The trickiest part of being a solo camera operator is recording sound and recording it well.
The first port of call for pretty much every camera operator is a wireless lavaliere microphone system. This is because they are convenient and you don’t necessarily need a sound recordist with you if you can plug into your camera directly.
I’m a big fan of lavaliere microphones and I use them precisely for the reason above but I much prefer a shotgun microphone because they capture warmer and richer tones.
When I’m working without a sound recordist or an assistant, I mount my boom pole into a holder.
Boom Pole Cradle
For about 6 months I used a “boom buddy” but I never found it strong enough to be able to hold the boom pole and always felt cheaply made.
The Neewer boom pole cradle has a 5/8 attachment which needs to go into a grip head. The all-metal construction means that it has no chance of bending. As it is holding up a boom pole, I recommend putting it on a heavy duty light stand or a C stand. Any stand that can hold less than 5KG isn’t going to be able to support the boom pole.
The boom pole fits into the cradle and you can adjust depending on the length where it needs to sit. There are no counterweights so you need to bear that in mind.
I’ve only tested this with my own boom pole which is a Rode 2m boom pole but the cradle easily supports the boom pole with a blimp. You’ll need to make sure one of the legs of your stand is underneath the boom polearm for maximum stability and if you want some extra piece of mind, adding a sandbag isn’t a bad option.
In realistic uses, I would only use this in interview situations as I’m not normally more than 1.5m away from the subject so it would never be extended to its maximum length.
This is a much sturdier and far sturdier than using a traditional mic stand or a boom buddy as they generally don’t have great weight capacity limits. Plus with a separate mic stand, its another stand you have to carry with you as opposed to a lighting stand which you’ll have with you anyway – at least that’s how I use it.
Any questions, then let me know in the comments on the video and if you are looking for a boom pole cradle, then I can’t recommend this one enough.