Audio can be the most confusing part of a video production.  If your audio isn’t perfect, people will tune out.  Here is a rundown of different types of mics you can use for your mobile video productions.


Built in Mic:

This one is pretty straight forward.  No setup, no cost, but the quality will start to suffer unless you have perfect conditions

Best Uses:

  • Inside  
  • Needs to be relatively quiet
  • 1 - 2 people facing the camera

Pros:

  • Inexpensive
  • No setup required
  • Decent quality

Cons:

  • Will pick up lots of background noise
  • Not good outside in wind
  • No volume control


Handheld:

For use with Switcher Studio and an iOS device productions, I recommend the iRig Mic HD.  However any XLR handheld mic and an iRig Pre or Pro will work as well.

Best Uses:

  • Interviews
  • 1 - 2 people on screen

Pros:

  • Easy setup
  • Volume control
  • Great quality sound
  • Can pass around the mic to accommodate more people

Cons:

  • Needs to be near speakers
  • Have to hold in hand or have on table stand
  • Depending on setup can add gear and cost


LAV:

I have had the best luck with XLR LAV mics with an iRig Pre.  If you want to try two mics, you can use a TRRS 2 line breakout box and two TRRS LAVs.

Best Uses:

  • One person on screen
  • Relatively quiet areas

Pros:

  • Hands free
  • Great quality for one person
  • Easy setup
  • Small and hidden

Cons:

  • Limited number of people
  • Will pick up some background noise.
  • Depending on setup, cost and additional gear
  • Do not always have volume control


Shotgun Mic:

There are many options for XLR shotgun mics and all will work if you pair with an iRig.  This will give you audio gain controls for better sound quality.  For a direct connection, I recommend the RODE VideoMic with a RODE TRS to TRRS adapter.

At any event I am doing video, I will have a shotgun mic at least as backup.  These are multifunctional, will accommodate lots of people, and if the background noise is too much it can be used as a handheld mic to pick up your subjects volume better.Best Uses:

Best Uses:

  • Indoor or outdoors
  • Multiple people

Pros:

  • Works in almost any situation
  • Hands free
  • Most versatile option
  • No audio gear visible in your production

Cons:

  • Expensive

 

As you can see, different mics fit different productions.  Before going live, always make sure you have checked and setup your audio.