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Directing the Documentary, 5th Edition by Michael Rabiger

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Chapter 9Camera Equipment

You can make good documentaries with the most modest equipment, especially when you are learning. There is so much excellent equipment today, so this chapter will highlight just the key features you should look for.

Camcorder

Body

In documentary you often shoot material handheld, so the professional electronic newsgathering (ENG) camcorder (camera + sound recorder) has a sidemounted eyepiece and a body balanced to nestle on the operator’s shoulder. This allows the camcorder to become part of one’s head and shoulders (Figure 9-1). Smaller camcorders often record amazing sound and picture, but having the eyepiece at the rear means the camcorder is a free-floating appendage held ahead of your face (Figure 9-2). The lack ...

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