October 9, 2016 at 7:15AM


I have a Canon 600D and a very small budget, what do I need to buy?

As far back as I can remember I have always wanted to be a filmmaker (or since I saw Goodfellas when I was like 9), and I'm 13 now so my mum gave me her Canon 600D. I also have a small budget of less than $400, so what do I need to buy?
I'm sure for the first few weeks (or months or years IDK!) I'm just going to be experimenting with shooting different footage to really learn how to make films, but I still know that for a good short film you need to have lights, camera, a microphone and editing software. I have a good camera and a 18-55mm lens, but nothing else. Where should I get the mic, lights and software and which one?
Also my camera also has a headphone port, do I need headphones? I have a pair of Turtle Beach headphones, so I could always use those.

Also does anyone have any other tips for film-making? I am currently taking Werner Herzog's Masterclass and I am going to start writing everyday.


Would say you definitely need some audio gear. Depending on how much you want to spend on that I would recommend go either with the Røde VideoMic Pro (about $200) which can be used directly with the camera or the Røde NTG2 (about $220) and a audio recorder (about $200).
Also you should use headphones to monitor your audio. If you do not it would be like not looking at the camera screen while recording. (By the way it's new to me that the 600D would have a headphone jack. It's rather the mic-in).

October 9, 2016 at 8:44AM, Edited October 9, 8:45AM

Eric Halbherr
Director, DP, Editor, Creative Storyteller

Thank for the anwer!
I will most definitely by the VideoMic Pro, but do I need anything for lighting?

Khuzy Qureshi

October 9, 2016 at 11:47PM

I would add a small audio recorder ( like a Tascam DR-05 or a Zoom H1 ) to record audio.

The reason I suggest these over an on-camera mic like the Rode VideoMic Pro is that you generally do NOT want to mount your microphone on your camera because you need to have your microphone less than 3 feet from your subject in order to record high quality sound. So this usually means mounting your microphone on a boom pole ( you can make your own pole to save money ), a boom-stand, or on a floor stand just out of your shot. So mounting your microphone on your camera puts it too far away to record good quality sound.

For lighting I would start with a couple of small LED lights like the Aputure Amaran AL-H160 light that costs about $50 US each. These can run on either AA batteries or rechargeable Sony L type batteries. They are daylight balanced, have a high CRI rating ( they produce good color ), are dimmable, and quite bright for their small size : https://goo.gl/8Aub51

October 10, 2016 at 11:06AM, Edited October 10, 11:06AM

Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer

I would add, Rode makes a mini(or micro?) boom pole for about 50 bucks. It's not internally wired, and it doesn't get super compact like more expensive ones, but it's pretty lightweight, extends pretty well, and has decent padding. And it doesn't look like a broom handle...

Landon Friesen

October 14, 2016 at 2:41PM

Others on this site are much more knowledgable on audio than I, but as far as lighting and software, when I started out, I just just used clamp lights and household lamps. clamp lights (or work lights) can run you about $10 at your hardware store, and you can use any household bulbs! Now is an amazing time for beginning filmmaking for editing, with DaVinci resolve 12.5. It includes a full NLE (Non-Linear-Editor, A.K.A. not using a tape recorder to edit) and is extremely powerful, and 100% free! The paid features tap into 4K, and collaborative things, etc. Don't forget with your gear, you'll need a tripod!

October 12, 2016 at 6:19AM

Craig Douglas
Editor/ Videographer

Household lamps can be great, but sometimes you need battery powered lights to shoot at a location and don't want to have to deal with the hassle of running a gas generator. This is where the new compact LED lights come into their own, where they can run for hours on a single $10 - 40 rechargeable battery, like the Sony L batteries.

Guy McLoughlin

October 12, 2016 at 5:52PM

absolutely agree with you.

Roman Wake

July 30, 2019 at 10:38PM

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