How to Create Streaming Video - How to Record Streaming Media

In order to create streaming video, several pieces of specialized hardware are required, but the cost is not prohibitive. Basic equipment to record streaming video includes a video camera, video camera tripod and video capture card. Depending on your shooting location, you may also need extra microphones and additional lighting.

All of this equipment can be as inexpensive or expensive as your budget allows. Simple webcams can be used to capture the video image, but can only be used in proximity to a computer. Video cameras give you much more freedom of movement and also provide convenient storage for the recorded material.

Record Streaming Video

Digital camcorders are within the reach of the average consumer, and are ideal to record streaming video. If you can afford it, this is the best option as the recorded material can be transferred directly to your computer for editing and storage.

Older analog video cameras can also be used but the recorded material has to be transferred to the digital domain before it can be streamed. Transferring from analog to digital involves some loss of image quality.

Digital camcorders should be equipped with an optical zoom and have digital connections for transferring the video to the computer. Most modern digital camcorders have features like image stabilization and the ability to store still shots on a media card which is useful for streaming videos that incorporate still images.

Video Camera Tripod

A tripod is essential for streaming video work because it will help to stabilize the video image which in turn aids when compressing the video file for delivery. Video compression works by eliminating parts of the video image that repeat from frame to frame, so a constantly moving background as can occur with a hand held video camera will result in a lower quality, larger sized video file. A tripod will help to avoid this problem.

Video Capture Card

The capture card acts as the pathway from camcorder to computer. Some computers come equipped with a FireWire port, and if you have captured your video in Digital Video or DV, simply plug the camcorder into the FireWire port and the video will transfer to the computer's hard drive.

Analog sources must be converted to digital format, and there are many ways to do this. A capture card that accepts analog inputs can be installed in your computer, or an external device can be used to capture and convert analog video so that it can be transferred to the computer via USB 2.0 or FireWire.

Video capture cards that are installed in your computer may do a lot more than simple video capture. Some cards can provide realtime output or realtime effects, and others can enhance the video image as it is being captured.

Microphones

Most camcorders come with a built in microphone that is fine for indoor use. If you are shooting an outdoor video, however, or have several sound sources to capture, you may want to use an external microphone. The price range for microphones is huge, but good quality microphones are available for less than $100.

Lighting

Modern digital camcorders do a pretty good job of capturing video without the need for extra lighting, but a properly lit studio will give your streaming video production a professional polish.

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