DSLR cameras are quite high-class and expensive, so we would expect a tolerable sound quality with out-of-the-box set-up. The sound is a lot better than you get with smart device mics. Those mics can work for you if you just make some YouTube videos. However, if you want to take your audio quality game to the next level, which everybody does at some point, there is a wide range of solutions out there for your DSLR video camera, take Amazon for example. The shotgun mics are clearly the most popular in DSLR world but other types of microphones are also available. Let’s have a look at the top 10 best mics for DSLR video cameras.
Sennheiser MKE 400
Azden High-performance (SMX-10)
Rode VideoMic Pro
Here’s one of the most popular microphones for DSLR cameras in the market. The VideoMic Pro is nothing less than a high-quality shotgun condenser microphone. It looks huge but with 150mm length it is quite compact so it won’t be wobbly on your camera. In fact, only 85g/3oz weight make it ultra lightweight, so much lighter than any camera you could fix it on. On the rear of the mic, you’ll find a 3-way level control that offers -10dB, 0dB, and +20dB modes. There is also a 2-step high pass filter with 0 and 80Hz settings, letting you minimize the impact of any hum or rumble. The resulting sound quality gets you a pro condenser mic with a pro looking windscreen. We recommend this model if you’re recording somewhere out in the open, you will hear the difference on every recording you make. Besides the windscreen, stereo mini extension jack is also available. With all the features and performance nobody would expect it to be cheap. The standalone mic is $229. The set with 3 things: mic, windscreen, and extension costs $265. If you are OK with the price, just get this one and don’t scroll down this list. It’s an upgraded version of their original VideoMic.
- Perfect for outdoors.
- Slips onto every camera.
- Light weight.
- Compact size.
- Price does not fit $100 budget at all.
- Hot shoe mount comes loose at times.
- Microphone audio jack does not always last.
Sennheiser MKE 400
Sennheiser is usually known for headphones, but it offers good mics as well. Actually, they have come up with MKE 400 model, rival to VideoMic Pro we just mentioned. With Amazon, Sennheiser can help you save $20-$25, and this model is lighter and smaller too. MKE 400 features all-metal housing, a wind noise filter, superior to Rode model 300 hours of operating time, and an integral shock mount for rejection of handling noise. Rode also doesn’t have a switchable sensitivity for short\long distances of this model. In the end of the day, grabbing the Sennheiser MKE 400 won’t be a bad decision, as it comes real close to our previous choice for DSLR cameras.
- Strong brand.
- Rugged all-metal housing.
- 300 hours from 1 AAA battery.
- Slightly cheaper than Rode VideoMic Pro.
- Hard to tell if it’s on.
- Can’t call it cheap.
Azden High-performance (SMX-10)
The name Azden is less famous than the previous 2, but this particular model is ranked just as high. Straight for good news: with Amazon, SMX-10 is a lot cheaper than the Rode and the Sennheiser. This is the way to go to save cash big time. You have probably noticed that it is quite long but it’s certainly light enough at 1.83 ounces. When it comes to other specifics, like output impedance of 1.5 k ohm at 1kHz, signal-to-noise ratio: 60dB (1kHz at 1Pa) and dynamic range: 66dB you should be impressed as well. All that works for the SMX-10’s wide frequency response with pretty clear audio quality. You can get enough of that with 400 hours of AAA battery life. With a shock mount and windscreen like the others, Azden is quite the standard for a DSLR camera, the standard that is much higher than the built-in ones in the video cams. Go for the Azden SMX–10 if you are eyeing for a wallet-friendly, good quality microphone for your DSLR.
- Foam windscreen out-of-the-box.
- Records High-Quality Stereo Directly.
- Lack of a power indicator.
- May pick up RF interference from a cell phone.
- Foam windscreen durability may be an issue.
Sharkk Basics Camera
Let us cheer you up with cheaper options. This Sharkk camera usually costs about $60, but $18 on sale. It cannot possibly get better for this price. Sharkk definitely picks up less noise that camera makes when auto focusing than a built-in mic. This cancels a bit of outside noise as well. Of course, you should not expect any sound distortion either. There is versatility as the microphone’s pickup pattern can be set to 90 or 120 degrees giving it flexibility and broader range in terms of picking up sound. Compared with the most expensive DSLR cameras’ sound quality this would not make that much difference, though.
- Excellent price.
- 90 degrees or 120 degrees pickup pattern.
- Plastic design.
- Sound quality just above average built-in mic.
Movo Cinema Bundle with Shotgun Condensor Video Microphone
This is another affordable option. Movo Cinema Bundle features an integrated shock mount, high-pass filter, low noise circuitry, handy foam windscreen, deadcat windscreen and a carrying bag. The Saramonic SR-AX100 2-Channel Audio Mixer features one 3.5mm (1/8″) stereo and two 3.5mm (1/8″) mono inputs, a 3.5mm (1/8″) stereo output, dual audio control knobs, and a mono/stereo switch. Shortly put, this a lot of bang for your buck. Against all those irritating background noises, like air conditioners and traffic, there is 40Hz to 20kHz response and selectable high pass filter at 80Hz available. And it is not plastic, enjoy the aluminum.
- More than just a mic.
- The Saramonic SR-AX100 allows you two microphones, wireless receivers.
- Looks real cool.
- Tall and heavy as it’s actually 2 devices put together.
Now we get into the lavalier mics. This Audio-Technica model is one of the highly rated out there, and the current price is $29.00. This is another budget-friendly solution for you. It’s omnidirectional and has a low-profile design for decreased visibility that also offers full coverage. Although recommended for instructors and teachers to amplify their voices through speakers, it can be useful for interviews and other applications where you need the mic to be close to the sound source. With a frequency range of 50 – 18,000 Hz and weight only 6 grams, the Audio–Technica ATR3350 is worth it if it’s what you need. Battery type-Lr44 is cheap and common as well.
- Best price/quality ratio.
- Sufficient cable length.
- Takes care of background noises.
- Omni pickup pattern offers full coverage.
- This microphone is mono.
- No battery indicator.
Lavalier microphones tend to be affordable and this one is just $18.40 right now and includes a 20′ cable. A small thing, this mic runs 700 hours with one LR44 battery. Works quite alright and will serve the purpose of filming interviews without catching on too much of external noises. The battery compartment that provides the “plug-in” level power required to make this useable in mixers has a sturdy clip and is placed at the perfect distance from the mic itself. The battery compartment is surprisingly metal because for this price you expect plastic. But the foam windscreen might fall off once in a while as it is just a cap essentially.
- Excellent price.
- Long cable.
- Fine sound quality.
- Long battery life.
- Some background noise gets through.
- You have to keep a battery in the mic for DSLR use.
Pop Voice mic features tons of stuff. This professional lapel microphone is compatible with any TRRS 3.5mm input, including Apple products. Now, most 3.5mm TRRS lavalier microphones on Amazon do not work on some phones, PC, or cameras. With the two mic adapters, it will deliver in any situation. With the adapter, your 3.5mm jack microphone works on almost all smartphones, and DSLR. Pop Voice certainly delivers the most important thing: picking up voices very well. The high definition of the recordings can be stored by this mic too.
- Good sound quality.
- Great compatibility.
- Long cable.
- Less known brand.
Sennheiser EW 100 ENG G3-A
It’s time for some wireless hardware and this thing is awesome. Sennheiser EW 100 ENG G3-A is one of the best wireless solutions for DSLR video cameras. To get it working, you need a kit, and although it gets pricey, can be worth it if you have the cash and need wireless. Its SKP 100 G3 plug-on transmitter turns XLR equipped devices, e.g. microphones and mixing consoles, into wireless devices by simply plugging the unit in. The transmitters stay with the person who is doing the audio and the other with the camera. The device itself is relatively interference-free, an illuminated graphics display shows what you’re doing, great audio quality, and battery indication. Since it’s a transmitter\receiver, you’ll need to figure out the frequency you are going to use which will take some testing to make sure you don’t get interference from some radio stations out there. And transmitters actually have adjustable output levels.
- Completely wireless solution.
- Automatic frequency scan feature searches for available frequencies.
- The pricetag.
Schure mics are the industry standard when it comes to handheld microphones. The VP64A is great because it is the cheapest of the best. It’s one of those more attuned for speech, perfect for adding clarity and preciseness to the human voice. A few other features include a water-proof mesh grille (you can spit on it), a supplied foam windscreen, and an overall tough build for those who travel. Internal isolation mount for low handling noise just adds perfection. But that perfection is smeared since this mic needs an adapter.
- Excellent sound quality.
- Good price.
- Neat looks.
- Double the price of cheaper ones.
- Requires an extra adapter.
That should be enough microphones to host your own show.