YouTube here I come!
While most "crypto influencers" opted to go with YouTube to get started building their audiences, I decided to go a different route. Jump back to January of 2017 when I first decided to create this blog, I hated the way YouTube treated their content producers (it's even worse now after recent changes!!!). I saw a TON of personalities in the crypto world using it as their main source of content distribution instead of their own website, and I just could not get on board. Since I build websites for a living (you didn't know?? See my business site here), I decided to start a blog and WRITE content instead of doing videos.
This was the worst mistake I made in all 2017...
Keep reading for my video setup specs, DIY green screen, and how 3 lucky voters on my YouTube Intro Video Music poll will win $100 in Ethereum each!
The Worst Of Times, The Best Of Times
Soooo, maybe I am being a little harsh on myself here and need to revise that previous statement... What I should have done was create my own website AND gotten on YouTube at the same time. I love the freedom and control I have over my content hosted on my own website, and you just can't get that on YouTube. What I did was underestimate the growth potential for followers through a YouTube channel (especially Oct, Nov, & Dec 2017), versus just pushing written content through my site. I saw the dumbest shilling fools on YouTube reaching 100,000 subs for spewing bullshit all day long while I was churning out quality content that was seen by far fewer people each day.
I am NOT all about the numbers and I truly love my amazing followers for keeping up with my journey, but I guess it just felt like I could have reached and helped more people with quality information. So many people were scammed in 2017 by these jokers on YouTube that it pains me to think about it. Regardless, getting my content to YouTube has been one of my goals since November.
Taking The Video Plunge
Fastforward to today, and I am finally reaching my goal!
I have had a CryptoStache YouTube channel for a while (<-- click that link & subscribe to help me out!), but it only had a few previews of my online crypto course on it. I ordered some video equipment in April to prepare for doing video content along with my written articles starting this month. I will be first porting over my MOST READ articles to YouTube along with videos for select new content as well. This means you get like 2000% more 'Stache for the same great price of $0!
Before I get into breaking down my video streaming setup, I want to tell you about why I am giving away $100 in ETH to 3 lucky people!
I recorded this video intro below for my YouTube channel, and my girlfriend told me the intro music sounded like a cheesy 80's VHS training video music!!! WTF?!? Well... she's kind of right actually! I had the intro done by a guy on fiver.com and while I like the animations, I never really liked the audio. SOOOoooo I am going to hold a VOTE ON MY INTRO VIDEO MUSIC poll and I will pick 3 people at random that complete all the voting steps and give each of them $100 in Ethereum!
FULL DETAILS ON HOW TO ENTER WILL BE POSTED ON Monday, May 14th HERE ON MY WEBSITE!
The intro video music with the most votes will be official and I will replace the one there now. This is BIG because I will use this intro for all of my videos going forward for the foreseeable future!
Ok, now on to my video streaming build!
Building My Video Streaming Setup
I love building things, so I wanted to go as DIY as I could with my setup. Of course, some things it's imperative to purchase out right, but I made from scratch or re-purposed a lot of my rig too. I wanted something very professional looking so in certain areas I did not skimp. The hardest thing was getting the lighting just right and I had to play with the position of my lights more than anything else. Here is a full break down of what I bought, what I already had, and what I built!
What I Bought
Logitec Brio webcam - I did a lot of research on webcams, and while the majority seemed to be using the standard Logitec c920, looking forward I felt that the newer Brio offered just a little more. It does 4k resolution videos (even though I didn't realize when I bought it that 4k only works on Windows 10 and im on Windows 7, fuck you Windows 10!). The quality of the video is scary awesome and sometimes I see new gray hairs or wrinkles I didn't notice before. I don't have a c920 to compare to, although I watched comparisons on YouTube, I am super happy with the Brio and feel it gives me some longevity with my cam. You can pick your Logitec Brio on Amazon here - https://amzn.to/2I2KEd3
Emart 15W Table Top LED Light - I knew that I needed some good lights as I didn't really have anything that would work properly. From my research, lighting a green screen can be a pain in the ass so decent lighting is a must. I picked up a pair of table top LED lights that had stands because I don't have a ton of space in my office and I thought these would fit perfect. I was right! While I ultimately didn't use the stands (I clamped the lights to my desk), I feel I made a great choice and they light my DIY green screen pretty damn well. If you are short on space, these little guys are right up your alley. I also got these LED table top video lights on Amazon here - https://amzn.to/2K4Pva7
Spring Clamp Set - The last little item I knew I needed was a good set of spring clamps for holding my DIY green screen in place. I got this tip from reading a bunch of blogs online about it and opted to go with a variety of sizes so I could cover my bases in case I needed to pivot from my original design (which I kind of did, as you will see in my green screen section coming up). These did the job! You can get them on Amazon too here - https://amzn.to/2rwqpKn
What I Had
I love to re-purpose things if I can and I used quite a few items I already had. I am also a musician (holy shit! You didn't know that either? Check out my band Brother Pines), so I had an AKG P120 condenser microphone, M-Audio fast track ultra audio interface to plug the mic in, a couple of old mic stands and a mic cable.
The AKG P120 worked out beautifully! It sounds great, and is not too bulky like that massive Yeti mic everyone likes. While this is more of a vocal mic and not really made for streaming or video, I am super happy with it, but you might not be. I got this one at Guitar Center, but you can also get them on Amazon here - https://amzn.to/2rz6zNK
I dusted off my M-Audio interface so I could connect my mic to my computer, because the AKG is not a usb mic. This guy is quite a few years old, has a few quirks (gotta start it up in a certain order), but it works like a champ and no complaints so far. I used this because I already had it, but you can find something comparable or better online for sure. As you can see in the pic, I just used a standard mic cable I had even though it was way too long.
What I Made - DIY Green Screen Tutorial
After all my research, I figured it would be a breeze to make my own green screen and I was right! I don't have the room in my office for a big 10ft screen like most of the pre-made kits, so I came up with a design that was approximately 5 feet by 3 1/2 feet to make a decent sized panel that I could easily take down and put up.
I only had to hit up 2 stores, Lowes (hardware store) and Jo-Ann fabrics to get it done. I made my frame out of 1/2 inch white PVC pipe and got 4 corner connectors and 2 "T" connectors. The "T" connectors are to make a middle brace for the frame for two reasons. First, to make it nice and strong, and second to have a place to mount it to my converted mic stand.
The fabric is just a nice bright green that I found at Jo-Ann's and it was the cheapest fabric they had honestly. Not very thick or heavy, but it seems to work great. I had them cut it to the exact length of my frame plus a few inches on each side.
For the frame, I just cut the pvc to the right lengths and connected them with the connectors. I didn't even have to use glue or epoxy to hold them together! I laid the material on the floor of my office and put the frame on top to make sure I had enough material around the edges to be able to fold it around the pipe and use those sweet clamps I bought to hold the material in place. From what I saw in others tutorials online this seemed to work great as it makes it very flexible and I can adjust or take down easily without worry.
Not going to lie, I got lucky with the stand for this build. I already had a microphone stand that I was not using that had a "spring clamp" type microphone holder versus the standard type. This allowed me to put the stand upright and clamp it to that middle bar support and hold the whole thing up nicely. You can see that here in this shitty close up. This makes putting the whole thing away SUPER easy and I couldn't be happier with the result as I didn't know if the stand would actually be strong enough to hold the whole frame and clips weight.
Here is a full shot of the back of the thing with the stand.
Here is a shot from the front of the final product! Turned out pretty good right? If I can do it, YOU can do it too!