Video equipment basics

How to choose equipment

In this lesson, we’ll get you started in researching and buying equipment. Be warned: Researching products to buy can gobble up your time, patience, and eventually, your money. You need a clear idea of what you really need before you start. Here’s how to set a solid buying mindset:

  1. start with the “Do I really need this?” game: try to talk yourself out it by thinking of every possible negative: more to carry around, more to break, more set-up, more cost for replacement parts, like batteries or bulbs, won’t actually make much of a difference in the final result
  2. if it’s still on, try to pinpoint exactly what benefits you’ll get: if you’ve been shooting a lot outdoors with the built-in microphone, and getting lots of that awful scratchy, popping wind sound, an external mic with a windscreen should make a HUGE difference. That’s a solid reason buy one. Look for reasons like that.
  • try before you buy
  • buy cheap to try
  • use reviews
  • read the most critical reviews
  • set a research deadline for each item