Required Purchases

Hard Drives

Film & Television Students enrolled in Undergraduate Film & TV production classes are required to purchase a minimum of two (2) External Hard Drives.

HD#1 for editing and

HD#2 for archiving/backup of their Film & TV media*.

Two drives are essential for maintaining Best Practices in today’s digital workflows. Students can expect prices to begin at about $150, increasing with drive capacity and additional features. While there are many brands available, we recommend either G-TECH OR GLYPH for best results.

*Note: Visiting students or non-film & television majors taking Sight & Sound Filmmaking can get by with one (1) External Hard Drive for the class.

Drive requirements:

  • Minimum speed 7200 RPM, preferably with an 8 MB buffer
  • At least one USB 3 port plus an additional interface is required (i.e. FireWire 800 or Thunderbolt) USB C Thunderbolt 3 is not supported at this time.
  • A 2TB (terabyte) drive is today's standard storage capacity.  We discourage using drives larger than 4TB at this time.
  • It must be a full sized drive that has a separate AC power cable; bus powered drives that use USB or Firewire cables to power the drive are NOT recommended as your primary work hard drive. You can get a smaller sized drive like a Gtech Mini or LaCie Rugged Mini but only if you are using it as your 2nd back up hard drive. Note: bus powered drives can be helpful when downloading files where AC power is unavailable.
  • Formatted as HFS+ Mac OS extended (NOT APFS)
  • Manufacturer’s warranty of at least 1 year
  • We recommend G-Tech or Glyph drives because of their warranties and customer service. Other brands like LaCie or OWC/Other World Computing are acceptable, as long as all of the above requirements are met.
  • DO NOT purchase any RAID type enclosures. These may use proprietary hardware that makes data recovery more difficult.

Do be aware that some thunderbolt drives may have compatibility problems with new MacBook Pros (with the touch bar function panel). Always purchase drives with multiple interfaces.

CSI Insurance

All students enrolled in Production Classes are required to purchase the CSI Student Personal Property Insurance. For more information, click here.



Students DO NOT need their own computer or video camera for the Film & TV production curriculum.

The Film & TV Post Production Center provides professional equipment for students to edit their class projects. However, some students prefer to have a computer to work at home. If you choose to buy one please read below:

  • If you choose to buy an Apple computer, be sure that it has an Intel processor and at least 16GB of RAM.
  • If you choose to buy a PC (Windows), it should have Intel Xeon, or i7 Multicore processors and a min of 16GB RAM. Mac Drive recommended for compatibility with the Apple computers in the Post Production Center.
  • Note: Many companies are making laptops that do not have upgradeable RAM so it is wise to purchase one with as much RAM as possible upfront.
  • If you choose to purchase a computer for post production work, you will need to buy a FireWire800 to Tbolt (Thunderbolt) adapter as many of the newest Macs do not come with any FireWire Ports, only Thunderbolt ports. 
  • Primary software applications used in the Post Production Center are the most current versions of Adobe Premier, Adobe Photoshop, Pro Tools and Avid Media Composer. We no longer support Final Cut Pro.
  • Warning: Students who work from home should be advised that there can be compatibility problems when trying to move between home and school computers!

Incoming and current students are able to purchase computers at reduced prices at the NYU Computer Store, 212-998-4672. To be eligible for the discount you need to provide a New York University letter of acceptance or a tuition bill to the computer store.

If you have any additional questions regarding equipment, please contact the Production Office, or 212-98-1790 x2.


Students DO NOT need their own video camera. Video cameras provided by the department for projects are professional, broadcast quality cameras. Cameras costing less than $2,000 will be less than professional quality, but if you chose to buy one, we recommend any brand of brand of camera with:

  • XLR Audio Inputs
  • Manual Controls: focus, exposure (iris) and audio levels
  • Additional manual controls for shutter speed and white balance are a plus
  • We do not support any tape based cameras.
  • Quality lens with low f-stop (for non-fixed lens cameras, be sure to purchase the proper lens mount adapters if needed).