High end cameras or can you use your smart phone
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I think this is a great question. I've been testing out several methods. If it's just me, I've been using my PhotoBooth on my Mac. When friends help, we often use iPhones. I've never received negative feedback from using either, and I've even booked from using both. What do you use?
Haven't used my android yet.usually go into my agents office. Trying to see the best way
I filmed my last two-one on an iPhone and one in a GoPro. I like the iPhone better. Sound was better as well as framing.
There are more than a few choices between iPhone and high-end cameras! Ask around and you will find friends/family with a Sony/Panasonic HD camera.
Also depends on where you are located. I'm in Atlanta, and the self-taping industry has grown immensely since 2006. It is now an expectation that your tape look professional, and some CDs won't watch your audition if it's a cell phone video, or has poor audio or lighting. Thus taping services have popped up everywhere to provide this as a service. I run one of the oldest services, Get Taped!, with my wife. That said, if you are in a market that doesn't have those expectations, save as much money as you can and use the cell phone. Just remember to always shoot in landscape mode!
All of the above. I've used canon T3i, I've used my phone, and I've used my camera on my laptop. Some casting directors say, just use your phone / iPhone. Use what you have. When I was on vacation recently, I used my laptop camera. It's easy to edit this way, it's already on my computer. You don't want to send in big files anyways.
Just went to a CD workshop & he suggested getting an inexpensive HD camera.
Angela... EXACTLY! I am not sure, as a producer, I would look at an iPhone video. It would seem the talent didn't care enough to go even slightly beyond "acceptable." You don't need to buy one... everyone knows someone with a halfway decent video camera.
Mark said "you don't want to send big files". That was true in the past, and is still partially true today, but it's changing. In the Southeast, casting directors such as the Fincannons (Walking Dead, Under the Dome, etc) and Feldstein/Paris (Sleepy Hollow, Need for Speed, etc) are starting to ask for bigger files. Even files at full HD resolution. It used to be that audition files needed to be "under 20MB", then it moved to "under 40MB". Now it's becoming the norm to see "under 100MB". Part of the reason is that when Lisa Mae Fincannon passes along your self-tape for Under the Dome to the studio/network people for approval, they are finding that the more professional tapes can affect the final choice. Mark Fincannon showed us a side-by-side comparison at a symposium in February here in Atlanta of two actors going up for the same role. One was a home video shot in a living room, with horrible audio and sunlight coming in from one direction. The other was professionally lit with excellent audio. Psychologically, the audition that was professionally produced will get the job 9 times out of 10, assuming the look and talent are comparable. Just knowing that is a possibility has forced all the Southeastern actors to up their game when self-taping.
What is a good quality camera that will get the job done inexpensive
I'm not in the market for one right now, so I don't know model numbers. Anything by Canon will serve you well. Whatever you buy, make sure it has a mic jack so that you can plug an external mic in. The add-on shotgun mics that can be attached to the top of the camera improv the audio, but not nearly enough by the every-growing standards of self-taping. Allow yourself the ability to upgrade to an external mic by looking for this feature.
Matthew, thank you for posting about the Fincannons and the option to send larger files. I was still thinking everyone wanted smaller. Good to know. However, how does one send those huge files? Is there any free file transfer program that would allow for sending very large video files or is that something an actor must pay for? I know I couldn't send my last one via transferbigfiles.com due to size, unless I upgraded to paid version... You may not know the answer but thinking someone on the forum might weigh in. Thanks again for great posts and information.
I use a Sony HD. I think it works great as far as quality but the problem I have, not having a studio, is lighting.
Neva, www.wetransfer.com is what a lot of people use. Up to 2GB free, and you can send a batch of files at once. No login required. Plus it sends you a download confirmation when anyone from the distribution list downloads. As someone who runs a taping service that gives us peace of mind.