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Inexpensive Microphone for Home Recording
What do you use?
Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 (4 votes) 
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Gordon Shumway
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GregW said

Gordon Shumway said

The mics arrived at 2 O'Clock today, in spite of being "out of stock"!

  

have you been able to experiment with them yet?  any 1st impressions?

  

So far all I've done is fire up Audacity to check that they function at all and don't need to be sent back.

The dB meter indicates that they are a lot more sensitive than the moving coils, but I haven't done a full check yet. Maybe I'll record some violin today.

During my first 5 years of guitar and uke playing, I occasionally wondered which would be the first thing I'd upload. If it turns out to be the violin instead, that will be a surprise!

Andrew

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Gordon Shumway
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Gordon Shumway said

GregW said
Your going into a focusrite correct?  just trying to recall what you were using as a recording setup.  :) or were you gonna use these more in a live setting.

Yeah, I've got a Scarlett 2i2.  

Having said that, it's a 1st generation version. I've been looking at the 3rd generation ones wondering if it would be too extravagant of me to update mine.

Andrew

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ABitRusty
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Im not as familiar with the focusrite as i am the presonus gear.  I know the focusrites are top notch though.   Id say they follow the same evolution so youre probably gonna get some cleaner amplifiers.  The biggest difference I heard when i went from an audiobox to a newer presonus interface was I could turn the gain up more without getting that background ssssssssssss sound in the recordings.  It also had some other enhancements I dont use.  Your probably going to also get some higher recording bit rates.  

 

Edit..

also..if youre getting "clicks" or the audio sounds like its dropping part of the recording here and there..or you have latency when trying to record ( say you hit a string on the uke and a split second later you hear it in your headphones) thats a computer issue.  you can solve that by tweaking the settings in your daw provided your not running out of memory or your pc is not matched for the software.  system requirements i mean.  My greatest jump in performnce came from ditching an old celeron 8gb memory laptop for a newer pc..not the recording interface.  

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Gordon Shumway
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Gordon Shumway said

I've got a Scarlett 2i2.  

Having said that, it's a 1st generation version. I've been looking at the 3rd generation ones wondering if it would be too extravagant of me to update mine. 

It occurred to me that it would be wiser to update to a 4i4. The 2i2 has two inputs which can be either mic or instrument, whereas the 4i4 has 4 inputs and you can have 2 mic and 2 instr or 4 instr.

However, its output is USB-c, which I am in the dark about - I don't think my PC is USB-c, but I don't really know. If it's just a case of a converter cable, then I guess that's fine.

Andrew

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Grandpafiddle
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January 8, 2021 - 10:48 am
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Hi everyone! All these different combinations for recording violin videos at home have my head spinning. I've tried using my android phone for recording and it's not that great. (I know, it's probably my playing ability.) I've also tried using my windows 7 laptop for video and audio but it's even worse. Sound quality is terrible.

Are there any decent usb mics to use with laptop video, or, is there a good camcorder out there with good audio? I've looked at the Zoom Q8 recorders but most reviews say that the audio is great, but the video quality is poor.

What is the best combination of computer/mic or camcorder that most of you are using? I plan to stick with my android phone, so equipment that works with an Iphone won't work for me. Thanks for any suggestions you can give me. I'd like to stay under $500.

Grandpaviolin

When I play violin, it's really not as bad as it sounds!

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ABitRusty
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I havent had issues with the q8.  it will record in hd and sound is about as good as studio mic.  I DONT think it would be a good choice for outside night filming without some type of additional lighting.  But, i havent had an issue inside.  if you get it and think its still too dark they make small photography/video lights the size of cell phones that can supply additional light for under 50.00.

the zoom q2n may have a brighter sensor but cant answer that. if you get EITHER one of the zooms MAKE sure you order the kit that includes the sd card!  you probably will want to add a small desktop type tripod.

I find im using my phone more than the q8 because the phone is usually with me.  if you havent checked on an upgrade of your android in a while id at least investigate whats available now.  the mics and video quality of current selections are amazing.  but i hate changing phones and hold on to mine for several years so I understand that hassel.

if you know for sure you plan on doing most recording using your webcam though, i cant offer any suggestions on usb mics.  that may be the least expensive route and the sound will be great. 

And on the flip side of cost, a vlogging marketed camera from sony or canon may open more posibilities.  the sony zv1 or canon eos-rp.  tge sony doesnt have interchangeable lenses but the video will be better at 4k.  i have the eos-rp but use it for photography.  the mics are decent and can do anything you want , but its a hassel for me to setup just for a fiddle video.  osmo pocket is handy for the gimbal but is about like the q8 on low light and doesnt come close to the sound quality.  but its got some great tracking features, a stabilized 3-axis gimbal, and is smaller than a phone.  

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ELCBK
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https://i.pinimg.com/originals/95/42/f9/9542f9fbae0b95a040dd7c526f128cde.jpg

 

This is a GREAT thread!  Lots of great ideas. 

Have been thinking a lot about using my phone for so much, that the Zoom Q2n might fit the bill - for a 2nd small video camera with a good mic, to possibly even position overhead or different angle.  

BUT THERE'S A NEW VERSION - Zoom Q2n-4k! 

I haven't liked Zoom before because of the latency between visual & audio, but they have come out with a way to adjust for that - which makes being interactive with others sound much more rewarding! 

 

 

https://i.pinimg.com/originals/e1/28/39/e128396bae499ce662d68ed9ea4fe4fe.jpg

 

...a 9 volt power pack should be consideration & sweetwater shows configurations. 

- Emily

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SharonC
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I’ve got the Zoom Q8 – never had any latency issues.  But the video quality is not its strong point, & it definitely needs to have good lighting.  That said, the audio is excellent, & the camera is easy to use & transfer files off of. 

Something that is not noted by Zoom or in any of the reviews I’ve come across—you can use a Portable USB power bank with it—very useful.  Able to get a lot of recording time before I need to recharge the camera.

I was initially using an external phantom power supply when I used my external condenser microphone (onboard XY is good, too); although the camera has ability to supply the phantom power, it drains power from the camera more quickly.  I discovered that I could use a portable power bank (USB mini B recharge port on camera to USB A on power bank), and eliminate the external phantom power source. 

So, I can use the onboard phantom power AND the overall recording time is great. I haven’t run it that long continuously, but I estimate I could run for at least 6 hours straight if I wanted to. 

One of the reasons Zoom might not mention it is because these portable power banks vary greatly in capacity & output.  Mine works well, but I’ll guess that there’s some limit (that no one’s defined) on output amps that it would work without issues.   

I do see that the Zoom Q2n (a newer camera) is powered by 2 AA batteries, offering up to 30 minutes of recording time in UHD 4K, one hour in 1080p, or two hours at 720p. 

On Sweetwater, I see they’ve got a power supply now (Zoom AD-17), but they don’t indicate how much more time you’re getting with it.  Also found an additional battery case available (BCQ-2N) for it that holds 4 AA batteries, & indicates it will extend recording time 4 times.  

Anyway, thought I’d mention it – attached pic of the power bank & cable I’m using with my Q8.

powerbankpic.JPGImage Enlarger

powerbanktocamcable.JPGImage Enlarger

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ABitRusty
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@elcbk said.."I haven't liked Zoom before because of the latency between visual & audio, but they have come out with a way to adjust for that - which makes being interactive with others sound much more rewarding! "

Can you elaborate?  If JUST using the q8 Ive not experienced this. Maybe theres more involved than just the camera?  Ive tried a setup with it, and cant remember exact signal path but was using bluetooth transmitter out of headphone jack maybe.  but that kind of thing wasnt the q8 faults.

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ELCBK
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@ABitRusty -

Thanks!

Check out the video at 9:25 about the delay button - what I'm excited about you probably have on your Q8, too. 

@SharonC -

Thanks!

Yes, that's what I meant about power pack (bank) is great to use - wasn't sure which one, though. 

 

Happy Halloween!

https://i.pinimg.com/736x/a2/d6/61/a2d6618cbcc24ec652e2aec564f8524f--halloween-rhymes-halloween-poems.jpg

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ABitRusty
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ELCBK said
@ABitRusty -

Thanks!

Check out the video at 9:25 about the delay button - what I'm excited about you probably have on your Q8, too. 

  

oh yeah... I forgot about those effects built in to camera! 😁 

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ELCBK
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Grandpafiddle said
Hi everyone! All these different combinations for recording violin videos at home have my head spinning. I've tried using my android phone for recording and it's not that great. (I know, it's probably my playing ability.) I've also tried using my windows 7 laptop for video and audio but it's even worse. Sound quality is terrible.

Are there any decent usb mics to use with laptop video, or, is there a good camcorder out there with good audio? I've looked at the Zoom Q8 recorders but most reviews say that the audio is great, but the video quality is poor.

What is the best combination of computer/mic or camcorder that most of you are using? I plan to stick with my android phone, so equipment that works with an Iphone won't work for me. Thanks for any suggestions you can give me. I'd like to stay under $500.

Grandpaviolin

  

https://dynamic.indigoimages.ca/books/1476812942.jpg?scaleup=true&width=614&maxheight=614&quality=85&lang=en

@Grandpafiddle -

Did you get the answers you needed last year?  I see that somehow missed your post! 

There are even great suggestions posted starting on the 1st page of this thread (I missed about the Q2n back there). 

I still like my Samsung phone, using standard video settings, but there are 'pro' settings, too. 

Much discussion several places - about how important the mic/phone placement is for better quality sound.  It's possible you just may not have found the 'sweet spot' with your phone, yet.

- Emily

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Grandpafiddle
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November 27, 2022 - 3:06 pm
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@ELCBK. Wow Emily, that was a while back!

Yes, I did wind up buying an AudioTechnica AT2020 with a usb hookup for my computer. It works very well, but since then I have changed to windows 11 and also changed phones to an iphone 11 and do most recording with that. I can upload to my computer and play with the audio using Audacity if I want.

HOWEVER ........ I completely misunderstood the fact that you actually need to be good at playing the violin in order to get a good audio recording! Still working on that part. laugh

I'm still interested in what others are using to record to get the best sound.

Take care,

Grandpaviolin

When I play violin, it's really not as bad as it sounds!

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