If you are a DSLR camera enthusiast and have been toying with the idea of taking videography seriously, you know you should invest in a good quality DSLR microphone to get you started.
Videography is as much about the sounds you can capture and the ambiance you can create, as much as it is about the visuals.
If, for instance, you are shooting in the park to get some day shots, you may also incorporate the bird sounds in the background or the specific sound of leaves crunching at a precise moment. With only your camera audio, you will not be able to record sounds with as much precision or quality.
You are likely to be stuck with just a cluster of ambient noises that you cannot do much about in post-production. Either you can take those shots with all the noise in the background or you will need to reshoot the whole sequence again.
When you have a microphone that has been designed especially to capture sounds with precision and give you clarity of audio, your video will be a lot more enhanced and articulate. You can add several elements to a video by playing around with sound, and a DSLR microphone will allow you that liberty to experiment with sounds.
A good DSLR microphone will also allow you to capture audio from the intended sound source and will block out all other side or ambient noises. The following are the best DSLR microphones you could consider investing in.
Top Picks: 7 Top On-Camera DSLR Mics
Best On-Camera Shotgun Microphones For DSLR Video Cameras – Our Reviews
Rode VMPR VideoMic Pro R
Rode VMPR VideoMic Pro R is an incredible DSLR microphone and fulfills several of the criteria that a microphone should have. This is a great microphone for those who have just taken to video blogging or are beginning to record a podcast (sure, a podcast is audio but most people like to maintain a video log of the recording as well).
This Rode video mic also comes with a few accessories that make it a complete kit. This includes the Rode DeadCat VMPR and the Watson 9V Rechargeable NiMH Battery. The microphone offers lower noise for a cleaner sound, and yet a higher sensitivity so you can capture all the right sounds.
- This is a condenser microphone that offers a broadcast recording quality.
- It has a compact form factor of 150 mm/6 inches in length.
- It comes with accessories like the Rode DeadCat VMPR and Watson 9V Rechargeable NiMH Battery.
- It comes with the Rycote Lyre shock mounting onboard.
- The plastic is very light, making the microphone lightweight too.
- The DeadCat does not fit too well and seems to be made for a thinner mic.
- There is still a hint of a hissing sound when it is recording.
- The battery door seems to be quite awkwardly placed.
TAKSTAR SGC-598 Interview Microphone
The Takstar SGC-598 interview microphone for Nikon/Canon Camera/DV Camcorder is another great option for a DSLR microphone. The microphone can simply be fixed to the camera using a standard universal connector.
It has a 200 Hz low-frequency attenuation and 10 dB sensitivity enhancement. This is a high-sensitivity condenser microphone that has been designed especially for DSLR cameras. Using this microphone is a great way to enhance the sound quality of the recording.
The microphone also has a durable and sturdy design, allowing you some liberty of rough use as well. It also has a shock-resistant structural design that reduces the mechanical noise that may come from the camera itself.
- The microphone has a heart-shaped single-point pickup feature which is great for reducing noise and preventing the mic from picking up ambient noise.
- The microphone has been made using a selection of alloy materials which also allows it to shield the sound from electromagnetic interference.
- It comes with a windscreen and a user manual (in English).
- The shock-resistant structural design is an intuitive addition and cuts out vibration noises too.
- The quality can be a bit questionable when the 10 dB boost is not enabled.
- The lower end of the sound tends to have a booming sound, which disrupts the balance of the overall sound.
Sennheiser MKE 600 Shotgun Microphone
The Sennheiser Pro Audio Wireless Microphone System allows a clean, high-quality sound recording that removes ambient sound and side noise as best as it can. The DSLR microphone offers pronounced directivity.
It also supports phantom or battery powering. The microphone is small, compact and lightweight. It offers sensitivity in free field, with a maximum sound pressure level of 132 dB SPL at P48. 126 dB SPL with battery powering. The microphone also comes with foam windshield and shock mount, with a frequency response of 40 Hz to 20 kHz.
- The microphone offers pronounced directivity that makes it great for recording sound bytes.
- It offers maximum drowning out of side noise and offers a clean sound without ambient noise.
- The foam windshield and shock mount the mic comes with make it a full package.
- The frequency response of 40 Hz to 20 kHz is a decent range for a DSLR microphone and is more than one needs.
- The shock mount is not very durable and will not be able to withstand rough use.
- The bass sounds are sometimes left out and are not picked up very well.
Shure VP83 LensHopper Camera-Mounted Condenser Microphone
The Shure VP83 LensHopper Camera-Mounted Condenser Microphone is a great device to be used with DSLR cameras. It offers a detailed and high-definition audio quality that gives you a professional sounding byte even if you are recording for an amateur YouTube channel.
The microphone has the incredible ability to reject any unwanted side noise while also capturing the audio from the intended source of the sound. It also offers superior RF immunity, a unique feature, that can prevent audio artifacts from cellular and RF devices.
The integrated Rycote Lyre shock mounting system is able to prevent the microphone from picking up any vibration sounds and mechanical noise that may be coming from the camera itself.
- The microphone offers a full low-end response that gives a clean sound and extremely professional results.
- The microphone also offers pronounced directivity with super-cardioid or lobar polar patterns that can cut the unnecessary sound out from the background.
- The microphone offers 125 long hours of battery life from the included 1 AA alkaline battery.
- It comes with a 0.125-inch dual mono, unbalanced connector, with a frequency response of 50Hz to 2-kHz.
- The make of the plastic is brittle and it seems a bit too delicate to be able to handle rough use.
- The audio plug is a bit flimsy and a few customers have complained of it breaking when they tried to insert it into the port.
The Rode VideoMic with Fuzzy Windjammer Kit is a useful and compact kit of only two items that make for all the things you may require along with your DSLR to shoot a good video. The Rode VideoMic comes with a Rycote Lyre Mount, and is a professional-grade microphone that has been designed to be used with personal digital cameras of all kinds.
The great thing about this microphone is that it does not cost a whole lot of money but at the same time, you get the professional audio quality that a serious videographer would expect to have. It also comes with an integrated shock mounting system that can prevent the sound from picking up any mechanical rumbles from the working of the camera itself.
- You do not require any additional adapters as the metal shoe has a standard thread (0.375 inch) to attach a boom stick.
- The microphone also boasts of a super-cardioid polar pattern which is able to direct the focus of the sound to the person who is directly in front of the camera.
- The microphone comes with an 80 Hz high pass filter that helps to reduce low-end noise such as the hum of the air-conditioner or traffic noise from the street below.
- The battery department offers a -10 and -20 dB level attenuation.
- Despite everything, the microphone has a slight hissing sound, some customers have reported.
- The microphone seems to perform better without the fuzzy windjammer.
Best Cheap DSLR Microphone: Movo VXR10 Universal Video Microphone
The Movo VXR10 Universal Video Microphone with Shock Mount offers universal compatibility not only with DSLR, but also with iPhones, Androids, cameras, camcorders, etc. This is a professional movo mic that has durable and sturdy aluminum construction, the integrated shock mount is also robust and allows the microphone to pick up a clean sound, without any disturbance from the wind or the mechanical sound of the camera itself.
This makes from a great shotgun microphone for recording vlogs, a live gig and perhaps even to make a video montage of your most recent family holiday. Being a budget pick it’s our best cheap dslr microphone which is a great microphone for recording outdoor events because it will pick up on the tonal quality of someone speaking in a large, unroofed place, without letting the ambient noise of the traffic going by or of the birds chirping trickling in.
- The microphone comes with a one-year warranty and the US-based support is quite accessible.
- The microphone comes included with a furry DeadCat windscreen, a soft case, a 3.5 mm TRS output cable (for DSLR cameras, camcorders, etc), and another 3.5 mm TRRS output cable (for smartphones, tablets and Macs).
- It has a durable battery-free design that includes an integrated shock mount which removes handling noise from the audio.
- The microphone comes with a whole set of accessories that make it a perfect kit.
- The reception in the audio changes automatically, making the audio sound faint at times.
- The mount is not as durable as advertised, some customers have complained.
Comica CVM-V30 LITE Video Microphone
The Comica CVM-V30 LITE Video Microphone is a super-cardioid condenser on-camera shotgun microphone that makes the life of any videographer a 100 times simpler. The microphone has universal compatibility and can be used with phones and DSLR cameras alike.
You only need to toggle between the ‘camera’ and the ‘phone’ buttons on the body of the microphone itself. It has a unique shock mount design that can reduce most handling noise and prevent it from being introduced into the audio. The microphone also gives incredible off-axis rejection for desired sounds, which allows it to reduce any other ambient noise from the surroundings.
- The microphone has an ergonomic, battery-free design that is powered by the camera or smartphone plug-in power. This is great for long periods of recording time.
- The shock mount design is able to perform shock-absorption efficiently and minimizes any unwanted noise of vibrations or handling noise.
- The microphone is great at capturing the sound of the person speaking into the camera and removing the excess out from the background.
- The toggle switch on the body of the mic makes it universally compatible and allows you to use it with a variety of devices.
- The microphone picked up the sound of the camera autofocusing in some cases.
- There is still some static that can be heard though the sound of the main things being recorded is certainly louder.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a DSLR microphone?
DSLR microphones are known for exceptional audio quality in noisy surroundings. They look somewhat like a shotgun barrel, which is why they are also known as shotgun mics.
The idea of a shotgun mic is that the mic is pointed right at the sound source, which makes it possible to record a very clear voice. You might have seen this type of microphone with news correspondents who need to read out news amongst blasts, riots, and crime scenes.
Do DSLR cameras have microphones?
They do, but typically microphones on DSLR cameras are not meant for the kind of high-quality audio recording in the same way as the DSLR itself is meant for high-quality video recording.
Most of them are just simple digital audio mics.
Fortunately, there are many DSLR compatible mics that you can use to accessorize your DSLR and get the same audio quality as to how good your video is.
How do I connect my microphone to my DSLR?
In general, there are two ways:
XLR cable: XLR cables are three-pin adaptors that you might have seen on most microphones. They are considered best in class as far as maintaining audio quality is concerned. The three-pin connector is connected first to an adapter, which connects to the 3.5mm out of your camera.
Using the 3.55 mm directly: Most beginners prefer the relative simplicity of connecting mics directly to the 3.55mm jack on the camera. All you have to do is to connect your mic in there, and voila, you’re done!
What is an on-camera microphone?
It is a special microphone created specifically for use with a camera device like a camcorder or DSLR. On-camera mics are usually very light and can be mounted on top of the camera so that you don’t need to carry them separately in your hand.
Do I need a camera mic?
External camera mics are an absolute necessity when it comes to high-quality audio in a noisy environment. Your in-built camera microphone won’t deliver the kind of quality that you need for such an environment. These mics can easily be hooked up to your camera and used without any fuss.
What is the best on-camera DSLR microphone?
Best Camera Mounted Shotgun Microphone – Final Thoughts
To make optimal use of any DSLR camera, a good microphone can make all the difference. With a good camera and a microphone that does justice to the kind of audio you want to record, you can hone your skills at being a videographer.
The more you practice, the better you can become at taking bytes, recording audio for the B-roll and in mastering general proficiency with the audio-visual format. The microphones that have been mentioned above are some of the best in the market. Most of them have incredible features that attempt to remove imperfections in the sound and leave you with the best audio possible.
Best Studio Mics was started by a husband and wife team who love the sound and the technicals behind recording it. Both are professional theatre artists, one with a stage management background and one more on stage. One also has experience in film and television work and the different audio requirements of that arena.