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So this is my second year going solo. And my first year creating my own sequences. Last year I prepared my show in 3 weeks. And it looks like it. The goal last year make them lights flash to music. This year I am trying to make a show.

2012 I started reading the manual in January. I tried to organize my show i groups of 4 and Red/Green. I learned how to use the animation window. And every song except one was sequenced from scratch by me.

I looked over some of my videos in years past, and i decided to add more lights. And hopefully cleaner and more organized sequences.

My questions are:

  1. What can I do to make higher quality videos? I found out last year if I video at dusk then the videos seam to come out better
  2. My sound source is usually the ride. What is everyone else using for a sound source?
  3. Are there any free, low cost, easy to use video editing software out there?
  4. Any other tricks and tips would help.
  5. Any suggestions on a camera?

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Use a tripod (I won't watch your video if you don't). Dub the actual mp3 of the song over the video (within the video editing software) rather than just relying on your car speakers. Windows Movie Maker should do the trick for most basic videos. http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-live/movie-maker-get-started

Flip UltraHD cameras work pretty well for recording Christmas displays. It is relatively inexpensive (about $100). They discontinued making them, but you can still buy them online (some places jacking up the price due to this).

http://www.theflip.com

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Even though the Flip is tiny, it does a great job and it has a tripod mount. Resist the urge to hold it while you're recording.

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I have a Cannon but the video comes out crappy. It might help if I read the manual.

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I have a Cannon but the video comes out crappy. It might help if I read the manual.

My Cannon ZR900 sucks too and I have read the manual.

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Regarding #1: Have a tripod and use it!

Set your camera to manual focus, then video your show. (blinking lights will tend to make the camera go in and out

of focus)

#2. Continue to use your "ride" speakers. after the taping you will replace the sound on the video with the original

mp3 file in post production.

#3. Check the internet for any free programs. I like Adobe Premier Elements which can be purchased $69 to $99.

If I forget how to operate any program Photoshop, premier Elements, etc. I go to Lynda.com for training.

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I haven't heard anyone suggest iMovie. I plan to use that this year. I know how to use the software, easy to use, and I already on it! Last year was my first year as well and... Lets just say I learned a lot. Lol

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I haven't heard anyone suggest iMovie. I plan to use that this year. I know how to use the software, easy to use, and I already on it! Last year was my first year as well and... Lets just say I learned a lot. Lol

+1 iMovie is great and very simple to use.

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I am going to record my show this year with my Nikon camera. I knew there had to be a bunch of tricks to exploiting all the features of that camera. Someone pointed me to this website It definately helped me get a grasp on much that I need to know to get the results I am looking for. I ran a quick test or two in the house, but that was only to see that the procedures would improve the results I was getting. For the record, I used a flip camera two years ago and was fairly happy with the results. I lost that camera last year and got a different video camera altogether and was very disappointed, which is why I decided to use my dslr. Good luck!

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