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Thread: Anyone with small studio experience

  1. #1

    Default Anyone with small studio experience

    Please look over this list below and see what else you would add. As a new member and new to video productions I am setting up my own little studio and figure its easier to just contact B&H and order everything I need in one large order.

    Apart from these items I am sure there are several other items I will need or have overlooked but I haven’t a clue what they might be. Apart from this list I have a nice HP desk top media center PC, a nice Toshiba Satellite 505A laptop computer, and an Apple Ipad (to use for the teleprompter program).

    I figure electrical cords, light bulbs and other such things that I might need I can simply purchase at a local hardware store but what else am I missing?

    Any help, honest suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    I plan to do simple green screen Video productions similar to this one

    Camera - Canon XH-A1s 3CCD HDV Camcorder

    Canon XH-A1s 3CCD HDV Camcorder 3238B001 B&H Photo Video Price: $2,995.00

    Pearstone VT2500B Video Tripod System

    Pearstone - VT2500B Video Tripod System $149.99

    Tripod / stand Pearstone VT-2100 Fluid Head Video Tripod VT-2100 B&H Photo Price: $59.95

    Telaprompter Autocue/QTV iPad Portable Prompter OCU-SSPIPADP B&H Photo Video Price: $984.95

    Radio MicAudio-Technica AT4040SP 40 Series Studio Pack Audio-Technica AT4040SP 40 Series Studio Pack AT4040SP B&H Photo $500.00

    Microphone stand AKG K&M 210/70 Tripod Microphone Stand (Black) l Price: $54.95

    Soft box light kit Price: $399.99 X2 = $798.00

    Photogenic StudioMax III 3 Traveling Hair Light Kit (120V) Price: $499.95

    Avenger D650 Junior Boom Arm with Counterweight Price: $188.50

    Interfit Flexi-Lite 5-in-1 Panel Kit - Large Price: $174.95

    Audio-Technica W88-13-829 Camera Mountable VHF Lavalier Pro 88W VHF Wireless System with Pro88W Transmitter and Receiver and AT829mW Lavalier Microphone (24) ble_VHF.html

    Pearstone - Foam Windscreens for 1/4" Diameter Microphones (3 Pack, Black)
    B&H# PEWSBS6 MFR# 8101110-3 Price: $8.95

    Audio-Technica ATR288W VHF TwinMic System html
    Price: $129.95

    10X24 green screen muslin and stands Backdrop-Alley STDKT-20G Studio Stand with STDKT-20G B&H Photo Price: $174.95

    Pony Spring "A" Clamp with Plastic Tips - 2" Price: $4.49 X 10 = $ Pony Spring "A" Clamp with Plastic Tips - 2

    Midland GXT1000VP4 2-Way Compact Communication Radio (Pair)

    Midland GXT1000VP4 2-Way Compact Communicati GXT1000VP4MID B&H $69.00

    CS5 Adobe Adobe® Creative Suite® 5.5 Master Collection $2,500.00
    Video editing software | Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5

    Thank you for any help or suggestions you can give me
    Last edited by Rewind; 04-16-2011 at 05:38 PM.

  2. #2


    Quote Originally Posted by paulears View Post
    What a bizarre way to set up a studio? Do your shopping on one web site? The links don't work, by the way - but before you start to dream up the wish list, you need to state the overall budget you have, and consider the room. You mention cords and odd and ends, but these can be very expensive. So much depends on the space. The list is just a collection of nice to haves. Think just about the camera. How big is the space, will you need a wide angle for it. You have a bunch of lights, stands random audio kit - yet no budget for an audio mixer, monitor speakers.

    Building a studio that you can work in takes a lot more than a very random assortment of kit. Lots of questions pop up. why so many radio mics? A floor full of stands, cables and kit is horrible. Tell us what you wish to do, what money you have, show us the plan of the studio - height width and depth. Does your edit suite sit in the studio, or in a separate area. Walkie talkies? what for? A rolling base of some kind for the tripod would be good if the floor is decent.

    Some items on your list are very expensive - some are odd. You have a $3000 camera on a$150 tripod and head. Is it strong, sturdy, smooth and capable of doing the camera justice? At $150 I suspect not!
    Ok thanks for the brutal and interesting response I will assume my OP was not presented properly so let me try to clear up some of the questions.

    First what is so strange about buying everything from one large reputable website? I though it would make it easier for shipping. Sorry for the links not working, I don't know why they aren't

    This is not so much a dream list as rather a list I slowly put together with simple things I feel are needed for the type of video productions that I will start out with.

    You mentioned some of the items are expensive and others are cheap, can you elaborate? Do you think the camera is expensive? I find it to be modest in price, and the simple tripod is just that a simple $150.00 tripod because all it will do is hold the camera in place. I do NOT have plans at this time for a rolling TV type dolly but when I do I will purchase the needed tripods or dolly for the job. If you can suggest a better tripod then please do.

    In terms of the studio space currently its 14 feet wide by 28 feet deep with a 14 foot ceiling (and later expanded to 28 feet wide by 28 feet deep. This is just studio space where all the equipment can be set up and left in place. There is a storage room that is 10 X 6 off to one side of the studio for additional storage. Sound and editing will be done in another "office space" that is 14X20 upstairs (thus the two way radios just to be able to communicate with out having to yell back and forth downstairs)

    As for budget I had set $15,000.00 as mu budget and everything I have listed so far totals $9,600.00 so yes I have additional money for cords cables and a few extra pieces of needed equipment.

    If you feel my equipment and the stands and other such stuff are not proper or there are items you suggest please tell me why or what other items I might need. I really am open to hearing it and even different equipment than I have listed.

    Why so many Microphones is what you asked, well for different things. For example the shotgun mic can be used on the camera or on a stand when there is a musical instrument such as a guitar being used. The broadcasting microphone if for a special video production I plan to produce than needs a DJ type look to it with a microphone on a boom. The wireless lapel mics are for two people who will be doing interview type segments so each microphone has a reason. I then got one regualr cordless mic to be able to use with a friends sound system or for other special events I might film.

    As for the floor so full of stands.. yea I guess sometime that cannot be avoided but also if your not using a specific stand it goes in storage. I posted the type of Videos I will be making so I figure standing in one place and not moving around much is what it will come down to so I wont have to worry too much about tripping over so many cables or cords except getting in and out of the spot.

    As for the 3,000.00 dollar camera and the inexpensive tripod I looked at the recommendations and the weight load capacity of it to the camera and it they say its fine.

    I will not be buying the actual Adobe suites from the video equipment company but directly from Adobe. Another thing I plan to do is completely set up the entire studio with equipment then have two other people come in and pay them for working and teaching me editing and the things I need done. Again this is just a simple inexpensive starter studio.

    I am totally open to any suggestions or information. Please don't jump me for being new, rather offer your opinions based on your experience and let me know why its better to go with a different piece of equipment

    thanks and see if these links work

    B&H Photo Video Digital Cameras, Photography, Camcorders

    Canon XH-A1s 3CCD HDV Camcorder 3238B001 B&H Photo Video

    Autocue/QTV iPad Portable Prompter OCU-SSPIPADP B&H Photo Video
    Last edited by Rewind; 04-16-2011 at 06:59 PM.

  3. #3


    Thank you Paul

    Ok your suggestion for the tripod was well take and I agree with your argument of buying a nicer one so I will do just that. B&H actually sells the ones you recommended and I will upgrade

    Manfrotto 501HDV Pro Video Head 501HDV B&H Photo Video

    In regards to the mic yes then I will look at what works best, what are shotgun mic used the most for then?

    As for sound I will be building a sound room (is this a dead room?) where it has acoustical foam on walls and acoustical tiles and designed to be a sound proof place to do voice-overs and other such stuff.

    As far as hanging the lighting from the ceiling, yes I am sure my ceiling would support it but the reason I didn’t go that route is so all the equipment remains portable in the event I need to take it on the road someplace I then have that option. Permanently installing it or purchasing installed systems removes the portability option

    Most of the productions I will be doing are green screen stuff so once I get the “setup” down to a science then that will be easier on me and like I said for the most part the equipment will stay in one place and the actor won’t be doing much moving around but it gives me the option of portability and for a few cables on the ground I’m willing to deal with that.

    As far as asking the people who plan to come help me yet, well I haven’t found them yet so I am trying to actually get the equipment first and therefore I figured coming here and asking other members like you about the equipment would be just as good in gathering information and suggestions. Sometimes the equipment takes a few weeks to ship so those guys helping would then have to wait a few weeks before they can do anything so I want to eliminate that dead time

    Remember this little studio is for a hobby and to create semi professional internet video and not to actually open as a business or to become some live studio for musicians or that kind of stuff. Just a nice hobby studio

    I laughed at totally agree when you said “$15,000 is still a respectable amount of money if it's wasted” and this is exactly what I am trying to avoid by asking all sorts of questions.
    In regards to the editing and stuff, what I plan to try to do is fit everything in the same studio space on the main level and then if it doesn’t fit then move the editing upstairs to the extra space I mentioned. If I do that then yes I will invest in the proper cables and stuff to get it all networked.

    In regard to B&H and the one stop shot, they basically sell all levels of equipment and price ranges from the real inexpensive cameras to ones that cost more than a home. I think they are also well respected for their customer service, quality, and even product warranties and support.

    You also said “no mention of studio monitors or other useful kit” and that is what I am getting at, what else do you think I might need? I mean if you were coming over to help me do a video production and walked into my studio expecting everything to be there then what would you expect to see.

    Also what about the lighting choices I made for the soft light boxes are they ok?

    And finally I agree that I do want a nice studio but I want a complete one and eventually after my skills in editing and effects begin to develop and I I am still super happy with the entire video production then I will move to a large space and spend a lot more money on better more professional studio and film equipment.

  4. #4


    Thanks again and let me respond

    in regards to the prompter and tripod. The camera weighs 5 pounds, the Ipad weights 2 pounds, and the actual prompter weighs 6.6 pounds for a total of 13.3 pounds so overall its very light weight. That's why I originally went with the tripod that was recommended because it is good for up to 15 pounds. I will investigate further and determine what I think I need but it looks like weight will not be a huge factor but stability will be. I agree with your reasoning where you have $4,000.00 dollars sitting one a tripod the tripod should be good.

    In regards to lights you mention above when you have time visit B&H and find what you are talking about in their lighting department and post the link for me to get an idea of what you're talking about. I would greatly appreciate it. Also in regards to light I have read many places that with green screen filming its VERY important to have and use all the same kind of lighting so if you use florescent all your lights need to be the same for white balancing purposes. This makes sense to me, also I have to look at what is going to be easier for me to replace when they do finally burn out or need replacements.

    in regards to soft boxes yes they take up a little room but I wouldn't think much more than any light box even with barn doors or whatever they are called. I mean when you have a tripod holding a light its the floor space that is out of use and sure a small light at the top doesn't take up as much room but it still takes up overall space with the tripod.

    As for taming the long room for echos or sound there are several options, one option I have is I know a guy who can provide me with as many cardboard egg crates I could ever want (For free) and just a dab of glue to stick them to the wall and presto, or I can figure something else out.

    also you didn't respond about studio monitors or other equipment. I am assuming with the cable from the camera I can hook it directly to the computer to transfer the recorded video into the editing software so I wont need additional equipment to buy to do that.

    and yes you have been a great help

  5. #5


    you say setting up and new, I would ask what type of productions you wish to get into as that will dictate the type of equipment required.

    Might be best to hire in equipment till you know what you need and what works best.

  6. #6


    Quote Originally Posted by Z Cheema View Post
    you say setting up and new, I would ask what type of productions you wish to get into as that will dictate the type of equipment required.

    Might be best to hire in equipment till you know what you need and what works best.

    I plan to do green screen video video productions as seen in the link in the OP

    Rental is not an option for me

  7. #7


    I don't think I saw a monitor on your list. Camera screens are usually to small and low resolution to see what's really there. A bigger, better monitor screen will help you with getting focus and lighting right etc. which is very important for green screen work. Also have you got office furniture chairs, desks etc. I wouldn't like to do editing sat on the floor.

    I wish I had $15,000 to throw at a hobby.

  8. #8


    Quote Originally Posted by Midnight Blue View Post
    I don't think I saw a monitor on your list. Camera screens are usually to small and low resolution to see what's really there. A bigger, better monitor screen will help you with getting focus and lighting right etc. which is very important for green screen work. Also have you got office furniture chairs, desks etc. I wouldn't like to do editing sat on the floor.

    I wish I had $15,000 to throw at a hobby.
    I have a 17 inch computer monitor and an entire computer I do not even use that's covered and protected from collecting dust (this is apart from the two other computers I have already mentioned and currently use aside of the IPad. I wonder if I can use that old computer flat screen monitor, if not then sure I guess I could get another monitor if it has to be a special type of one.

    As for office furniture, I have my bases covered on desks and work surfaces for myself and two other people. I do want to buy me a new chair at some point but overall I am covered there.

  9. #9


    Paul once again you have been a wealth of knowledge and I greatly appreciate all the helpful suggestions and information.

    I am afraid to visit B&H because I know without a doubt I would walk out 100% over budget. LOL

    Ok as for the egg crates thank you for letting me know I have that wrong, I won’t waste any time or effort there then. This morning I was actually in the warehouse (oops Studio) and actually the sound quality isn’t that bad. If I need to add some type of sound proofing later I will cross that bridge when that time comes.

    In regards to the monitor, will a regular computer monitor work? If so then yes I can buy a new one they are only like 200 bucks. If a standard computer monitor doesn’t work then point me in the right direction with names and recommendations.

    Now as to lights, What I hear you and other say is that green screen production in particular need a lot of sharp light. So this means those LEDs are not high on the recommendation list so let’s scrap them as an option.

    Help me choose a complete light set up that you think is best for general green screen productions. Check out these Tungsten lights and let me know what you think

    Impact Qualite 2-Light Soft Kit QL300-2KII B&H Photo Video

    Also what sort of light is best recommended for a key light?

    I want to keep this as simple as possible, I don’t want to be all occupied with trying to adjust for different lighting ranges and that kinds of stuff.

    Ok for video to the computer system you say taking it directly there is faster, which is basically hooking up a cable that goes directly from the camera to the computer, which is what I had planned on doing. Ok then a video feed to the monitor and presto.

    In regards to the head weight of the tripod, I agree with you 100% and I am looking for a much stronger and better tripod probably in the 50 pound head weight range. Once I decide on the actual model I will post it here for you to see.

    Thanks for the magazine link I will check it out

    Anyone else with suggestions don't hesitate to chime in

  10. #10



    In my search for a simple tripod I am amazed that a decent tripod can range in price from 200 bucks up to 10 grand. I know it all has to do with the head and flow and stuff like that but all I am looking for is a simple tripod that can support the weight being placed on it and do a simple job. I found that even some of the lighter weight models that can only hold 12 pounds can cost 2 thousand dollars.

    I found this tripod that can support 33 pounds and my total weights is only 13.3 so I am under half the weight capacity and yet still in a decent price range $550.00 bucks and it looks like a decent starter tripod. what are your thoughts

    Again anyone can chime in and let me know they think

    Libec TH-2000 Video Tripod TH-2000 B&H Photo Video

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