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Tips & Tricks

5 Audio Options for Your Home Studio

By Hanssie on March 19th 2015

If you’ve ever made a home video, you’ll know the importance of audio. Nothing is more distracting for viewer experience than poor quality audio. It seems like such a small thing and easily overlooked by a videographer, but there’s a reason people invest thousands of dollars for a surround sound system for their home or hundreds of dollars on a tiny pair of headphones. I’ve watched my brother, who is a professional filmmaker, spend a long and very boring amount of time on setting up boom mikes and reshoot entire scenes simply because the sound was not exactly how he wanted it. Sound quality is important.

One of the challenges in setting up a studio in your home or office is getting good sound quality to come through. Our friend Jay P. Morgan from The Slanted Lens has released a new video in his Home Studio series focused on getting good audio for your videos.

Audio is sometimes the last thing we think about, but the first thing that people notice.



As mentioned before, audio can get expensive and what I like about this ~10 minute video is that Jay P. gives us 5 audio options to choose from – starting with the inexpensive to the Hollywood quality, larger budget option. Of the 5 options, the least expensive one is the microphone on your camera – which is not really a great option unless you are standing right next to the camera, and honestly, who does that?

Jay P. also discusses the Rode Videomic Pro, an external recorder such as a Zoom or a TASCAM, a lavalier mic, the $1600 Sennheiser 416 Shotgun Microphone and the pros and cons of each. Of all five, I’ve used the practically useless camera mic and the lav mic. I really like the lav mike option because it gives great sound and isn’t astronomical in cost. Anyway, watch the video below to find the audio option that will work the best for your video needs.

Watch Audio for your Home or Office Studio From The Slanted Lens

What do you use to get good quality audio for your videos? Comment and let us know below!

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Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

Q&A Discussions

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  1. anglina leo

    My wife is in love with the new kitchen design we got by the services of northern virginia home remodeling! She has told her every single friend about their work! They are simply amazing!
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  2. Jason Pasqua

    Great, useful tips. I like how he really demonstrates the different sound quality with each option.

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  3. Ralph Hightower

    Jay has a great T-shirt!

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  4. Dave Haynie

    This was a pretty good one — covered much of the stuff I figured out on my own through decades of trial and error :-) I was essentially conscripted to be a sound guy starting back in High School — my Mom was a local choir director. But I kind of got into it over time, and eventually learned to get good results. So I’ve always tried to get top notch sound for video.

    He didn’t get into some of the cheaper solutions — you can use a cheaper Zoom recorder, or even a smartphone, with a low cost wired lav mic and get a much better sound than with the built-in mic. But one word of warning — watch out for older Zooms and other digital recorders. Back before the days of DSLR video, they weren’t very careful about the clock crystals used for timing in those devices. So you can find an older unit, like the original Zoom H4 (not the newer H4n, one of my go-to recorders), the audio will fall out of sync with your video pretty quickly, sometimes in as little as 5 minutes.

    Another tip he offers is an excellent one: use PluralEyes for sound sync. This is really handy if you ever do multi-camera shoots. What I do is set up one digital recorder that stays on during the whole event. That will deliver good general audio, but it’s also basically now the time bed for the whole project. Once that’s going, you can start and stop camcorders or DSLRs as often as you like (or, given the stupid issues of long recording in most DSLRs, as often as you have to) and not worry about spending any significant time syncing it all up later.

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  5. Tosh Cuellar

    How very true, just recently I found myself scouring through youtube videos on soccer drill and one thing was common in nearly all of them and it made me hit the back button and try another. No matter how good the video quality was I couldnt watch most of the videos because of terrible wind noise or a coach standing far away practically yelling at the camera mic.

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  6. fotosiamo

    You can have a crappy video and great audio, and people will watch it (maybe even think the low-fi video is a stylistic choice). But if you have great video and crappy audio, people will think you’re an amateur and less likely to watch the video.

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  7. robert garfinkle

    Yup, on device (camera / video cam) mics are difficult to deal with – got to go pro…

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