Flip Screen Camera vs External Monitor: Which is Better for Vlogging?

Vlogging has been trending around the world, and so the competition among content creators is quite intense. Content creators are coming up with new vlogging styles and niches ranging from daily vlogging to travel vlogging. Creating engaging and entertaining content with good production quality is the only way content creators can become noticeable in the sea of content creators and vloggers. Hence, having the right equipment to monitor shots is crucial to creating such content.

Different cameras and screens are used for monitoring the shots for vlogging. In this article, our primary focus is to compare the two main options for filming content, which are flip screens and external monitors. It will allow you to make an informed decision as to which of these options will be better suited to your vlogging needs and styles.

What is a Flip screen camera?

What is a Flip screen camera?

Flip-screen cameras have a screen that can be, as the name suggests, rotated and tilted as per the shooting requirements. This built-in screen enables vloggers to shoot at different angles while monitoring their framing, exposure and overall shot in real-time. There are variations in the flip screens as well. The flip screens are mainly of three types and are pretty self-explanatory: front-facing flip screens, 180 degrees tilting flip screens, and fully articulating flip screens.

The front-facing ones allow you just to monitor what you are shooting and are the simplest screens. The 180 degrees tilting flip screens flip at one axis only, that is, front or back, whereas the fully articulating ones can be rotated at 360 degrees.

What is an external monitor camera?

What is an external monitor camera?

External monitors are attached to a camera to monitor the shots and, unlike the flip screens, are separate display devices. These are comparatively larger and also have enhanced features that further add to your monitoring experience and the quality of shots. There are many high-end options with external monitors, but that is in accordance with the type of vlogging for which the external monitor is used. Need help how to choose one! Then do check this guide on BhPhotoVideo about External monitors.

Comparing flip screen cameras and external monitors

Now that we know what flip screens and external monitor cameras are let’s get into weighing the benefits and limitations of each.

1. Convenience and portability

Flip screens are quite compact and lightweight as compared to external monitors, which are bigger. Also, the flip screens are portable as these are built into the camera, and therefore, no additional equipment or setup is required. Hence, this convenience and portability really make the flip screen cameras ideal for on-the-go vlogging. You can go about holding your camera in your hand whilst making sure that your shot is perfect.

On the other hand, the external monitors are bulky and require a complex setup. Depending on your videography needs, additional setup like power sources, cables, or mounting brackets might be required. This makes them difficult to carry around. Hence, this makes the external monitors better suited for indoor vlogging, collaborative shootings or technical subjects. 

2. Viewing experience and features

The external monitor screens are larger than the flip screens and come with additional features providing improved resolution and visualization of the shots. They have enhanced additional features which allow for better composition and adjustments. For setups with multiple cameras or for vloggers who are regularly collaborating with other content creators, the external monitors allow the monitoring of the shots simultaneously.

Coming to the flip screen, cameras also allow shooting high-quality videos while making sure the shot looks okay before they start to roll. You can choose the framing and set the right exposure for your shot. Also, different camera models offer various features.

3. Weighing the Limitations

Coming to the limitations and considerations of the two, each has its own benefits and limitations. Also, the limitations or considerations are actually based on the specific type of vlogging needs.

Firstly, the flip screens are smaller than the external monitors. This means that the visibility of details is limited in comparison with the external monitors. Secondly, additional features such as the zebras, focus peaking, waveform monitoring etc., might not be available in the flip screen cameras.

Nevertheless, it comes to the needs of filming, if your vlogs do not tend to be on technical subjects or are not on the higher end of being professional, then you can do without such features. Not having these features does not mean that you are compromising on the video quality in any sense.

In the case of external monitors, additional equipment is required, which makes these less portable and bulkier. The additional equipment, like the mounting brackets and power sources, also adds to the cost of the already expensive external monitors. The high-end models of external monitors with enhanced features are quite expensive when compared to flip-screen cameras.

How to make the decision?

Your decision to buy either the flip screen cameras or an external monitor should purely depend on the vlogging style you follow and your vlogging needs. Also, the type of vlogging one does determines which option will be more convenient and feasible to be used. Factors such as portability, flexibility and screen size play a pivotal role in choosing between the two.

Some types of vlogging do not require external monitors at all, so it would be a waste of money to get one. So, understanding your vlogging needs is the key. Once you know your needs, you can analyze the pros and cons as well as the limitations of flip screens and external monitors as mentioned in the article.

This will help you make a very informed decision so that you don’t go around wasting your money on things that are not even needed.

For a quick opinion, If you are a travel vlogger or lifestyle vlogger and you are always on the go, then flip screen cameras are a better choice for you. Whereas, if you are vlogging in studio settings or in professional environments where you shoot vlogs that are based on technical subjects or your vlogs tend to have an artistic expression, then you should go for external monitors.