If you had the money, you’d hire a stellar production team for your shoots, right? But, hey! Even when on a tight budget, you can still capture accurate audio to match the crisp detail of your film. Here’s how to do it;
Get the Right Mic for the Job
Positioning your microphone in the right spot can make all the difference when it comes to the quality of your audio. But, that’s not all there is to note. Mics used in video production come in an assortment of sizes and shapes. It is, therefore, essential that you invest in at least one microphone for your camera setup. One of the best options is a shotgun due to the versatility it offers. All shotguns aren’t the same though. So, you need to pinpoint a model whose features and design can suit your shooting environment.
Of course, you’re better off with a mic that provides a smoother response and a reasonable self-noise rating. After doing a little research, I decided to order the NTG4 due to its super thoughtful features including a full super-cardioid pattern and long battery life. On top of that, this model comes with three digital controls, allowing you to make the most of what it can do.
Be Mindful of Your Shooting Location
Be sure to visit your shooting location(s) a day or two in advance. Don’t forget to bring your camera and mic with a pair of headphones. The idea is to help you identify if there is any problem with noise sources. Keep in mind that the sound you hear with your ears is relatively different from the one your microphone captures. The air conditioner noise that you can hardly notice can be significantly louder when coming through your earphones.
Protect Your Microphones When Outdoors
Ensure that you protect your mics from wind and other weather elements. Carry more than thin, foam windscreens. When the wind is heavy or if it rains, you will need adequate protection to continue to shoot uninterrupted. Besides, drip rain coupled with low-frequency wind can make your work unusable.
Use a Separate Recorder for Audio
Sure, a small DV camera can use gain circuit automatically for consistent input. However, you may not get the best result if you use this approach. It, therefore, makes perfect sense to invest in a different recorder to put you firmly in charge of the levels. Also, make sure that you know how to connect a portable digital audio recorder in your video camera setup.
Use Dedicated Software to Edit Your Video
A dedicated application gives you more power to edit your work. Use a program that offers as many editing options for your audio as possible. You can also use a multi-track application such as Vegas Pro if you want to do more than use two tracks of sound in your video.
Learn how to make smooth edits too. Practice as much as you can to get rid of things such as coughs and other sounds that are not necessarily part of your footage. That way, your final product will be flawless and by extension more appealing to your audience.
The Bottom Line
You don’t have to struggle to get great audio when filming. You only need to know what to do and when to do it. Familiarize yourself with tools that can make your audio sound better. Learn about various mixing concepts and how to equalize your tone to perfection. Be sure to use plug-ins that can correct or reduce the intensity of background noises such as crackles, pops, clicks, and wind. Take it one step at a time, especially if you’re a beginner.