Retractable green screen from Elgato.
For our YouTube videos, I’ve been toying with the idea of getting a green screen for quite some time. Instead of a more or less ugly wall, that’s the plan, I can filter out the background and, for example, show my own background with logo.
There is a large selection of green screens and they are not particularly expensive to start with; simple versions are already available for a few euros. Well, in the end it is often just a green cloth that is attached to the wall. More expensive sets at least offer a stand.
I didn’t want any of that, I didn’t necessarily want a fixed or cumbersome installation.
The green screen from Elgato
Finally, I came across the Greenscreen by Elgato. In terms of price, it is a little more expensive at 150 euros. The clever thing about this model, however, is that it can be retracted and extended. If I want to use the thing, I unfold it, pull it up and that’s it. The mechanism ensures that the wall is crease-free. After use, the green screen also disappears again quickly.
Two rotating feet provide sufficient stability. When extended, the green screen covers 148 x 180 cm. When retracted, it remains the same width but disappears into the housing. With the carrying handle, it can be quickly placed somewhere else and also simply disappears under the bed when not in use.
The workmanship leaves nothing to be desired. The retraction and extension mechanism runs smoothly and without problems.
Advantages and disadvantages
The biggest advantage is that the thing can be retracted quickly. So you don’t have some green wall standing around permanently and there’s hardly any effort involved in setting it up. The width can be seen as a small disadvantage. The 1.48 metre width is just enough for streaming with the webcam, but if you want to make larger recordings, you will have to take a wider model. Elgato also offers a variant for ceiling mounting.
Use, software, tips
On the software side, I use “Camtasia” for the recordings. The software offers the possibility to replace a certain colour in the recording. As soon as this is set, the background disappears. There are various settings, e.g. colour tolerance, so that gradations in the illumination are also replaced appropriately.
Nevertheless, a few things should be taken into account when taking the picture. Uniform illumination is particularly important. Otherwise, one part of the screen will have a different colour shade than the other and the replacement will no longer work. Ideally, you should position the screen in the centre of the light source, such as the window.
If you only want to use the green screen for Microsoft Teams and the like, you don’t have to do much, the software does it automatically.
I am satisfied with the purchase. The system is well suited for my YouTube videos. Here, the dimensions are also very sufficient. The green screen can be extended quickly and it also disappears again quickly when it is not needed. The price of just under 150 euros is also okay.
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