Although it has been said before, it is still important. In videos, poor sound quality has a bigger negative impact than poor picture quality. You may see setbacks if your camera’s microphone is all you rely on for sound. The answer to your action camera involves more than purchasing an external microphone. An action camera microphone attachment is required. It is due to the lack of a microphone input on most action cameras.
Do you wish to raise your sound quality by enhancing the audio? Then, please read our review of the top action camera microphone attachment after that.
How Can an External Microphone Be Attached?
The absence of an audio jack is the first problem to be solved. It will help if you receive your action camera’s audio signal. There is no external microphone input port in action cameras. It means that to use an external microphone, you will require a microphone adaptor. However, other options might be with older or less expensive action cameras.
This assessment is predicated on the idea that action cameras should prioritize small adoption. Although connecting any of these external microphones to an audio recorder is not the main topic. (An audio recorder, on the other hand, takes you to the next level regarding sound quality. Mostly because it vastly enhances the microphone pre-amp.)
Let’s move on, assuming that’s not the case for you.
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GoPro camera adapters for external microphones:
You will need a 3.5mm to USB small B converter to connect an external microphone to a GoPro HERO3 or HERO4 action camera. Perhaps this is simply a simple dongle. However, it will let you attach a third-party microphone to your GoPro.
Things get a little bit easier for the GoPro HERO5 and later models. A 3.5mm USB-C socket is provided by a GoPro adaptor that plugs into the USB-C port. It is the most straightforward solution from the HERO5 to the HERO7 action cameras.
The GoPro Camera Media Mod is the coolest product for the HERO8, HERO9, and HERO10. Unfortunately, the HERO8 Media Mod does not fit the other two action cameras, despite looking identical.
The Media Mod is a wraparound adaptor plugged into the action camera’s USB port. It includes two cold shoe mounts, a directional microphone, and 3.5mm, USB C and mini HDMI connectors. The extra microphone with the action camera is already superior to its own. A huge number of additional possibilities are add by the mount and the 3.5mm socket.
However, there are two drawbacks. First, the upgrade will compromise the action camera’s waterproofness because it is not waterproof. It implies that if you believe the camera might become submerged, you cannot use it. It also makes replacing the battery more difficult to remove it must from the camera entirely.
The Ulanzi line of housings for GoPro action cameras provides an option. They do not have the Media Mod’s built-in external microphone. However, they do offer more options for mounting accessories. For example, the housings make accessing the SD card and battery simpler. They also provide alternatives for mounting the GoPro using either a tripod screw or a finger. But a USB to 3.5mm adaptor is still require.
Adapters for DJI Osmo Action and Action 2’s external microphone:
The DJI Osmo Action and Action 2 cameras should be compatible with generic USB C to 3.5mm dongles. However, it’s wise to always confirm compatibility before making a purchase. The CYNOVA Osmo Action Dual now has a USB C port, giving it a more modular appearance. Unfortunately, like with the GoPro Media Mod, the waterproofing is compromise when using the adaptor.
So, the adapter issue has been resolved. Let’s now discuss picking an external microphone for the video you capture with your action camera.
What is the best microphone for an action camera?
Shotgun and lavalier mics are the two major action camera microphone attachments that will discuss. Your needs will determine which is best for you.
Microphones similarly collect sound, but they have different purposes. The microphone on an action camera will be omnidirectional. It implies that it contains sound from all around. However, these microphones only pick up sound from a 180o field.
You get a more directed sound using a shotgun mic. Additionally, it will give superior wind noise reduction and sound quality. It will exclude or muffle sound from the sides and back to concentrate on what is in front of the microphone.
Similar to the action camera microphone attachment, a lavalier microphone also captures sound. Its benefit is that it brings you up close for narration or interviews. In addition, it reduces background noise better. We’ll solely focus on wireless options because using wires to tether an action camera is pointless.
Top 7 action camera microphone attachments:
Rode Wireless Go IIRode:
Go II Rode Wireless Rode is a reputable producer of audio equipment. And a fantastic illustration of why they’re so well-liked is the Wireless Go II. With either one or two transmitters, there are two versions.
They are portable, square, and small in size. The transmitter link to the subject’s clothing, while the receiver is fastened to a cold or hot shoe. Additionally, you must connect the receiver to the 3.55 input port of your selected adapter.
According to reports, the wireless transmission distance is 660′. (200 m). Getting closer to 330′ (100 m) should never be an issue. The recording is available onboard the transmitter. It indicates that you won’t lose even if the transmission malfunctions. The Wireless Go II uses Rode’s safety mode.
This is use to record a second audio track at -20 dB. The transmitter keeps your sound without clipping even if you become overexcited and leap out of a plane. The Rode smartphone app can adjust safety mode and other settings. Additionally, the receiver incorporates a vivid color LCD screen for tracking various metrics.
The DJI Osmo Action is the only device for which the DJI Mic was created. You may use it with various cameras, including your action camera, because it has a cold shoe adapter. There are two receivers and transmitters with microphones. Additionally, they may keep in a sturdy charging carry case without risk. The units are now easy to travel, coupled with, and charge.
The transmitters can be fastened to garments. Additionally, they have a magnetic mount if that isn’t possible. It is a practical solution, for example, for T-shirts or unbuttoned shirts.
The battery life, which is 15 hours, is much longer than the time an action camera can record. And the dead cats that are supplied will lessen wind noise.
Like the Rode Wireless Go II, the DJI Mic incorporates a safety track and integrated recording (of -6 dB). Additionally, you can alter the receiver’s gain settings to customize the output to your action camera’s requirements.
It is a contender in the market for inexpensive external microphones. The Synco G2 functions using the same theory as the earlier microphone systems. It doesn’t have an onboard recorder. Therefore you lose that part of the recording if your audio cuts out. Additionally, it lacks a safety track.
The Rode provides better sound quality when comparing the Rode Wireless Go II with Synco G2. The sound is fuller, and there is less noise. As a result, the Rode offers superior audio compared to the Synco G2.
But everything is relative. The action camera’s built-in microphone won’t be as effective at voice recording at a distance as the Synco. If you do not want to invest in the Rode or the DJI, which is even more costly), Synco is worth considering.
RØDE VideoMic Pro:
A DSLR or mirrorless camera would better suit the bigger VideoMic Pro option. However, there is no denying that the sound quality is appropriate for various recordings.
Why do I recommend this as a microphone adapter for an action camera? Well, only some configurations necessitate mounting the microphone atop the camera.
This microphone would appear a touch top-heavy if placed on a GoPro; however, if you mount it on the side. You’re now considering something more useful.
A shotgun microphone like this one is suitable for recording sounds from a distant source. If you’re speaking to the camera, keep the lapel microphone out of the picture. A shotgun microphone is the best option in this circumstance.
Despite this, the system is still small and lightweight, measuring just 23 cm and weighing 85 grams.
Also, take note of the foam covering. That will result in audio recordings that are clearer and crisper while also reducing wind noise.
It has a significantly more compact form factor than the VideoMic Pro, measuring only 8cm long and weighing only 42 grams.
RØDE video micro has a microphone mounting adapter that will shield the microphone from interference despite its size because it stops static noise from touching the camera.
Or wires from being picked up on the audio channel. It is useful in situations where you have to move the camera around. The provided glass will lessen wind noise, but it can interfere with the camera, depending on how you attach the microphone.
Sennheiser Professional MKE 400:
The Sennheiser Professional MKE 400, which measures 13 cm in length and weighs more than 300 grams, is the largest action camera microphone adapter on this list. But don’t give up just yet. Unsurprisingly, Sennheiser provides superb sound quality; nevertheless, the price slightly reflects this. Another shotgun microphone is better positioned to the side than on the camera. Using various attachments, such as a Noga’s arm, is simple.
I just recently learned about Sairen. But there have been some favorable evaluations of the VM-Q1 microphone. The price of the mic is quite low. It has a dead cat, shock mount, and foam windshields and is incredibly small.
The sound quality is inconsistent, and at least one reviewer complained about how noisy the cords that came with the microphone were. Nevertheless, the sound is amazing for the price range with a cable upgrade.
And once more, remember that even a cheap microphone like this will considerably enhance your video capture audio. Unfortunately, you can’t use the Sairen VM-Q1 to listen to music on the fly because it lacks a headphone jack.
It isn’t easy to notice the difference between the Rode VideoMicro and the Boya BY-MM1 regarding sound quality. However, the difference will be felt in your wallet, as the latter is around half as expensive.
The accessories we anticipate from this microphone are present in the BY-MM1. A dead cat, shock mount, cables, and carry case are included. The BY-MM1 is a capable performer, and I like the Boya sound better than the Rode. However, you might make your decision based on the somewhat worse performance in the wind.
Let’s take a moment to review why we are considering the Action Camera Microphone Attachment. First, using an external microphone will considerably improve your video recordings’ audio quality. In practically all circumstances, this is true. You should think about the kind of recording you do, the environment you record, and your financial situation. Which of these external microphones is best for you will depend on this.
The Rode Wireless Go II is a good option for a lavalier microphone because of its simplicity and usability. The DJI Mic is a highly attractive option if you have extra cash to spare. The magnetic mounting choices and charging travel bag. The decision with a shotgun microphone is to weigh personal preference and performance. The Boya BY-MM1 is my personal preference due to the depth of its sound. A mix between performance, cost, and personal preference will produce the ideal action camera microphone attachment adapter for your requirements.
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