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Six problems to avoid when renting a video studio

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Six problems to avoid when renting a video studio

You are getting ready for an important corporate video shoot. You’ve booked your senior corporate spokespeople, prepared scripts and arranged camera crew and a studio. It’s a surprisingly big effort to coordinate so many people to play their specialist parts precisely at the right time.

But the shoot kicks off badly when members of your senior leadership team arrive twenty minutes late because the studio is so far out of town. And instead of the corporate office they are used to, they have to navigate through a flatted factory car park in an industrial area and access the studio through a greasy non-descript door.

Your guests settle in and get ready for the shoot. But before the recording begins, the crew has to turn off the air conditioning because the adjacent compressor is so noisy. With the aircon now off the noise from the nearby highway becomes quite noticeable, not to mention that your guests are starting to perspire under the lights.

You and your spokespeople battle through it and finish the shoot. Now comes the bill. It doesn’t seem to bear relation to the treatment you received.

“Studio rental is rather expensive, so it’s always a trade-off between price and the quality of the studio,” says Lance Ong, Producer at Hong Bao Media who manages the RafflesPlace.Studio platform, “You can get cheap studios, but that comes at the expense of a beautiful background.”

He recommends you pay particular attention to these six features when booking a studio:

1. Controlled audio

    Visit the studio beforehand and listen out of air-conditioning or traffic noise. If the aircon is too loud, ask for it to be turned off and see whether other sounds emerge. Clap your hands to see whether there is an echo. If the studio is close to a lift lobby, check for the sound of bells announcing the arrival of an elevator. Also, can you hear other people’s footsteps in the lobby outside?

    2. Filming approvals

      Whether you are filming in public places or private office towers, it’s often not long before security guards appear out of nowhere to shoo you along. It is possible to get permission to film from National Parks Board or other government bodies managing public spaces, or building management in the case of offices. But this takes time, sometimes costs money, and there is no guarantee you will get approval.

      3. Remote locations

      One alternative to shooting your video in a corporate office is to find a studio. But given the high cost of rental in the Central Business District you are more likely to find them on the outskirts, or even in flatted factories in heartland industrial areas.

      Does your high-flying corporate guest have the time to drive out there? Do you want your premium guests to spend an hour driving out to a dim and distant studio?

      4. Size

      The studio must obviously be large enough to allow for comfortable filming of the action on camera.

      But there are other points to consider. For example, is there enough space for you and other observers? Or if you are bringing in equipment for a product launch or demo video, is there a service entry or goods lift? Can it fit through the studio doors?

      5. Unattractive studio space

      Studios are workspaces, but they don’t have to be dirty or hidden away in factories. If you are inviting third-party guests, such as your customers, investors or partners, what impression are you leaving when they show up in a multistorey car park somewhere, wondering whether they’re in the right place?

      While we’re at it, public toilets in these industrial buildings sometimes leave a lot to be desired. You probably don’t think about it when you book the studio, but you certainly will when the CEO asks to be excused for a few moments to stretch their legs, or change into their on-camera attire.

      6. Cost

      There are so many inputs in terms of studio, equipment and crew it’s difficult to know whether you are getting value for money. Decent studios aren’t cheap, but camera equipment and crew experience vary so much it’s unsurprising there is no universally accepted standard for studio rental.

      “There are many things corporate clients have to consider when booking a studio, and it’s difficult to find one where you don’t have to make some compromises”, Lance says, “Price and value must go hand-in-hand.”

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      Mark Laudi

      Mark Laudi

      Press contact Managing Director (+65) 6223 2249

      Your Integrated Communications partner for contemporary media and business communications services.

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