5 Pieces of Video Equipment YouTube Stars Need

Did you know that the first YouTube video was uploaded by YouTube Co-founder Jawed Karim, documenting his trip to the zoo? His video, ‘Me at the Zoo’, was only 18 seconds long. Fast forward now to the present day and you have videos that are 15 minutes or longer once you’ve verified your account. We’ve come a long way since the early days of YouTube. Now, there’s a whole community of YouTube stars and even conferences such as VidCon that celebrate online video. People are getting discovered on YouTube and getting placed into stardom.

One famous YouTube star, PewDiePie, expressed his thoughts on becoming the most subscribed channel:

“When I started my YouTube channel in 2010, I never imagined that one day it would be the most subscribed channel in the world and that I would be a part of such a great community.”

– PewDiePie

So you’re probably thinking that it would be pretty cool to become a YouTube star….but, how do you do that? Besides creating great content and having some luck, you’re going to need video equipment. What video equipment would a YouTube star need? Read on…

1. Camera

Okay, so the first and most obvious piece of video equipment that you’ll need would be a camera. When you’re first starting out, you don’t have to go crazy and buy an extremely expensive DSLR camera. The most cost effective route to take would be to first use your smartphone or get one. Smartphone technology has gotten advanced enough that the cameras can capture high quality video. For example, the iPhone 6S Plus can record ultra high resolution video at 4K resolution. For Android, the Samsung Galaxy S7 makes the shutter speed, ISO, white balance and focus user-accessible.

When you’ve built up more of a following and when you’re ready for a nice camera, then you should look into cameras such as the Canon EOS Rebel T6i kit, the Canon XA10, or the Sony a6300.

2. Microphone

The next essential piece of video equipment that you’ll need is a microphone. It’s crucial to have clear audio so that your audience can hear you in your videos. If viewers can’t hear you clearly, then nobody will pay attention and you’ll have a harder time trying to build up a following. So what microphone should you get? If you’re using a DSLR camera, we recommend getting an on-camera shotgun microphone such as a RØDE VideoMic. If you’re looking for a microphone that you can clip onto your shirt, the RodeLink Filmmaker Kit is a great wireless system. It includes a transmitter, receiver, and a lavalier microphone. This microphone is basically invisible and helps if you’re going to be more mobile or shooting out in the field.

Now, if you don’t mind the microphone being seen, you could get a condenser microphone. These are popular among podcasters and YouTube stars. Two popular condenser microphones that you could get would be the Blue Snowball microphone or the Blue Yeti microphone. These two microphones are great for YouTubers that are filming at a desk or on a particular set all the time.

3. Lighting

Lighting is important especially if you’re filming things indoors. If you’re just filming yourself at your desk or something similar to that, all you’ll need are small LED lights such as the iLED-MA or the iLED120 daylight flood LED light. If you want a higher quality light that is brighter, you could get the iLED312-v2. Beauty lights such as the Piatto lights are great for YouTubers that give tutorials on makeup. If you have a limited budget, then the PL60 or the PL90 would work well. Keep in mind that lighting is more important when you’re just staying still and filming in one spot indoors. Once you’ve built up a following, you can look into getting a lighting kit.

4. Tripods

A low cost photo tripod for DSLR cameras or phones is a great piece of video equipment to have when filming a YouTube video. The Manfrotto 190 Benro would work great and it comes in either aluminum or carbon fiber. The carbon fiber tripod is more expensive, but it is lighter and stronger than the aluminum one. E-Image also has a couple of affordable tripods such as the EG01A2 kit and the EG03A2. When you’re ready to upgrade, you can purchase higher end tripods from E-Image to get smoother shots.

5. Gimbals

When filming a video, it can be hard to get nice, stable footage especially when you’re moving around. This is why getting a gimbal can be very helpful. Gimbals such as the FLY-X3-GO and the FLY-X3-PLUS are great for capturing footage that looks professional and isn’t shaky. These stabilizers work well with GoPro cameras and smartphones. In addition, they will increase your value on YouTube because you’ll be able to present clear and stabilized video content. Once you’ve built up momentum on YouTube, you can invest in a DS1 gimbal stabilizer, which works well with DSLR and mirrorless cameras.

It’s a Wrap

In addition to all those products mentioned, you’ll need some kind of editing software. It can be an app on your phone or a program on your computer. Just remember: it’s all about getting the basic video equipment that you need to get started. Once you get the equipment and know how to use it, creating great content is what will drive people to your videos. Start with what you have first and then later, increase your production value.

Want to learn more about ikan’s products for creating great videos? Subscribe to the ikan


Ikan is a company of filmmakers. Our staff is almost entirely composed of seasoned professionals whose first love is the world of film and video. As filmmakers, we understand the challenges our customers face on a daily basis. We understand the need for reliable, dependable equipment. We understand that a piece of gear going down during an important shoot can affect your reputation. We also understand that, while imagination may be limitless, budgets aren’t. Whether it’s an expensive Hollywood motion picture or an intimate wedding shoot, you need to maximize the value of the products you’re choosing to buy. And because we understand these things, we feel it’s our responsibility to continue to bring our customers the best available technology, quality, service, and long-term value across our entire product line. Whether it’s our lights, gimbals, tripods, monitors, or the hundreds of other production tools we’ve brought to the market, all of Ikan’s products are created by filmmakers, to empower filmmakers. Ikan products are sold through authorized dealers located in more than 50 countries around the world and at
Broadcast Beat - Production Industry Resource