Video Stuff

Hey! The Seniors on our team are trying to go out with a bang, and as on of them, I want to make a super sweet video montage of the season. What do people suggest to making it? And what camera suggestions do people have?

We are looking into putting a GoPro clone on our robot this year to get some video from that.

Also, what software do people use that is easyish to teach new students? Personally, i use Final Cut Pro, but we don’t have access to that kind of software. We do have the full Adobe Suite however – Premiere?

Any tips would be appreciated!!

If you have access to Premier, it’s a very powerful software and learning it would benefit anyone who wants to do video editing in the future. The good news, is that there’s tons of video tutorials on YouTube on how to use it, and the basic functionality is super simple to get together.

As far as cameras are concerned, I would either look into a using a DSLR, or just use your cell-phones! There are plenty of more expensive and better looking options, but when you’re tackling a long-term project like this, accessibility and ease of use is more important than flawless picture quality. I always say that the best looking video is the one that has enough footage to get made.

Premiere is great and if you’re used to Final Cut the jump over isn’t too jaring. I would also suggest getting a Dropbox account mostly because the file request feature makes it super easy for students and parents to submit footage and pictures from personal cameras or phones. It’ll be a chore to keep it organized and maintained, but you’ll be glad you put in the effort when you sit down to start editing at the end of the season.

As for cameras, having a GoPro is good for some footage, but I wouldn’t rely too heavily on that. I would try to convince the team to invest in a decent camcorder, (I have been using this camera for the past few years and it’s been great, but that guide* has a few other options depending on budget.) In my experience a small camcorder like that has a good ratio of decent quality footage/ease of use. I’d also suggest a simple external microphone (something like this would work fine) if you want to hear anyone talking over general shop or competition noise.

Most importantly, like Francis said, the more footage you can get the better off you’ll be. Encourage your team members to capture footage throughout the season on whatever device they have ready access too, and if you keep it organized it’ll be much more manageable to put something together at the end of the year.

*Disclosure: I work for TheWirecutter, but have been using that camera since before I started working there. I linked to that guide because I think they do a better job explaining the camera than I could here.