View Full Version : Brought my first camera, any advice now?

Danny Aindow
02-15-2009, 05:55 PM
Hi all, i've spent a while now looking at camera's to buy for my first starter camera. After eventually accepting i have a very, very small budjet and a 3ccd, external mic input etc etc just wasn;t going to happen with my current budget i took a plunge and brought what i could afford.

So i now have a Panasonic SDRH 40, probably about as entry level as a camera can be. Technical stuff is here

My question to you experts is what advice can you give me to maximise the potential of this very standard camera. From what i can gather it has the option of manual white balance and shutter speed (although i really am not sure what the manual shutter speed does).

Is there anything i need to be doing to ensure i get the best possible picture? I can guess without an external mic input the sound is going to be where i can really fall down, any tips on this?

P.S - I brought a tripod for it, just praying it fits when it gets delivered!

Or did i completely waste my money? Planning to start of with some shorts and some sketches, just want to start getting a feel for filming and seeing how the results turn out and quite importantly start editing stuff as i have no clue on this so i figured buying a camera and getting starting would be a good thing despite how limited the camera may be.

Cheers for any help and advice

02-15-2009, 06:06 PM
you just need to experiment filming as much as you can. If you like narratives maybe try writing aswell. Dont worry about the tripod, they are all standard and fit every camera.

Danny Aindow
02-15-2009, 06:20 PM
Yeah i've just finished a first draft of a short, looks to run about 10-15 mins and is a kinda serious and sad story. Working on a couple of comedy sketches now that would hopefully be quite filmable but i like the idea of just getting out and filming stuff.

Thinking of editing, it came with Panasonic VideoCam suite 1.0, dont know if anyone has used that to know if its any use at all for editing or should i be looking for a different programme (a cheap/free one ideally)

02-15-2009, 09:55 PM
Take the camera out and test it to figure out how it works. All you really have to do is go outside and get some shots from your front yard. What does the color look like? Bad? Change the settings. You'll be glad you figured out the parameters before you actually shoot something.

Oh, and....don't drop it, very bad......:D

-- spinner :cool:

02-16-2009, 12:37 AM
My friends and I started doing the exact same thing you're doing: bought a consumer camera, used some crappy editing software, and made some shorts. And from my experience, don't start with a serious vid. It ends up being really cheesy since it ends up looking pretty homemade, and people just don't take it seriously. If you're a funny kid, do funny shorts. That's the best way (I think) to get into it and learn about video making. Aslo, in comedies, anything that ends up being corny, just turns out more funny. Now that we know how to really make a video and learned more about production techniques, we're investing in a better cam (canon xh-a1) and working on a serious screenplay. I'm not here to dictate what you do, but thats my experiences and advice. But good luck with whatever you end up doing.

The Not So Nazi Party, Midnight Fag Fight, Vampire Weekend -Campus, and S.H.I.T. are the best I think. These are the beginner vids we had. You can tell which ones were our very first and which ones are more recent.