Best Budget Cameras for Creating Online Courses
Video transcript below…
One of the biggest fears for most online course creators is dealing with tech. Let’s face it, there are so many things to think about. Which camera do I use? What kind of mic, lighting, video editing software, and then by the time you’ve thought about all of that stuff you feel like eating a can of Pringles and flipping on wheel of fortune. In this video, I want to show you two camera options you can use for video for recording an online course, especially if you are on a budget.
Hi, I’m Ben and for the past seven years I’ve worked with many, many course creators and I’m also co founder of one of the leading learning management system plugins for WordPress called WP Courseware. On this channel we talk about tips and strategies for creating online video courses. If you want to find out more about CourseCast, click the card above.
One thing I know is that when you are first starting out, you don’t have a lot of money to invest in tech. Believe me, I totally understand this. My first video course was created using the built-in webcam on my iMac and honestly it wasn’t that bad.
Camera Recommendation #1
My first recommendation is going to be the Logitech c920 webcam. In fact, that’s exactly what I’m using right now. It’s my go to camera. The C920 is just under $75 on Amazon at the time of this video. It really is an awesome camera. It does a full 1080P at 30 frames per second and it’s tripod ready. You can mount that bad boy on a tripod plug in the USB cable and you’re off to the races my friend. It’s both windows and Mac friendly so you can literally plug and play.
Now just as a pro tip, you can use an app like Webcam Settings on your Mac to really dial in all of the settings for the Webcam. I’ll link to it in the show notes below. I recommend taking off the auto focus. If you’re like me, I tend to make a lot of hand gestures, which can cause the auto focus to kind of go wonky and makes the video look bad. The cool thing is that you can save all of your settings into a profile so that you can click the profile and immediately be dialed in and ready to shoot video. Since I have a green screen and a wide screen, I have two different profiles. I even have a profile when I’m just on a regular video call with my team.
The webcam also has a software called Logitech capture for Windows users and you can download it for free on the Logitech website. It appears to have similar settings to the Webcam Settings App and I’ll also link to that in the show notes as well.
Interestingly enough, Sunny Lenarduzzi, one of my favorite YouTubers who currently has a hundreds of thousands of subscribers creates a lot of her tutorial videos with this exact camera. The beauty of this is the camera is small, lightweight and you can basically take it wherever you go. The only thing I’m going to recommend is not using the onboard mic. Find an inexpensive USB mic or lapel mic that can plug into your computer or laptop for recording. Onto my next recommendation.
Camera Recommendation #2
My next recommendation is going to be to use your mobile phone. Let’s face it, most mobile phones shoot great video. It’s 2019 and I’ve not upgraded my iPhone and a couple of years, so I’m still on the iPhone seven plus, but frankly, I love how it shoots video. I mean, it can record video in 4K at 30 frames per second, 1080P at 30 frames or 60 frames per second. Seriously, this phone can handle recording your online course.
Even looking at the Samsung Galaxy S7 which was released the same year as my iPhone seven has 4K capability at 30 fps or 1080P at 60 fps.
Again, I don’t recommend using the onboard mic for recording your audio on either phone. However, there are plenty of options for the lapel mics or even a digital audio recorder.
Whether you decide to go with the webcam or the smartphone, I’m going to recommend that you get a tripod for obvious reasons, but honestly, the tripod will come in handy for just about any camera you get in the future. For the Webcam. You could use a desktop clamp boom arm or a desk clamp flexible arm. You can find either one of these on Amazon for right around $20 at the time of this video.
For your smartphone, you can spend less than 10 bucks on a smartphone mount. They attach right to just about any tripod. The one on the right is just a few dollars more on Amazon and I’d recommend spending the money. The really cheap one on the left is not very stable if you switch your phone to shoot vertical video, I’ll link to both of these down in the description as well.
Final Words of Wisdom
Finally, I want to simply encourage you to start with what you have. Don’t let the tech hold you back from starting your very first online course, even if your videos aren’t the best. You can always improve them at a later time, but the point is to start now. Take Action now. Start Building your course today!
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