Why You Need An iPad!

Last week I was invited to Firhill for a Partick Thistle press conference. I decided to take my iPad and see if the filming and editing capacity on it could work for blogs and online news sites.

Well I was pleasantly surprised. The whole process was very easy to use and in the end the quality was good enough to use on site.

Here is the video again.

Now the final article was not perfect but that helps with this preview. The first attempt was always going to be trial and error. The sound with Jackie McNamara was low… That was my fault as I was concentrating too much on the picture, I wanted Jackie with the macb sign in the background. Having no mic and headphones proved problematic but I have since found out that their is a mic available for the iPad. Plus on the editing side of things you can improve the sound slightly too. From a technique point of view indoors is better than out for sound and you should get the subjects that you are filming as close to the camera as possible while containing them in the shot.

Now to edit, I bought iMovie app from iTunes for £2.99. It is very easy to use and it took me around ten minutes to edit the piece together. I simply put both interviews on to my timeline, cutting the tops and tails off (the start and ends off the footage). Then uploaded the finished article to Vimeo… you can also upload it to YouTube and Facebook. Be warned this will take up most of your time and you will need to take your iPad off your cellular data and have Wi-Fi connection. Also on an editing side you can add titles, voiceovers, graphics and fades.

As you can see in the above photo and during the second interview, there was a lot of interest in what i was doing… quite a lot of the press took a photo of me using it which was very surreal.

Ok this rig was actually made for a prompter which my smart father managed to fix onto the iPad… It gives a more stable hold of the iPad and gives you the chance to use your other hand to hold a mic, dictaphone or light. It also adds to the impressiveness of the look to other journos and the people you are interviewing.

The Rig also means that I can attach my iPad to a tripod which gives the whole thing more stability, plus frees you up to focus on other things like sound, lighting or even on your questions.

Now we have all seen press conferences on Sky Sports News and been to games where we turn up early or been in a room waiting for the person we are interviewing to turn up. Well the big thing for us all, is what to do with our spare time! Well the iPad is a gadget when all said and done. Why not keep up to date with the footballing world either online or on Twitter. Or get the Football Manager app for £6.99. Then there is the CoachPad app (£2.99) and impress the football boss you are about to interview by showing him what tactics he should be employing!

The main benefits to using an iPad for football bloggers and online news sites are simple… It is easy to use, quick and the quality is actually pretty good. You can have an interview filmed, edited and uploaded inside half an hour. The space you save is great too, In my man bag I managed to take my iPad on its rig, a notepad, dictaphone and a photo camera.

So for me this is a great tool that any blogger or online journalist could use and benefit from.

10 Responses to “Why You Need An iPad!”

  1. Who took the photos of you while you were filming? They look so professional 😉

  2. Good read!

    What i would say though is an iPhone 4 is equally as handy with it’d HD video recording. Sure it wouldn’t have the wow factor of rolling up with a rig like the one you’ve shown – but on trips where space might be an issue it’s a more than adequate replacement. There are enough accessories on ebay to put your phone in that allow you to fit the device to a tripod.

    iMovie is a brilliant app though, can’t recommend it enough. Would love to try it on a second gen iPad.

    I’ve been using my iPad (first generation, no camera) at Meadow Lane when i’ve covered Notts County. What will happen sometimes is i’ll use the first half to take some shots of the game, then at half time take up a position in the pressbox. Transferring photos to the device is easy thanks to Apple’s accessories, and then live blogging for the second half. For what I need to get done, it’s perfect.

  3. Craig – Dunno who took the photos at Firhill 😛

    Stu – Yes I believe an iPhone 4 would give you the same kind of quality as you say not the wow factor but more space for trips.

    The one thing that would put me off doing it on an iPhone would be that it would take longer to edit and slightly more complicated due to size.

    That said I am all for new innovative ideas.

  4. All I’ll say is – I hope your dad goes on Dragon’s Den with that iPad rig!

  5. Really interesting.
    I thought output video was not so good, due not hight quality camera, but if you confirm it is, I think this may consider a step forward!

  6. Rob – Haha I will definitely suggest it to him. It works really well.

    Michelangelo – It is good enough for the internet especially for blogs… Check the link to the video.

  7. I bought my iPad before the nifty number 2 and it’s camera was avaliable and as a blogger I mainly use it to keep up to date.

    It can be too easy to spends hours sitting at a desk, or have a heavy and warm laptop on my knee reading the other blogs and websites to keep up to date and enjoy what everyone else has produced.

    The iPad has made it so much easier for me to consume media.

  8. Hi Scott

    Love the set-up.

    That CoachPad app looks great. Can you upload your finished image when you’re done? I don’t have any iOS devices anymore, I might be tempted with an iPad yet 😉

  9. Thomas – Yeah the iPad is better on the go & has a better battery than my MacBook.

    John – You can upload the finished graphic to your photos then email it to yourself then show the world your Fantastic Ross County tactics!

  10. Thomas & Scott, agree again. In the press box at Notts there are a lot of people around me with laptops, wires everywhere…the iPad is perfect in that respect – gives you more room for notebooks, programme, team sheets etc

    Also i shared Michaelangelo’s concern about the quality of the video until i saw your effort! Very sharp!

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