- Get the Mic Closer
- Eliminate Ambient Noise
- Choose a Good Mic
- Outline a Script
- Record Highest Quality Available
- Edit with Headphones
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YouTube is a great method for promoting yourself, a cause, a product or a service, as well as just good old fashioned fun. Good audio for YouTube is essential for viewer enjoyment, even more so than good looking video.
You really want both clear video and good audio for YouTube, but if a viewer has a choice between forgiving less than perfect audio or video, they’ll turn off bad sound in an instant, so recording good audio should be a priority for YouTubers.
Since YouTube video audio quality is so important to viewer enjoyment, we decided to give you some audio tips for YouTube videos that are within reach of almost any budget YouTuber.
Here are 6 easy and very budget friendly tips and techniques for recording good audio for YouTube:
Get the Mic Closer
One of the easiest ways to capture good audio for YouTube is to simply place the microphone closer to the subject being recorded, whether that is you or another person. What mic to choose is one of the other audio tips for YouTube videos that we’ll cover in a bit.
There are several methods you can use to get the mic closer, put it on a person, point it at a person, or put it next to a person. The first two are determined by the mic choice, the last one can be done with virtually any cardioid mic and a versatile gadget called the OctoPad.
OctoPad is a weighted camera and accessory non-slip mount that can hold 2 or 3 pounds of equipment on almost any surface, even if the surface is slanted up to 45 degrees, allowing you to position an inexpensive mic out of sight but right next to the subject being recorded.
Eliminate Ambient Noise
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Just like a mirror reflects light, hard surfaces such as walls and floors reflect sound. Recording on a tile floor with bare walls behind the subject will reflect all the extra noise around them. You can either soften the surfaces or cut down the surrounding noise.
The easier and cheaper method is to reduce the extra noise around you. If you are interviewing someone in a crowded room, it could be hard to focus on the subject’s audio. If you can wait until the room is less crowded, you will have less noise to deal with.
Outdoors, you might encounter traffic noise, industrial noise, or wind noise. If you have the opportunity to choose another time when the noise level is lower, you will be able to capture better YouTube video audio quality.
Lens focus motor noise can be a major source of distraction. Either prefocus and turn off autofocus or choose lenses with quieter focusing. Built-in hyper sonic or ultrasonic focus motors that are in many newer versions of lenses can virtually eliminate this problem.
Choose a Good Mic
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Regardless of the ad copy you read about how amazing the built-in microphone is on that new camera, you can improve your YouTube video audio quality dramatically by the simple addition of an external microphone.
For voice recording, lavalier mics, either wired or wireless, are pretty much an industry standard. Other mics for recording good audio for YouTube are cardioid mics on a mount like the OctoPad or an on camera shotgun mic.
Lavalier mics are preferred by many YouTubers for voice recording. They fit right on a person and you can either opt for inexpensive wired versions or spend more for the wireless mics. If you use wireless mics, you will need to watch out for radio interference that can negatively impact your good audio for YouTube.
Outline a Script
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While you really don’t need to type out everything being said word for word for a YouTube video, having a basic outline is a good idea for recording good audio for YouTube. The reason is pretty simple, you or your subject will feel more confident in what’s being said and thus will have stronger vocals.
When the average person is fishing for words, their voice tends to lower, so does their head, making the audio suffer. An outline will keep a person on track while still allowing for spontaneity.
Record Highest Quality Available
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Whatever the highest quality audio recording mode is on your camera, that’s what should be used for recording good audio for YouTube. This will eat up more memory card space, but it’s better to start with high quality and then edit it down to a format and file size that can be uploaded to YouTube.
Similar reasoning to why we record in the highest resolution visually, it’s better to edit down the quality than to wish you had used better quality audio or video.
Edit with Headphones
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In order to have good audio for YouTube videos, in fact, in order to have good video, you will be using some sort of editing program. Eliminating ambient noise in your editing studio is as important for editing as recording good audio for YouTube in the first place.
A good pair of headphones will cancel out extraneous noise and will also allow you to hear subtle nuances in the raw audio recording or your edited and enhanced files.
It Won’t Happen Accidentally
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In order to record good audio for YouTube, you will have to expend some extra effort. It’s worth it, though, to present to your YouTube viewers the best possible audio and visual experience, which should bring them back over and over again to your channel.