Videomaker’s Best Products of the Year: 2015 |

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2015 has seen fantastic new equipment for video production. 4K is everywhere, but cameras are also steadily moving towards higher frame rates. Customizable workstations meet a wide range of needs and high quality camera stabilization has come into the reach of even low-budget productions. Video producers have a world of options, it can sometimes be troublesome to sort through them all. Fear not! We’re here to sift through the options for you. After carefully reviewing 12 months of the newest, latest, and greatest, we have compiled the cream of the crop into one list. The long awaited: Best Products of the Year Awards, 2015. Due to the demands of our magazine schedule, when we say 2015, what we really mean is October 2014-October 2015. To be considered for these annual awards, the Videomaker editors must have had a chance to have some hands-on time with a product within that time span. In some cases, a full review was never published, but you can be sure that we personally evaluated the product. After carefully reviewing 12 months of the newest, latest, and greatest, we have compiled the cream of the crop into one list. Additionally, there are some great products that were released in 2015 that we didn’t have a chance to evaluate before our evaluation window closed. Notably, the Sony a7S II and the most recent iMac 5K came in a bit late and thus will have to wait for the 2016 awards to be considered. When making a decision about winners, we prefer to recognize products that support our philosophical mission of encouraging democratization and inclusiveness in the media industry. We choose to award recognition to products that we feel will best help the largest share of our community share their ideas and express themselves with video. A hearty congratulations to all the winners of the Best Products of the Year. 2015 was full of excitement for video producers whether just learning, or already a legend. These products help us to do our jobs, create our art and bring our visions to the screen. We can only imagine what next year will have in store. For a product to qualify for our Best Products of the Year, it must have passed through the Videomaker headquarters in 2015 for examination by our editors. From there, we judged products based on the following seven criteria: 1. Empowerment: How effective the product is at helping videographers be more effective storytellers. Erik Fritts is a multimedia specialist with a BA in Film Production. He is an award-winning writer, photographer, and filmmaker. He loves spending time outdoors and playing with his dogs. I read ‘Sound & Vision’ best products of 2015 right before I read the similar article in ‘Videomaker’. The S&V article took great care to have a ‘Value’ category for most of their products. ‘Videomaker’ recommended a $1,100 tripod. How does this fit your criteria: ‘3. Affordability: The product must provide a good value for the price.’? The article mentions a nearly free editing software for the Mac. What about the larger audience with Windows? I answer questions for a LOT of newbies who are just starting out in video. I am always looking for resources to point them to. I cannot point them to ‘Videomaker’ when $1,100 for a tripod is considered a ‘good value for the price’. Please – include ‘runner up’ or a ‘best value’ for each area in your next best of article. And remember – many newbies have Windows based machines and are NOT professionals. We need to help this audience as well. I agree with the comment above about price but moreover the whole exercise is drab. Those you couldnt pick in advance (when was VM not going to pick Premiere and iMovie) were just daft – have you seriously tried to use a HP computer for editing or anything serious – their specialty is unreliability. How about tossing categories and asking what novel or interesting kit or software popped up this year that could be gamechangers for videomakers. But that would involve actual investigation rather than averaging other online gear lists. Boring …. You obviously don’t have an HP configured by a professional reseller. Our last two editing workstations have been HP (xw8400 and Z420) and I can count on one hand the issues we’ve had with them over the last 12+ years. I’m guessing Digital Pictures in Minneapolis builds many, many workstations for their customers using HP, and if their products were as unreliable as you say they would have stopped a long time ago. Source.

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