Recording classroom lectures has become an essential part of modern education, offering students a valuable resource to enhance their learning experience. In today’s technology-driven era, capturing lectures in video format allows students to revisit important content, reinforce their understanding, and bridge gaps in comprehension.
This practice not only caters to diverse learning styles but also provides a flexible and accessible means for students to engage with educational material at their own pace. By empowering students to take control of their educational journey, this technological advancement fosters a dynamic learning environment and promotes a more interactive and immersive academic experience.
What to look for in a camera?
You have to decide if you’re going to purchase a camera body and lens, action camera or a webcam. We’ve tried all types of cameras and we’ll break down the best in each class as well as their pros and cons.
No recording limit
Europe had strict regulation regarding cameras for personal or commercial use, as such a lot of camera companies implemented a 30 minute recording limit. Where at the 30 minute mark your camera turns off. This has since been eliminated, but there are camera bodies that still have this limit.
Audio is just as important as video. Depending on the camera system you get will dictate if you should purchase a wireless mic or a shotgun mic.
What are you trying to record?
Do you can to record the whole class or are you trying to record just yourself at the front of the class? Is this class strictly online? If so then you don’t need anything too complicated.
If you’re tying to record the entire classroom then you’ll need a camera body and a tripod that can be positioned in the back of the class.
Best cameras for recording your classroom lectures
With that out of the way, here are our top pics for each category of cameras to record you as the teacher doing what you do best, giving a lecture to your students.
- Osmo Pocket 3
- Insta 360 webcam
- Sony ZV-E10
- Sony ZV-1
- Lumix S5
Osmo Pocket 3 – The best overall camera to record lectures
The Osmo Pocket 3 can be set to face track and allows for an external, wireless mic to be attached. That means when you’re walking back and forth, the camera stays on you automatically and the audio sounds excellent.
Osmo Pocket 3
Set it down and it will track you as you move in front of the whiteboard.
This camera is also equipped with a 1-inch CMOS sensor, it records in 4K resolution at up to 120fps. From capturing breathtaking night views to vibrant sunsets, every detail is enhanced for outstanding clarity. On top of that, it’s quite easy to frame yourself with Osmo Pocket 3’s expansive 2-inch touch screen. It smoothly rotates for both horizontal and vertical shooting, allowing you to frame your shots with ease and precision.
Finally, it has built in stabilization so if for some reason you want to walk and talk with the camera you can. It also doubles as a high quality webcam for your online teaching needs as well.
- Face tracking, the camera gimbal moves and tracks you as you move about the class.
- Can double as a webcam for online teaching.
- 2 inch monitor built in to help frame yourself.
- Stable footage if you move the camera.
- Compatible with wireless mics.
- This can not attach to a large tripod, so it’s best if only mounted on a desk at the front of class.
- It’s a bit expensive, but the value you get is there for the price.
DJI Wireless mic – As you’re going to be walking and moving away from the camera, you need this mic system for quality audio in your recordings.
Insta 360 Link Webcam – The best webcam on the market
If all you’re doing is teaching online and want a way to record high quality video then the Insta 360 webcam is your best option as it’s the best webcam we’ve tried out. Experience 4K resolution with the 1/2″ sensor of the Link, ensuring you always look your best with a slightly blurry background.
Insta 360 Webcam
Webcam that has a gimbal. Record your lectures with a laptop and this device.
Its exceptional dynamic range captures lifelike details effortlessly. With its gimbal design and powerful AI tracking algorithm, Link’s lens seamlessly follows your every movement. Enjoy automatic zooming and framing, keeping you at the center stage of every shot.
You could open up your laptop, then attach the Insta 360 Link webcam and record yourself with software like OBS if you’re in an actual class. For online settings, this 4k webcam produces the best video quality we’ve seen.
- 1/2 inch sensor allows for high quality video from a webcam.
- Decent built in audio, be we suggest getting an external mic if possible.
- Ideal for recording an online class only.
Best microphones for online teaching – Our breakdown on the best mics to get if you’re teaching online and you’re not using a headset that has a built in mic.
Sony ZVE-10 – Best budget friendly camera
The Sony ZV-e10 boasts a large 24.2MP APS-C Exmor CMOS Sensor and a fast BIONZ X processor. It captures s4K video, oversampled from 6K with full pixel readout, eliminating pixel binning. With the “product showcase setting” you can effortlessly transition focus from face to object.
The Sun Joe SPX3000® pressure washer delivers it all to tackle a variety of cleaning tasks: homes, buildings, RV’s, cars, trucks, boats, decks, driveways, patios, lawn equipment, and more.
With the Sony ZVE-10 you get a background defocus button allows you to toggle the defocus effect on and off instantly. Enjoy easy to setup live streaming with this camera as a webcam with just a single USB cable, no need for extra hardware or software for your online lectures.
If you’re looking for an interchangeable lens camera then you’ll love this device as it’s affordable, light and convenient to setup in your classroom. Plus you can use it as a webcam for streaming when needed.
- The best budget friendly camera with lenses system.
- Can attach external audio.
- Mounts on cheap tripods with ease.
- Flip out screen to frame yourself.
- Battery life. It can last hours with ease, but may not record a full 5-6 hour day of lectures.
Sony 16-50mm kit lens – The lens that can be bought with this camera, it’s perfect for a class as you can zoom in and out as needed.
Rhode Wireless Go – Our favorite wireless mic system for camera bodies.
Amazon Basics tripod – A basic, no frills tripod.
Sony ZV-1 -Best point and shoot camera
The Sony ZV-1 Digital Camera stands as a powerful tool for educators aiming to deliver quality video content. This compact and user-friendly device offers features tailored to meet the needs of teachers in the digital age.
An excellent point and shoot camera, good for video content. A bit tight on the face.
Its high-resolution video capturing ability ensures clear and crisp visual content, while the advanced autofocus system guarantees that the subject remains sharp and in focus. The integrated microphone with windscreen offers clear audio recording, making the teacher’s voice audible and easy to understand.
Additionally, the product’s image stabilization feature ensures smooth video recording, even in scenarios involving motion. Whether delivering online lectures or creating educational content, the Sony ZV-1 aids teachers in effectively engaging their students in a virtual classroom setting.
Please note you’ll need to set this up on a tripod, and frame yourself correctly. It’s not a wide field of view, but at 24mm you can get yourself into the frame easily enough when recording yourself in class or using it as a webcam.
- High quality video.
- No need to buy any additional lenses.
- Can pair with both a tripod and a wireless mic.
- As a point and shoot, you can’t change the lens.
- The built in zoom lens starts at 24mm which may be a bit tight and not capture the whole classroom.
Lumix S5 – The best full frame camera for teachers
The Lumix S5 is a game-changer for educators seeking to enhance their teaching methods with visual content. This compact and versatile full-frame mirrorless camera is known for its exceptional image quality and video capabilities, suited perfectly for recording lectures, tutorials, or educational materials.
Outstanding full frame camera system. Excellent when paired with Sigma glass.
Its intuitive controls and responsive touch screen make it easy for teachers to operate, even with minimal technical knowledge. The camera’s in-built Wi-Fi capabilities enable quick and efficient content sharing, making it a breeze to incorporate the captured material into virtual classrooms or e-learning platforms.
With its robust build and long-lasting battery, the Lumix S5 is built to withstand the demands of a busy education environment. We like this camera because it’s the perfect blend of lightweight portability and powerful performance with our hybrid camera.
- Full frame camera that pairs with high quality lenses.
- Can pair with external mics.
- 4k recording at a high frame rate.
- Good battery life.
- Full frame camera systems are expensive and require a significant investment upfront.
Sigma 16-28 – The best zoom lens for this system. 16mm on a full frame is very wide, but you can punch in if needed.
MKE 400 – Our top choice for a shotgun mic. If you’re setting up the camera way from you in the back, then get a wireless mic system.
Best cameras for recording classroom lectures
That’s it for our guide on the best cameras for recording a classroom lecture. The use of cameras for recording classroom lectures serves as a pivotal tool in maximizing the learning potential of students. It provides them the opportunity to revisit the lecture at their own convenient time, enhancing comprehension and retention of the subject matter.
Just make sure to get any accessories as needed like a cheap tripod, our recommended lenses and a wireless mic system for premium audio.
David UnwinHi, I'm David Unwin. I've taught as an ESL teacher in Thailand for 5+ years at all levels of education, from elementary to University. I was also one of the first 1000 VIPKID teachers. I now share my extensive experience as a teacher here at Teach and GO. Learn more about me.
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