In this video tutorial, we show you how to film professional quality videos with your Android smartphone. (You can also use iPhone or any other smartphone if you’d like.)
Now, probably the least you will need is some type of a tripod and a smartphone mount to hold your smartphone. Without these, you will end up with shaky videos taken with your hands which may look very amateur at best.
And of course, if you want to add some smooth panning to your shots, you will definitely want a fluid head.
As for lighting, you will want to shoot indoors if possible with bright lighting (as smartphones in general are not great in low light in comparison to professional-grade cameras) which will also allow you to control your light the way you want. If you want to shoot outdoors, it will be more challenging as you will have to deal with the sunlight (and probably will need an ND filter) so we recommend you to start indoors first then slowly work up your skills to the outdoors.
For best results, you will want to go with a smartphone that supports manual video mode like the LG V20 (our best recommendation), Galaxy Note 7/S7 Edge, etc…etc…
Here’s our recommendation for a good starter kit:
- Manfrotto Befree Tripod – $179 – Link (Or for cheaper tripod, try this Dolica. I would probably spend more on good fluid head as you can always upgrade tripod later.)
- Manfrotto MV500AH Fluid Head – $139 – Link (If you want to spend a bit more for the best in class, you can grab the Manfrotto MVH502AH instead, which is what MKBHD uses and I love it!)
- Vastar Universal Smartphone Mount – $5.99 – Link
Total Cost for Our Recommended Setup = $323.99
Now, you can easily go with cheaper/lower-quality tripods and fluid head but if you are thinking about making videos for the long term, you may end up spending more money if you buy cheap equipment as they make either break easily or don’t work properly. So, think ahead and get some nice equipment that will last you awhile and you should also be able to easily resell as they hold value well.