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Turning Home Video into Pro Video > Turning Home Video into Pro Video - Pg. 48

Keep the Camera Steady are cheap, too. You can buy one for as little as $20, although more expensive tripods have more features, last longer, and are less likely to nip your skin when you're col- lapsing them for transport. Tip: If the camcorder on the tripod isn't perfectly level, the picture will start to tilt diagonally as you pan (the car will appear to be driving up or down a hill instead of across a fat plain). To prevent this phenomenon, make sure that the camera legs are carefully adjusted--slow and tedious work on most tripods. But on tripods with ball-leveling heads (an expensive feature, alas), achieving levelness takes just a few seconds: Just loosen a screw, adjust the head until it is level, and tighten the screw down again. Of course, tripods aren't always practical. When you're trying to flm without being noticed, when you don't have the luggage space, or when you must start flming immediately, you may have to do without. In those instances, consider one of these alternatives: ·Turnontheimagestabilizationfeature. As noted on page 25, every modern DV camcorder includes an image stabilization feature, which magically irons out the minor jiggles and shakes associated with handheld flming. Using electronic/digital (as opposed to optical) image stabilization drains your battery faster, so feel free to turn it off when you're using a tripod. But at all other times, the improvement in footage is well worth the power sacrifce.