With cameras being so accessible in today’s world it’s very easy to start your career as a filmmaker. But knowing what equipment you need can often be daunting as there are so many options to choose from. In this list, we will be showing you the essentials you need depending on what kind of filmmaker you want to be. Check out our OnlyFans Buyer’s Guide: Filmmaking Equipment.
An entry-level camera is for those who are new to filmmaking. These cameras are easy to use and come with all the basics you need while being the best value for your money.
Everyone has one and if you have the latest smartphone, chances are you already have a great camera sitting in your pocket. While not as good as traditional cameras, smartphones are a gateway to practice your filmmaking skills. Phones such as the iPhone 12, Huawei P40 Pro and the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra are all capable of filming in 4K at a much lower cost than regular 4K video cameras. Smartphones are also very easy to use and are capable of live streaming through apps like Instagram, Twitch and of course, OnlyFans.
The GoPro Hero9 is regarded as the best action camera on the market. While action cameras are often used for vlogging and sporting events, they also make for great everyday video cameras. Just like smartphones, it’s affordable, small and very versatile. This camera features rear and front display screens, excellent image stabilization, easy-to-use features and can record up to 5K.
- 5K video resolution
- 20MP photos with the SuperPhoto feature
- Front display + rear touch screen
- Live streaming capabilities
- HyperSmooth 3.0 video stabilization
- 8X Slo-Mo and TimeWarp 3.0 features
£379.20 – View on Amazon UK
$399.00 – View on Amazon US
Fujifilm X-T30 Mirrorless Digital Camera
This mirrorless camera is perfect for content creators of all skill levels. It’s extremely accessible with advanced face detection and auto-focus tracking features and can record up to 4K in 10-minute continuous recordings. The lenses are interchangeable, which means you can swap them between scenes. It’s a great all-around digital camera that can be used by beginners and professionals.
- 4K at 30fps or Full HD at 120fps video recording
- 26.1M Back-illuminated X Trans CMOS 4 sensor
- Compact and lightweight body
- Advanced AF-tracking
- High-resolution digital sound recording
£799.00 – View on Amazon UK
$969.42 – View on Amazon US
For those who are keen and wish to take filming more seriously, these cameras have more advanced features that can also be found on most professional cameras, whilst also being fairly straightforward to use.
Sony FDR-AX700 4K HDR Camcorder
Designed for professional performance and ease of use, the FDR-AX700 captures every subject with 4K HDR (HLG) video. It also features Fast Hybrid AF which keeps fast-moving subjects in focus and other pro-class capabilities. This camera really blurs the line between pro and consumer-grade gear and for its affordable price, it’s a steal!
- 4K HDR (HLG) video recording
- 1.0-type Exmor RS™ CMOS sensor
- Fast hybrid AF with 273 points and wide coverage
- High-precision OLED Tru-Finder
- ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* wide-angle 12x optical zoom lens
£1,699.00 – View on Wex Photo Video
$1,898.00 – View on Amazon US
Canon XA11 Camcorder
This is a compact semi-professional camcorder that’s popular for news broadcasts, documentaries and corporate videos. While it doesn’t shoot in 4K, it does boast a slow-motion feature that opens the door to creativity. It comes with an 8mm wide-angle lens with 20x optical zoom and an image stabilizer. This camera is very good in low-light environments, allowing you to shoot in dark scenes.
- Full HD 1920 x 1080 AVCHD or MP4 50p video recording
- Wide-angle 20x optical zoom lens
- HD CMOS pro sensor
- Slow-motion and time-lapse recording modes
- Great low-light performance
- 600% dynamic range
£1,188.68 – View on Amazon UK
$1,199.00 – View on Amazon US
Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema Camera 4K
This camera is a tiny powerhouse that sets the bar for small form factor cameras. It’s capable of 4K HDR recording with interchangeable lenses. It’s easily portable due to its size while still giving you cinema-quality videos. For a camera so small, it comes with everything you need to make a high-budget movie.
- 4K at 60FPS or full HD at 120FPS video recording
- 4/3 size sensor
- 13 stops of dynamic range
- Dual ISO
- Mini XLR port
- USB C connectivity
£1,110.00 – View on Scan.co.uk
$1,295.00 – View on B&H Phone Video
These cameras are for those who want to take their filming skills to the next level. They’re more advanced and are perfect for making high-budget movies, documentaries, and social media videos.
Panasonic X2000 4K Professional Camcorder
This is one of the newest models from Panasonic and their latest iteration is a doozy. It’s able to record up to 4K UHD at 60fps along with a 24x optical zoom making it very versatile for multiple scenes. It’s also great for live streaming and is surprisingly easy to use compared to other professional-grade camcorders. If you’re into professional filmmaking, then you can’t go wrong with this!
- 4K at 60fps video recording
- Wide-angle 25mm 24x optical zoom
- 5-Axis Hybrid O.I.S (Optical Image Stabilization)
- WiFi live streaming
- Built-in LED video light
£1,540.50 – View on PRO AV
$2,197.99 – View on Amazon US
Canon EOS 5D Mark IV
Going back to DSLR frames, this camera from Canon is regarded as one of the best DSLR cameras ever made! It works great for pictures but also works wonders for films as well. It’s capable of filming at 4K resolution at 30fps and is much smaller and easier to handle compared to professional camcorders. It also features Dual Pixel CMOS AF and Movie Servo AF, which allow for easier and smoother tracking.
- 4K at 30FPS or full HD at 120FPS video recording
- 30.4MP CMOS full-frame sensor
- Dual Pixel CMOS AF
- ISO 100-32000
- Dual Pixel RAW
£2,869.00 – View on Amazon UK
$2,499.00 – View on Canon USA
Canon EOS C300 Mark II
This is the most versatile and expensive camera on this list. This body is packed with features that make your life as a filmmaker easy as well as providing you with incredibly high-quality video footage. While it is an old camera, it is still widely used by many professional filmmakers as it is reliable and flexible. Not to mention that it is compatible with over 100 EF and PL mount lenses.
It features an 8.85MP Super 35mm CMOS sensor, up to 15 stops of dynamic range and low rolling shutter distortion along with many other key features.
- 4K at 30FPS or cropped 2K at 120FPS video recording
- Super 35mm CMOS sensor
- Dual Pixel CMOS AF and face detection AF
- 15 stops of dynamic range
- Huge range of compatible lenses
£5,895.00 – View on PRO AV
$6,999.00 – View on B&H Photo Video
Here’s a top tip: never use your camera’s built-in microphone. Chances are the sound quality is poor. Plus, there’s a lot more to sound than just using a decent microphone. Here’s the essential gear you need to achieve crisp and clear sound quality.
RØDE VideoMic Pro+
One of the most popular mics on the market, this microphone is widely used amongst filmmakers for its exceptional sound quality and ease of use. It’s great for capturing multiple sound sources and is extremely portable.
- Automatic Power Function
- Includes 2 stage high pass filter, 3 stage gain control, high-frequency boost and safety channel
- Windshield included
£229.64 – View on Amazon UK
$227.00 – View on Amazon US
Sennheiser Portable Wireless Lavalier Mic Set
This Lavalier microphone set is designed to perfectly capture dialogue when out on the field. It’s built like a tank and reduces unwanted ambient noise, giving the speaker a clear and crisp voice. It’s perfect if you’re a traveling vlogger.
- All-in-one wireless system with high flexibility for broadcast-quality sound
- Easy configuration
- Up to 100 meters/330 feet range
- Up to 8 hours of operation time
£499.00 – View on Amazon UK
$899.00 – View on Amazon US
If you’re looking to do indoor vlogging or streaming then the Blue Yeti is your best bet. It’s used by many popular vloggers and streamers and is simple to configure. For its low cost, it boasts excellent sound quality that’s easily comparable to high-budget microphones.
- Excellent sound quality
- High-res LED metering
- Adjustable mic controls
- Blue VO.CE broadcast vocal effects
£159.00 – View on Amazon UK
$129.99 – View on Amazon US
Zoom H1n Handy Recorder
While not a necessity for filming youtube videos, it is worth considering a separate audio recorder. This is because most cameras only come with basic audio features. Having a portable audio recorder like the Zoom H1n Handy Recorder however, gives you much better control over audio quality.
This model in particular is great for removing unwanted distortion and allows you to connect an external microphone and headphones which enables you to hear exactly how the audio will sound.
- Sleek body with a matte finish
- Streak-free and easy to apply
- Monochrome LCD display and one-touch button controls
- Handles up to 120 dB SPL for distortion-free recording
- Records directly to SD and SDHC cards
£199.68 – View on Amazon UK
$119.99 – View on Amazon US
Sennheiser HD280PRO Headphones
Ask anyone that works in sound design and chances are they will talk about Sennheiser headphones. These are the go-to brand when it comes to industry-level headphones. This model boasts extremely robust construction combined with excellent sound quality, modular design and aggressive noise isolation and will cost you less than £100/$100.
- Lightweight and comfortable
- High ambient noise attenuation
- Accurate, linear sound reproduction
- Folding and rotating ear cups
£95.00 – View on Amazon UK
$99.95 – View on Amazon US
Having camera support is vital for achieving shake-free footage. While most professional-grade cameras come with image stabilization, it’s still worth going the extra mile for getting smoother, jitter-free footage.
VILTROX VX-18M Tripod
This versatile tripod boasts great stability for filming and has a maximum height of 1880mm. It features a fluid drag head that allows for smooth rotation and tilting movements. It’s easily portable and comes with a carrier bag allowing you to take this on your travels.
- Versatile -75°to +90°tilt range, 360°pan range
- Includes separate locks for pan and tilt functions
- Maximum height: 1880mm (74 in)
- Minimum height: 830mm (32.7 in)
£159.00 – View on Amazon UK
$145.00 – View on Amazon US
CINEPEER C11 Smartphone Gimbal
If you’re going ahead with using your smartphone as your primary camera then it is worth investing in a gimbal. This model is regarded as one of the best for its amazing phone stability and features such as Pan mode, Lock mode, Follow mode and POV mode. This device enables you to pan, tilt and zoom by using the joystick on the gimbal. This is used by many vloggers on the go and is perfect for those who want to capture the moment in motion.
- 3-axis gimbal stabilizer system: pan, tilt and roll
- 4 gimbal modes: pan, lock, follow and POV
- Lightweight and durable design
- Zoom control and joystick control
- Portrait and landscape mode switch
£63.99 – View on Amazon UK
$59.00 – View on Amazon US
DJI Ronin-S Handheld Gimbal
The DJI Ronin-S handheld Gimbal is designed for DSLR and mirrorless cameras. It offers professional-grade stability for content creators and includes creative modes including Panorama, Timelapse, Motionlapse and Tracking. This is perfect for vloggers and professional filmmakers and ensures that your video is consistently steady.
- Professional grade stability for content creators
- Designed for DSLR and Mirrorless Cameras
- All-in-one control
- Panorama, Timelapse, Motionlapse, Tracking features
- 12 hours battery life
- 3.6kg load capacity
£545.92 – View on Amazon UK
$549.00 – View on Amazon US
Neewer 47.2 inches/120 centimeters Camera Slider
For those looking to achieve smooth panning movements on a budget, then this camera slider from Neewer is perfect for you. It steadily maintains the camera attached as you move the rail from left to right. All you need is a couple of tripods or a flat surface and you’re ready to go. This also comes with a carrying bag, allowing for portability.
- Smooth movements
- 4 U-shaped ball bearings
- Multi-angle shooting capabilities
- Adjustable and secured legs
- Silent movement
£79.79 – View on Amazon UK
$125.99 – View on Amazon US
Lighting is a vital part of any type of filmography and plays a crucial role in determining the outcome of your videos. With so many lighting kits to choose from, it’s often hard to find the right one for you. So here’s a few we found to make your life a little easier.
Andoer Softbox Photography Lighting Kit
This is the perfect starter kit for anyone new to filming. This kit comes with all the basic essentials you need for a well-lit environment. For the price, you get three adjustable lamps, which are more than enough when it comes to small filming spaces.
- Super bright and standard colour lights
- Lightweight and easy to use
- Light stands and softboxes included
£119.99 – View on Amazon UK
$134.99 – View on Amazon US
Neewer 2 Packs Portable Photography Lighting Kit
If you’re looking for something more portable, then this lighting kit from Neewer is right up your alley. It’s perfect for travellers and vloggers as it’s small enough to go backpacking with. Its pre-packaged colour filters are also a nice touch so that you can change the mood for a more atmospheric scene.
- 180-degree adjustable lights
- Comes with 4 colour filters (white, red, yellow and blue)
- Tripod stands included
£55.94 – View on Amazon UK
$40.99 – View on Amazon US
The Rotolight AEOS is designed for portrait and location photographers and videographers on the move. You only get one lamp but it is well worth the cost because of its impressive features. If you have money to splurge then this is the solution for you.
- Bi-colour LED light with accurate kelvin display
- Ultra-thin design
- High-quality professional ball head
- Includes a 4-piece filter kit (full and half diffusion, cosmetic peach skin diffusion, and magenta)
£799.00 – View on Amazon UK
$995.00 – View on Adorama
A good memory card is a tiny, but essential part of filming used for saving video footage onto your camera. Memory cards differ in speed and capacity so it’s important to know what you’re looking for. Here are a few options.
SanDisk Extreme PRO 128 GB SDXC Memory Card
This SD card is essentially the go-to for all filmmakers out there. It has a 128GB storage capacity, 170 MB transfer speed and is very affordable. Overall, it’s a very versatile card that works well with most cameras.
£29.99 – View on Amazon UK
$33.25 – View on Amazon US
Lexar 64GB 3500x Pro CFast Card
Compact Flash Cards are much faster than SD cards which makes this a preferred option for storing 4K video footage. This card provides high-speed file transfer to dramatically accelerate workflow and 64GB storage capacity. Bigger cards are available up to 512GB.
£129.00 – View on Amazon UK
$135.95 – View on Amazon US
External Hard Drives
When you’re finished filming for the day, you’ll need a reliable source to store your footage somewhere. You are bound to run out of space pretty quickly so it is worth investing in an external hard drive that’s reliable and has a large storage capacity.
WD 2 TB Elements Portable External Hard Drive
Western Digital is a brand that offers outstanding reliability and build quality. This hard drive ensures that your photos and videos are safe and secure. Its plug-and-play design allows for easy installation to all major operating systems and its compact design is perfect for travelling on the go. Bigger hard drives are available of up to 5TB.
£54.98 – View on Amazon UK
$64.99 – View on Amazon US
Seagate Portable 2 TB External Hard Drive
This portable drive is compact and will easily fit in your pocket. Setup is straightforward: simply connect a USB cable and you are ready to go. The drive is powered from the USB cable, so there is no need for an external power supply and will work on all operating systems. Bigger hard drives are available of up to 5TB.
£53.06 – View on Amazon UK
$62.99 – View on Amazon US
Samsung Portable SSD T5 1TB
It may be smaller than the other options above but it makes up for it with its super-fast transfer speed. If you are a video editor, you’ll appreciate the extra speed as you’ll need a hard drive fast enough to keep up with video editing tasks. Having a slow hard drive can cause glitches during video production and this SSD drive guarantees that you’ll have a smooth experience whilst editing.
£106.70 – View on Amazon UK
$116.97 – View on Amazon US
Filming is only half the battle. In the right hands, the best video editing software can transform RAW footage into something spectacular! Here are our top picks.
Adobe Premiere Pro
Adobe Premiere Pro is a widely used piece of software capable of making blockbuster movies and 10-minute YouTube videos. Its user interface is customisable and easy to use with lots of editing effects and features only found on Premiere Pro. What makes this option so great is that it works in tandem with other Adobe software such as After Effects, Photoshop, Illustrator and Media Encoder. Premiere Pro also supports third-party plugins which can add new and interesting effects and presets to give your video that extra zing. Premiere Pro is compatible with 4K, 8K and VR footage and works on Windows and Macs.
Adobe Premiere Rush
Premiere Rush is a stripped-down version of its bigger brother but is still more than capable of creating amazing videos. Because of its simplicity, you can create a video in minutes using either a computer or mobile device and share them online. The best part is that this software is free.
Final Cut Pro X
Apple’s Final Cut Pro X is a highly capable video editing tool that easily rivals Adobe Premiere Pro. Final Cut Pro X includes great features, including 360° video, HDR and advanced tools for colour correction. It’s very easy to work with and is subscription-free, unlike Adobe Premiere Pro. This software also comes with a very generous 90-day trial for you to try out. If you are working primarily on a Mac, we highly recommend using this software.
Corel VideoStudio Ultimate
Corel VideoStudio Ultimate is a much cheaper option compared to Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro X and is perfect for beginners too as it has a clear visual interface. It features motion tracking, 4K support, 360-degrees VR video support, a music library, multicam support, 3D text editing and thousands of effects, making this a very versatile piece of software. It’s great value for money and if you have never edited a video before, this is perfect for you.
If you’re looking for something completely free with advanced editing features, DaVinci Resolve may just be for you. It combines professional 8K editing, colour correction, visual effects, and audio post-production into one space, giving you all the tools you need to make a fully-fledged movie. Its colour correction tools in particular rivals the likes of Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro X – and at no extra charge. We highly recommend this software.
KineMaster is a unique video editing software that works primarily on mobile devices. For something designed to work on less powerful hardware, it pulls no punches. It has surprisingly rich features that are easy to implement onto your clips and is used by many for its simplicity and portability. If you’re a travelling filmmaker in need of easy access to video editing software, this could be it.
Much like photography, filmmaking is an expensive hobby. But if it is something you are really passionate about, it is worth investing the time and money in getting to know how filming works. Set yourself a budget and see what works for you. If you plan to film online content, you don’t have to break the bank. You can go a long way in just using your smartphone. Invest wisely and do your research and, most importantly, have fun with it.
For more filming tips and tricks, be sure to check our article on 10 Tips for Making Videos.
Are you a filmmaker? Did you find this guide useful? Let us know in the comments section below.