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Fan Productions Creating our own Trek canon!

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Old September 3 2010, 02:52 AM   #1
FalTorPan
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Cameras and Sound Equipment

What types of cameras and sound equipment do you use in your productions? In my finally almost-completed Astronuts sci-fi spoof (shoestringscifi.com), which was filmed way back in 2001, I used a consumer-grade Sony Digital8 Handycam, and I relied on its internal microphone. Needless to say the quality of both the video and audio weren't great.

I'm interested in starting another project within a year -- a project that will take far less than a decade to complete -- and I'm wondering what sorts of cameras and sound equipment people are using in contemporary low-budget productions.

Thanks in advance!
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Old September 3 2010, 02:57 AM   #2
BolianAuthor
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Re: Cameras and Sound Equipment

I don't use this for production, but this is the cheapest thing that can film in full 1080p, and accommodate an external microphone.

http://gizmodo.com/5325151/kodak-zi8...er-and-sd-slot
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Old September 3 2010, 03:08 AM   #3
Potemkin_Prod
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Re: Cameras and Sound Equipment

We used a Panasonic 3-chip DV Cam that shot in HQ 480p and had a nice boom mike with it for "The Old Guys." For "Care for a Lift?" we used a Panasonic 1-chip PV-DV900 with its shotgun mike. "The Old Guys" was meant to be a test of the equipment (looks GOOD), and "Care for a Lift?" was meant to be a test of the turbolift set (looks GOOD, but GRAINY).

Obviously, we need to invest in some lighting.
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Old September 3 2010, 03:25 AM   #4
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Re: Cameras and Sound Equipment

Depends just how low your budget is and how professional you want to go.

For about $500 you can get a Canon HF10, which shoots HD footage at 24p, 30p, or 60p, whichever suits your fancy. It doesn't give you a shallow DOF, but if that's not a problem, then don't worry about it. If it is, you can purchase an adapter for another $100. If you got more money I hear a lot of people are digging DSLR's that shoot video, like the Canon 7d. Not as expensive as a full blown indie filmmaker's camera, but almost the same quality. And with the ability to switch lenses, you can play with all sorts of depth.

For sound, you would probably want at least a solid hyper-cardioid mic which can run you a couple hundred bucks. You would then want to run it to a recorder like the Zoom H4 (or lower I guess, but I know the H4 has XLR hookups) which is around $300.

If you don't want to go that far in debt, then at least try to pick up some sort of good sound equipment. You can excuse and work with bad image quality, but it's hard to deal with crappy sound.
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Old September 3 2010, 03:49 AM   #5
Potemkin_Prod
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Re: Cameras and Sound Equipment

Fan films are peculiar things. We have folks with the right equipment lined up, and they've already proven their reliability. We're just looking for the right equipment for our budget (i.e. NONE) for shooting short little vignettes.

When we shot "The Old Guys," the equipment was easily worth $3000 (cam, lights, mike). But scheduling to use that equipment can be a challenge. Our first 30-mins episode won't begin filming until November when the actors and the equipment are BOTH available.
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Old September 3 2010, 04:30 PM   #6
Admiral Buzzkill
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Re: Cameras and Sound Equipment

We're using a Canon 7d to shoot in HD.
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Old September 3 2010, 08:10 PM   #7
Owain Taggart
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Re: Cameras and Sound Equipment

I don't shoot fanfilms, but I do shoot other forms of video, I figured I'd pop in here and say that I've ordered a Zoom H1 to be used with a Canon 7d. It's very affordable. Check it out:

http://www.samsontech.com/products/p...fm?prodID=2053

I haven't received it yet, since they haven't been released yet, but looks to be well designed for the purpose of using it with dSLRs.
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Old September 3 2010, 11:55 PM   #8
FalTorPan
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Re: Cameras and Sound Equipment

Thanks to everyone who has shared their experiences and plans. My only regret when making Astronuts was being too cheap when it came to sound.

Looks like I have some research to do!
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Old September 5 2010, 02:08 AM   #9
Sir Rhosis
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Re: Cameras and Sound Equipment

I use a Canon HV40 for personal home movies (g/f's grandkids, etc.). Very nice picture quality. Got it for $699.

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Old September 5 2010, 03:37 AM   #10
GSchnitzer
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Re: Cameras and Sound Equipment

For our Star Trek Phase II episode "Kitumba," we used a "Red One" camera by Red Digital Cinema Camera Company.
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