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Episode Show Notes

005: Essential Equipment List Part 2

January 17, 2018


Don & Suzy continue their discussion about the video gear you need most to get your video marketing program started. In the second segment of this two-part topic, we discuss camera supports, lighting, computers, and music.



A good tripod is absolutely essential to almost any type of video production. Tripods come in a wide range of quality and price. If your filming is limited to static shots of interviews or direct address videos, you can probably use a simple photography tripod.

If you need to be able to move the camera on the tripod during filming, however, a good fluid-head tripod will smooth out those movements and make your on-tripod footage look less jerky. Expect to pay a bit more for a fluid head tripod.

Another type of camera support that I find indispensable is a should mount of some kind. These range greatly in price but, unlike tripods, the less expensive models without all the frills can still be very functional and make your off-tripod footage look better.


A simple no frills light kit will go a long way towards making your videos look better. You can scrape by with a simple on-camera light to keep expenses down, but a three-point light kit will give you much more control when filming interviews or direct-address videos.

Light kits can use tungsten, fluorescent, or LED bulbs. Tungsten are the least expensive, but they get very hot! If you are shooting in a confined space, they can make you and the talent miserable.

LED lights produce no heat at all and they are much more durable than conventional lights. The big downside to LED kits is that they are still very expensive.

Fluorescent light kits can provide a happy medium between the tungsten and LED kits. They give off no (or very little) heat but are not nearly as expensive as LEDs. One downside to Fluorescent bulbs is that they are very fragile, so don’t abuse them.


If you have access to a reasonably new computer, you may not need to purchase a computer for editing your video projects. If, on the other hand, you find that your computer gets bogged down easily, you should plan to spend $500 to $1,000 for a simple editing machine.

Free editing software is available for both PC and Apple platforms, and often comes pre-installed. Free software is not quite robust enough to handle long or complex editing tasks, but they can handle the simple editing required for basic video marketing pieces until your skill and creativity demand something more powerful.


While not technically considered “gear,” I would include $100 to $200 to license some music to use in your marketing videos. As a non-profit, you are not exempt from copyright laws, and I would recommend that you NEVER use music that belongs to someone else without permission (in the form of a license). The good news is that for a small amount of money, you can find production music to use in your pieces.


For a list of specific models we recommend or have been recommended by sources we trust, check out our gear page.

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