A video production company can advise on a script, handle all the filming and editing to make your video more compelling. But let’s face it, not everyone has a budget or is ready to hire a production company. So here’s your challenge. Try to make a video using nothing other than a smart phone of iPhone for perhaps your next video blog. This is your chance to prove to the world that great content creation on a smart phone or iPhone is possible. The great news is that you most likely already have a smart phone or iPhone which means it’s really down to the accessories you use to bring it up a level. With each generation the camera video recording quality is improving so why not take advantage of it? Shooting with smaller equipment isn’t necessarily a bad thing. While you wont see Hollywood productions being shot on a smart phone or iPhone, even the pro equipment is reducing in size.
This post is close to me because I want to share with you what’s possible on a budget . If you are ready to take on the challenge you will need to make sure you manage your sound, lighting and camera positioning correctly. Add a bit or creativity along with a great script and you should see your production quality greatly improve. Planning wise you can check out one of my earlier posts on scripts here and storyboarding here. Let’s get you started with the recipe below.
Make A Video Served On A Budget – Recipe #1
Make a video with correct sound and lighting – No video recipe is complete without sound and its important to get this element right. Smart phones and iPhones can take great video, but the internal microphones can pick up a lot of noise disturbance. Unless you are talking directly into your phone its easy for the sound to get lost. Few people I speak to realise that an external microphone like a microphone used for interviews can be added. The microphone adapter makes this all possible. To help you make a video with a professional touch get started by collecting the key ingredients below.
Plug one of these into your iPhone or Smart Phone and you’ll have a variety of microphones to choose from. You don’t have to spend a lot of money. This adaptor will allow you to connect most 3.5 mm microphones to your smart phone or iPhone.
Higher quality cable by RØDE – RØDE SC4
Once the microphone adapter has been attached you can then attach a lapel or lavalier microphone similar to the one below. Once you connect it to yourself or the subject of your video you will notice a dramatic improvement in sound. These microphones capture sound more accurately and block out surrounding noise.
Search Amazon or the web and your find plenty of lapel mics to choose from. If you want to really keep costs down check out these mics below. Yes they are cheap, but they will be an upgrade from your phones microphone. Most of the reviews are positive and I’ve personally tried them.
Best cheap Lapel Microphone by Neewer
The smartLav is a professional-grade microphone specifically designed for iPhone and smart phones. Users can connect the microphone to a smart phone or iPhone without use of a microphone adapter. The sound is incredibly clean and will make all of your videos sound great.
If you are thinking of shooting outdoors, don’t let a windy day ruin your video shoot. You can capture great audio by taking a few precautions which include using a wind cover.
Rycote makes some great Overcovers have been specifically designed for use with small personal microphones in windy outdoor conditions.
Make sure you get yourself a tripod to stabilize the image. You can buy a tripod designed for your smart phone or iPhone for next to nothing. Before filming make sure you set the right height and distance of the phone and camera. You want to make sure that your head isn’t cut off unnecessarily.
There are a number of these portable tripods for smartphones and the iPhone on the market. More and more are coming onto the market, but I’ve listed a few below worth checking out (Prices in descending order)
Joby GripTight – This little tripod supports the iPhone 5, iPhone 4/4S, iPhone 3/3G, and other smartphones (such as Samsung Galaxy S III, Nokia Lumia 900, Motorola Droid RAZR MAXX or HTC Evo 4G), with or without protective cases. You may be able to find it elsewhere on the internet, but I’ve provided some Amazon links below. (Prices subject to change)
Breffo Spiderpodium Flexible Gadget Grip and Travel Dock– This is a funky little grip which has been designed to support almost all smartphone shapes and sizes
Joby GripTight – If you already have a tripod and simply want to add a mount which can hold your smartphone or iPhone check out this little device Mount for Smartphones