Over the days leading up to the 25th of December I’d like to give something to everyone who stops by my blog. These tips cover camera settings, flash, lighting, software and gear. I’ll be providing a pair of tips each day until 25th December.

#7 – Don’t get to the end of your tether

Tethered shooting, is wonderful. The one drawback is the cable, falling out and suddenly you are not tethering anymore. I’ll admit that I often use Wi-Fi to tether these days, but for transferring heavy RAW files a cable is still the best solution.

There have been several solutions to the perennial “cable falling out” problems, Canon even added their own solution to the EOS-1Ds Mark III with a heavy duty metal knurled screw and plastic cable keeper.

securing your cable when tethered shooting

EOS 80D with Tether Tools Jerk Stopper

Then along came TetherTools, with the Jerkstopper (Amazon) and made cables stay attached to most cameras. Tether Tools also sell a range of extension cables if you need to be further from your computer.

However it’s not the only solution for Canon cameras, the EOS 5DS and EOS 5DS R included an odd bit of plastic that also appeared in the EOS 7D Mark II, EOS 5D Mark IV and EOS R boxes. Canon’s solution uses a screw hole in the body next to the HDMI and USB ports. To the screw hole attaches a bit of plastic that takes the strain away from the USB and HDMI ports – and it’s free too.


#8 – Get better audio for vlogging


external mic for video

If you’ve ever tried capturing video of yourself, you know that a vari-angle LCD makes life a lot simpler, but the best thing you can do for your audience is improve the sound quality on your vlogs. Most of the current EOS cameras have a MIC input, so please make use of it. One of the best out there is the Rode VideoMic Pro+ (Amazon); it has great sound, a rechargeable battery that lasts ages, and it turns on and off automatically when you start recording – genius. If you’re holding the camera at arms length then set a manual recording level in the camera to keep your voice consistent, the same if you are sat down and the camera is on a tripod.

For vloggers, the reason sound is so important is that your voice is more than 50% of your message. What you say is even more important than how the video looks. Think about this… If you watch a video and the picture goes, but the sound carries on you’ll persevere for a while. Yet, if the sound goes and the picture carries on, you’ll give up pretty quick.

The Rode VideoMic Pro+ is not cheap, but Rode have plenty of other models that will capture the real sound of your voice and won’t break the bank, some would even fit your phone too.


Here’s a few more festive fifty tips

Festive fifty – day #7
Festive fifty – day #17
Festive fifty – day #8
Festive fifty – day #13

About the author

Full-time photo tutor and photographer. I love to share my knowledge and skills to make photos, videos and teach others. I write books and articles for photo magazines and I always have at least one Speedlite flash in my camera bag