Being a multi-disciplinary creative would not be as manageable without the best tools to make things happen. I’ve had my fair share of go-to gear over the years, but these days, I’m really packing heat. As my business continues to grow, I’ve found that my tools need to help me work better, faster and stronger. Thinking about everything I do across video, audio, graphics and music, I couldn’t do it without these 10 pieces of tech.
16-Inch MacBook Pro
Let’s be honest, almost nothing I do can be done without a computer. My 16-Inch MacBook Pro houses all of my creative programs like Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop, Final Cut Pro, Logic and Maschine. This beast gives me the power of a desktop, with the portability of a tablet.
MacBook Pro (16-Inch, 2019)
Processor: 2.3 GHz 8-Core Intel Core i9
Memory: 32 GB 2667 MHz DDR4
Graphics: AMD Radeon Pro 5500M 8 GB
Intel UHD Graphics 630 1536 MB
Panasonic LUMIX GH5s
I. love. this. camera. Of all the DSLRs I’ve owned, this one has to be my favorite. The cinematic footage I’m able to capture on this unit in 1080p60 and even Cinema 4K is amazing. The slow motion possibilities are *chef’s kiss*. This is a fantastic camera for video, but be warned the S version is not built for photos. There are just as many megapixels as a mobile phone in 2010. It also doesn’t have in-body image stabilization that the GH5 has. I personally think this is great and also true to cinematography in that you can get more natural handheld shots.
Lens: Panasonic LUMIX Professional 12-35mm Camera Lens G X VARIO II, F2.8 ASPH, Dual I.S. 2.0 with Power O.I.S.
I’ll drop more details about my whole rig for this camera in another post.
Zhiyun Weebill S
In order to combat the camera’s missing in-body image stabilization in situations where I need it, I use a gimbal. There are so many options for professional gimbals and stabilizers on the market today. Some are as cheap as $90 and they can get as expensive as $1,000. I wanted to find a happy medium and the Weebill S is just that.
Feels high-quality and durable
Attachments sold separately
Battery could be better
This was my dream microphone for many years, I know it may be a trendy thing to say these days, but I wanted this mic way before Joe Rogan and all of the popular podcasters started gassing it. I knew the Shure SM7B was the microphone Michael Jackson used during the Thriller sessions, so that was reason enough for me. I recently got over the sticker shock and got one and I don’t regret it! I am able to get really clean, broadcast-quality audio right out of the box. This mic allows my voiceovers people love so much to shine.
Things to Note:
A Cloudlifter or something similar is needed to get the best performance from this microphone.
Many people have said that and people wonder if it’s really necessary. I bought a Cloudlifter. It’s necessary.
You may have noticed that I gravitate towards gear that is compact, comprehensive, and easy to travel with. That is the perfect way to describe the Zoom H6 Handy Recorder. Not only does this thing have 4 XLR inputs for record sound from microphones, it can also be used as an audio interface for the computer. It’s a sleek piece of gear with its all black finish. It was a worthwhile addition to my toy box and it pairs really well with the Shure SM7B.
Things to Note:
Battery Operated (AA)
Can be powered by the computer when used as an interface.
The built-in microphone head can be removed and swapped out with one of Zoom’s other mics.
When it comes to music, the Maschine MK3 Music Production & Performance System leveled up my output exponentially. The Mikro model is the perfect companion to make music anywhere, its size and weight make it easy to toss in a backpack and carry on-the-go. The flagship MK3 is a must-have piece for any studio setup. The build quality and pads are some of the best of its kind. Many people knock the Maschine software this piece of hardware controls, but I love it.
I just purchased the limited edition Maschine MK3 Dinamo. Only 750 units made worldwide and I will have one. I’m really excited and look forward to producing a video and perhaps writing about it here.
The SP-404 isn’t just a sampling workstation, it’s a whole wave, a piece of lo-fi hip-hop culture. The more I elevated as a producer, the more intrigued I was by the vinyl simulator and other built-in effects of the SP-404. Paired with the Maschine, my live sets and performances are that much wavier and…lit. Since I primarily use Maschine to sample, I use my 404 exclusively for effects and textures.
Things to Note:
Take AA batteries but also has a power adapter.
Sounds can be loaded on an SD card.
Almost all of the effects are dope, however the pitch changer on this device is not good at all.
Wacom Intuos Pro
Digital art, vector portraits, photo retouching, logo making, among other things wouldn’t be as fun and easy without my Wacom Intuos Pro tablet and pen. For years I did all of my designing with a mouse and I didn’t know what I was missing until I randomly picked this up. It’s very light and portable, connects wirelessly and works smoothly.
Great battery life
I legit don’t have any cons about it, that’s saying something.
I am by no means a gamer and don’t consider myself one, although I’ve put over 1,000 hours into Animal Crossing: New Horizons and actually create content about the game. Hundreds of people who watch my video on YouTube signed up because of what I do with this piece of tech. I’ve built a cool little community around it, so the console has become a staple for me.
Since starting Animal Crossing: New Horizons, I have owned 3 different Nintendo Switch consoles. I started with the Lite, since the regular Switch was sold out everywhere last year. Then I got a regular Switch only to then get my hands on the limited edition Animal Crossing Switch.
Elgato HD60 S
Recording Animal Crossing gameplay would not be possible without this little capture card by Elgato. There are many capture cards out there, but Elgato is a brand I trust. The device also comes with software, which is actually what I use as opposed to OBS. The device performs at its best when used with the native software.
Small and compact
Easy to use
Comes with software
Doesn’t work *as* well in other softwares
Captures in 720 and not 1080p