Its been several months now since I did my first Vlog on YouTube. I have to say its been fun to do the ones I have made up to now. I have found it has made me think more about my landscape photography so if anything else it has had a positive outcome.
Spending a small fortune on equipment to make the videos better quality was the main thing I had to do. My first video was filmed with my smart phone which was rather better than I expected. With the addition of an external microphone the audio was much better. But I needed to improve the quality of the video, so I opted for a Gopro Hero 5 black. The problem was though getting audio to this device. On researching how to do this I needed a connector which was almost the size of the Gopro in itself which was completely useless because it wouldn't work with the Karma grip I had also purchased, what a ridiculous design flaw. So the next thing to do was to purchase a separate device to record audio on. I opted for a Tascam DR-05V2 stereo recorder.
I found that the Karma Grip lacked functionality. Some of the problems I found were that the battery life of the grip was limited and once the grip had run out of charge it was useless. So if I was out in the field so to speak that was the end of its usefulness. It annoyed me too that I could not attach my external mic to the device , Even if I purchased the adaptor it was still impossible to attach it to the Gopro when fitted to the Karma.
So I tried out another gimbal. This time I did a little research and found a gimbal that might just do the job nicely. A Zhiyun Z1-Evolution Evo 3 Axis Gimbal. This was much better than the Karma.
This had much more functionality. I liked the fact that the batteries are replaceable and spares can be carried at all times. The mode button is also useful where the gimabl can be set to locked, free style or standard mode. The addition of a joystick too is brilliant giving really smooth control of pan & tilt.
The most expensive piece of kit I have purchased is the Phantom 4 Pro. This has been fantastic and has opened up a lot more to my landscape photography. It adds a hole knew dynamic for me. Its brilliant for telling a lot more of the story and I can get shots that are otherwise impossible to achieve. I opted for the Phantom 4 Pro because it has at the time of purchase it has the best sensor in the range. Having a 1" sensor gives the camera much better quality images over its smaller counterparts. It also has good battery life which I find important. The only downside is the size. If the Mavic Pro had the same camera I would have gone for that model instead.
Now all this equipment needs to be transported somehow. My Nest camera bag was no good anymore. I needed something to carry my Camera, Lenses, Filters, Tripod and of course the Phantom 4 Pro. So back to the internet to source something suitable.
I found this bag to be just what I needed. The Mantona elementsPro camera and drones backpack No. 21313. Its huge and has more than enough space for everything I needed.
It is also comfortable too. Well designed with so many features. It sits high on your back and is perfectly balanced for long hikes.
So there you have it. The gear I have purchased up to now. I am sure to be adding more in the future and at the moment I am thinking of investing in a mirrorless camera. This will be for vlogging and also for compositional purposes rather than taking out my 5D mk 3. It will be useful and save time I think. If you want to pop over and see my channel here is the link