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Video Equipment

This page briefly explains some common types of hardware used in video production.
Note: For lists of equipment by manufacturer, see our Equipment Database.

Camera Technically speaking, a video camera is the component which includes the CCU imaging device, i.e. the part which converts light into an image. Professional cameras do not usually have a lens or recording mechanism — these are separate items which are added to the camera.
In everyday use though, a combined lens/camera/recorder is referred to as a camera.
The recording mechanism and housing which attaches to the back of a camera is simply called a camera back.
More Info: Camera Tutorials
Camcorder A camera in which the recording mechanism is built in, so the camera and recorder are a single unit. Most camcorders have a built-in lens as well.
Most consumer-level video cameras are camcorders.
TBC (Time Base Corrector) A device which adjusts and/or improves the quality of a video signal. Can be used to synchronise different vision sources before being mixed together, to avoid picture disturbances when cutting from one source to another.
More info: Time Base Correctors
Tripod Camera support consisting of three legs and a head.
More info: Tripod Tutorial
VDA (Video Distribution Amplifier) A device which takes an incoming video signal and outputs multiple versions of the same signal at the same strength.  
Y/C Separator A device which splits a composite video signal into luminance (Y) and chrominance (C) signals.