We’ve been making videos for our business for a while, and have long struggled with trying to memorize our lines. We’ve tried writing out the script on a piece of paper on the desk, posting it on the wall, we’ve even projected the script onto our electronic wall display behind the camera, but in every case, it resulted in the subject’s eyes and/or head moving around too much, making it obvious he or she is reading a script. And when the lines are committed to memory, that seems to cause a stiff performance, as we’re working too hard on recall, and not enough on being “in the moment”, which erodes the message.
Finally decided to check into a teleprompter, and found prices ranging from just over a hundred bucks, well into the thou$ands. I almost bought a slightly cheaper unit, but after seeing this one and reading the reviews, I realized that for only a few dollars more that the cheap one, this one’s mount is vastly superior. Not to mention the fact that this one folds flat for storage/transport, and even includes a basic carrying case.
The unit came already assembled. All I had to do was screw it onto my tripod, and mount the camera to the teleprompter in the same way it mounts to the tripod – a single screw. The glass is really quite clear, so has minimal impact on camera exposure, yet the front side is plenty reflective enough to be able to clearly read the script.
There are quite a few freebie teleprompter apps out there for ios or android devices. Unfortunately, most of them require you buy the upgraded version in order to be able to reverse the text to use with an actual teleprompter. The apps usually are in the $5 to $10 range, with some being a little more. Most have similar features, so we haven’t yet settled on any particular one as being better than the others.
If you do even the occasional video incorporating any type of script, you NEED to get this teleprompter. The amount of time you’ll save over memorizing scripts will quickly justify the minimal cost of the equipment.