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suitable cameras for business

Discussion in 'Camcorders, Action Cams & Video Editing Forum' started by TITCH1982, Nov 18, 2004.

  1. TITCH1982

    TITCH1982
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    Hi

    im new to the forum as u can probably tell, so i apoligise if ive posted in the wrong thread etc,

    basically im trying to start a new small business, making wedding videos. ive been making videos since i was about 14 and have recently starting saving money from my dead end job so i could start up something that im interested in.

    I was hoping that someone in the forums was doing the same sort of thing who could help me on technical selection, I have about £1500 budget for cameras and basic equipment but with so much choice i am bewildered as to what to invest in. I need a cheap dv cam and a also a decent broadcast quality camera, but im unsure as to whether risk goin second hand or not as i no 1500 is pretty limited.

    any advice whatsever would be greatly appreciated, whether to do with equipmant or just general advice on this type of thing - thanks in advance - rich
     
  2. Roy Mallard

    Roy Mallard
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    Spend your £1500 on tuition, much better value than a camera, then try and get a working practiioner to take you on. This way you can learn the craft without investing (and potentially losing) a lot of money in something you may decide is not for you.

    No offence intended here but there are enough hobbyists masquarading as professionals. To do this type of work to a professional standard takes training and experience more than kit. Ok, you've been doing stuff with a cam for years, but have you been doing it properly?.

    Look at the cost of and criteria for membership accreditation of the IOV.

    Look at the cost of Public Liability Insurance (this is the ONE thing you absolutely need)

    Do you have a stable high spec pc running professional software?.
    If not, have you priced one/ (Pinnacle Studio & iMovie will NOT cut it)

    When you are working out your rates have you taken into account the cost of repaying loans, your hourly rate whilst editing + any re-edits.

    As well as a camera you WILL need:

    A decent tripod (allow at least £150, probably more like £500 manfrotto)

    An external on cam mic (at least £150, more like £350 sennehiser MKE300/ME66)

    A radio mic kit (£500 - £750 for a sennheiser evolution kit) essential for miking the groom.

    A lighting kit (at least 4x REDs, £800)

    A paglight for on camera use (£200-£300)

    A second cam for a wide/safety cover shot.

    A robust DV deck for capture to your PC (£1500-£2500)

    Every gig you do you'll need an assistant/second cam operator.

    As regards your main cam, you could probably pick up a second hand XL1's or Sony VX9000 / DSR PD250 / 270 within your budget. These cams aren't necessarily any better picture and audio quality, but they look more impressive (a big deal when at every wedding I've done theres been at least five folk with their own handycams, you have to look more professioanl than uncle Ted, my sony 900 looks no different to Auntie Shielas hi8 cam to the untrained eye).

    The cam of choice amongst wedding guys at the moment seems to be the JVC DV500/5000, which is about £4k a pop.

    If you want decent sound on a XL1 or VX9000 you'll need to spend an extra £300 on a beachtek xlr box.

    I'm not trying to be difficult here, but bear in mind you'll be competing against folk like me for business, so you have to do it right. You might beat me on price, but you won't beat me on quality.

    So yeah I have politics in what I'm saying a) you're threatening my livliehood merely by your aspirations, b) you're threatening the reputation of my craft by doing it incorrectly but c) you risk losing a lot of money.

    If you want to do it, get professional tuition, and as I say, try and get a job with somebody who is already doing this kind of work, you'll learn loads and you have the chance to decide whether you think it's all it's cracked up to be (a question I ask often when I'm up till 4am at the end of a week long edit of the same wedding video).

    Last of all man, good luck, I really do mean this, if you try it, like it and can do a good job and still turn a buck, you're doing better than most, but I would definately say you are attacking it from the wrong angle.
     
  3. TITCH1982

    TITCH1982
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    Thanks Roy

    your constructive critism has been a great help. I didnt even no about the IOV so that has been a good start i have already sent off for an information pack. I do have have a little expereience as you say, ive recently been working for free at a small media company in my town who make eductional videos (i no its not the same but its a start). I have also had hours of proffesional tuition at university, the reason i failed my course was because i was spending hours bunking off my course to go into my friends media lessons where i supmitted my own work for marking in a course i wasnt enrolled in (ooooops).

    Dont worry about the stable computer and use of proffesional programs, sadly due to the winter i become a recluse and learn more about computers and programs until its time to go to work (or pub) so i would say im pretty handy with premiere, and have a basic knowledge of avid.

    As you say I do need to probably rethink my plans because there are obvously alot of things i havent accounted for (which was the main reason I came to this forum), and may be some more hands on experience is needed. I have been thinking of starting this up for along time now and have found that locally I could easily create better videos than most of the wedding video specialits in my area (theres only 2) who are as you say hoppyists trying to be proffesionals.

    The reason I so badly want to give this a go is that If I dont try now, and take a risk Im just gonna be another university drop out working in a crappy job which he doesnt enjoy, I do really want to make a go of this, I love creating videos and seeing poeples reactions when something u have made has made them really think, and to do this as my job would almost be a dream.

    (sorry bout last paragraph, bit of a life story moment)

    Anyways mate thanks for the advice

    Rich

    I hope you dont mind in the future if i have any querys i can come back to ask you as you have obvously been in the business a little while and will probably have a greater knowledge depth than most people i will be able to contact.
     
  4. robroy

    robroy
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    Titch, don't start with wedding videos.

    Without getting all slushy and romantic, a wedding is a big day for a couple and there are enough incompetant and rip-off videographers out there without you blundering in, albeit as a well-meaning beginner. More importantly for you, couples are realising that they can take a shoddy videographer to court for compensation if he/she doesn't come up to scratch and the insurance doesn't cover incompetance so you could end up paying a monthly fine for a few years.

    Start by making your own videos where the only person to suffer if things go wrong is yourself. Try making local documentaries for clubs and societies, videoing an amateur dramatic society for example, or adult videos (just make sure you stay behind the camera) and then editing them yourself and then try to sell the result. It's hard work and you probably won't get a huge immediate financal success, but will benefit in the long run. One cocked-up wedding could ruin your career before it even starts, there are enough blacklisted vidographers who will never get past cheap weddings without you joining their ranks.

    With regard to "industrial and commercial" videographers. I personally wouldn't even speak to a "professional" videographer who turned up with anything less than a Sony PD170 (about £3k with a decent microphone) and would expect something more like a Panasonic DVCpro or better DVCam. You're looking at about £10k for a basic start-up kit.

    Now a really good bit of advice: Turn up to Video Forum
    (Earls Court 25-27 Jan 2005 http://www.videoforum.co.uk)
    and visit the seminars and talk to some of the people there who will give you good one-to-one advice.

    Rob.
     

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