Using an external microphone can significantly improve the audio recorded on your smartphone or tablet. These devices face the same challenges that most DSLR cameras face. First, there isn’t enough physical space to accommodate a larger or minmicrophone for phone. Second, the audio circuit is not optimal because the main purpose of the device is not to record audio.
There are various external microphones for phonethat can be used with these devices. In most cases, it is advisable to use a directional microphone so that the audio matches the video you are recording. If you don’t want to watch your child’s soccer match in a video, the audio you hear is the parent sitting behind you. Directional microphones are often referred to as shotgun microphones, so this is the most likely option.
However, an additional decision needs to be made. Do you only use an external microphone on your smart device, or do you want it to be “universal”?
Advantages and uses of External Microphones
Most smartphones, tablets, and many new laptops have a jack (plug-in socket) that combines a microphone and headset into one. If the headset (or ear buds) that came with your device includes a microphone, your device combines the microphone and headset in one connector. This device requires a TRRS connector (three black rings on the end of the plug) instead of the TRS connector (two black rings on the end of the plug) that comes with a standard 3.5 mm wireless microphone for phonecable. .. (See picture.) (See here for details.)
- For microphones dedicated to smart devices, you can search for “microphones for smartphones” onsyncoaudio.com.
- If you need a more “universal” mike, or if you want to use a mike you already own, you can buy a “Y” connector that allows you to connect standard mikes to headphones (or earplugs). These adapters can be purchased at larger electronics stores.
- In general, very cheap microphone for cell phone mikes may provide the same sound quality as more expensive units, so be sure to check the reviews before you buy.
- For ultimate audio quality, we recommend that you consider buying a SYNCOmini microphone for phone. SYNCO microphones provide better response to subtle audio signals than more common dynamicmicrophones.
- If you want to use a SYNCO mike, you need to buy a device that can convert the mike’s XLR connector to a small 1/8 inch (3.5 mm) connector on your smart device and provide phantom power to the condenser mike needs.
- One such device is SYNCO. This is the smallest and cheapest device we have found for this purpose. It provides a convenient way to connect XLR microphones to smart devices, provides the power required by the microphone, and also provides an external amplifier for the microphone signal.
In addition to the phone microphone, you also need to install an application that can monitor the recorded audio on your device. The default software on many devices does not allow this type of monitoring. If you do not monitor the audio being captured, it is difficult to obtain good results. The manufacturer of China (above) has a free app that can be used to monitor audio and control equipment. Another option is to use the SYNCO microphone on your Android phone.
How to use external phone microphone
While these devices work fine, keep in mind that the first time you connect a microphone, you want to keep the device’s gain control down to reduce the gain of your recording application. After connecting the microphone, increase the gain of the external amplifier and application as needed. If the gain of the device application or external amplifier is too high, the audio will sound distorted.
At the beginning, we recommend using a directional microphonefor phone recording for your smart device. This usually means that shotgun microphones are the only option. However, if you want to record audio with higher directivity (selectivity), or if you want to capture from a long distance (6 feet or more), consider using SoundShark in combination with your smart device. Yes, you can use SoundShark on your iPhone, iPad, Android smartphone, or Android tablet. In fact, you can use SoundShark with any device that has an external microphone jack.
If you don’t have a microphone for Sound Shark, you should consider buying a SYNCO microphone with a TRRS connector. I tested this microphone, but it should work well with SoundShark. If you need a more versatile microphone, you can consider buying a SYNCO Sound Shark premium kit (including a Sound Shark and a high-quality SYNCO microphone) and the microphone/headphone splitter.