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A visual recording worth replaying for others. Today, professional outfits like Camp 4 Collective and Teton Gravity Research have sophisticated tools for capturing great shots. The Epic Dragon, created by Red Digital Cinema, allows filmmakers to craft theater-quality footage with a small, relatively cheap ($35,000) camera that mounts on a helicopter using Shotover’s gyro-stabilizing platforms for the cleanest, most creative angles imaginable.
As top-end tech trickles down, the gear available to amateurs is making a big difference in online videos. A midrange drone costs under $1,000—1080p camera included—and GoPros are the top-selling cameras worldwide. (See Nick Woodman.) “You’ll see clips that make you say, ‘Wow, that looks like something Hollywood produced,’” says Teton cofounder Todd Jones. “And it’s a kid with $5,000 worth of gear.”