How to shoot Quality Videos with Android smartphones depends on the quality of your Android smartphone. Today, smartphones have taken over the world of mobile phones with millions of users all over the world with major users making use of their smartphones for surfing the net, taking pictures and recording videos. While we concentrate on how to shoot quality videos with our smartphones here, we take a look at some of the tools and techniques beginners can use to shoot, edit and upload videos from their Android smartphone.
The quality of your smartphone will have a big bearing on the quality of the video you capture with it. There are tools that can help enhance poorly captured videos, but there is no substitute for good equipment in the first instance – so the likes of the Oppo Find 7, Acer Liquid S2,LG G Pro 2, Samsung Galaxy S5 or theOnePlus One will all serve you well, with each capable of shooting a video in up to 4Kresolution.
That said, 4K isn’t really necessary to capture a high-quality video, especially when you consider that most TVs and monitors still aren’t 4K compatible. Most recent mid-to-high range Android phones will offer something in the region of HD 1080p, which is more than adequate.
But as a general rule of thumb, the better the quality of smartphone you have, the better quality lens and camera it will have for capturing videos. This will usually be reflected in the price too, but not always, as we’ve seen with the OnePlus One, which has a better-than-average camera for the price.
Steps in shooting a quality video with Android Smartphones
- Shooting with Android Smartphone
Shooting is the most crucial stage of the video-creating process. If you capture the video correctly, you have all the time in the world to edit it to taste. But if the source material is bad, you will be seriously hamstrung further down the line. Chances are, the video camera app that came bundled with your Android device will more than suffice. Most of the third-party video-recording apps out there simply link to your device’s bundled camcorder — and remember, they are both using the same underlying hardware anyway. Though often they may have a few nifty features thrown in for good measure, such as touch-to-focus, image stabilizing and other configurable settings as with the Camera ICS app. For most people though, the camera that comes with your phone will be fine for shooting.
2. Tricks of the trade: Knowing your five enemies
If you didn’t study film-making at university, there’s probably a good reason for that. But there are five simple things worth considering when shooting that can make all the difference. This is far from an exhaustive list, but they’re probably the most basic and simplest factors that can elevate ‘awful’ to ‘not bad at all’ when creating a home movie.
- Android Smartphone Orientation
The simplest rule-of-thumb is to ensure you always flip your phone and film in landscape mode. While filming in portrait can be fine for viewing back on your device, if you want to avoid those dreaded black bars down the side of your skit on YouTube, treat portrait like the plague.
Among the biggest tell-tale signs that a video has been shot by an amateur is the lighting. Even some decent dedicated video cameras don’t perform well under standard room lighting, so it goes without saying that many smartphones will struggle in dimly-lit places too.
There’s no need to become an expert in lighting or buy expensive lamps to make your skits look ‘Pro’ (though this will of course help) — simply avoid back-lighting the subject (e.g. a person standing against a window with the sun shining in), unless you’re genuinely seeking the silhouette look. If possible, use naturally lit locations to film, such as outdoors or near large windows. Position the subjects of your filming so that the camera is nearest the window and it captures the light shining on to the subject.
It doesn’t have to be natural light of course. If you do have a very well lit room from electric lighting, it can work just fine. Try some test-filming first to see what it looks like when you play it back.
Horrible, tinny audio can bring an otherwise good video down more than a few notches. If you plan to dub some music over the top of your moving images, then it doesn’t matter one little bit. But if the background sound is important, then there are a few things you can do to ensure it is passable.
The location of your filming is everything when it comes to filming without an external mic. Avoid tunnels and echo rooms for starters, while wind is notorious for killing nice sounds you want to capture. If you’re interviewing a person, or want to capture quality speech, it helps if you’re situated as close to the subject as possible.
If you’re planning to create a Blair Witch Project-style docu-drama, this one may not be a concern. But the human hand’s propensity to jitter like a jitterbug when holding a phone aloft is well known and it should be avoided if possible.
Source: TWRN and Nigerian cinematographers
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