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Common sound recording mistakes when making a video

In today's post we will examine three common mistakes even professionals make when recording.

While not everyone can easily get access to a professional audio recording studio, there are simple steps you can take to improve the quality of your audio recordings.

When recording video content, many people consider sound recording a secondary task, because organizing a good audio recording appears to be easy at first glance.

You're likely to be very meticulous when recording; you'll arrange the appearance of whoever's in the frame, adjust the lighting, place your furniture and props orderly and use a quality camera. And the picture will be fantastic. 

In the case of an interview, however, if the sound isn't good, you'll lose some of the information, or it'll be difficult to parse and you'll have to spend more time on the content, asking the interviewee what he said and overlaying it with the sound. 

What if it's live? You will not be able to effectively salvage the situation.

If you want your web meeting, broadcast, or other video to look professional, choose the right equipment and make sure you test it before you use it.

Good sound creates a sense of presence. Without good sound quality, even the best picture in the world won't help your video. 

The main problem with sound recording is that the microphone is not given enough attention.

You can take any condenser microphone.

The above diagram shows the polar pattern of a condenser microphone from the American company Marantz. You can see that the microphone records the signal only in front of itself, as it should with a cardioid. Passport frequency response tells us about good linearity over the entire operating frequency range. 

Any microphone with similar parameters will do. You already know that you need to move the microphone closer so that the signal is better received. But there is one more nuance of this particular type of microphones - place it just above yourself, approximately at the level of the nose. Then the sound will be more natural if you hold the microphone over your head as close as possible.

You can read about what other microphones are and what recordings they are suitable for in the article “Best streaming microphones overview”.

How will the sound turn out if you don't spend enough time with it and only use your camera's microphone or laptop's microphone? Despite your best efforts, your viewers will not feel like they got the best impression from your interview.

There are a number of reasons why this can happen:

  • your subject was too far or too close to the microphone;
  • poor recording quality in general;
  • the acoustics of the room created interference.

Mistake 1 : Misplacement of the microphone

Putting the microphone in the right position is the easiest thing to do to improve video quality quite a bit. The further it is, the worse the recording will be.

If you have to use your phone to film, use an external microphone system to make it sound better. It doesn't have to be expensive. As you might be placing your phone further away from the person/s speaking, don't forget to position the microphone closer.

People tend to hold or place the camera further away from the face of their subject, and it results in not all words being legible in the recording.

Mistake 2: Not re-listening the final version of the recording

Watch your video and listen from the listener's perspective. That is, if you are recording a video for a client, a good thing to do is to send the video to yourself and re-listen to what you recorded, as if you are the end receiver of the video. 

Presenting or preparing a professional video report requires that you or your subject says everything clearly and loudly enough.

Mistake 3: not addressing acoustically reflective surfaces

Reflective surfaces are a big factor affecting audio quality. Try to eliminate them all within the range of the microphone. When recording indoors, this may be the hardest task at hand.

To achieve acoustic neutrality, you may need to delve a little into the acoustic literature and learn how to eliminate the basic problematic false reflections that distort the sound.

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