Socialive brings your stories straight to your followers with professional live-streaming software. How you capture your story can be done in a variety of different ways; depending on your budget.

The following article breaks down low- to mid- to high-range budget options for cameras, tripods, and audio/microphones.

MOBILE-BASED

Using the Socialive Mobile app, you can use your mobile device as a standalone setup to go live directly for viewers or use it with your live camera to be used in a broadcast being managed from a computer.

(APPROX $80 or under)

  1. Camera: iOS Socialive Mobile is currently only on iOS but Android Recorder is now in beta!

Sign up here!

Learn more about our Android Beta here

  1. Tripod: No matter the camera, you want a steady, stabilized shot. We like the SLIK 800. You will need an adapter to hold the mobile device on the tripod. 
  2. For best audio quality, use a microphone with your mobile device. This iRig handheld mic works great for interviews from the field. Consider extending the iRig microphone cable with the iLine Input-Output Extension.

Viewers are more likely to forgive less-than-stellar picture quality than they are muffled, unclear audio. Consider refining your mobile-streaming set-up with a mobile-device microphone.
Additionally, rather than propping your phone up on a make-shift stand or holding it in selfie mode, consider stabilizing with lightweight tripod or a gimbal.

Gimbals are excellent additions for broadcasting on the go. They stabilize the device while allowing the person films to focus on their framing rather than holding the phone perfectly still.


  

BUDGET-FRIENDLY

(APPROX $50-250)

  1. USB Webcam: We like the Logitech C920 for its clear picture and built-in USB cable. USB powered, no separare battery or power source.
  2. The SLIK 800, recommended above, is still a great option for a lightweight webcam.
  3. Microphone: These Comica 15’ lapel microphones are a good affordable option; they need to be hard-wired.
  4. Mixer: Multiple microphones can be routed through an audio mixer, and the Behrenger XQ802 is unbeatable for the price. Perfect for a 2-4 microphone set-up and outputs USB to the computer.

Webcams are perfect for a team-of-one, in that they are plug & play. There are no sophisticated settings to adjust; just point & shoot. Compared to mobile devices, webcams provide improved picture resolution and capture a wider color spectrum.
Lapel microphones are discrete and allow speakers to free up their hands during an on-camera conversation.

  

MID-RANGE

(APPROX $1,200-$2,000)

  1. Camera options: Digital Still Cam - The Sony DSCRX100 line shoots great video and is ultra compact & affordable: $400-$900 based on model. The lenses on these cameras are fixed (cannot be changed), and they have a rechargeable battery. |-| Mirrorless DSLR - Sony’s A7 line are a step up in quality from the DSC with a small bump in price. You can also change out lenses. $1,000-$3,000 pending model. Includes battery & charger.
  2. Cable & Capture Card: These digital cameras have Micro-HDMI outputs. This will require a Micro HDMI-HDMI cable to go to a Video Capture card, which allows a computer to receive the video signal. The Inogeni 4K2USB3 works great. Inogenis come with a USB 3.0 cable to connect to computer.
  3. Tripod: Fluid-head tripods are ideal; we really like the Magnus VT-4000 we have in studio.
  4. Microphone: If wireless microphones are desired, this Comica setup is the most budget-friendly option. We have not personally used this brand.
  5. Mixer: The Behrenger XQ802 is still the best option at its price point; perfect for a 2-4 microphone set-up and outputs USB to the computer.

By upgrading to a lightweight digital camera with wireless microphones will step your video production quality into professional territory, while still on a budget -- and with the ability to do it all yourself!
Even budget-friendly digital cameras these days can capture video up to 4K with great depth of field & the ability to customize the picture you're capturing.
Reduce your cable clutter with wireless microphones.

  

HIGH-END

(APPROX $2,500+)

  1. DSLR: The Canon 5D is an industry standard,  top-of-the-line camera that is dual purpose and portable. Lenses for these cameras are sold separate. These cameras come with separate batteries & chargers.
  2. Cable & Capture Card: These digital cameras have  full HDMI outputs. This will require an HDMI-HDMI cable to go to a Video Capture card which allows a computer to receive the video signal. The Inogeni 4K2USB3 is still the best option for this job. Inogeni devices come with a USB 3.0 cable to connect to computer.
  3. Tripod: Manfrotto fluid-head tripods are unbeatable for the price.
  4. Microphone: Sennheiser wireless microphones are reliable and the sound quality is unmatched. Socialive uses these in the field and in-studio. AA batteries required.
  5. Mixer: The Behrenger XQ802 is still the best option at its price point; no need to go any bigger if sticking with a 2-4 microphone set-up. These mixers come up with a USB 2.0 cable to go to computer.

  

CASES

Regardless of the type of setup, we recommend storing & transporting video equipment in a Pelican case.

All equipment of the Budget-Friendly build will fit in the 1400 case.
Equipment of the mid-range & high-end builds will fit in the 1510 case.

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