Best Camera Microphones 2020: Shotgun Mics for Field Audio Recording - Rolling Stone
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The Best Camera Microphones for Field or Studio Recordings

Upgrade your DSLR’s audio capture with these shotgun microphones

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Whether you create beauty vlogs or documentaries, you know that if you’re serious about the quality of your projects, it’s not just the visuals that matter. Sound is equally important. You may have the finest DSLR camera that your wallet could permit, but without the right microphone technology, your other investments might as well be for naught.

An on-camera shotgun microphone is one of the best pieces of equipment you can have when it comes to enhancing the way you capture sound as a videographer. These microphones are mounted on top of your camera and connect to the camera’s mic jack port to better pick up your subject’s voice (or chirps or barking, depending on what you’re filming).

Shotgun microphones prioritize the sounds directly in front of it; sounds to the sides of the microphone, or behind it, are largely ignored. This makes them especially good for conducting interviews, testimonials, or vlogs of yourself.

Microphones of this style come in a variety of sizes and models. When selecting the best one for your camera, bigger doesn’t necessarily mean better. You want a microphone that is proportional to your camera. If you have a small, compact DSLR, then you don’t want a shotgun mic that will topple over your device (and maybe even the tripod it’s connected to). As cameras increase their heft, the bulkier your shotgun mic can be while still being compatible.

Shotgun microphones also vary in their complexity. Some just plug and go – you don’t even need batteries. Others require battery power and let you play with its sensitivity levels and wind filters.

One thing remains the same: No matter which model you utilize, the audio you capture will have a cleaner, more professional quality.

1. Movo VXR10 Universal Video Microphone

It’s hard to beat the simplicity of this Movo shotgun mic. It doesn’t require any batteries, plus its built-in shock mount helps minimize unwanted noise. It’s compatible across camera makes and models, so as long as your camera has a microphone jack, you can get started. The microphone itself is just over three inches long, so it’s perfect for compact-sized cameras. It could even attach to your smartphone.


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Buy: Movo VXR10 Universal Video Microphone at $39.95

2. Tikysky Camera Microphone

This battery-operated shotgun microphone gives you 80 hours of working time. It’s the perfect tool for video interviews since it can focus on the direction of your subject while reducing background noise. The microphone has a large pickup range and is extremely sensitive. Even with its sensitivity, there is minimal high-frequency loss. It also comes with a windproof mic cover for even more reduction of ambient noise. It’s over five inches long, making it the perfect fit for sturdy DSLR cameras.


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Buy: Tikysky Camera Microphone at $31.99

3. Sennheiser MKE 400 Microphone

This five-inch shotgun microphone captures professional audio for professional-grade equipment. It’s battery-powered, but the working lifespan is nearly 300 hours. Those who know their way around their equipment will appreciate the fact that you can adjust the microphone sensitivity. Its all-metal housing makes it extra durable, perfect for those who need a device that can withstand constant use. Plus, it comes with a fur windshield covering.

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Buy: Sennheiser MKE 400 Microphone at $199.95

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