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I have a DSLR that I've started using for video recording and I'd like to buy some accessories for shooting video. I know this could be subjective, but it doesn't have to be. I am looking for accessories for a DSLR that help with video recording, such as a follow focus, or shotgun mic. What are some important accessories for recording with a DSLR?

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3 Answers

up vote 6 down vote accepted

I'm biased, but before anything else, invest in AUDIO GEAR. Far too often, filmmakers forget to keep audio on an equal par with picture. Invest in some good, quality mics. Shotgun? Meh...a good, all purpose cardioid like the reasonably-priced ElectroVoice RE-10 can hold you over for a while until you get some audio recording practice under your belt.

Essential to MY toolkit is an H4N...an excellent digital audio recorder. It's small enough to hide on set, and I'll be honest...I've used it hidden behind a centerpiece to record a conversation at a table with no problems. They're stupid cheap, too...like...um...$299? I forget offhand.

The microphones in DSLRs are pretty much all crap from my experience; I use them more as a reference track than anything else.

Good audio will make your images sparkle even more!

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Thanks! Very helpful. –  daviesgeek Mar 14 '12 at 4:04
    
How do you insure on-camera voices to sync with an independent recorder? Are you using a gen-lock of some sort? –  filzilla Mar 14 '12 at 23:11
    
No genlock, I just use a slate. Hey, if it's good enough for hollywood... :) Take a little more time in post, but that's what we're stuck with. Some DSLRs have headphone jack inputs...but no real way to control levels, so you may get crap audio even if you're using good mics. Double-system is the way to go for now... –  dwwilson66 Mar 15 '12 at 0:39
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Good advice in regards to sound from dwwilson66.

My favourite accessory for my camera is this shoulder rig. There are heaps of stores selling them on eBay for under $100. They're great for how much you pay.

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I vote for audio accessories first then the rigs and tripods. Just want to mention that you can make a lot cool tracking shot stuff very cheaply with PVC pipe and skate wheels.

Here's a good example:

http://www.diyphotography.net/diy-pvc-table/skater-dolly-for-video-photography

The key to making this work well is to be very precise with where you make holes, and pay attention to the lengths of each item.

If you like this sort of thing but don't want to spend time building it, you might want to become familiar with folks that specialize in dolly, cranes, and sliders. Here are some examples:

under $300 http://cinetics.com/

way over $300 http://www.kesslercrane.com/

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That looks awesome! Will keep it in mind. Thanks!! –  daviesgeek Mar 14 '12 at 23:26
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