Camera and equipment for online classes

IMPORTANT: There are many possible combinations of equipment and configurations. I am going to start from scratch for a specific example, and I am going to choose the equipment that I think would offer me the best value for money, always in the tightest budget range, explaining the criteria that would lead me to choose it.

Each case is unique and will have its peculiarities. And no team is magical and perfect.

What I mean is that there is no magic recipe, you will surely find problems or difficulties that you will have to solve and things that you will have to adapt to your needs, the style you want and your way of working.

Think that we are setting up a studio that a few years ago only a television station or production company could afford.

But with current technology it is something relatively simple and with a minimal investment you can achieve a level of quality that would be at the height of a professional production.

1 | Analyze the needs

This is the most important part.

Do not copy recipes from others without knowing if they will work for you and do not buy equipment haphazardly without any criteria.

What works best for me when I am going to start any project is to put everything in writing, also including sketches and plans (a simple sketch by hand), to have something physical and more concrete to work on.

For this example we are going to try to describe the scenario in which we are going to move:

We want to broadcast live classes (yoga | physical preparation | zumba |…) in which the teacher performs a physical activity while talking to the students.

The classes will be held in a room that we have prepared (eg at home, in a local …)

How big is it? In our example we are going to suppose that it is a 4 x 5 meter room

We make a plan or sketch of the space, indicating where the windows and doors are, and other elements that could affect when getting a good framing.

We will try that natural light is located on the side or behind where we are going to place the camera. We are going to try to avoid the backlight .

In our example we have a good source of natural light that we will try to take advantage of .

But we must bear in mind that natural light is very changeable: it changes throughout the day, it changes from one day to the next, it is seasonal … We cannot depend only on natural light, we must add artificial lighting .

To carry out the activity we are going to stand at the back, but we will leave a free space up to the back wall to avoid the visual sensation of being boxed in.

We will be interested in leaving as much space as possible between the camera and the activity area: 1) to have a sufficiently wide frame, 2) so that the perspective does not generate a lot of distortion, 3) so as not to have to use lenses that are too angular.

The camera should be located near the computer (or the computer near the camera), within 2 meters to be able to use an HDMI connection cable (or USB depending on the configuration we choose)

We have to delimit an activity zone in the sketch.

That area will give us a reference of the frame that we will need and it will also give us an idea of ​​the focus distances (in case we use manual focus or we want to have the entire scene in focus)

For the sound issue we will need a solution that avoids cables as much as possible, since we will be constantly moving within the activity zone.

2 | Initial listing with the team

Now we are going to make an initial list with the equipment and its basic characteristics, then we will go on to look at more specific characteristics.

Main team:

  • camera that allows live broadcast
  • Tripod for camera
  • Microphone wireless headset or lapel, or directional microphone (to avoid cables in the area of activity)
  • At least 2 bulbs , for main light and fill light
  • Computer with sufficient capacity for live broadcast programs
  • Internet connection with sufficient upload speed and above all that is as stable as possible

Auxiliary equipment and material:

  • HDMI Video Capture
  • HDMI cable with camera connector
  • (Optional) USB cable with connector for camera
  • Battery with power cable for camera (dummy battery)
  • Optionally we will need adapters for audio connectors
  • Optionally we will need a small audio interface to connect the microphone to the computer

3 | Choose camera for streaming

In this article you have a lot of information and criteria to choose a camera for streaming and live broadcast .

We have already commented that for this example we are going to look for the best possible quality within a reasonable budget.

We want a camera that:

  • Allow us to broadcast in 1080p (Full HD, we don’t need 4K to broadcast a class)
  • Have clean HDMI output
  • Have the possibility to deactivate the sleep mode. That is, it does not turn off automatically after X minutes. We want the camera to be able to broadcast uninterrupted throughout the session.

For this example I am going to choose between two cameras.

Will I use the camera for streaming only?

So a good option could be the Sony a5100 .

It is a model that is already very old, but it is used a lot for streaming because of its value for money.

Do I want to use the camera for streaming and also to record videos?

For example to record sessions outdoors or in places where I cannot use the streaming settings. Or if I want to complement the classes with vlogging videos, etc. That is, the content that we could see on any YouTube channel.

Then I would stick with the Sony a6100 or the Sony a6400.

Why do I choose those models and why Sony?

For the live broadcast part there are many cameras that would cover what we need in this case.

Many models from Panasonic and Canon would suit us perfectly.

For the video recording part the same. There are many cameras with good features for video recording and vlogging.

However, I think that these second generation Sony cameras (a6100, a6400 and a6600) have all the features that we are going to need and they will also make our lives a little easier:

  • For streaming: clean HDMI output, non-stop streaming, good autofocus system
  • For video (a6100 / a6400): 4K recording, no time limit per clip, very good focusing system, external power supply via USB while recording, external microphone input …

And they are of course excellent cameras for photography.

Let’s say that for someone who has more experience in video, with practically any current camera they would be able to configure a good setup one way or another.

But for someone who just wants the simplest solution possible, I think any of those Sony’s will offer the image quality we are looking for without any additional complications.

HDMI or USB connection?

The connection through HDMI always, always, will give better image quality , at least with current technology.

There are cameras with which it could be broadcast via USB as if they were a webcam, but the quality of the image transmitted via USB is more limited.

An HDMI capturer costs relatively little and, for me, it is the most robust solution , the one that will give us more quality and the one that will avoid problems and headaches.

Why a photo camera?

Basically because of the sensor (its size and technology) and because they are interchangeable lens cameras: we can find the lens that best suits what we need or with which we achieve the highest quality.

An equivalent camcorder with those features would be in the professional range and the price of the equipment would be much higher.

With a camcorder from the consumer range (small sensor) we can achieve good results if we take care of the lighting.

For live classes, for example, I don’t see a bad option because in any case we are going to look for simple frames, with everything in focus.

However, an interchangeable lens (photo) camera is going to give us much more leeway in the long run.

Choose target for streaming

Here you have more information in case you want to delve a bit into the subject of objectives and their characteristics: choose objective for streaming or video recording (youtube, pe)

But in this case we look for:

  • relatively open frame : showing the entire activity area
  • fairly wide depth of field .
    That is, everything in the activity zone appears in focus, from the foreground to the background. We could rely on the camera’s focus system, but in this particular case I don’t see the need to go for that out-of-focus background effect.

We are going to work with a medium aperture and we are going to have lighting.

We do not need a lens with special characteristics, we can use the kit lens that usually comes with the camera. In this case it would be a Sony 16-50mm f / 3.5-5.6.

It is not the best lens in the world, but for video it will give us plenty of quality and we have a very wide margin to find what focal length gives us the frame we want.

Later, if we are going to make other types of videos, more artistic or in which we look for certain more specific characteristics, we could look at some additional objective.

Tripod for camera

If you are only going to use it for live shows: I would choose a ‘crappy’ tripod, the typical 20-30 euro aluminum and plastic one.

If you plan to use the tripod outdoors, travel, etc. then I would invest in a tripod a little better.

travel tripod is usually a good compromise between stability, size, and weight.

The Manfrotto Befree are very good , but you also have tripods from lesser known brands with a good value for money.

Take a look, for example, at the K&F Concept tripods , which are usually very good value for money.

4 | Sound

Sound is one of the most complex sections. And it is as important or more than image quality .

In this case we do not need a studio recording with the level that a musical production would have.

We need the voice to be heard clearly, to be understood perfectly, with a good signal level and to be as clean as possible.

The main enemy in an enclosed space is reverberation .

Reverb is the sound that bounces off the walls, floor and ceiling … and reaches the microphone with a certain delay with respect to the main sound (the voice in this case).

A little reverb is not bad, it is even necessary because otherwise it would give the impression of an unnatural voice. We are used to reverb in our day to day.

The problem is when the reverb reaches very high levels or when interference wave patterns are created somewhere in the room that distort the original sound.

The rule of thumb when recording sound is to try to place the microphone as close to the source as possible . This way there will be a very big difference between the signal (the person’s voice for example) and the noise, including any unwanted background noise and reverberation.

We will try never to use the internal microphone of the camera , always use an external microphone.

The best option would be a lavalier microphone or a headband microphone . So we would have the microphone very close to the mouth at all times.

If we are going to do a lot of head movements, perhaps the headset microphone would have the best performance. With the lapel microphone we can have small variations in the level of the voice depending on where we have our face turned.

In this case we want to avoid cables .

Using a lavalier microphone connected by cable to the camera or computer is a nuisance if we are going to be doing a physical activity, and has the risk of getting caught in some movement and throwing part of the equipment to the ground.

The ideal solution in this case is to use a wireless microphone system : an emitter where the lapel or headband microphone would be connected, and a receiver that would be connected to the camera or computer.

The system that I recommend is Rode’s: Rode Wireless Go.

It is a very proven system, which works very well. Very easy to use and super small.

I think it is a good compromise between quality and price. Think that a professional system would cost 10 times more. And on the other hand, a cheap wireless system will give you a much worse sound quality and less reliability.

If such a system is out of budget, the alternative could be to use a directional microphone placed as close to the activity zone as possible.

These types of microphones (shotgun or directional) are more sensitive to reverberation and will also be separated from the sound source.

You will have to try in different positions until you find the place where the best sound is achieved, where the reverberation affects the least, sometimes it is a matter of moving a few centimeters and you can tell the difference.

In this case, the microphone would be connected by an extension cable to the camera or directly to the computer (below I comment on the direct connection to the computer, the 3.5 jack microphone input of the computer is a source of problems, it is preferable to connect the microphone through of a small sound interface: microphone> interface> computer USB connection)

What if the acoustics in the room are very bad?

The acoustics of a closed space is worse the smaller that space is.

It also depends on the geometry. For example, a totally symmetrical (square) space tends to generate a more ‘damaging’ reverb.

The walls, ceiling and floor of the room act as mirrors for the sound waves, especially when those surfaces are bare and the room is very empty.

We can improve the acoustics with curtains, rugs, furniture, plants, paintings … That is, what a normal furnished room would be.

All these elements can be out of shot if we do not want them to appear in the frame. Or we can take the opportunity to include some of these elements as decoration.

It’s not worth lining the room with foams and weird stuff, because this only affects the higher frequencies anyway. If the acoustics are bad there is nothing we can do at home.

But to clearly pick up the voice of a person speaking (we are not recording a singer nor are we going to record live music for an album) we should not have problems, especially using a microphone that is located close to the mouth.

What we have to try to avoid is that ‘cave’ effect or that it seems that we are talking from inside a well.

5 | The lighting

Another of the most important aspects that are often left aside.

If we have a good window we can try to take advantage of natural light.

As we have mentioned, the problem with natural light is that it is not constant: it is not the same in the morning as in the afternoon, if a cloud passes by, the lighting changes completely, in winter we would have fewer hours of usable light …

In other words, it conditions us a lot.

It is worth investing in at least a couple of artificial lighting spots.

Relatively inexpensive continuous lighting kits are available. We don’t need a ‘professional’ lighting system either.

What are we looking for with artificial lighting?

  • Sufficient amount of light for the camera to work in its optimal performance zone (best possible image quality)
  • Achieve homogeneous and soft lighting, without harsh shadows and without excessive contrast between light and dark areas of the scene.

Natural light

We can use natural light as ambient or fill light.

We would place a translucent curtain, preferably white so that it does not generate color casts, so that it filters the light and provides us with a very extensive and soft light source.

Work in soft light

The same would apply to artificial light sources. It is important that they be extensive light sources, not point light sources such as a light bulb.

To achieve a light with a greater emission surface, diffusers are used. A diffuser can simply be a white cloth placed in front of a point source.

I would recommend using softboxes (which are normally intended for use with energy saving lamps) or led panels .

You could also use diffuser umbrellas like those used in photography … Or a homemade diffuser using fabric or some translucent material, but in the long run it is usually more cumbersome than anything else.

A softbox includes a front diffuser and isolates all light that is not directed towards the scene, so that various light sources do not interfere with each other.

A large enough LED panel would already act as a large light source. They have the advantage that they allow you to regulate the intensity and in many models also the color temperature.

An additional diffuser could also be added to the led panel if we need a softer light.

CRI – Light quality

I do not recommend using LEDs or low consumption lamps for domestic use, the ones we usually use at home. These lamps have a very narrow emission spectrum and it will greatly affect the way the camera will capture colors.

LED panels and energy saving lamps for photographic use have a wider emission spectrum. This quality of light is measured by the CRI value, which should be around 90 or higher .

Color temperature

This would be the dominant color of the light: lower temperature corresponds to orange light, higher temperature corresponds to bluish light.

For the color temperature, I recommend choosing lamps or LEDs with a temperature close to 5500K , the closest thing to natural light in the central hours of the day.

Light power / intensity

What interests us is the ‘amount of light’ that reaches the scene, the area we want to illuminate. This would be the illuminance (lux) and it depends on several factors: for example, the amount of light emitted and the distance between the light source and the scene.

When we buy a spotlight, an LED panel or a light bulb, what the manufacturer tells us is the amount of light emitted by that device, which is measured in lumens (luminous flux).

A part of that emitted light is lost and does not reach the scene.

If we place the light points very far away, less light will arrive (it will be distributed throughout the room) and if we place them very close, more light will arrive but it will be very difficult to achieve homogeneous lighting.

For reference, with light sources in the order of 2500-3000 lumens we should have enough light to homogeneously illuminate the activity area.

The led panels will allow us to regulate the intensity (in some also the color temperature).

If we work with low consumption bulbs (also known as CFL – Compact Fluorescent Light ) we can only play with the distance to regulate the intensity that reaches the scene (or we can add an additional diffuser, a white cloth for example, to reduce a little emitted light).

Lighting scheme (placement and direction of light sources)

There are so many lighting schemes.

In this case we are going to look more for a practical and simple lighting, than a more artistic lighting.

I would start with a very simple scheme with the two points of light illuminating equally, at about 45º   with respect to the axis between the camera and the scene.

Then we can play with the relative intensities (or distances), the heights and the orientation until we find a lighting that we like for aesthetics or because the activity that the teacher is going to perform is better appreciated.

We can also play with the lighting in the background, to make it attractive but not distracting.

We can use a lamp or flexo that we have there, we can use a small LED spotlight that allows to regulate the color to create an ambient light with a color that separates the wall from the back well but without taking center stage … Here already everyone’s imagination would enter.

6 | Computer and internet connection

Although some programs like OBS (which we will see later) can consume a lot of resources, in general we will not need a computer with exaggerated performance.

You do not need to have a dedicated graphics card, although modern graphics cards include specific functions for encoding the video signal.

Any more or less current computer with about 4GB of RAM should be sufficient if it is only going to be dedicated to the processes related to live broadcasting.

It is not essential, but the ideal would be to work with a double monitor , it will be much easier and more intuitive for us to know what we have on our computer (all the windows that we have open) and what we are really broadcasting. As I say, it is something that makes our work easier but it is not essential.

It is very important that the internet connection is stable and that we have a good upload bandwidth .

To broadcast at 1080 / 30p (Full HD at 30 frames per second, which would be more or less the standard) we would need a minimum upload speed of about 5Mbps (mega bits per second).

The more margin we have, the better, because the important thing is not the specific speed, but the rate of rise that is sustained over time and stable , without micro-cuts or drops.

These systems work like this: we send the contents (video signal and audio signal) to the server of the platform that we are going to use: Zoom, Twitch … using our internet connection, and then it is the platform that is responsible for sending to all our users.

If possible, it is preferable that the computer is connected directly to the router by cable .

The connection via WiFi can become unstable, especially if we do not have good coverage or if we have many neighbors with their own active WiFi channels.

An alternative option can be the PLC systems: they are transmitters and receivers that use the electrical network (the cables of the electrical installation of the house, office, etc.) to transmit the information. This is usually a solution that works very well if the building has a normal electrical installation (in very old buildings there could be a greater risk of interference and poor signal quality).

7 | Connecting everything and basic setup

We are going to use the camera connection via HDMI:

Camera> Capture> Computer

In this case we have chosen the Sony a6100, which uses a micro HDMI connector (type D) .

We have to buy an HDMI cable that has the micro HDMI connector (D) on one end and the standard HDMI connector (A) on the other.

The cable should be as short as possible, the shorter and thicker (high speed type) the better. But we will also have to take into account where the camera will be located, that is, the distance between the camera and the computer.

A cable of between 1 and 2 meters would serve us perfectly.

The HDMI cable is connected to the video recorder.

In this case we are going to choose the Elgato Cam Link 4k capturer, one of the most used for streaming.

The capturer is connected to the computer through the USB connector. I recommend using a USB cable (male-female) to connect the capturer to the computer, instead of connecting it directly. This cable will avoid mechanical stress between the capturer and the computer.

To connect the video recorder it is preferable to use one of the computer’s USB inputs , not through an intermediate USB hub. And it is preferable to use a USB 3.0 input if we have it available on our computer.

Continuous feed for camera

The Sony a6100 allows you to connect a USB cable from a power source to charge / power the camera while still running.

I prefer to use a dummy battery with a power cord . This type of battery is known as a dummy battery .

You would have to look for a battery compatible with your camera. In this case we would look for a dummy battery compatible with the NP-FW50 battery used by the Sony a6100.

The advantage of the dummy battery is that we avoid any kind of heating of the real battery and the camera itself (due to the battery). Also, some cameras only disable sleep mode when they detect that there is no real battery. In this way we avoid that the camera enters sleep mode every so often (in that mode it would stop emitting and you would have to press the shutter button to reactivate it).

Sleep mode on the a6100

The a6100 (and other Sony models) deactivates sleep mode when it detects that it has an active HDMI connection and when there is a dummy battery (external power) connected to the camera.

HDMI setup on camera

Check the following menu options (for Sony a6100 and similar for other Sony cameras):

  • Settings> HDMI settings> Resolution : 1080p
  • Settings> HDMI settings> Show info. HDMI : Disabled (this is to have clean HDMI output and only send the image, not the on-screen help information)

Sound, connecting the microphone

In this case we have chosen the wireless system option .

It is a significant investment, but I think it is worth it and it will pay off in the long run.

We are going to choose the simplest Rode system: Rode Wireless Go. It is a very proven system that many youtubers use. We are going to use it at a very short distance, so we should not have any problems with interference or signal cuts.

The Rode Wireless Go transmitter already includes a microphone, we can use it directly as a lavalier microphone. It is a very small emitter that can be placed very easily on the neck of the shirt.

The autonomy of the system is about 5-6 hours. It works with an integrated rechargeable battery.

The Rode Wireless Go receiver has an audio output with a 3.5mm jack (TRS).

We could connect it directly to the camera, to the external microphone input, using a male-male TRS cable. The audio signal would be transmitted over HDMI along with the video signal (not all cameras have this functionality).

However I prefer to bring the sound signal directly to the computer.

We could use the male-male cable to connect the receiver to the microphone input of the computer. I don’t like this option either because the computer’s preamplifier is usually of very low quality and it is also very likely that this input adds a lot of electronic noise.

I recommend using a small sound interface .

We would connect the receiver to the interface.

The receiver and the interface usually use 3.5 TRS jack connectors (2 black bars / 3 connections).

If you use another receiver or a different interface or connect directly to the computer, you will have to see what type of 3.5 jack uses each element. For example, some Macs often use TRRS connections. You would simply have to use a TRS to TRRS adapter or vice versa.

Here you have more information about 3.5 jack connectors and their variants .

The audio interface would be connected to any USB input on the computer or through an external USB hub (for the audio signal there should be no problem).

Those simple sound cards do not usually have the best audio electronics in the world (preamplifier, converter, etc.), but compared to the problems that the microphone input of most computers gives … I think it is worth using this option .

A card of this type costs less than 20 euros, I would try to discard the cheapest ones and keep a model in that range of 15-25 euros. In the equipment and prices section I include a couple of simple sound interface models that work quite well.

Audio video delay / sync

The sound signal and the video signal travel different ‘paths’ to reach the computer.

It is very common for the sound to arrive with a certain delay with respect to the video signal or vice versa. This is noticeable in that the voice is not synchronized with the movement of the lips and is a very annoying effect for the person who is watching a video or the live broadcast.

I believe that all broadcast programs allow you to configure and adjust (usually the sound source) so that the two signals are synchronized.

You can find a lot of information on the internet, it is simply for you to take it into account if it happens to you in your broadcast, which is something that can be solved in a simple way.

Sound levels

This is another of the most important sections.

Here we always talk about the level of the audio signal: one thing is the level of the signal and another thing is the volume of the playback equipment.

We have to look at the signal levels through the digital meter that appears in the program that we are using to manage the broadcast.

We have to find a balance between emitting with a sufficient level (so that the user does not have to turn up the volume of their equipment too much) and avoiding that the audio is distorted by saturation.

The main enemy is zero (0 dB) that appears at the end of the meter scale.

If our audio signal exceeds that limit (it is called clipping, clipping or clipping) we will be distorting, and it is something very unpleasant for the listener.

When we record sound, for example to publish on YouTube, for podcast, etc. It is always preferable to be very conservative and work with levels that give us a lot of margin. Then in editing we leave the sound with the most appropriate levels, without loss of quality.

But when we broadcast live we have to leave the audio at levels appropriate for consumption, so to speak. We have to be a little more aggressive but always taking care not to reach the maximum scale.

A reference for direct could be the zone of -10dB to -12dB for normal sound (that is, the zone that the bars reach in a sustained way when we speak normally), with sporadic peaks that can reach -6dB or a little more, already in the red zone.

The red zone of the meter does not indicate distortion, it indicates that we are in a risk zone. What we should not do is be with the audio level in a sustained way in that critical area.

Depending on the program we use to broadcast, we may have the option of adding a filter or module for the audio.

It might be a good idea to include a compressor and / or limiter .

These ‘filters’ help us control those sound peaks that may appear throughout the transmission: clapping, laughing, hitting, yelling or raising the voice pitch, etc. You can find many tutorials on the internet on how to configure these types of filters depending on the software you are using.

It sounds more complicated than it really is.

The most important thing is to know that the level of the audio signal is telling you the digital meter (visually), not your speakers or your headphones. And that we have to control that our audio signal has a high enough level but with a certain margin to avoid distorting the sound peaks.

Here you have more information about the optimal levels of audio in recording, streaming, etc.

8 | Manage the broadcast

Once we have the camera and microphone connected, the computer will detect them as a video source (such as a webcam) and an audio source (USB interface).

We could work directly with the broadcast platform that we are going to use for the classes: Zoom, Twitch, Google Meet …

It is the simplest option, but it is also a very limited option.

I recommend using a streaming management program, which would act as an intermediary between the input information and the broadcast platform .

You can use any of the variants of OBS , which is a free program, probably the most used in streaming. The best known variants are OBS Studio and Streamlabs OBS .

There is tons of information on setting up and using OBS.

There are also other widely used programs. For example for Mac Ecamm Live is used a lot .

From the program we simply have to say to which broadcast platform we are going to send the content, we could even broadcast to several platforms at the same time..

What are the advantages of using this type of program?

The main advantage is that they give us much more control over the content that is going to be broadcast.

We can have a predesigned intro at the beginning of the broadcast, we can make transitions between different contents, we can add titles, notices, texts, still images, music …

We can configure the technical parameters of the broadcast so that it best adapts to the capacity of our internet connection …

The possibilities are virtually endless.

Disadvantages?

The learning curve. At first it may seem complex. But it’s like everything else, as we practice and gain experience, it is when we are going to see the power and the possibilities with respect to streaming platforms.

It places an additional burden on the computer.

Here are a couple of videos where you can get an idea of ​​the power of OBS (or any similar software) to manage the content of an online class or to record a class with different types of content:

Some are already integrated directly into OBS. For other platforms, OBS can be used with a module, Virtual Cam, which generates a ‘camera’ that we would use on that other platform as a video source.

OBS is designed to mainly manage the part of the broadcast (from our computer to the viewers). All the interactive part: chats, voice communication with other participants, etc. it would be done from the native application, for example from the Zoom software if we are using this platform.

9 | Monitor audio, video and live broadcast

Okay, this part is a bit complicated when a single person is going to take care of everything and that person is also away from the computer.

We cannot put the audio that we are emitting in the speakers of the room where we are because it would feed back (it would couple) or it would create a very annoying echo.

If we are sitting near the computer we can use headphones to monitor the audio that we are generating and the one that we are emitting, this gives us an idea of ​​the general sound quality.

But we have to trust above all the visual indicator of the audio level .

For the video signal we have to check for example that the image is in focus. If we use manual focus we would adjust it before starting the broadcast and we would no longer touch it. If we use automatic focus we depend on the camera.

The Sony a6100 has a very reliable focus system, especially if we have face detection activated. We should have no problems.

To check that the broadcast is going well and without problems, we can use, for example, a mobile phone or a tablet, connecting as spectators to the platform we are using to take a look from time to time and see that everything is working correctly.

The comments of the users themselves (students) live through the chat that include this type of platform are also very useful.

10 | Summary of equipment and prices

Camera: Sony a6100
Excellent value for money for streaming and for recording video (and for photography)

Tripod: Light tripod
I really like the Manfrotto Befree but we are going a bit on budget, so in this case we are going to choose a slightly cheaper tripod from well-known brands that usually offer good value for money:

Microphone:  Rode Wireless Go
We are going to use the transmitter directly as a lavalier microphone. It is very small and can be worn very well on the neck of the shirt. We could also see the option of buying a lavalier microphone to connect to the transmitter.

USB audio interface
For connecting the wireless system receiver to the computer via USB instead of using the computer’s microphone input 3.5 jack connector.

Lighting:  Kit with 2 led panels
I am going to choose a led lighting kit. I find it less cumbersome than a kit with softboxes / umbrellas, and the led panels will give us more flexibility: we can regulate the intensity directly on the panel, while in a kit with low-consumption lamps we would have to regulate the intensity by zooming in or out the lights. It’s a bit more expensive, but I think it’s worth it in the long run.

Video capturer : Elgato Camlink 4K
One of the most used. It is very small, reliable and very good value for money

Micro HDMI (type D) to HDMI (type A) cable
Between 1 meter and 2 meters at most, depending on the position of your camera and computer. Keep in mind that you can also use a USB extension cable between the capturer and the computer. The shorter the cables the better, but it is not worth adjusting to the millimeter either, leave some margin in case you change the position of the camera in the future, etc.

Dummy battery for the camera
You can look for it as dummy battery, dummy battery, battery adapter… for the NP-FW50, which is the battery model of the Sony a6100.