BASIC MOJO KIT

Here is my basic gear list for mobile video journalism.

At first you may be thinking that you need extra lenses and gimbals before you can shoot good quality video.

I find it is better to first focus on stability and sound.
Capturing good sound is always the most challenging issue and the one that makes the biggest difference at first.

iPhone and Android gear

This kit all fits into a small plastic bag and is always in my bike bag or backpack when I head out the door.

You may be tempted by this similar kit on Amazon, but honestly, I have no experience with this microphone or the maker.

Microphones are the one thing you have to rely on. I only show the gear that I have tested in real field conditions.

With this rig you will always be ready to capture steady shots and use the mic for live reporting or capturing VOX pop sound bites from people at a scene. Be prepared to collect a few different microphones as you build your kit.

These are the most valuable pieces and will serve you a long time. Avoid the cheap ones. They will break when you need them most. This can be a hard lesson to learn.


 

NEXT STEPS

Add a small lapel mic.
This is a small mic that can be pinned to you or your interview subject for better control of the sound.

 


 

Recording with two mics

And now, if you using on iPhone I suggest you add in the Røde SC6-L two mic adapter.

This unit will let you record with two microphones.

(Android users can audition the SC6 analog adapter to see if it works with their handset, OS and apps.)

This two-mic SC6-L adapter for iPhone is a game changer. 

It comes with a digital interface which sounds amazing, and provides the ability to record one microphone in the left channel and the other microphone in the right channel. Plus you can monitor with headphones.

This simulates what a professional video camera does – record two-channel, isolated audio tracks.

Grab the gear from this handy list

 


 

The gear ​I recommend work like lego bricks. The pieces can be re-configured for different scenarios.

For example You can use the new free DoubleTake app with your iPhone 11 and film two camera shots like this.

I prefer the Shoulderpod G2 for more advanced situations like this, as it lets me attach a light and mics easily.

Typically I use two Røde mics and the SC6-L for audio.

For example I will attach the Video Micro and/or a SmartLav+ mic, but will switch them out for the Røde Wireless Go mic kits for hands-free filming like in this video.

You will also need an audio adapter cable when using the Wireless go with a smartphone. Mini plug to Smartphone. (This is the TRS to TRRS cable adapter I use.)

 


 

A light, full-height tripod

Next, you will want to add a full-size tripod so that you can record your interviews, live streams and selfies with more stability and with hands-free.

You must buy one that extends to at least 72″ high (182cm).
This is nice lightweight example of a tripod.
It is made of carbon fiber and extends to 191 cm (75 inches)
This height will let you interview tall people – it is very important to get the camera at the correct height.

 


 

Live streaming

If you need to provide constant power to your iPhone while live streaming and using an external mic and headphones, I recommend the Belkin Rockstar adapter and the Røde SC6 analog adapter.

 


 

Swipe down to tour the specialized gear setups I use for iPhone filmmaking and TV storytelling. 

 


 

MAX MOJO Broadcast Rig

Here is a single mic rig that is sturdy and light — The Max Mojo Rig for covering events and Vox Pop interviews at broadcast quality.

 


 

 


 

Filming with gimbals

When pros make smartphone videos with motion shots, they want smooth tracking.

I have tried the various third-party gimbals that you can attach a smartphone and I don’t like them. I have learned that the models that work the most naturally for me are the ones that also come with an integrated camera.

For example, I filmed the shots of the Award-winning film “Sophie Sutton” using the original Osmo + 4K camera. That model has been replaced by the much smaller and still capable Osmo Pocket.


Osmo Pocket rig

Here is a complete gear list for an Osmo Pocket setup that will get you great results with your iPhone attached.

 


 

Digital microphones

The Sennheiser HandMic Digital is a great unit for live streaming video.
This is the mic I used in the multi-award winning short film, “Ice Swimming.”

Below is a #Geartest video I made in Berlin showing you how well this pro mic does in noisy places like markets.

 

A lot of pros also like the Shure MV-88 digital condenser microphone.


It is a great choice for podcasts.

 


 

Light ’em up!

If you want to step up from the Luxpad 22 LED face light, check out the Neo 2 LED Light from Rotolight on top of your rig. This is a great light.

 


 

Anamorphic lenses

Want your mobile films to look like a feature film? Then you need to learn about filming with anamorphic lenses – just like Hollywood film directors do. It is fun to do this with smartphones – Here’s the kit I use from Moondog Labs.

Anamorphic rig in the Alps

4K anamorphic cinema rig featuring an iPhone 6S+ in a Helium Core cage with a Moondog Labs lens. This is my Extreme #Mojotrek filming rig in action on a week-long trek hiking across the Alps. Shown with Manfrotto mini tripod, the Moondog Labs ND filters and a Røde Videomic Pro  (Plus SC4 adapter cable.)

The rig above is capable of producing commercial quality work and it is a very low cost way to get started making professional films.

It features an amazing anamorphic lens that allows you to capture scenes that look like this.

This rig films pro video at a native 2.39:1 aspect ratio – using the same technique that Hollywood filmmakers have used for decades.