While you are worried about designing an interesting online course, you may forget about all the video recording equipment you will need to start this venture.
From microphones and lenses all the way to proper lighting, there is a lot you must carefully consider.
It can be overwhelming to choose the right sort of video gear for your new online courses. It’s not just the tens of options that you have to mull over but also figuring out whether the equipment is worth the money can be a daunting task as well.
If you have $150 to get started or more to spend, we will be breaking down which lenses, camera, microphones, and lighting to get for three budget ranges. However, before we get to that, here are two things you should know about getting your video recording equipment.
If you’d like to see a graphical breakdown of the video recording equipment, we got you covered:
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Content Matters the Most
You should keep in mind that the biggest contributor to the success of the online business is your content and only that.
It has to be good if you want your business to be successful. You can invest in the greatest and best gear in the world, but it will not really lead to anything if your content is not good.
You should first focus on researching and planning out your content so that when you invest in video recording equipment, it is worth it.
Expensive Equipment Isn’t Always the Best Option
When you are getting video recording equipment, it is vital to remember that the best gear is one that allows you to start selling your online courses and is within your budget range.
Spending too much time and money on an expensive DSLR can be a waste for you when you can film with your phone in the beginning.
Devices for Video Recording
Almost everyone has a smartphone, and if you own an Android or an iPhone, you know that the video quality on them can be quite great. If you haven’t started filming your online course yet, you can buy a tripod and start filming your course.
There are some settling adjustments that you will have to make, but the phone can be quite enough to start recording and putting out work. There are plenty of free applications right on the phone where you can edit the video too. Abode Rush is a great application to start building content.
You might also have a computer or a laptop with a built-in webcam.
Using the built-in camera can be a great way to start your online courses without making a big initial investment. However, between a webcam and a smartphone, we recommend the latter since the camera is much better.
If you decide on using the webcam, you should film the video in natural light, keep the webcam at eye level, and make sure you have a clean background. This advice applies to all recording methods and can significantly improve image quality.
If you are interested in getting a high-quality external webcam, they come at the cost of around $30-$100. Here are some popular brands that you can get:
- Logitech HD Pro Webcam C920
- Microsoft Life Cam
- Logitech HD Laptop Webcam C615
- Point and Shoot Camera
If you have a bigger budget for the video recording equipment, you can look into a point and shoot camera. These come in a range of $100-$300 and are quite easy to use. They don’t require a lot of study into ISO, shutter speed, etc., which you will need to work with if you get a DSLR.
Here are some good options:
Please note that by paying a significantly higher price, you will not be getting a huge improvement in the quality of the video. The price difference can be huge, but the improvement in quality is only slight. You can learn about the return on investment for cameras here.
If you have serious investment for the online courses you are about to teach and need the best quality footage possible, the next investment is getting a DSLR.
Again, you should keep in mind that the difference in additional lenses and camera models don’t have as much of an impact on quality as you may first think.
You should concentrate your research on finding a model that would be more suited to your experience and needs rather than the most expensive or well-liked of the bunch.
A lot of people recommend taking up alternative filming methods like your phone or webcam before you invest in the first DSLR. This can give you more insight into how to edit and put out your videos before you make a serious financial investment.
By the time you are running a successful business, you will have the budget to elevate your business to a whole new level with a DSLR. Here are some good DSLRs you can look into:
Lighting Gear for Online Courses
You don’t need to invest thousands of dollars to set up a professional studio for your online course recordings. You can simply get a $100 lightning kit that includes a carry case, softbox, light stands, and light bulbs.
Here are three common setups for the light that you can do depending on the content you are creating.
- If you are standing closer to the camera or are seat at a desk, you only need a single light. Ring lights are great for this purpose since they also have a place to attach your camera on.
- If the plan is to record in a slightly larger space with a whiteboard, you will need more lights. The best plan is to get two softbox lights (on either side to cancel out shadows) perched on stands and a third hair light or backlight.
- If the recording will take place in a mixture of the above two, then getting two lights can be enough. You can work with some ambient lighting to fill out the room, which will also illuminate your face too.
The easiest and low-risk lighting setup is a ring light since that has the smallest learning curve. Larger rooms require more light to set up to reduce the unsightly shadows in the background and on yourself.
If you are pushing out a lot of videos and need higher-end lighting set up, you will need to read more about the requirements of the setup too.
For example, you are investing in separate lights, you need to make sure you pick ones from similar color temperature. The higher-end setup will also require better camera recording equipment to capture the increased video quality.
USB microphones can be the easiest audio equipment you can get. All you need to do is simply plug it into the laptop and start recording. Here are the best five USB microphones that you can look into:
The Blue Yeti microphone is recommended in most blogs and articles about creating online courses. It has excellent quality and pickups audio really well.
The zero-latency ensures no delays in your audio from the mic to your laptop. You can control volumes and use the built-in jack for the audio recording.
Rode NT USB
Rode NT USB has similar audio quality with Blue Yeti, but it only works with the cardioid pattern. It is the best choice if you need this pattern. It is slightly more expensive at $169 but comes with accessories. It is free of delay, zero latency, and echo.
The internal pop filter also helps to minimize the sound that overloads the capsule. If you have no issues about budget, you can also try the Rode Podcaster for $59 more.
The AT2020USB+ microphone is a cardioid condenser with volume control and a built-in jack. The pre-recorded audio can be blended into the microphone through mix control options. It comes with crucial accessories like a swivel mount and a tripod.
Software You May Need
Alongside a microphone, lights, and camera, you also need software tools to edit and record the videos for the online course. Here are some free tools that you can use.
Software for recording video:
Software for editing videos:
When you are setting out to invest in video recording equipment for your online courses, it is important to stick to the budget.
Don’t go out of your way to spend money on the best recording gear if you cannot afford it. Set up your online course business before you begin to invest in higher quality equipment.