ONA 2009 Tips for Video Equipment

Beginners with video were advised to start with the Canon HV30 (about $800).

That's what I started with to shoot my first film Rocktober.

They were then told work themselves up to the Sony A1-U (about $2,500). That's kind of where I'm at.

For artsier types with a bigger budget, the Canon 5D Mark II (about $4,000) was recommended.

An AP videographer said he miked it with a Sennheiser MKE 300($250) at the top for audio, using Lexar Pro 24 minute 8GB 300xspeed cards (about $100), to record everything.

The Canon EOS Rebel can also shoot high quality pictures and video, at a lower price ($900).

The importance here though is the lenses and how you use them to make effects. I think a wonderful example is the work the Post has been doing on styles in different D.C. neighborhoods.

Award-winning Nacho Corbella has also made good use of it. I think you almost always need a tripod to make it work, and it freezes work in some ways, making it prettier but more predictable as the action always happens in front of the camera, rather than having the camera counter or accompany the movement. I've never tried it though, so I can't really say.

Panelists said the Flip can also be carried around as an insurance policy, to get emergency shots. The Flip camera ($160) works best in bright light and quiet conditions.

A better version in the same size and price range, since it has a mike input, is the Kodak Zi8 HD pocket video camera ($180).

Finally, an AP videographer walked in to one of the conference rooms with an Israeli-made 20 pound battery and chip-filled backpack which basically used an aggregate of available cell phone services to function as a portable satellite truck. He filmed live onto the room's screen in decent quality. AP said renting the service cost just $2,500 per month for an initial 100 hours of use.

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