Pimp my gear…

This is the posting formerly known as “Impressing or getting it done…

A friend dropped by a while back to borrow some gear and bemoaned the fact they couldn’t afford the gear wanted/needed to do video productions.

So I showed off my Canon HV10…and got the immediate response, “but THAT won’t impress anyone.”


So now impressing the client/public is important? I’ve heard that before from still photogs, some of whom think that bigger is better (so, apparently, is black, so forget silver) so that folks KNOW they are pros.

I’ve gone through the whole “lost my impressive thing” business years ago…when I downsized out of news into teaching and went from a Panasonic DVCPro to a Canon ZR10.

So…stand by until I return with a way to ‘press your gear up…

…and here’s a way to dress up your gear. My reason – to make it more versatile. For those of you with self-esteem issues, these add-ons will bulk up your little “nothing” camera so that it will be sure to impress.

Let’s start with the basic camera – a little old Canon HV20 (and this, by the way, can work with any of the small prosumer/consumer models).

First, you need a bracket to attach all of your add-ons.

Practically speaking, here are ways to improve both your visuals and audio.

Small portable light – I’m using a Readylite 20. My dream is a Litepanel and it’s on my Christmas wish list.

Audio add-on so you can use pro XLR audio. A Beachtek, which allows me to use my Electrovoice 635 and Lectrosonics wireless.

Lens extenders for both telephoto and wide angle.

Scary….almost a Frankenstein of video production. But in bulking up or “pimping,” I’ve both improved my ability to get visuals and I’d say increased the BS (oops impress the client) factor by at least 7 out of ten.

But at a cost. Got the tele lens as part of an old VHS kit…dumped the camera, but kept the lens. Wide angle cost around $100. Beachek another $100 used. Bracket was $15. Light probably $40. The XLR cables/mike I already had. But lets add on another $300 for the tele lens, cables, mike (and that’s conservative). Another $550.

Is it worth it? If you want to impress, you can get it all for a lot less or just add that on to the cost of a bigger camera. Something…bigger…longer…

But it’s definitely worth it as far as extending your ability to be creative.


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