The Best Audio Gear For Wedding Videography
What is the most essential audio gear for wedding videography?
Audio is 50% of your wedding film. Learning how to use audio in your wedding film to help tell the story will separate your films from all other wedding videos in your area. I am writing this article to share some insight on what audio gear we use and what gear I would recommend purchasing. The majority of the gear I will be talking about will be audio gear from Rode. I am not saying Rode is the best brand to go with, but I know we have shot tons of weddings using their gear and have never had an issue! There are other manufacturers that are equally as good if not better. I will be sure to link products from other brands like Sony & Sennheiser at the bottom of this page for reference.
Rode Link Wireless Filmmaker System:
Around 80% of our audio in our wedding videos come from the Rode Link Wireless System. We use this for letter readings, ceremony and speeches. I would recommend a wireless lapel unit being your first audio purchase. Wireless audio will never be as high of quality vs a wired connection, but for wedding videographers we don't really have the time on wedding day to grab C-Stand and mic up the speakers like you would for an interview for a commercial gig. That being said the Rode Link Wireless System is a the best way to get good clean audio quickly. Refer to the wedding video at the top of the page to hear samples of the Rode Link Wireless Filmmaker System. All of the audio from the ceremony, letter reading, first look and speeches came from this unit. EDIT: Since writing this article we have completely switched over to the Tascam DR-10L and we couldn't be happier! The audio sounds great, the only downside would be having to sync up the audio in post compared to the Rode Link audio being baked into the video file. Rode also recently released the Rode Wireless Go which may be a great option for wedding videographers as well!
Zoom H4N or H1:
Having one of these in your audio bag is an absolute must. Using a digital recorder is how you can line into a DJ's mixer and pull the audio feed straight from their sound board. We always mic the speakers, but things happen. Having back up audio is crucial. There have been several times one of our cameras stopped recording or a card filled up during a speech and we had to use this version of audio! Do not rely on this audio because not every DJ outputs high enough quality audio to use in your wedding film. Also, their mic could cut out or peak and you can't use that in your highlight reel. We also use our H4N if we are filming a wedding in a church that does not allow us to line into their sound board, we will just set it on the podium and use that as backup audio.
Rode Video Mic:
Rode Video Mics are great to keep on your camera the entire day capturing scratch audio. We very seldom use audio from these mics, but they are good for catching ambient audio during bride and groom prep or some nature audio/urban audio when capturing b-roll. A lot of times we opt to not use audio from this mic and I go and check YouTube's Audio library for free sound effects for more effective sound bites. They have several different Rode Video Mics and I have used a few different versions and they all sound good. The newest Rode Video Mic Pro+ would be the one I would recommend. The automatic power function is a really nice feature because there are several occasions I have forgotten to flip the power switch on our Rode Video Mic.
Wedding videography requires a specific set of needs for capturing audio. Ideally we would grab a C-Stand, Rode NTG2 and some lights and start shooting, but we just simply do not have that kind of time on wedding day. When it comes down to it, our most used piece of audio gear would be our Rode Wireless Lapel Mics. The audio quality is great and they are fast and efficient. We have multiple so we can mic the all of the speakers. The Zoom H4N is also essential and very versatile. Learning how to capture clean audio and using it to effectively tell the story will drastically increase the production value of your wedding films. If you have any questions about gear or anything related to wedding videography, send us a message below!
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