Are you ready to create a YouTube channel sharing the things you love? Maybe that’s cooking, a family vlog, hair tutorials, or something in between! Whatever the topic, there are a few things you want to acquire for your YouTube channel when you are first starting off. Today I’m sharing some of the top essentials for starting a Youtube channel!
NOTE: When starting a YouTube channel, you truly only need 2 things which is something to record on and something to edit on. That can be your phone.
Matter of fact, when I first started my YouTube channel, I actually recorded with my cracked iPhone leaned against a window and that’s how I collected my first 5,000 youtube subscribers!
As my channel grew, I knew I had to elevate so I invested in better equipment. Starting off you do NOT need the newest greatest things. I am a firm believer in using what you have and upgrading as you go. That’s exactly what I did.
Essentials for starting a Youtube channel
You don’t have to go out and buy a brand new camera… you probably have one right in your hand (which is your phone). You can use your phone to record videos and it’s not that hard to do!
Using your phone to record is a cheaper alternative to buying a digital camera. However, I do feel that if you want truly elevated videos then you will need a DSLR camera as these deliver that top-notch cinematic look.
One of my favorite cameras for shooting Youtube videos is the Sony 6400. While there is a slight learning curve, this camera packs a lot of punch with 4k quality (for super clear and crisp video quality), auto-focus so you’re not blurry when recording and, it’s lightweight which makes it a great vlogging camera.
It doesn’t matter how amazing your camera is… if your lighting is not great then you won’t look great!
There are two types of lighting when it comes to recording and that’s natural sunlight (ie: the sun) and artificial light (such as ring lights and standing lights). You can choose to use one or both!
The sun provides natural lighting which is complimentary and free. However, relying only on natural sunlight means you won’t be able to record at night or while it’s raining.
I, personally, use a combination of both. I use artificial lighting during the day and photography lights during the night so I can record no matter the time of day or weather.
Here are a few lights I currently use and recommend:
3. SD Card
A SD card (which stands for Secure Digital Card) is a memory card that you record on so you can transfer to your computer.
If you are using a DSLR then there’s a very high chance it has an SD reader. There are a ton of SD cards and ultimately you want to choose one that has a decent amount of storage and works for your camera.
My personal favorite SD card for youtube is the Sandisk extreme since it allows you to record 4k quality with no problem. I highly recommend getting at least 128GB so you can record multiple videos within the SD card.
Video is awesome because we can not only see you but we can hear you which means crappy quality video and crappy quality audio is a serious no-no.
If your audience struggles to hear you then they will, unfortunately, turn your video off which is why it’s important to invest in high-quality audio equipment such as a mic.
One of the top microphones for popular Youtubers is the Rode microphone.
Back in the day, I would sit my iPhone against a stack of books near a window and record my videos. It worked during that moment in time (and sometimes it didn’t work…. and would fall down during recording) so as I elevated my equipment, a tripod was absolutely a must-have for me.
When it comes to a tripod, I recommend ones that will allow you to record vertical and horizontal as well as from different angles and heights.
I have been using the Amazon Basics tripod for years now and highly recommend it. It’s sturdy and can be adjusted as high as 60 inches
6. Camera remote
A camera remote is not a necessity when it comes to equipment essentials for starting a Youtube channel. However, it will make your life a lot easier because you will be able to record, zoom in/out, take photos, pause and so much more without having to leave your seat and constantly adjust the camera.
Now there are different remotes based on the camera you use so be sure to check that your remote is compatible with your camera (did you know they even hate remotes for cell phones?!)
7. Back-up battery
Imagine this: You’re recording a youtube video and everything is going great. The sun is shining perfect, you’re deep into your content, and suddenly your battery dies…
Now you have to stop everything you’re doing and wait for your battery to charge up.
Trust me, it’s not fun. Especially if by the time your battery charges, it’s now dark and you’re no longer in the mood to record.
This is where having backup batteries come in! Make sure you have at least 2 batteries for your camera so if one dies, you have another one!
Additionally, look into plug-in batteries that never die and prevent you from ever needing a backup battery!
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8. Camera Lens
Different camera lenses do different things.
Some are great for vlogging and being on the go.
Some are great for real estate because they go out further out allowing you to get more into a frame,
Some are great for sitting down talking-style videos because they focus on you allow you and make your background super blurry.
If your sole purpose is recording Youtube videos then find 1-3 lens that will work for you since lenses can be expensive.
For example, I tend to shoot 2 types of videos which are beauty and decor videos. Beauty videos are usually me sitting at my desk so I need a lens that will get close up to my face so my audience can see my makeup application.
For decor videos, I need a lens that will zoom further out so my audience can see an entire room in one frame.
Different lenses will produce different outcomes so I highly recommend researching the best lens for your needs. Also, don’t be afraid to head to your nearest BestBuy and test our lens so you can get a good feel before purchasing.
9. Cleaning Kit
Protect your investment by cleaning your camera, lens, and mic regularly.
This cleaning kit includes everything you need for under $20!
If you want to switch up the background to your videos then a great youtube essential is clothes to hang up for different background colors.
You can use sheets, poster board, and even fabric to switch up the look! You can tape it, nail it, or invest in a background backdrop stand such as this one:
Can you record and edit videos from your phone? Yes, yes you can.
Is it the easiest and best? No.
When it comes to editing videos, I’m a firm believer in editing on a laptop or desktop since you will have a lot more options and freedom.
I currently use an Apple MacBook air but seriously, I think any computer that allows you to edit videos is great.
12. Editing software
Most computers come with free video editing software such as windows movie maker or iMovie.
I used iMovie up until a few years ago when I decided I wanted more special effects and invested in filmora wondershare.
I highly recommend it for beginners since its super user-friendly, and comes with great special effects!
In my next post, I’m sharing the best video editing software for YouTube
If you’re ready to start an amazing YouTube channel then I highly recommend downloading my ultimate YouTube checklist to a banging channel! It’s completely free to download and includes everything you need to create a YouTube channel and YouTube videos that increase your subscribers and views!