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Tech Stuff

While I strive to be a minimalist, some tech is absolutely necessary.

The Sony a6400 — my new video camera

I haven’t been able to let go of the idea of posting Youtube videos about PR. It’s not about becoming a “Youtuber” — it’s about change. It’s about mixing this whole “blogging about PR” up a little.

So, I need a camera setup.

Honestly, I tried with my Canon EOS 5D Mark II. It’s old, but it’s a full format camera that takes beautiful pictures. But there was a lot of things that I had to fix to get it working as a modern video camera:

Getting a clean HDMI out was a hassle and required me to install a somewhat volatile third party firmware called Magic Lantern. And I still didn’t get it to work properly.

Plus, I still needed to invest in a capture card, a monitor (since the 5D Mark II doesn’t have a flip-out screen), and a dummy battery to ensure power while filming. And let me tell you, my Canon’s auto-focus isn’t even worth using. It’s not a problem when shooting photography, because I always focus manually, but for shooting talking head videos of oneself? Not a good idea.

The 5D Mark II does shoot beautiful video when you manage to get it working, but it was just so much hassle and after some trial-and-error, I simply grew tired of figuring things out.

I decided to bite the bullet and opt for a better alternative. After some research, I found that the Sony a6400 is a popular budget alternative — especially when paired with the Sigma E 16mm for crop sensors.

Sony a6400
The Sony a6400.

Was this a good choice? Well, I guess that I’ll have to find out. Because the camera and the lens is on it’s way home to me now. While I still need a capture card (and probably some other gadgets as well), at least I’m moving forward with this project now.

As for trying to free myself of stuff, I’ll have to sell off my old Canon camera and all its gear.

Avatar of Jerry Silfwer
Jerry Silfwerhttps://doctorspin.org/
Jerry Silfwer, aka Doctor Spin, is an awarded senior adviser specialising in public relations and digital strategy. Currently CEO at KIX Communication Index and Spin Factory. Before that, he worked at Kaufmann, Whispr Group, Springtime PR, and Spotlight PR. Based in Stockholm, Sweden.