Tag Archive for CD

Tips for Shooting Better Video

You’ve gotten yourself a brand new high-end camera and you’re ready to get out there and start shooting! So this means that you’re going to create a masterpiece on your first go, right? I mean, it’s a top of the line piece of equipment – of course it’s going to come out amazingly!

Unfortunately, no. Many people go into video with this mindset and are disappointed to learn that great equipment does not a great videographer make. Creating a visual masterpiece takes years of patience, hard work, and practice.

You don’t have years to learn all of the tricks of the trade? Well, that’s okay! We’ve compiled some tips for shooting better video that we hope will help you out!

Always make sure to keep back up memory on hand! – Whether it’s memory cards, CDs, tapes, or whichever, make sure to keep a spare or two on you just in case you need it. There’s nothing worse than being in the middle of an important moment and realizing that your camera just ran out of space to record it. If you wait until you’re out of space, you might also run into problems with buying more. These days, most stores carry SD cards and things of the sort, but if you buy them at somewhere like a hotel, gift shop, gas station, or somewhere else on the go, odds are that you’ll be paying more than you would buying them somewhere else.

Make sure your battery is fully charged beforehand, and if possible, keep a spare on hand! – The only thing worse than running out space to record is having the space but having your battery die on you! If you know you’re going to be filming something, make sure you charge up your battery in advance so that it’s ready to go. If possible, it’s also a good idea to keep a spare on you so that you can easily switch out the dead battery for a fresh one in case it dies at an inconvenient time.

Don’t overuse special effects that come with your camera! – You might think it’s really neat to play with your camera’s special effects, and it is, but when you’re recording an important moment, it’s best to just record it in it’s natural state and go back to add effects later if you wish to. If you shoot something with an added effect, generally there’s no way to remove it later on. If you shoot something in black and white and then later decide you want it in color, there’s no way to bring the color back. On the other hand, if you shoot it in its natural state and then later decide you want to make it black and white or add an effect, you can always add them in, undo the changes, whatever you want. Shooting naturally allows for total control of effects and removal of effects later on.

If editing isn’t in the cards, only record the crucial moments! – If you don’t plan on taking the footage into an editing program later to edit out all the extra moments you recorded to get to the good bits, don’t bother recording the extra, unimportant moments. Without editing, anyone watching will either have to sit through the extra bits or fastforward through them, and either of those can be annoying. If you do plan on editing, record to your heart’s content!

Avoid techniques that might make your video look amateur! – Much like Comic Sans is frowned upon in the graphic design community, there are certain techniques that are looked down upon in videography. Avoid excessive zooming in and out, and when you do use zoom, take it slow and easy! Frame your shots well and don’t use wide shots too often. Avoid heavy backlighting, as it can cause the focus of your shot to look dark and you can lose a lot of detail in your shot. Also, try to shoot from different angles and perspectives to switch things up and keep it interesting.

Always back up your files! – Speaking from experience, it’s horrible recording important memories and then losing them for some reason or another, whether it’s due to a corrupt hard drive, a broken CD, misplaced files, or accidentally recording over them. Always keep back ups of your files so that in case anything does happen to the original, you can rest assured knowing that you haven’t lost your precious memories or hard creative work. We walk you through backing up your files here on our blog, but AM Tech Video can also do it for you in store. Just give us a call or bring your files in and we’d be more than happy to help you out!

How To Keep Your VHS Tapes Lasting Longer

In this day and age, everything seems to be about Blu-Ray and DVDs and even little memory cards that you can store your videos on. But if you, like us, grew up in a time before all of these things were around, odds are that you have a decent collection of home videos on VHS tapes. You’ll also know just how fragile these tapes can be and how easily you can damage them or accidentally record over them (that is, assuming that you still even own a VCR).

Our number one suggestion to you is to get your precious memories converted to DVD before anything can happen to those tapes, and we here at AM Tech Video can do just that for you! In addition to converting your movies to DVD, we’ve compiled a list of a few simple things that you can do in order to keep your original VHS video tapes lasting longer.

First, you want to be very careful when handling the tape. Tapes may be more durable than DVDs on the outside, but there are plenty of inner workings that can get broken if you’re not careful. You never want to touch the tape inside of the door of the cassette either, as it can get smudged, crumpled, torn, etc., which could badly damage your video. When you’re done watching a VHS tape, you should rewind it before storing it to keep the tape inside tight, which prevents the video from sagging.

When you do store it, always keep it stored inside of its designated case to keep it from getting dusty, as dust can mess with your VCR when you go to play it and can also scratch the tape inside the cassette. Store VHS tapes in a cool, dry place away from heat and direct sunlight. The tape inside can shrink if it’s stored somewhere that’s too hot, which will definitely cause damage to your video. It’s also helpful to store them vertically so that the tape inside sits flat, which also prevents sagging. Lastly, something most people might not know, make sure to keep your VHS tapes away from magnets and speakers! The magnetic properties can damage or even erase VHS videos!

Be sure to follow these tips to keep your VHS home videos lasting longer. If you haven’t had them converted to DVD yet, give us a call or drop in to see us here at AM Tech Video to see what we can do for you!

How to Label Your DVDs and CDs

Have you ever wondered why you don’t see many stickers used to label discs anymore? Well, it’s because using that kind of label can throw off the balance of the DVD or CD when it’s in a player. This can cause your disc to either not play right or not play at all.

The best way to label a disc is either with a permanent marker or with a DVD/CD printer. If you have a printer, just keep in mind that you have to get printable discs. Otherwise, what you printed will smear right off.

If you have DVDs or CDs that you need duplicated, bring them in to AM Tech Video, Inc. Our local video production company has competitive prices and can take care of all the copying, printing and packaging you need!