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Recommend a mic for screencast / video demo

Peter Knight

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Hi guys

I know some of you here make your own YouTube videos etc. I've started to make a short ProcessWire video and wondering what you recommend microphone wise?

I'm very comfortable with audio production etc and I have a background (hobby) in music / guitar playing etc

But have never recorded my voice for a YouTube demo etc.

I was wondering if you'd absolutely recommend a "proper" USB mic etc?

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I have good experience with electret microphones. You also need a good equalizer and a background noise quencher.

I think I've some dedicated audio software for that. Certainly my guitar recording comes bundled with it.

I've seen a few of people recommending Blue Yeti for podcasting.

I saw one of those today in the shops. Might look into that or the Apogee mic: http://www.apogeedigital.com/products/mic
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I can recommend the blue usb mics (make sure any mic you get is cardioid pattern so you don't get too much room sound or echo from your own voice).

If you want a set up which is more versatile, then I would get a usb audio interface with a condenser cardioid mic or two - e.g. Focusrite, m-audio, beheringer etc interface

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi Peter

This answer might not apply directly to you... but I put it here for the benefit of the wonderful group of positive contributors here in PW land  :rolleyes:

I've started to get into more serious audio visual recordings now....

The brief summary is yes you need a good mic. Congratulations Peter on deciding this! So many people use their in-device mic and things just sound awful. Most experienced people will tell you that sound quality is way way WAY more important than the video quality. But of course you and I want both!

So the big problem on the internet is what they don't talk about much at all is that to get the best results you really need to equalise your recordings with audio editing software.

You can easily research and find yourself a great mic yet be totally unhappy with your recording played back.

Even with a good mic, some things like your environment, distance from mic, alignment to mic, your voice, your mouth teeth toungue profiles, the way you speak, the language spoken and the devices your target audience will ultimately play it on means that to get the best results, equalisation is required.

Software equalization can and does come in the form of plugins. Good audio editors will accept plugins. So the idea is to find an audio editor that you like using and find the appropriate plugins for it. The plugins come in various formats. Since I use a mac, I look for audio plugins that come in the AU format.

So Peter... if your happy with the sound straight out from your mic, great! But if your not, then look for an audio editor and some equalisation plugins and have a fiddle. 

For audio production, one paid software plugin suite that I think highly of is iZotope Nectar. It's not cheap Peter. But it has a ten day trial. If you have a play with it during those ten days... you will be able to play with a whole lot of modules and equalisation and presets and from there you will know what kind of plugins that you are looking for and seek them elsewhere. There are various standalone 3rd party discrete plugins that you can buy for affordable prices.

In my case Peter, I really need a de-esser with my recordings. I use a cardioid mic thats great for field recordings and has great noise rejection. But I've come to the realisation that that noise rejection quality of the mic comes at the expense of a problem created elsewhere! In my case that cost is a high frequency peak in the sibilance region. By de-essing my recordings and selecting the male radio announcer voice in iZotope to deepen the midrange of my voice and give it a bit of extra body I can actually listen to my own voice quite comfortably and not cringe!

Perhaps a solid choice for a bloke you should ask for actual mic suggestions would be our fellow member Joss. He is a real audio guy!

Happy recording Peter!

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If you are on Windows platform, you shouldn't miss Virtual cable this piece of software for a DAW (digital audio workstation).

It is powerful audio virtual mixer on Windows, and it is a donation free software

There are tons of tutorials made from others on the youtube.

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