DSLR and Mirrorless Camera Basics for YouTubers | Ben Rowlands | Skillshare

DSLR and Mirrorless Camera Basics for YouTubers

Ben Rowlands, Professional Musician and YouTuber

DSLR and Mirrorless Camera Basics for YouTubers

Ben Rowlands, Professional Musician and YouTuber

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7 Lessons (25m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Choosing a Frame Rate 24 vs 30 vs 60

    • 3. Choosing a Shutter Speed

    • 4. What is Aperture?

    • 5. Setting your ISO

    • 6. Shooting Slow Motion Understanding High Frame Rates for B Roll

    • 7. More Skillshare Classes Coming!

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About This Class

This class focuses on the most essential camera settings, for creating online video. If you are brand new to DSLR and Mirrorless Camera's and do not know what the settings mean. This class will be the perfect introduction. Helping you understand what you are changing on your Camera, so you can capture the perfect image! Allowing you to improve your video quality and get the most out of your gear! 

Meet Your Teacher

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Ben Rowlands

Professional Musician and YouTuber


Ben Rowlands is an up and coming YouTuber with over 1,000,000 Views and 9K Subscribers. Educating people about the power of Live Looping through tutorials, product reviews and live performances. 

Ben is a Professional Musician with BA (Hons) in Music Industry Practice. Through his experience of performing live shows as a one man band over many years, supporting acts such as Frank Turner and KT Tunstall. Ben pushes his equipment to the max! Providing him with unique and unconventional knowledge.

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1. Introduction: So welcome to this YouTube, that camera basics class. Now in this course I wanted to take you through all of the basic fundamental settings you need to know in order to get the most out of your cameras may have just recently upgraded to a DSLR or mirrorless camera to increase the quality of your YouTube videos. But you're a little bit overwhelmed by all of the different settings that are present within the menu. Now it doesn't matter whether you are using a Canon camera, a Sony camera, Nikon, Panasonic, whichever brand you up to choose, because all of these settings are identical across all of the different brands. And the only thing that's slightly different will be the menu system of the camera that I'm using. Now I will be demonstrating all of today's settings on my new Sony A6 400 because it can do far more than my Canon and 50. But if you want to learn more about your mirrorless or DSLR camera for shooting YouTube videos. Then Xiaomi here for YouTuber camera basics. 2. Choosing a Frame Rate 24 vs 30 vs 60: So let's talk about choosing a frame rate that you want to shoot and film your videos in. Now commonly, the frame rate options that you have to choose from 24 frames per second, 30 frames a second, and 60 frames per second. And there's a variety of pros and cons depending on which frames per second you choose to go with. Now commonly, most big Hollywood movies that you will be familiar on watching on the big screen, I usually shop in 24 frames per second. However, things like American sitcoms, like How I Met Your Mother, Big Bang Theory, friends, all those types of programs are often shot in 30 frames per second and even 60 frames per second. And depending on the frame rate that your camera is set to, will determine the sort of overall feel the footage actually has. Now, the lower the frame rate you have, the more motion blur is present within the actual 32, which gives it that more cinematic and smoother experience for the actual user who's watching the video. That's why a lot of cinema movies are shot in 24 frames per second because obviously they want that dramatic effect with very thin motion blur. I feel all of my videos in 24 frames per second across YouTube, across any platform. Because I personally think it looks the most natural when you're moving around as the smoothest look to it because of the motion blur, 24 frames per second has. Now there are a few other reasons why I opted to my videos in 24 frames per second. And this is mainly due down to the limitations of my camera itself. Now you can see here we have two different options. We've got file format and we have recording settings. Now both of these options in the menu here allow me to dictate and determine what my camera is actually filming. Yeah. So inside of the file format, I can choose the resolution of my Sony A6 400, which is the camera and filming this course with day, you can see I can film for k or I can film at HD. Now if I opt to film at just 1080 PhD and we look inside of the recording settings, you'll see we have so many different frame rates that we can actually choose from. Now the way these little options work here is you can see we have 50 P, 25 P, and 100 DPI. Now these values here that end in P are referring to the frame rate that this camera can shoot within. So this is 50 frames per second, this is 25 frames per second, and this is 100 frames per second. Now the reason why my camera is saying these much different numbers like 25, 50, and a 100 frames at the second compared to the more conventional 2430, 60, and 120 frames per second. It is because my camera is set to pout. And that's because in the UK where I feel my videos, our sort of file format is pal, whereas in America the file format is Mt SAC, where if I had my camera set to that, my file femtosecond would look slightly different. That be more like 24 frames per second or 60 frames per second instead of 5020 frames per second, instead of 100 frames per second, as you just saw within the many. But I choose to issue empowered the country in the file formats and I'm used to. But if you are based in America, you will obviously have. More options than what I have here. Now the number next to the frame rate, you can see here we have 50 frames per second at 50 m. Now this is the file size that will be captured, the amount of data that will be captured in this particular record settings. So you can see if we chose this one here, it would capture an image 1080 P recording at 50 frames per second, 50 meg. And then if we go down, it will be 25 megabytes, 50 megabytes, 16 megabytes, which is a really small file format. And then you can see here we have a 100 frames per second at 100 m. Now, what you wanna do here is you want to pick the highest file size. So we do not want to film at 25 frames per second, 16 M, because he's going to give us an extremely compressed file that we cannot do much with. So this means if we were to drag this into our video editing software and maybe tried to color grade it or do anything to it to manipulate the actual image. It's just going to fall apart into grade really, really quickly because it's captured the footage, but at a really full, small file size, which means there's not much information there to push the footage or do anything with it whatsoever. You may prefer to shoot at a small, smaller file size if you maybe doing daily vlogs or really long videos, maybe like a renovation or something like that. And you don't intend to do anything too seriously with the actual footage in terms of color grading it. But you'll just want to keep the file sizes down on your computer hard drive. This is where you would opt to go for slightly more sort of compressed file size as you're witnessing within this menu. Now this is what I actually choose for my personal YouTube video settings to get the most out of the sensor on this A6 400 that are used by Sony. Now if we switch out the file format to be for k, This now means my camera will capture a four K image, which is obviously what you want to do when you're filming your YouTube videos. For me personally, I want to capture the best possible image with the most amount of pixels and also a pro tip as well. If you film your YouTube videos in for K, are you export them in for K, even if you film them in 1080 P, will tell you too that it's a four K video which does help promote you fervor within the algorithm. Because obviously YouTube that goes, this video is filmed at a high resolution, is good quality, so it presents it better within search over somebody who will have filmed at 10 ADP video. So I now film all of my videos in native 4k eight gives me more flexibility in the actual edit in terms of the amount of pixels that are on the census, I can crop in, crop out way more than if I was just filming in standard HD. Now you can see inside of the record settings this time we have far fewer options. Or I can do is I can just film at 25 frames per second at 100 meg. Or I can feel that 25 frames per second at 60 m. Now this means I obviously have the much higher codec to shoot out here because we've got the a 100 MB or I could reduce it down to 60 m to sort of keep that for K file size down to a more minimal amount because trust me, these four K files on the Sony Computer, absolutely. Keynes by Ha Jin's The amount of hard drives I go through, it's absolutely crazy. So film, so many videos and store in so much footage. That's pretty expensive. And you can see here, I opt to choose 25 P a 108 because this gives me the largest file format and the most information. But you'll also notice, I don't have any other frame rates that I can choose on this particular camera app for K, I can't shoot at 30 frames per second. I can't shoot at 60 account, shoot at a 100. Can't do any form of slow motion. I can only shoe at 25. So this is another reason why I film all of my videos at 24 frames per second or 25 frames per second in my instance, because I'm based in the UK. Now do you think if you switch out this particular camera to the American format and TSC, you can't shoot at 30 frames per second with this camera, if I understand correctly. But the problem with doing that is it does introduce a crop factors. So the image would be zoomed in ever so slightly on my face, regardless of what lens in order, the different configurations I have on the actual camera itself, which I don't really want to do. Anyways, I want to have the full size of the actual sensor to get the most out of my camera. 3. Choosing a Shutter Speed: In the last video, we took a look at exploring the different frame rates on your Cameron and whether you should cheat your videos in a lower value, like 24 frames per second, or whether you should fill your videos in a higher value depending on the look and feel that you want to get out of your footage. Now a really important component that goes hand in hand with the frame rate is shutter speed. So in this video, I'm going to talk you through selecting the correct shutter speeds for your frame rate at why it kind of works in combination with those values. So if we take a look inside of my camera menu over here, let's head into the record settings and actually choose the frame rate that we want to film with him. Now let's go for 25 frames per second, or 24 frames per second if your camera is in the American setting. So let's go for 25 P and we'll exit out of the menu. And let's go through the actual shutter speed. So you can see in the lower corner, our shutter speed is set to one over 50, which means it's set to a 50th of a second. And we can increase this value to be a 60th of a second, 100th of a second. We can even decrease it if required. Now, because we are filming in 25 frames per second, you want to set your shutter speed to be double the frame rate. So obviously we're shooting in 25 frames per seconds, so we want to set our shutter speed to be one over 50. Now obviously, if you are shooting in 24 frames per second, you would want to set the shutter speed to be one over 48, or whatever value is nearest to them. In this instance, it's 1 over 50 because my camera is set to the power mode, this means it is perfectly double of the actual value, the frames per second. You set U. Now if we were to change our frames per second within the recording settings, let's say for example, we wanted to shoot our footage in 100 frames per second. So this would be slow motion because we could slow this down laterally in the edit. And I could see right now the shutter speed is set to one over 100th of a second. Now this is not correct. We want to increase this to be one over 200th of a second, so double the frame rate. This will give you the most natural motion blur and the smoothest image possible that you are trying to capture. Now, something that's important to understand about your shutter speed is the lower that you set the value, the more motion blur will be present within your footage. And the higher the set the value, the less motion blur that would be present within your footage. And also the less light will be present on your footage as well. Because obviously, the sensor is not being exposed as much to the light coming into the camera itself. Now as you increase your shutter speed, you do decrease the exposure of the actual image you are capturing. So the higher the value of the shutter speed that Docker image will be, the lower the value of the shutter speed, the brightness of your image will be because obviously the camera has got more access to light when it's actually capturing that particular frame. If you are shooting in slow motion, for example, all of my B-roll in my YouTube videos are short, 100 frames per second, which means I have a shutter speed of one over 200. So this means my footage is extremely duck. Now there are a few ways to combat this. You can increase the ISO on the actual image itself. But the problem with increasing the ISO is you add more grain and noise to the overall image, which we'll talk about in another video. You also have the option to reduce the f-stop, which is this value over here. Now the F-stop is the aperture of the actual sensor itself, which is basically how much light is being received by the sensor on the cameras. So the lower the aperture, the more light the camera has access to, the higher the aperture, the less light the sensor has access to, which also combats to giving you a much darker image. Now what I do is in order to combat this issue of having the correct shutter speed and a higher frame rate, but having a very dark image and not wanting to over exert the ISO on the camera for a very grainy image, I choose to just simply increase the amount of light that my camera has access to. So I'll just crank up the light on my key light or whatever I'm using to shoot that particular product shot or the B-roll. And I'll just cranked it up to almost full blast so the camera can be on its lowest possible ISO settings. So it has the Chrysippus and cleanest image that I can possibly capture. 4. What is Aperture?: So in the last video, we began to discuss some settings on your camera that you can use in order to increase the brightness of your image. Now in this video, I want to deep dive into the setting which is called aperture. Now, depending on what lens you used in combination with your camera, will determine what aperture values you actually have access to. Now your aperture value can also be referred to as an f-stop. Now you can see here I have got this value which is called F 3.5, which means my aperture is set to 3.5. Now if I just turn this knob here on my Sony camera, you can see I've just got these little control knob over here. This will increase my f-stop or decrease my f-stop. So you can see the lowest f-stop on this particular lens that I'm using is 3.5. Now what this f-stop value is doing is basically it's determining how much light the sensor of the camera can receive. So the lower the f-stop, the larger the actual arbitraries in terms of how much light is being projected into the sensor. So this is going to give you a brighter image, which then means you can turn down like things like your ISO to reduce graininess and noise out of your footage because you're getting more natural light onto the sensor itself instead of having to artificially increase the brightness of your footage. And likewise, if you have a higher f-stop, this will make it smaller incentive the amount of light that can be put onto the actual sensor of the camera, which will give you a Docker image. Now, depending on the quality of lens you also choose, we'll determine the x-dot values you can choose from. Now with this particular camera, I do not have a fixed aperture. Now what I mean by this is basically this particular camera lens has an f-stop of 3.5 to 5.6, which means as I zoom in on this lens, it will increase the actual aperture, making the image darker. So if you take a look here, you can see I'm set to 16 millimeters, which is the largest. Zoom it zoomed out the most. But as I increase the zoom, you will see the f-stop just increases without me doing anything other than increasing the Zoom to 50 millimeters, which is the maximum. And you can see the f-stop is now 5.6, giving us a much darker image. But then as I zoom out, it will reduce the f-stop given those much more light on the sensor and a much brighter image in the illicit because the f-stop is not fixed on this lens because it is the Kentlands. It's a cheaper lens that comes with the actual camera. However, the camera lens and I'm filming on over here, is a much more fancier lens that I specifically bought with a fixed f-stop of 2.8. So this means regardless of whether I've said it's 17 millimeters right now, or a zoom in 28 millimeters. The actual f-stop on the camera itself is fixed so you can see my footage doesn't get any darker, doesn't get any brighter. It remains the same. Another benefit of having a lower F-stop is the bokeh or below on the actual background. Now if you have a higher f-stop, the less amount of blur you've got to get on the background of your YouTube videos. You'll see this a lot with some YouTube is they have some really expensive cameras setups, and also in cinematic movies, and I've got a really blurry background. It looks really, really nice and gives an overall vibe to your footage. Now because this camera has got an f-stop of 2.8, this means I have more blur on the camera. So if I get closer to the camera and I zoom it in, you will see on the actual background that there is way more blur behind me and the background giving me a lot more definition. And it's taking the subject out of the background, giving you a much cleaner look so people can see what I'm talking about and not be distracted by what's happening with the guitars on the wall behind me here. They're just that to complement the shop. So you can see that's what the f-stop is doing here. Whereas if I had a higher f-stop, this would no where near B, as blurred as you just witnessed within that demonstration. 5. Setting your ISO: So now let's move on to deep diving into ISO. Now we've talked about aperture and how to naturally get your sensor on your camera to receive more light to increase the brightness of your image. But now let's talk about sort of artificially increasing the brightness of your image. Now we have this particular setting on our camera called ISL, and we can increase the ISO to basically increase the exposure of our footage digitally. But the problem with doing this is as you increase the ISO, you add more grain and noise into your footage, basically degrading the quality, the image that you have captured. But it's still a very useful setting to use now and again. And also you need to understand how to set it correctly to get the most image quality by default out of the camera. So if we take a look at these camera settings over here, you can see in the bottom right corner, I've got this value called ISL, and at the moment it is set to 500. Now we can increase this value. And as you can see, as we increase the value, it increases the brightness of our actual footage. But you can also tell that it's at did more noise into the actual image, but it's went from being a black background too obviously, as you can see now, you can actually see the desk itself, but it's overexposed here so you can hardly see what it's actually capturing of Civil 3D juice this back down to 500. Now because I'm a musician and I do a lot of tutorials on YouTube about music. A bit of an analogy I have of ISO is it's kind of like setting the gain on a mixin. When you plug your instrument into a speaker, you set the gain of the actual instrument and as you turn it up, and if you go too far, you will introduce distortion to that signal, which will mean that it's lost all of its integrity and all of its clarity and information. So that means when you play a chord on your guitar will be all distorted and sound really nasty. Whereas if you set the gain correctly, your guitar sound beautiful. Iso is very similar to setting the gain of an instrument on a mixing console. It is, the brightness gain of the actual image is what I would like to refer to it us. So as you increase the ISO, you are artificially adding brightness gain to the footage, which will guess give you a brighter image, which may look really good, but it will also add more noise and grain to the footage, making it not look as desirable. Now obviously you do need to set the ISO of your camera to obviously get it to work correctly. Now the lower the ISO, less noise and grain you'll have in the actual footage. Now you can't just set your ISO to auto, which it could recommend for vlogging if you're going between a lot of environments, setting your ISO to auto, if you're vlogging, you're going inside to outside may be a really great solution. When I've looked in the past, I preferred setting it to auto because it was a much more running gun setup compared to changing the ISO every single time you went inside and then changing it every single time you went outside. Now for me personally shooting inside of my studio here, I have all of my cameras set to 500. This camera now I'm filming on here is set to around 500, I believe. And this camera over here is set to 500. This is the best balance I've sort of found between having the light sets are really bright and having the camera ISO as low as possible, obviously, I could increase the brightness of the light and then reduce the ISO even further. But then that makes it a bit uncomfortable for me because I've got a really bright light bossing me when I'm filming all day. So I found a happy medium of 500 ISO, which is super low, and also not having this light too bright. So it's getting on my nerves. Why film during my videos? So that's what ISO is basically it's artificially increasing the brightness of your footage that your camera is capturing. 6. Shooting Slow Motion Understanding High Frame Rates for B Roll: So now let's talk about filming your videos in slow motion. Now we've already talked about choosing a frame rate as in 24 frames per second, 30 frames per second, 60 frames per second. All that type of stuff. But now let's specifically dive into setting up your camera for shooting B-roll, filming a YouTube video, maybe a product review, something like that. B-roll is essential in order to articulate a point that you're trying to make about a product or showcase the feature that it can do. And it also really helps with watch time within the video because it's not just you talking into the camera, like I have done for a majority of this course. You've got complimentary footage on top of it to make it a little bit more engaging. Now if you want to shoot B-roll, one of the easiest ways to get fantastic results is to film in slow motion. Now by filling in slow motion, this means you can do a lot of your shots handheld and then slow that footage down in the editor. And then I'll give you a much smoother image than if you were to sort of try and move really slowly in real time. It's a good way to just get much better results. And on the cheap. That's what I've done for majority of my videos. Now obviously we've talked about choosing a frame rate before within this menu, go into the record settings and going over to 100 frames per second. Now this particular camera can shoot 100 frames per second or a 120 frames per second. And if you set it to the American mode, now by shooting it this higher frame rate, this means we can slow this down when we take this footage into our video editor. Now, something that I wish people explained to me sooner Was the relation between your high frame rate B-roll footage and your actual frame rate of your Adobe Premiere Pro sequence or whatever video editing software you use. Now as we've already sort of established throughout this course, I film all of my YouTube videos at 25 frames per second, which means my Adobe Premier Pro timeline and the sequence settings are set to 25 frames per second. So if I am to insert a slow motion clip, that's a 100 frames per second. The B-roll that I've shown a 100 frames per second, this means is going to be playing back at a much faster rate than the 25 frames per second clip. So in order to turn that 100 frames per second footage into slow motion, we need to slow it down to 25 frames per seconds. So obviously, you know, we got to a 100 frames and we want to slow that down to 25 frames. So we simply can decrease the speed of the clip to 25 percent, which gives you a super smooth slow motion clip. And the same is true as well. If you were to film your slow motion at 50 frames per second. If we were to film, I was slow motion at 50 frames per second and insert that into a Premier Pro timeline at 25 frames per second, we can obviously decrease that 50 frames per second for each down by 50 percent because obviously 25 is half of 50. So we can slow down that footage by half the speed. And obviously previously we could slow down the 100 frames per second for each down to 25 percent, because obviously 20 times 25 is 25 percent of 100. So depending on how many frames per second, you can do the maths to slow that down in your timeline to the correct speed to get the smoothest and correct slow motion playback in your timeline during your project. 7. More Skillshare Classes Coming!: Now I really hope that you have now got a better understanding of your camera for shooting YouTube videos. If you want to learn more about growing your YouTube channel, then you're going to want to check out some of my other classes here on skill set, which is how to edit YouTube videos inside of Adobe Premiere Pro. How to edit YouTube thumbnails inside of Adobe Photoshop. And also most importantly, how to start and plan and grow your YouTube channel throughout the rest of this year inside if my YouTube basics beginner's guide. But with that said, be sure to check out the class project a linked down below and make sure you're following me here on Skillshare for future classes, all about YouTube and other camera related courses.