Video Podcasting

Not a woodworking thing, but I have had a couple of inquiries about how I capture the video for the podcasts here:

As a quick summary: I use 2 digital video cameras – one set to provide a general view, the other a closeup of the work area. (You’ll probably catch me in a few scenes looking ‘off camera’ – often it is so I can remind myself where the other camera is pointing so I can show a closeup of what I’m talking about!) I could do it with 1 (which is what I used to do), but it is much easier if I can shoot both angles simultaneously.

Lighting was ambient, and the shed fluorescents, but I have recently added one, and now two 50W halogen video lights to improve the lighting quality. (That did not work well in the Spindle Sander video mind – turned out the new lead-acid battery had a serious terminal corrosion problem which prevented the battery getting a sufficient charge – consequently, the light levels in that video went up and down badly, really making my job almost impossible. The Wheel Cutter video still uses 1 light, I didn’t have the second light at that stage, but at least the levels didn’t bounce around uncontrollably.) Hopefully the new replacement lighting setup will not suffer the same problems! These lights get mounted on their own tripods – will hopefully mean there is some improved quality in future videos. So many of these are shot after dark, so natural light is not an option (and the moon is approx 1 million times duller than the sun…..)

Sound- still haven’t ironed out a final solution. I now have a reasonable external mic on one of the cameras, but still want to improve it further. Had a video shot today (outdoors, in very windy conditions), and thought the onboard (external) video mic would be ok with a dead cat fitted (sounds terrible, but that is what they call that really furry sock you see on the professional microphones!) It was alright, but what was surprising was the quality I got from a lapel mic that was recorded by an iPod of all things. So will try that in the next video (ie Episode 12) – will see which recording solution is best!

The captured raw material (video, sound, images) is all captured into the computer and placed into one of 2 programs. I use Adobe Premiere and Apple Final Cut Pro – both are competing products – time will tell which is the long-term winner. In any event, all the footage is placed on the timeline, synchronised, then I start choosing which camera view to use, when, and do all the cutting, transitions etc. The sound is cleaned up as best I can, and then the results outputted.

I first produce a high (DVD) quality file, and then run that through another program to produce one optimised for the web/iTunes/iPods.

So that’s it, in a nutshell. Each video represents between 5 and 10 times the amount of time of their final length – ie a 20 minute video takes up to about 3-4 hours to create from first shot to final uploading to the blog.

So what would you like to see?

I have a number of ideas for upcoming videos, but they are just my ideas of what might be interesting.

If you have anything that you particularly want to see, or have clarified, just drop in a comment (or email), and we’ll see what we can do.  Doesn’t matter how seemingly basic you think it is – I’m sure if one person is interested enough to say, that there will be others who have the same question / problem!

For example, I have a few (ok, 3) of the old-style Triton Superjaws.  I have found over time that a spring in the mechanism occasionally comes loose which can cause the jaws to jamb.  I have heard that some people have stopped using the jaws as they are now ‘broken’, yet the fix is relatively straightforward, when you see it.

So anyway, ask, and you may receive!

BTW – there is another video coming shortly – I have shot the raw footage, and just need to edit it for release….been another one of those really busy weeks!  I have some time off this coming week, so hopefully that means I might have a chance to shoot (I’m hoping) the raw footage for another 2 or 3 videos.

%d bloggers like this: