This is a short video that describes some basic setup for doing an asynchronous lecture.

This video was recorded in Zoom. The Insets and transitions are all created by ManyCam. I did edit out bad takes and for length. The only part not from ManyCam is the screen sharing at the end, which was done natively in Zoom. Do not use the Zoom background feature. It won't work with slides or a document camera.

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When you click on ManyCam or the Zoom chat window, it takes focus away from the PowerPoint slides. You will need to click on them to return focus in order to change to the next slide.

Many webcams will work for this. I am using a Logitech Pro C920 Webcam, which works reasonable well, but is a bit more expensive. A cell phone works well, just be sure you have enough batteries. You will also need to turn off global sound in ManyCam or you may get feedback from the phone microphone.

The document camera I am using is an Okiocam T. I do not recommend it. Another we have found that works well is the Thustand V4K. There are plenty available <$100. Just be sure it will work with zoom. Some document cameras are for scanning only and will not produce video.

Camera Settings

If you select your webcam in ManyCam, you can right click and choose Properties to access your webcam settings. I have had difficulty with them wanting to refocus or choosing a poor exposure (you'll see that in some of these videos in fact; I didn't want to go back and redo them). You can turn the automatic settings off an manually set the exposure and focus and you may find it works better, particularly if using a basic background (black, white, or green).

Frequently Asked Questions

What is that background?

I'm using an infinity black background in this video. If your home office looks nicer than mine, then books in the background look great. Mine is cluttered, so I use a drop-down background when doing videos. The specific one I'm using is: Savage Infinity Vinyl Background. White is also a popular choice.

Do I really need a standing desk?

Of course not. If you are happy sitting when doing a lecture, be my guest.

Do I use Zoom screen sharing to share the slides?

No. If you are using ManyCam, it can share the slides, so you don't use that feature in Zoom.

Do I really need a second monitor?

Not necessarily. If you have a large enough or high enough resolution monitor, you can display PowerPoint it its own window and share that. You will have to select Slide Show>Set Up Slide Show. In the dialog box, choose Browsed by an individual. Then the slide show will show in the PowerPoint window. There are a few caveats to doing this:

1) It shares the window, not the slides, so by default it looks like this:

You can zoom the slide a bit and drag up to get rid of the title bar. It does tend to want to clip the bottom of the slide as well, so allow some extra space.

2) You won't be able to see any slide notes you may be using.

What tripod are you using?

The tripod you see in the video is a Manfrotto carbon fiber tripod with a Benro head. It's what I have for my DSLR camera and was just handy for me to use. The combination probably costs 4 times as much as that webcam. But, just about any inexpensive tripod will work, provided it is tall enough. Amazon has one for $25.99 that will work just fine.