It also reduces the complexity of tracking continuity issues that crop up when the scene is reshot from the different angles. Drawbacks include a less optimized lighting which needs to provide a compromise for all camera angles and less flexibility in putting the necessary equipment on scene, such as microphone booms and lighting rigs.

These can be efficiently hidden from just one camera but can be more complicated to set up and their placement may be inferior in a multiple-camera setup.

The camera currently being recorded to the line cut is indicated by a tally light controlled by a camera control unit (CCU) on the camera as a reference both for the actors and the camera operators.

When sound came into the picture multiple cameras were used to film multiple sets at a single time.

Early sound was recorded onto wax discs that could not be edited.

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Another drawback is in film usage—a four-camera setup will use (depending on the cameras involved) up to four times as much film (or storage space for digital) per take, compared with a single-camera setup.

While shooting, the director and assistant director create a line cut by instructing the technical director (or vision mixer in UK terminology) to switch between the feeds from the individual cameras.

It is often contrasted with single-camera setup, which uses one camera.

Generally, the two outer cameras shoot close-up shots or "crosses" of the two most active characters on the set at any given time, while the central camera or cameras shoot a wider master shot to capture the overall action and establish the geography of the room.

The use of multiple video cameras to cover a scene goes back to the earliest days of television; three cameras were used to broadcast The Queen's Messenger in 1928, the first drama performed for television.