Lens to Lenses: Single Camera Shoots vs. Multi-Camera Shoots

Posted by Liz Glazier on Oct 15, 2014 3:24:09 PM

When deciding whether to use a single camera or multiple cameras to film your next conference or event, it’s important to thoroughly understand each of the options to determine which will best accommodate your needs.

Single Camera Shoot

If the event or speech has limited movement on stage or features a single speaker at a podium, using one camera is a great choice. If the speaker offers additional multimedia during his or her speech, such as a slideshow or other graphics, these can easily be inserted into the video during post-production and wouldn't require additional cameras.

The camera is placed at the best location to capture the action, and remains stationary for the entirety of the event. For events with multiple speakers, a single camera may be positioned behind the audience, where it can capture all of the action on stage as well as potential Q&A participants from the audience. As the conversation moves from person to person, the videographer zooms and pans accordingly. This style of shooting works well for sessions with single speakers and without a lot of movement, like an educational lecture.

Multi-Camera Shoot

If you have more than one speaker on stage having a conversation, conducting an interview, or giving a presentation, filming with more than one camera will add to the viewers’ experience greatly. This way, the viewers can watch the presentation in various angles: individual shots of each speaker, wide-pan shots of the stage, and also shots of those in the audience. Multi-camera productions require a director and switching equipment to capture these angles. Multi-camera shoots afford more dynamism compared to a one-camera shoot. For starters, shooting with three cameras gives you many points of focus. See image below:
multi camera setup

The possibilities are endless – in one scenario you can have one camera trained on the moderator, another on the speakers, and a third on-stage camera to capture audience questions and reactions. Shooting the stage from multiple angles gives the post-production crew more material to work with, as they can stitch together various shots and angles, and edit in cutaway and reaction shots to truly achieve a broadcast television sensibility.

For a shoot with two or more cameras, a visit to the venue should be scheduled with the videographers before the event to determine the best positions for each camera. For live streamed events, an on-site director should work directly with the camera crew for smooth, professional, seamless live switching from one camera to the other.

You can take the production even further and use three or more cameras. This works great for panels, performances or other events that will have a lot of onstage movement.

Although these shoots typically cost two to three times more than single camera shoots, they provide your online audiences with the highest quality viewing experience which can increase viewership and exposure.

The choice of choosing between the options available is ultimately up to you. To learn more about each option and to find out which best fits your needs, check out our website or contact us at: fora.tv/contact

Looking to get started with live streaming your event? Check out our "Guide to Professionally Live Stream Events: The Basics to Best Practices" for information for marketing novices to seasoned event organizers, to help plan and execute a successful a live video production.

Topics: video, Blog Post, camera, conferences, events, filming, FORA.tv, online video, production