Survey of Head Height

How big are you in video? – A Survey of Head Height

I did a quick survey of how big people are on news programs. How zoomed in the camera is, how big the person appears on screen. The sample was from national and local programs, particularly segments with single speakers in a 16:9 aspect ratio. Typical webcams are 16:9. I reviewed about 15 examples. This can be a guide to how to frame yourself with your webcam.

Here are the results:

  • The head height ranged from about 40% to 55% of image height.
  • Most head heights were around 50%, some slightly bigger, and only a few smaller than 45%.
  • The space above the head was about 12% of screen height, rarely if ever less than 10%.
  • All but one was centered.
  • Almost all examples had a lower third.

Start with This for Your Webcam Set Up

  • Place your camera so your head is about 50% of image height.
    • If your camera has a zoom function, you can often get a better image using the zoom a little.
  • Put the top of your head near the top of the screen.
  • Leave at least 10% margin above your head, no more than 15% of image height.