George Lucas once said audio makes up 50% of the moviegoer’s experience. There’s a reason for that, show your audience a blurry shot or horrible angles and they’ll likely forgive you. But if you give them awful audio, they’re bound to walk out.
Audio quality is important whether you’re doing a simple home video, a YouTube tutorial or a full-length movie. Unless you’re doing slapstick videos of course, but then again, you would still need to add music, which is also audio.
If you’re a beginner, here are several tips that you need to keep in mind.
If you’re soft spoken by nature, you might want to practice projecting your voice. It’s surprising, so many people assume the mini microphone on their device is enough but it never is. A professional quality video includes great audio – this includes a host that talks clearly and in an understandable manner.
Find a Quiet Space to Record
Find a quiet room and turn off all the appliances that might cause noise or get picked up by the microphone. If you live with other people, wait until they’re out of the house before recording or inform them you are recording so they know to keep quiet. It would also be ideal if you turned off your phone and other gadgets to prevent distraction.
Grab an External Microphone (And Use the Right One)
Your camera might be awesome but still consider grabbing an external microphone and a camera that has an audio jack you can use. While these built-in mics can work, the placement can be problematic. And nothing is more awful when shooting videos and realizing you didn’t capture the audio properly.
In terms of the type of microphone to get, a general guide would be to use ultra-directional mics for external spaces or locations. Use directional or shorter microphones for inside shots. Then make sure to switch to a non-direction microphone when shooting in cramped spaces.
Hold the Mic as Close to the Mouth as Possible
Keep the microphone as close to your mouth or to the person speaking. For many microphones, it will follow that the farther away you move from it, the poorer the audio quality.
Get a good Soundman
For those wanting to take their video shoots to the next level, you can look into hiring a competent audio guy to help you out. It might be added expense on your part but it can make a difference.
Have Cue Cards
If you have a lot of words to say, then make sure to have cue cards ready. These are really helpful to ensure you don’t lose your place or train of thought while speaking. It also ensures you speak everything clearly without having to memorize it since it’s right there.
Listen to the Recording Before Wrapping the Shoot
Make sure to listen to the shoot before you call it a wrap. Don’t just look at the video quality but examine the audio quality as well. You might not realize that an annoying hum or appliance has squeezed itself into the background. At least this way, you have time to reshoot if in case it’s too annoying. You can also eliminate this problem by doing multiple recordings for the audio.
When it comes to audio, you really need to pay attention to the smallest detail. There’s nothing more heartbreaking than realizing you have fantastic footage but unusable audio.