Foxvideo Productions

New kit (toy's!)

Sometime ago I was asked about producing a series of short 5 minute videos on the books of the Bible presented by a friend who lives locally. We produced an 'intro' version with a view to look for funding or sponsorship which so far we've not managed.

Chatting over coffee (as you do) we realised we didn't need funding to shoot these, we had the scripts, the location (a side room in a local church) and most of the equipment including lighting and green screen background. The demo was produced using a home made autocue - a hood and 60/40 glass, a 15" lcd screen, a Macbook and software, it worked well but was a bit awkward in use. The ideal solution was a Datavideo TP-300 using an iPad but at around £380 new it was outside our budget as we're now funding this series personally. Browsing eBay I spotted a new, unused TP-300 with a start price of £230 + £30 p&p or a Buy it now for £325 + £30, I queried the expensive postal cost with the seller who assured me it was correct, in my opinion £355 to 'Buy it now' was too expensive compared to the new dealer price so I waited till the auction was about to end, with no bids on it I entered £230 fully expecting a reserve of much higher - I won the auction, so £260 off my Paypal and 5 days later I'm now the owner of a mint, unused TP-300.


This version of a prompter is suitable for smaller cameras which meant using my JVC HM700 was out of the question unless I used two tripods, however my JVC HM100 would be ideal shooting @ 1920x1080 for YouTube and DVD. To make shooting a little easier I also bought a 7" on camera monitor with HDMI, it's full 1920x1200 and 1200:1 contrast ratio with many onscreen features - peaking, audio display, histogram and focus assist. It was on offer from Amazon at £119 instead of £175.

When we originally shot the demo, although the camera didn't need attention once setup, I did find operating the autocue at the same time as watching the presenter and monitoring the audio difficult, now with the iPad I've found a 'voice controlled' script reader we can use, Voice Teleprompter on the App store. There's a 'lite' version for free however this version can't import scripts but is ideal to test, the 'pro' version is £19.99 and allows import of .docx files from Dropbox, Google Drive etc, I've tested it out and it appears to work fine, I still have iCue on the iPad which can be controlled from an iPhone if we find Voice Teleprompter is not suitable. The only limiting factor now is the presenters cough - we'll have to wait until it clears up!