For video, the original video or audio source, or final video production with analog media, the first tape you create from your PC video file, also known as the first-generation tape. The master tape is a high-quality source to which you should return whenever you want to make more copies.


Although you could use the file on your hard drive as a master, you won't want to keep that file forever because it takes up so much storage space. If you're using analog video, however, the PC file is your master source and first generation; the first physical tape you record is considered to be a second-generation tape. 

One of a director's primary goals is to maintain control of the audience's attention. Expressing knowledge with interesting visuals is what separates a pro from a novice. Steven Spielberg uses complex master shots constantly throughout his films, and he pairs it with a really sharp motivated camera movement.

What does a master shot do?

  • Captures all required information
  • It tells the story in a compelling way
  • Eliminates regulatory gaps by providing coverage

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