So, you're a parent looking to invest in some video equipment to record your kid's school or club volleyball matches. Whether you are walking into Best Buy or shopping online, it is difficult to find exactly what you need to get the job done right. Before I fill you in on the gear I use, here are some reasons why recording club volleyball games can be a difficult task:
- You're in a cramped space, making it difficult to get the whole court in the frame.
- There often isn't an elevated spot for you to put your tripod on, forcing you to shoot through players.
- Power outlets are difficult to find and often are in inconvenient locations.
Taking into consideration those challenges, the best solution I've found is going with a GoPro set-up and here is why:
1. The wide angle lens allows you to get a wide enough shot so that you have the whole court being captured.
A very important feature since the way volleyball is played there's a lot of things happening away from the ball that are very important to the outcome of each point.
2. It's tough enough to withstand the hardest of hits and falls.
Although most camera's can take an initial hit from a volleyball, it is the following hit it takes when it hits the floor that usually renders them destroyed.
3. Light enough to mount on a light stand securely.
Most cameras are designed to be used with a tripod, which in our scenario, doesn't really help us. Tripods are very stable but are not tall enough to get an adequate perspective to record a volleyball match correctly. This is why you need a light stand to mount your GoPro. GoPro's accessories allow you to place their camera securely on a light stand, giving you an optimum perspective to record from.
4. Rechargeable by portable USB battery.
GoPro uses a similar voltage as your cellphone for charging their batteries. This is why you can use a small portable external battery to recharge it conveniently between matches, without having to look all over the gym for an outlet.
- GoPro Hero 4 Silver Edition (Best Buy $499.99)
- GoPro Battery Backpac ( Best Buy $69.99)
- GoPro Tripod Mount ( Best Buy $14.99)
- Lexar 633x 64GB microSD Memory Card (Best Buy $89.99 / Amazon.ca 62.99)
- Anker 2nd Gen Astro2 9600mAh Portable Battery (Amazon.ca $43.99)
Manfrotto 1004BAC Master Light Stand (Broadway Camera $139.99)
- Set your GoPro video capture mode to "1080p" at "30fps". This will give you the optimum picture quality in indoor gym lighting conditions.
- Use the iOS or Android app to remotely control your GoPro using the GoPro's wifi capabilities. The app has many phenomenal features such as giving you a live preview of what you're recording, as well as allowing you to start and stop recording. Both these features make sure that you have the right framing as well as only the specific rally footage that you need.
In summary, for under $1000 the GoPro set-up delivers the total package of features to record your kid's volleyball matches successfully.