recommend a way to get decent audio when I film with my phone

In September, I’ll be giving a talk at a conference. The conference organizers are not taping any of the talks, but presenters are allowed to tape theirs if they want to. I want to tape mine so that I can watch it later and be mortified by my stilted mannerisms and nasally voice. I’m a masochist.

Anyway, I’m not sure how big my room will be, but I suspect it will be a medium-sized conference room like you’d see at a good sized hotel or convention center. I expect the audience will be around 75-100.

I want to put video of my talk up on my company site to show people how smart I am, so I’m looking for decent quality. But I’m not submitting it to Cannes. And I’m trying not to spend a fortune. I’m thinking of just putting my phone on a tripod in the center of the room a little ways from where I’ll stand. It’ll need to be far enough back to capture the presentation screen and keep me in frame as I move around a bit. So, 10, 15 feet away maybe? It’s a typical Samsung Galaxy phone. I think the video quality should be adequate.

But I’m afraid the sound quality will suck at that distance. I was thinking maybe there was some kind of wireless mic I could clip to my shirt for this type of thing. And I … I guess there is? I quickly became confused and overwhelmed by the options and the various tech specs. I see some RF mics, but I don’t know if they are decent or how/if they interface with my phone. I guess Class 1 Bluetooth has the range to work for this, but all I see for Bluetooth mics are either headsets or the jawbone style earpieces, both of which I’d prefer to avoid if possible because they look stupid.

So, any suggestions?

If this is a company-sponsored event, can’t you get your company to buy (or rent) a decent video recorder? And drag along an underling to sit in the front row and record you? If it is going on the company website, they should be willing to put a little cash into the effort.

But if you do end up using your phone, for Allah’s sake, pleeeeease mount it in landscape mode! Nothing is worse than portrait-mode video on a TV or computer screen.

What about a Bluetooth lapel microphone? The audio for the video would just come from that wouldn’t it? (Not the audio from the whole room)

If wire is not an option, then BT microphone or directional mic.

Let see what Google says:

Never tested first hand tho…

Tim: my “company” is just me at this point. I’m an independent consultant. I just got the business going so I’m trying to get the most out of my money.

I see some RF mics like the links below, but the reviews for some were all over the place. I wasn’t sure if I just plug the one part into the mic/headphone jack in my phone and that’s it. Is it as easy as that, or am I missing something? Some of the reviews also complained about interference. Others seemed to indicate that they were good enough for limited use. They are pretty cheap, so I guess I could try one out.|407757776|103008|GMC|911480847|pla|bdphone|US|103008003|m||2|#pd-103,ss:67&prds=epd:6329772061244264417,paur:ClkAsKraX2SQHAsJAFj4unUv24NlTC9gdgaPonQHU4apDgSwWPv4WoVD-J0FoPS4fMloKPC-b3C_YRuht6VeFOasyjX534sqbxVhurq3J0VefN-fpqFf4Htn8BIZAFPVH70biytiCBUFJkW-_mlftxJaWs4pcg,cdl:1,cs:1&ved=0ahUKEwiD1aj_6ejcAhUiTt8KHRvtBCwQgTYIpwU

What about recording sound on a separate digital device (say, one sitting in front of you on the podium)? It wouldn’t be hard to merge the audio file from that with the video from your phone in a simple video editing program.

I thought about that. I did intend to record audio with my laptop as well. I was going to use the PowerPoint feature to turn a slide show into a movie and record with a directional mic attached to my laptop. But I was afraid it would be a pain to synch the audio to the video from the phone. Maybe that’s easier than I think it is?

It’s not hard at all to synch audio and video if you effectively do some kind of clapboard–like just a clap of the hands in front of the camera right before you start your presentation (and not stopping or pausing either device during the event). Some phones have excellent sound recording, so as long are you’re prepared to get the sound file off the phone and into video editing software, it could be the best quality of all your options. Otherwise, I’d use the wireless Bluetooth mic.

However, I’d just like to ask: Isn’t the conference is going to use an amplified PA system, with a microphone? If that’s the case, your phone should be fine with the sound.

And if you record anything on a computer, be sure to test it beforehand, because sometimes computer sound recording can be awful.

It’s quite easy on a Mac using iMovie — I’m sure there are a ton of other free and simple video editors for all OSes.

When syncing sound and video tracks: as long as they’re both single long recordings, it shouldn’t be too hard. Guizot’s clapboard suggestion would make it even easier, but even without it you basically just have to drag one track backward and forward, playback, and adjust as necessary.

I’ve manually synced separately recorded audio lots of times. If you zoom in far enough you can visually line them up by looking at the wave forms in the editor. It won’t be exact, but you can then play it back and move the audio track back or forth as needed until it stops sounding like an announcer at a ball game.