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Videographer Tips – 8 Essential Settings for a Video Camera

Toronto Videographer - C100 Camera settings

A skilled, professional videographer can be very busy with corporate video production needs in Mississauga and Toronto area as these are the thriving business hubs in Canada.  When filming in a run and gun scenario it can be a chaotic with many things to juggle at the same time.  Operating a video camera requires a lot of attention to detail especially when you’re in a fast paced environment, which is the case a lot of the time.  It’s crucial for a camera operator to manage everything going on behind the camera as well as in front of the lens. Setting up a video camera with the correct settings is critical in order to get the best images creatively and technically.

This is a basic list of 8 things that a videographer should check before pushing the record button:

Toronto Videographer – Setting up your Camera

  1. Frame rate & Resolution – these are very important settings to check whether you’re filming with one or multiple cameras. Make sure you’re filming at the desired resolution (HD 1920×1080, SD 720×476 etc.) and check that the frame rate is what you want. Normal frame rates are NTSC 24fps or 30fps and for PAL it’
  2. Shutter Speed – a 180-degree shutter is the guideline. A good rule of thumb is to double the frame rate you are filming at to get your shutter speed. 24p = 1/50th, 30p = 1/60th and 60p = 1/120th
  3. Exposure – Aperture/f-stop – the best f-stop setting to use depends on your lighting situation, the depth of field you want to achieve as well as the capability of your lens. A good rule of thumb is to aim for f5.6 since most lenses are sharpest at this aperture setting. If you want to achieve a shallow depth of field use f2.8 or lower if have a fast lens.
  4. ISO – higher ISO settings are for low light situations and lower ISO settings are for brighter lighting situations like filming outdoors. ISO settings make sure your image is properly exposed. Lower ISO settings makes for a cleaner image without any camera noise.
  5. White Balance & Colour Temperature (Kalvin) – this setting is important to make sure colour temperatures look natural. This is very important when you’re going from filming indoor to outdoor or vice versa. All professional video cameras have a manual way to set the Kalvin – Tungsten Light = 3200 Kalvin and Daylight = 5600 Kalvin. Be sure to adjust your white balance (Kalvin) for every set-up.
  6. Picture profile – set the desired picture profile setting depending on how much creative control you want on the image in post-production. Use a standard setting if you don’t want to do much to the image in the edit suite. For more control over the images contrast, brightness, and saturation use a neutral setting or use the log setting for cinema cameras which renders the image flat. This setting gives a lot of creative control in post-production and delivers more latitude of the video signal.
  7. Focus – it is crucial to make sure your image is sharp and in focus. Use the focus assist in your camera or onboard monitor.
  8. Battery power – make sure that you have enough juice in your batter pack before you start filming. You don’t want to run out of power during a long take.

As you can see there is a lot of things to be set properly on a video camera before you start filming anything for your corporate video production project in Toronto or Mississauga.  Be aware and cautious of these settings at all times in order to capture the best images possible. For more information contact us.

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