Dec 6, 2022
When first starting off in film and video, it can be a bit overwhelming trying to research and decide on all of the different pieces of gear which you might need to purchase. From the hundreds of pro and prosumer cameras currently on the market, to a great array of lights, rigs, and audio options — it can be a lot to take in.
One piece of gear which we here at Soundstripe (which is primarily an audio and music licensing company) think is absolutely essential for those first starting out is a good microphone. And while you can always upgrade later to a better shotgun microphone and audio recorder setup, for true beginners an attachable on-camera shotgun mic should always be a top choice.
So let’s take a look at this new Rode VideoMicro II, an ultra-compact on-camera microphone ideal for beginners and those looking to quickly plug-and-play a better audio solution to their simple digital camera setup.
Before we dive into the new Rode VideoMicro II, let’s take a moment to go over some of the hallmarks of a good external microphone as part of your video production setup. For many, when first starting out, your entire production is housed on your digital camera.
As you progress you might look into more sophisticated mounts or rigs, but for many beginners you might just be running and gunning with your camera by itself. And in these setups, any additional pieces of gear might need to be attachable to your camera. For example, a battery pack or an attachable microphone come to mind.
For these external microphones in particular, you’re really looking for ease-of-use and reliability. Audio recording quality is of course important too, but if you’re upgrading to an external source you’re already going to be getting better audio than any built-in audio option on a basic digital camera these days.
Therefore, a good on-camera external microphone will be one which has solid recording capabilities, ideally a supercardioid polar pattern for high directionality, a resilient mount system to connect to your camera, plug-and-play connectivity and no complicated controls.
Now, let’s look at the Rode VideoMicro II to see if this on-camera microphone meets the criteria above. With this next-generation update to their highly popular Rode VideoMicro, this new VideoMicro II does a great job bringing the same professional sound quality to such a compact form factor.
Designed for video beginners and online content creators to run-and-gun seasoned video pros, the VideoMicro II does appear to take everything that made the original VideoMicro so popular, yet introduces several new features for enhanced performance and even more refined ultra-compact on-camera audio recording.
The VideoMicro II provides great audio quality and sound quality which is better than you'd expect from any action camera microphone attachments or the like, and does well to prevent against wind noise with some solid wind noise suppression.
Now, when you’re starting out on your on-camera audio recording journey, there are some tips and tricks that you’ll want to keep in mind. And, in truth, many of these points are ones addressed by this new external microphone. As a true shotgun condenser microphone with a supercardioid polar pattern for highly directional audio capture, you’re best served keeping your camera pointed at any subjects whose audio you want to record.
The VideoMicro II does a good job of picking up room tone and other external noises, but it focuses well and should offer enhanced sensitivity and lower self-noise. And while you can also monitor audio live on set and make adjustments in-camera as you go, many content creators will simply rely on auto settings which the VideoMicro II adjusts well to on the fly.
With no batteries required to operate and no complicated controls, the VideoMicro II is a true plug-and-play option that should simply give you better audio than your in-camera option right away. It’s up to you to decide how much more focus you want to give audio than that, but you can rest assured that for many streaming or online content needs — the VideoMicro II should suffice.
Featuring some groundbreaking design and crafted to the exact specifications for this new microphone, the VideoMicro II should fit snug on your mirrorless or DSLR camera of choice and provide some quality fundamentals.
Here are some of the key specs and features:
At the end of the day though, whether its an action camera microphone attachment, a lavalier microphone, a shotgun microphone, or any other type of external microphone option, the right microphone will be the one that can deliver improved sound quality that you desire.
So shop around for different microphone adapter options or seek out the best action camera microphone that you can find if you'd like, but if you want solid professional audio and better sound quality and ease of use overall, check out the Rode VideoMicro II.