An Introduction To Tripods For Real Estate Agents

Transcription: Howdy Authority Agent Academy agents, principals, brokers and all the rest of you in Real Estate. In this video I wanted to take five or ten minutes and just show you the basics of tripods. It’s the one thing I haven’t had a chance to record a video of properly yet. So, I wanted to show you a few basics about tripods and how to get up and running with one.

The first thing I want to say is that tripods range in price and I’m talking a proper real one, not a $10 one that I got for desk use in Kmart which you would have seen already. Anyway, tripods cost anywhere from … oh I think I’ve seen them for about $30 on up to hundreds and hundreds of dollars.

Now, I’ve got three, not deliberate, it just kind of happened. I had one which was that one I just showed you for years. I lost the little adapter plug off the top of it so I had to go out and buy another one because I couldn’t use it and then my sister gave me a tripod that she is no longer using so three is three. And of course I then found the adapter plug off my original tripod, so now I have 3 working ones!

So, the first thing I’ll say about tripods is you don’t need to spend a lot of money when you’re getting started. The one that this camera (my smart phone) is on cost me $50. I don’t remember how much the original tripod cost because I bought that some years ago but the one I’ve got here is a Yellowstone YSCT62 tripod, and I bought it from JB HiFi it cost me $50.

You don’t need to spend hundreds of dollars. That’s the real key thing. That’s your starting point. As you get more sophisticated, as your video productions get more advanced, maybe when you get an assistant helping you may want to go to something more advanced.

Particularly if you start to move to having a tripod when you’re filming moving action. What you’ll find with the cheap tripods is that they don’t rotate smoothly, they actually kind of shake and shudder. You don’t notice that until you do it and I found out the hard way some years ago.

You can then get more advanced tripods which have a smooth flowing action. I can’t remember what the name but if you go to any camera shop they’d be able to advise you on that but you don’t need that start with.

Update: A quick google search found the term I was trying to remember in this video: Fluid Head. Here’s a good demo video from the folks at B&H on fluid head tripods to bring you up to speed on the topic.

So, let’s just start with this old tripod first. The key for a tripod is this little thing here. It’s called a camera mount, and they all look slightly different but what it basically does is it clips into the top there. You just pop this lever out and it clips in. There we go, and it’s all locked in place. Most tripods will have something like that. They all have a little screw which you can just see there, it’s that thing there. From memory I think it’s a quarter inch and that’s a standard across all tripods.

Wikipedia Says: Per ISO 1222:2010, the current tripod screw thread standard for attaching the camera calls for a 1/4-20 UNC or 3/8-16 UNC thread. Most consumer cameras are fitted with 1/4-20 UNC threads. Larger, professional cameras and lenses may be fitted with 3/8-16 UNC threads, plus a removable 1/4-20 UNC adapter, allowing them to be mounted on a tripod using either standard.

Then what you do is you take your tripod clip so here’s an example of one that can go on a smartphone and you just screw it onto that little fellow there. Then just do it up tight. Making sure of course, just push that little thing down there, making sure that when you do it up tight that the phone is in the right position. In this case the phone goes in there so I would probably want to turn this around so the easiest way to do that is just to take this out, flip it around 180 degrees, put it back in. Get my finger caught and there it is now facing the right way. I just have to do it up again and take your phone and clip it in and bob’s your auntie as they say. That’s the first thing.

Most tripods have extendable or telescopic legs, which are controlled by these locking clips here. Different models are going to have a slightly different setup, but this is fairly typical. The legs just telescope out so you can have the tripod as low or high as you want it.

Now, you may just ask “Why aren’t all the legs long?” And you may want to mount the unit on a table or a cupboard or a bench in which case you don’t have to extend the legs you can just have a short one so that can be useful putting it on a table even if you may be sitting down in a chair talking and you just want the camera or the phone just a little bit above your head looking down at you. That’s probably the best way to go. That’s what I’d recommend.

The other thing also I just wanted to quickly show you is this little fellow. I picked this up for $4.74, very expensive off Ebay. You might say, “So, what the hell is it?”

Well, I’ll show you. It’s got a little clip on the back and it comes up and down and I can take my Samsung tablet or an iPad or whatever the case may be, lift it up, clip it down there, you can see it on the back and this one just clips locked like that. Then you have your standard quarter inch screw there and that can be clipped onto the tripod as well. If you wanted to use a tablet to record your content – maybe your phone’s not very good or you just for whatever reason prefer to take photos and video with your tablet, this is how you can mount a tablet on a tripod and use it for video recording.

The other thing you can use this for and this is the reason I bought it, is that it’s a cheapie teleprompter. You can mount that on a tripod facing you and buy software or like an app for your thing that you put your script in and it scrolls the script down or the teleprompter out and you’re just reading it and recording it from the phone. I’ve recorded a separate video for you demonstrating that.

That’s a good way to get started probably under $10. Like I said this costs $4.74 from China off Ebay, that is including shipping, and the teleprompter app I’ve got to start with cost me $2 and there’s another that I’m about to buy and test which I think might be a better app. I think that’s going to cost me about $6 or $7. If we say $10-15 max, you’ve got yourself a teleprompter if you already have a tablet. If you’ve got a smaller sized tablet like an iPad mini, it will still accommodate that down to that height obviously so it should be fine for that kind of thing.

This Tripod Mount Holder Bracket is definitely worth getting if you have a tablet or if you’re planning to have a tablet. Whether you use it as a teleprompter or to record your videos, it doesn’t really matter. Just something to think of if you’ve got a phone and a tablet you actually have two separate cameras. I’ve got two phones and a tablet, I’ve got three if I need to and luckily enough I have three tripods. I don’t recommend going out and buying it, it’s just the way it happened. If I need to shoot footage with three separate cameras at once I’ve now got the operation to do it. The only thing missing, of course, is three microphones.

I’ve got two, one that you can see, probably can’t see but it’s just there and the second one you can see there’s the microphone and the clip and of course this little thing here. I got these from which is an Australian company based out of Sydney and they’re also in the US as well. Off the top of my head, I think it was about $40 US roughly. It’s a 4 meter long cable so there’s plenty of room between you and the camera and they’re great. I’m actually really impressed with them.

By the way, these are called a lavalier microphone. I’ve had a couple of previous ones that weren’t that good. This one’s actually awesome so happy to have two of them, happy to recommend people go to and buy them if they want some.

That’s the basics of tripods. As I say you don’t need to go out and spend a couple of hundred dollars. Please don’t do that to start with. You can do it later on if you want when you get a little bit more fancy. For roughly $50, you can get something good from somewhere like JB HiFi or Harvey Norman or if you’re in the states I’m sure Best Buy and a few of those guys would have this kind of stuff. No idea what kind of shops you can buy from in the UK. I know you can shop on Amazon in the UK as well. No need to buy something exorbitant.

One other thing to keep in mind when you’re buying a tripod is the height of the tripod. When it’s fully extended and also this is something I didn’t show you and I just thought of, most tripods have a handle and they allow you to wind this up so you get some more height out of it. Some of them will have it, some of them won’t, but here’s a thing to consider. If you’re tall – I’m not particularly tall – I’m 5’10” in the old money – if you’re 6’2″ or 6’4″ or something like that, you may find that your tripod isn’t actually high enough to be on eye level with you. And, if you’re 7′ tall you may have to spend a lot of money or have somebody mount it on a box for you. 🙂

Just something to keep in mind – that different tripods come in different heights so just have a look around when you’re buying them at the extended length of it. When the legs are all out and everything’s wound up and all that kind of stuff just check that out.

One little tip, if you have a little problem and you can’t find a tripod big enough, this thing here it’s not ideal but if you put it in a bit and then tighten it it actually raises because the legs are coming in a little bit more, it actually raises the tripod a little bit. It’s not ideal but it’s certainly an option that would get you over a height issue if you did have one.

OK, that is it for tripods so get out there, get yourself at least one. Don’t need to buy two or three or anything stupid like I’ve done. Get started recording video. Go to Ebay, order one of those tripod mount holder bracket things (assuming you’re got a tablet of course.)

Get out there and start recording some videos. Okay I’ll speak to you again soon.

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