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5 Things to Know Before Using a Shotgun Microphone for the First Time

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If you are thinking about launching a YouTube channel or podcast or joining the content creation industry via any platform, the first thing you need to do is obtain all the equipment necessary. As you know, a high-quality mic needs to be at the top of your list, and a shotgun microphone is the most common choice.

However, you shouldn’t just purchase the first device you stumble upon. Instead, you should observe it as an investment and complete thorough research beforehand. Because of this, in the following article, we will tell you everything you need to know about this gadget.

Source: dpamicrophones.com

1. What is a shotgun mic?

First things first, let’s start with some basic information. If we had to describe it using only a few words, we would have to say that it is a shotgun directional microphone. What it means is that due to this tubular design, it has a narrow sound pickup area, which is why it records only the sound from a specific direction while omitting everything around it. Its design also makes it perfect for recording sounds that are not emitted in its close proximity, which is why it is an essential piece of equipment in the video and film industries.

2. What are recording patterns?

When looking to buy this device, you need to know that you get to choose between three main recording patterns – supercardioid, hypercardioid, and ultracardioid. Each of these has specific features, so the supercardioid shotgun microphone has a narrow pickup pattern and properties we have already mentioned. The hyper cardioid one has a more limited pickup area and an extended rear pickup pattern, while the ultracardioid one has the narrowest pickup area, which is why it can be challenging to manage it if you have never used it before. As you can see, the pickup pattern can make a tremendous difference between the various application of this device, so make sure to consider them meticulously before opting for one and making a purchase.

Source: mixxed.com

3. When to use this device?

Considering the various applications of this mic, its popularity doesn’t come as a surprise. The first thing that probably comes to your mind is whether you can use a shotgun mic for streaming, and the answer to this question is yes, absolutely. The truth is that it is probably the best option available on the market. As already explained, due to its design, it only records the sounds from the source that is right in front of it. This isn’t only beneficial because you don’t have to worry about the other sounds, such as noisy neighbors and loud traffic. Instead, all you have to do is position it correctly and initiate your streaming session.

On the other hand, if you are more interested in creating video content and filming, you should purchase a shotgun mic for DSLR. When it comes to this application, the fact that the source of sound doesn’t need to be in close proximity for the microphone to pick it up is its number one advantage. In some instances, this may not even be an option, depending on what you want to film.

Furthermore, it is also a great solution for conducting interviews with guests on your channel or podcast. Since it rejects the surrounding noise, you won’t have to worry about the audio quality if other people are present in the room or studio. Nevertheless, to enjoy all of its features, make sure to find the best shotgun mic for interviews, and you can start your search on the Synco website.

4. What about iPhone podcasting?

Besides the abovementioned application, the popularity of iPhone podcasting is quickly rising. How would it not, when you have various podcast recording apps at your disposal, unlimited topics and subjects to analyze, and the best part is that you can use your smartphone to record the entire session.

If this sounds appealing to you, you have probably already made a plan of what you want to create but are wondering about the audio quality you get with the built-in iPhone mic. Now the question arises – should you use that one or invest in a shotgun mic for iPhone? The truth is that even though the built-in can provide good quality audio, it may not be the best for regular podcasting. Sure, you can use it once in a while if you have to record while away from the home or studio, but you should definitely try to use a professional one most of the time.

Because of all the features and benefits we previously discussed, you won’t have to worry about the audio quality for one second. It goes without saying that this needs to be your number one concern because you won’t be able to attract listeners and persuade them to follow your work if they cannot understand every single word you utter without any difficulties. Plus, it is quite compact and small, so you won’t have any trouble carrying it around with you. Due to all these reasons, you should get a short shotgun mic for podcasting as soon as possible.

Source: mixxed.com

5. How to mount it?

Finally, before we conclude this article, we will give you some practical tips on how to mount this gadget correctly. Obviously, here you have several options. Firstly, when it comes to streaming and podcasting, a tripod or a desk stand. You can get one of these almost anywhere since they are quite affordable, and enable you to place the mic right in front of you on the desk. Similar to these two is a studio arm stand. Unlike the previously mentioned two, this stand will position the mic in the air, slightly above you, which can prove to be essential if you need to have enough free space on the desk while recording.

Finally, you can also go with a boom arm that will keep the mic outside the camera frame when filming interviews. As you can see, you get to choose between multiple items, and it all comes down to your personal preference.