Video Production Equipment Sets Quality Companies Apart

Video production equipment can make or break your business video production.

video production equipmentCisco reports that over 80% of all internet traffic will be video-based by 2021. This makes it increasingly important to analyze your current company video marketing strategy. The barriers to entry for video production wannabees is very low these days. That means there are lots of people running around with cameras that think they have what it takes to make a video.

With so many video production companies out there claiming to be the best, it can sometimes be hard to sift through what’s good and what’s great.

When it comes to your video marketing strategy, pay special attention to the quality of the equipment the company you choose to work with has. And pay even more attention to how well they use that video production equipment.

The Right Camera and Microphones for Your Needs

The type of camera that a company will use will ultimately depend on your company’s budget as well as the image and audio quality you’re looking for. It’s best to go into any pre-production meeting with examples of cinematic styles you’ve seen and want to replicate. This way the professionals can determine the type of camera needed to achieve that look. Here’s an example: if you need a video that revolves around a lot of quick action shots, the video production company should be using a camera that is highly portable and easy to carry. Whereas a more cinematic look might require a different, higher-end camera.

Lighting is Everything

It’s of the utmost importance that any video production company have the right lighting gear on hand. But it’s actually even more important that they know how to use it effectively. This includes tasks such as:

  • taking advantage of natural lighting
  • framing the subjects correctly
  • ensuring the exposure of the room creates a balanced contrast
  • making sure the natural camera settings are right to reduce any excess noise or overexposure
  • shooting with the correct color temperature of light.

Most viewers get the vast majority of information from a video through the visuals. So if a video production company can’t light your video properly or doesn’t have at least a basic lighting kit they can easily set up to enhance a shot, it should be a definite no-go.

Quality Post-Production Attention

video editing softwareMost of our business videos are edited without the client present. So he or she never even sets eyes on the post-production portion of our video production equipment. The right editing program, along with proper sound mixing and attention to detail can make or break a video. A company that utilizes the right equipment and the right people to edit with it will produce superior videos to those from videos edited with lower-quality tools. It’s therefore important to pay attention to the video editing software, the type of audio equipment and their sound mixing and post-production workflow in general. Great audio is important. In a study that USC conducted, researchers found that the quality of audio in a video actually influences whether people believe what you’re saying or not.

Investing in Quality Video Production Equipment

Because a business video should look and feel very professional, investing in a company that invests in their equipment ensures you’re getting the most out of your marketing budget. This all begins before the story is even being filmed, and when you see the end result you’ll ultimately understand why the right video production equipment was so important in the first place.


This article was originated by Jane Dixon, freelance writer.

How to Enhance Audio Quality in Your YouTube Videos

Audio Quality: the often overlooked aspect of business videos.

Over 1 billion hours of YouTube content are watched daily, according to research by Omnicore Agency. YouTube is the most used platform. People like to entertain and show things to their friends. Businesses share their video content to advance their business. However, there is lots of stiff competition. Having good quality videos is paramount to attract more viewers.

This includes having good audio quality for your videos.

Several suggestions can help you to avoid producing videos with poor sound quality.

Here are several steps you should take to enhance your YouTube videos:

Invest in High-Quality Microphones

audio quality

Coming up with a high audio quality for your videos is essential when making your YouTube videos. Just like you would listen and review a music track, you can also do the same for your videos. Listen to it carefully on your computer, tablet, or phone speakers – or on various portable audio devices. This includes your headphones to make sure the final product is of high quality.

To produce quality audio for your YouTube videos, you will need the right tools.

The first tool is a good, high-quality microphone. Using a microphone as close as possible to the sound source allows you to capture better audio quality versus onboard mics on the cameras. Microphones come in different shapes and sizes, each having unique strength that is suited to capture better audio in a given area.

Capturing Audio Using a Separate Decoder and Recorder

Sometimes, using one recorder for both video and audio recording can create inconsistent input recording levels, resulting in distorted audio. It may also be awkward, trying to manipulate the controls all on one unit. Having a separate audio recorder for your YouTube video production work can help you gain quality results in your sound. Similar to controlling audio levels from a mic or camera, a digital audio recorder allows you to adjust the audio levels in a way your microphone can pick as much sound as possible without clipping too high. Also, with a digital audio decoder, you can use different microphones for different uses and enjoy greater flexibility when it comes to arranging your mic set-up.

Use Dedicated Audio Software

When editing your video, most video editing software mainly focuses on the editing of the video and less on sound. However, dedicated audio software gives you the power to edit your sound quality. The edits include removing background noise, clicks, crackles, pops and wind noise. Also, a dedicated audio software helps in removing 60 cycle hum (a nasty humming sound produced by AC power), low-frequency echo and switching noise that brings about undesirable sounds to recorded videos.

Familiarize Yourself with Equalization and Mixing Techniques

Synchronizing several audio tracks (e.g. voice and music or soundtracks) can be a little more complex than merely adjusting levels of volume. Each track in your video will need different frequency levels and should be equalized accordingly to bring about harmonization. For instance, when you’re producing a documentary for your YouTube channel, you will want to ensure the soundtrack is not too loud – otherwise, it’s going to overshadow the commentary voice. With a proper EQ (Equalizer), voices can stand out, by minimizing the rumblings and prevent overly brightly audio segments, amongst other things. To master all these things mentioned above, you need to do more research and practice more to produce high-quality audio for your videos.

You can confidently promote your YouTube videos when you know that you have high quality audio.

Quality audio work can help to attract more viewers to your videos. The result is that you build your fanbase as more viewers get to subscribe to your channel.

This article was originated by Jane Dixon, freelance writer.

Silicon Valley Video: Another Past Client Calls on Penrose

We’ve Recently Produced a Silicon Valley Video for a Client Who Found Us After 20 Years.

As we reported earlier this summer, we had a Silicon valley video production client come back to us after not doing video for 20 years. We’re proud to say that it’s happened again.

A couple of weeks ago, lightning struck a second time and we were called upon by a past (and now current) Silicon Valley video production client. The client had moved on to another firm (or two or three) in the meantime and he remembered us.  But this time they were in a rush.

Judging by their past history as our Silicon Valley video production client, they knew who to call.

sillicon valley video shootThe task was to shoot, edit and output the product video in less than a week. This included narration in both English and Mandarin. Despite the tight deadline of a week, we were able to do the complete production within that time frame. Here we are on location at the client’s office.

So you want to know about the product? Sorry, we’re under NDA and the video was delivered for the client on the web and as a DVD. The company has already featured the video in their booth in Chna.

So if you need a video fast, if you need it good and you want someone to keep your company information to themselves, you’ve come to the right place.

Penrose Productions is the leader of Silicon Valley video production – call today at 650-969-8273

Posted 10/22/13

Fun San Jose Video Production is Done

This San Jose Video for a Small Business was Lots of Fun to Create.

We often produce San Jose video productions, as well as those in San Francisco, or around the world. And it’s always lots of fun when we get to express our creativity.

In my blog post of July 3 about a fun video production for San Jose-based Abbey Carpets, we indicated we’d be sharing the video once completed.  It’s up on YouTube now and we’re happy to let you see it.

The challenge was to create a marketing video for Abbey Carpets/Blossom Valley Interiors in San Jose. We used footage from a video camera that shoots at a very low frame rate, so that when the video is played back at normal speed everything is in fast motion.

Using that footage as a basis, we constructed a story around the old-time movie format that it suggested. By using the “before” footage in black and white, we added title cards, film scratches and ragtime piano music in the edit.

Kudos to Steve Delamore and the entire staff at Abbey who embraced the process and trusted our professional judgement for the creation of this video.

Now that the video is up on YouTube, it’s time to leverage the power of YouTube videos for search engine optimization. It will take awhile to get this San Jose video ranking on the front page for competitive keywords such as “San Jose Flooring” but already after just 2 days for the term “Karndean San Jose” this video is the #2 ranked organic search on Google:


San Jose Video SEO




Video Production the Fun Way

We Love a Video Production That Inspires Us to Get Creative.

We’ve done an awful lot of video productions in our 30+ years in the San Francisco Bay Area.

As with any job or profession, the work varies from the mundane to the truly exciting. And like others we revel in the opportunity to do a video production that is flat out fun — and get paid to do it

We’ve done lots of video productions over the years, but the trend for quite a while has been away from that as companies feel they can’t afford to appear frivolous.

We just put the finishing touches on the first edit of a marketing video for Abbey Carpets/Blossom Valley Interiors in San Jose.

Owner Steve Delamore is one of those business owners that is truly marketing-focused and he realizes the need to do videos as part of his marketing mix. And we love how he lets us get creative with the vision.

In this particular case Steve wanted to highlight the opening of the new Karndean Design Center in his store. His store is the only one in Santa Clara County where such a center exists, and his goal is to use it as a great competitive advantage.

He actually had to close his store for a week to install the design center and when he told us that he was going to do so, we suggested that we create a video production around it. We further helped him find a video camera that shoots at a very low frame rate, so that when the video is played back at normal speed everything is in fast motion.

We suggested that he set up the camera in a fixed location in the store and keep it running during the installation.

Steve did that and got some very cool video footage of the installers and workers scurrying around.

Watching the fast motion inspired us to create a script done in the style of an old time silent movie, complete with black and white footage, film scratches, title cards and piano music in the background.

Steve approved and embraced the video production concept wholeheartedly.

Here is the finished video:

Fun and creative video production projects like this one are too few and far between, but they serve as a source for great satisfaction and inspiration when they come along.

And we’re always going to be on the lookout for more.



8 Ways to Doom Your Corporate Video Production – Mistake 7

Video Production Mistake 7. Use The Camera Microphone to Record The Audio

You can see in video production that the rapid improvement and compactness of video is also manifested in the audio that accompanies it. Camcorders today record excellent sound. But there is a problem.

The problem is that the sound source closest to the camcorder microphone will be recorded best. And this may not be what you want recorded.

Have you ever set up a camcorder in the back of the room to record a live seminar for your corporate video production and listened to the result? Isn’t it amazing how the comments, coughs and collisions in the back of the room sound so clear – and the speaker is unintelligible at those points?

I simply can’t count the number of times people have come to us to ask if we can enhance the audio from just such presentations, and other live events as well. In short, the answer is unfortunately “No.” We can not bring out audio that essentially is not there.

What is the solution? First, you must have a camcorder that will take an external microphone input. If yours doesn’t, get another one.

After that, it’s all just a matter of microphone placement. If you have just one speaker in your video production, you should invest in a lavaliere microphone for the presenter to wear. The mic is then in place less than a foot from the presenter’s mouth and will record clear audio.

Here I am placing a lavaliere mic on blues guitarist B.B. King prior to shooting a TV commercial. In this case, the microphone will be hidden from view. I’m tucking it under his collar, out of sight.

microphone for BB king

Another option would have been to use a mic on a boom pole just out of frame as we did for football Hall of Famer Steve Young. Here a boom operator holds the mic on a boom pole becuase Steve is walking and talking, so the mic has to move with him.

boom microphone for Steve Young

Here’s another example of a boom operator holding the mic above the talent in this corporate training video production with actors.

boom microphone for actors

If the speaker in your video production is stationary, the boom mic can be anchored just above and out of camera view. In addition to giving a consistent level of audio, it eliminates the need for another person to operate the boom.

boom microphone over child actor

If possible when buying or renting a lavaliere, get a good wireless microphone. Don’t defeat the purpose by getting a cheap microphone that feeds buzzes and hisses to your recording system. A pair of decent, yet inexpensive headphones will let you listen to the audio that you are getting. If you don’t get a clean signal, take the microphone back to the store and get one that works for you.

Prices for good quality mics have come down dramatically over the years, so if you are going to do much of this type of “talking head” recording, it’s worth the small investment.

Microphones are obviously not just for amplification. You need a good mic close to the subject to get good clear audio.