinH32

Prominent Member
Cheers.... That's probably the best-use for such WA gear.... but with two placed in a ?Fitting? you would get even wider coverage and ( With care ) the ability to pan from 1-2 as the bride moves past the "join" - giving you an unpaid second-operator.
+++Would be good to see any quick-edit results.

This "Fitting" would be in two pieces, allowing the pillar-strapped part to remain while the cameras can have battery-changed, etc... then repositioned exactly as before. With a laptop PRIOR you can walk through to check the scene and be certain the Event will be the same.
Ver-2 has a "micro-adjust" so you can move the fixed-point both up/down and across by set numbers of degrees - perhaps using pre-set steps. When you detach the cameras, point them at the settings ( or use spoken Audio ), so you can work-out if any changes are needed.
This makes the "fitting" more complex, but far more useful; since it's almost certain the first-try will not be right ( and might include a light-source that wrecks the exposure for the whole shoot ).
I'm guessing you'd get the "Fixing" in the Right Place ( Esp. with WA coverage), but it wouldn't hurt to shift the whole a few 20degree steps Horiz, maybe 10 degree steps Vert..... if that was noticeable on checking.

...Good Luck...
The one thing to think about in all this from my experience - time!
You just don't have any when shooting so everything has to be in place and set up quickly so really need to keep things simple! Going to start a new thread with a few other questions
 

Mysticpuma

Established Member
I would suggest for simple cutaway shots that a GoPro would work perfectly as a wide overall shot.Also a useful feature of the GoPro is the ability to use an app (IoS, Android) to set the shot up (view the camera feed, change the exposure (dial in exposure compensation if the window highlight is too bright), etc, etc) and then leave it to do the work.
 

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