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16 October 2014

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Equipment checklist

Here's a checklist of some of the equipment you'll use to help people make a digital story.

18 things a digital storyteller needs by Gareth Morlais

1. Computers - you may be able to use existing equipment at a local community centre, school or cybercafe. If you need to buy new equipment, you need to decide between Apple and PC. Laptops are easier to transport and need fewer mains points than tower units. They've also got their own power-cut protector built in (battery). How many do you need? Well, as many as you'll have people making stories at one time plus at least two designated and set up for the trainer and audio editor.

2. Software. E.g. iMovie or Premiere for video editing, Photoshop Elements for image editing, Audacity for audio editing

3. Image scanner. A slimline one which can be powered from the USB lead, not by being plugged into the mains

4. Printer. Having a bluetooth-enabled one saves cabling

5. Digital cameras with fast, large memory cards and a good solid tripod

6. Voice recording set-up. Nowadays we normally use portable flash-card audio recorders. Examples include Zoom H2, M-Audio Microtrack and Edirol E-09. You can also use a good-quality microphone via a USB audio interface by a company like Edirol, M-Audio or MOTU to capture audio. If you do this, you'll need a microphone stand, cables, windshield, clip and a script stand.

7. Portable powered speakers

8. DV camera for archiving stories. MiniDV tape, not disk or flashcard unless you're confident you can deal with compression and keyframe issues. The camera needs to have DV-in enabled.

9. Other appropriate capturing/authoring devices as required for workshops (e.g. mobile phones, disposable cameras, webcams, etc.)

10. Data projector and portable screen

11. Tape, disk, card and storage stock

12. Portable storage - external hard drives and data sticks, external USB floppy drive and card reader

13. Cables - USB and firewire cables and mains extensions/splitters

14. Gaffer tape, rubber mats, cable ties and other sundry items

15. Flight cases

16. Trolley

17. Access to transport suitable for carrying equipment will be needed by trainer

18. Other equipment, as advised by trainer and people locally

This information isn't exhaustive. It's just an aide memoir or a draft shopping list of things that may be needed to set up or run a digital storytelling or video production workshop project.

If you're submitting a funding bid, don't forget to set aside some money for the software too.

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