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Author Topic: How to get into video services  (Read 582 times)

Craig Leerman

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How to get into video services
« on: August 01, 2020, 11:44:56 am »

Many folks in audio are looking at ways to increase their income during these ďfunĒ times and have looked at getting into providing video services for their clients.  Here are some tips and tricks I have learned from working with Vidiots over the years

SHOW UP AT THE LAST MINUTE: Donít be a pansy and arrive at the gig with plenty of time to set up and test gear. A Professional Vidiot shows up at the last minute!

DRESS FOR SUCCESS: Make sure you are dressed correctly for the event. For example, when at an outside summer festival shooting a local band for the lead singerís parents you should be in a 3 piece suit, but if you are working Stella and Garyís wedding at the Ritz Carlton you should be in dirty wrinkled blacks.

DO NOT HAVE ENOUGH XLR: What separates the pros from the amateur A/V techs is that the professionals do not need to bring enough XLR, as the audio crew is ďsupposedĒ to supply the board feed from the console to the AV station that is a few hundred feet away.

NEVER HAVE ANY GAFF TAPE: Itís a sure sign of an amateur if you bring any gaff tape to an event and actually tape down and secure your cables out of the way.

ONLY USE ORANGE EXTENSION CORDS: Everybody knows that orange cords pass electrons better than those ugly black extension cords.

HAVE A BOX FULL OF ADAPTERS EXCEPT THE ONES YOU ACTUALLY REQUIRE: A/V techs all know that RCA connections are better than XLR for pro audio because they are used in lots of A/V gear, so why would they need to carry ďXLR to RCAĒ adapters? The microphone manufactures and audio techs are wrong to use XLR connectors!

NEVER BUY GEAR THAT USES THE SAME FORMAT OR CONNECTIONS: Itís a sure sign of an amateur if your various cameras and switcher all use the same type of cables and connectors. Professionals use adapters and interface boxes whenever they can.

BUY CHEAP TRIPODS: A real Vidiot knows that the more expensive and heavy a camera is, the cheaper the tripod should be!

SET UP SOME GEAR IN AN AISLE: A/V professionals know that you canít record the event properly if you donít block an aisle, walkway or emergency exit.

SPEND MORE ON ONE PIECE OF GEAR THAN THE REST OF YOUR INVENTORY COMBINED: For example, buy a Grass Valley switcher to use with your prosumer cameras. Better yet would be to buy a single expensive HD camera and use it on the same shoot with your cheap Cameras and switcher.

ONLY BUY THE CHEAPEST WIRELESS MICS YOU CAN FIND: Real A/V techs know a wireless rig with all the bells and whistles is a waste of cash. The pros buy the cheapest units with low end microphone elements. The experienced techs will also lose the lavalier clips.

BLAME ALL PROBLEMS ON THE OTHER PRODUCTION PROVIDERS: A good Vidiot knows to blame any problems they have on the other techs at the event. Picture not looking good, itís the lighting guys fault. Canít hear the bride and groomís vows, must be the sound guys fault. No power outlets close enough to the camera gear, the damn house electrician and architect have screwed you over!

Now get out there and shoot something! 😀



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James Paul

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Re: How to get into video services
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2020, 01:09:21 pm »

Spoken like a true professional.
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Justice C. Bigler

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Re: How to get into video services
« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2020, 01:19:05 pm »

You really need to publish that as a serious article in LSI, Craig.
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Chris Hindle

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Re: How to get into video services
« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2020, 01:29:36 pm »

Been there, seen that.
Use YELLOW instead of Orange extensions.
Use the "Hide in plain sight" method for concealing your cables.  :o
Chris.
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Riley Casey

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Re: How to get into video services
« Reply #4 on: August 01, 2020, 08:10:22 pm »

Craig you need to work with a better grade of video vendor, the kind that brings NO audio gear but recorders and lets you charge for EVERYTHING!

Doug Fowler

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Re: How to get into video services
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2020, 09:41:05 pm »

Don't forget to run your rainbow brokedick loose cable bundle over every audio and lighting fly loom coiled on the floor waiting to go up.
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Craig Hauber

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Re: How to get into video services
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2020, 11:51:37 pm »


ONLY BUY THE CHEAPEST WIRELESS MICS YOU CAN FIND: Real A/V techs know a wireless rig with all the bells and whistles is a waste of cash. The pros buy the cheapest units with low end microphone elements. The experienced techs will also lose the lavalier clips.

Don't forget to make sure your cheap wireless rig sits right in the middle of the audio vendors frequency available range.  Don't actually deploy it until after doors and soundcheck.  And carry several of them out in the rubbermaid tub in your SUV to swap out if it isn't interfering enough.
Also do not bother the sound crew, just open their mixer doghouse without asking and jam your mic transmitter into any output that fits it -preferably one that already has a cable in it -just remove it and swap your in transmitter quickly so as not to disturb them!




(It is sad that I actually miss having to put up with this kind of thing!)
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Justice C. Bigler

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Re: How to get into video services
« Reply #7 on: August 02, 2020, 12:25:30 am »

Don't forget to tape your wireless lav mic to the hard mic on the lectern, making sure to cover the lectern mic with enough gaff tape to keep it from picking up any sound on it's own.
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Mike Caldwell

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Re: How to get into video services
« Reply #8 on: August 02, 2020, 10:51:37 am »

Pay no attention to the mic / line level switches next to the XLR connectors on the camera and complain about the distorted audio feed after being told it was a line level signal.

Riley Casey

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Re: How to get into video services
« Reply #9 on: August 02, 2020, 12:59:35 pm »

True story. Contracted by a well known video / AV vendor to handle audio for a four day convention including a concert on the last day. Large hall production for a national organization, 4000 people in the city convention center. Our client subbed the video production as well to a vendor we hadn't worked with before. We sent a LR mix that they received on a Mackie mixer. Our crew checked repeatedly with the video crew over the course of load in day, rehearsal day and four show days that their feed was good. Repeated assurances that all was fine. A week after the show I get a frantic call from our AV client. Did we have a back up recording of any kind? This was back in the analog console days and and since we didn't have a request for a back up and it would have meant four days of DAT recording we hadn't just done one for fun. Video contractor had the Mackie mixer set to mic in and had never bothered to listen with headphones after the first few minutes of tech set up and had four days of fuzz on the audio tracks.  They ate the gig and we almost went to court for our check.


Pay no attention to the mic / line level switches next to the XLR connectors on the camera and complain about the distorted audio feed after being told it was a line level signal.

ProSoundWeb Community

Re: How to get into video services
¬ę Reply #9 on: August 02, 2020, 12:59:35 pm ¬Ľ


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