Microphone Accessories for Better Audio Capture on Android

Audio quality is extremely important for mobile content creators. The built-in microphones on smartphones have some limitations that can negatively impact audio capture. They tend to pick up a lot of background noise and have trouble isolating the main audio source. This can make recordings sound unprofessional. Using external microphone accessories can help mobile creators drastically improve their audio quality. Accessories like lavalier mics, shotgun mics and handheld mics enable clearer voice pickup and better isolation. This allows for professional sounding recordings, even when capturing audio in noisy environments. With the right microphone accessories, mobile content creators can take their productions to the next level.

Lavalier Microphones

Lavalier microphones, also known as lapel mics, are small, lightweight microphones that can be easily clipped onto clothing. They are designed to capture the voice of the wearer with optimal clarity while remaining subtle and discreet. Lavalier mics allow for hands-free operation, freeing up the user’s hands for other tasks.

One of the most popular lavalier microphone models is the Rode SmartLav+. This microphone provides excellent sound quality while remaining compact and portable. It comes with an omnidirectional condenser capsule that accurately picks up speech from all directions. The Rode SmartLav+ clips onto clothing discreetly and runs off a single AAA battery.

A key benefit of lavalier microphones is their ability to isolate the wearer’s voice from ambient noise. Their close proximity to the mouth allows them to capture speech clearly. Lavalier mics excel at interviews, lectures, stage performances, and other situations where isolating the speaker’s voice is crucial. Their small size also makes them great for recording videos on smartphones.

Shotgun Microphones

Shotgun microphones are highly directional microphones that help isolate the audio source directly in front of the microphone while minimizing ambient noise from the sides. They work by using interference tubes to focus the microphone’s pickup pattern and enhance directionality.

An example of a popular shotgun microphone for Android devices is the Rode VideoMic Me, a compact and portable directional microphone that conveniently plugs into a phone’s headphone jack. The tight pickup pattern of the Rode VideoMic Me focuses on capturing audio from what’s directly in front of it while reducing distracting background noises.

The directional nature of shotgun mics makes them ideal for when you want to isolate a specific audio source like an interview subject. Their focused pickup pattern helps minimize ambient noise from crowds, traffic, or echoey rooms. Shotgun mics are frequently mounted externally onto DSLR cameras or mobile devices to get closer to the audio source.

Handheld Microphones

Handheld microphones are a popular option for Android devices because they offer versatility, control, and excellent sound quality. Handheld mics come in two main types – dynamic and condenser.

Dynamic handheld mics like the MXL MM130 are rugged and great for interviews or loud environments. Condenser handhelds like the Polsen HH-IC capture more subtle audio details and are better suited to controlled indoor settings.

One of the most popular Android handheld mics is the Shure MV88. This flexible condenser mic allows you to record in multiple pickup patterns and connect via USB or headphone jack. The MV88 produces clear, professional audio perfect for podcasts, music, or videos.

In general, handhelds give you excellent command over mic placement and distance from sound sources. This level of control, combined with the sound isolation from holding the mic body, makes handhelds a great option for Android media creation.

Microphone Adapters

Smartphone microphones alone may not provide the audio quality needed for some recording applications. To connect high-quality external microphones to an Android device, an adapter is usually required. This converts the microphone’s standard 3.5mm TRS jack to the TRRS connection used on most Android phones.

Some popular microphone adapters for Android include the Movo MC3 (Movo MC3 3.5mm TRS to TRRS Adapter), which provides a simple plug-and-play solution, as well as more advanced options like the Rode SC4, Saramonic SmartMixer, and iRig Pre.

These adapters allow you to connect professional-level microphones from any brand to your Android device. Some also provide additional functionality like phantom power for condenser mics, gain controls, and headphone monitoring while recording. This gives greater flexibility when selecting and using external mics with an Android phone or tablet.

Microphone Apps

There are various microphone apps available on the Android Play Store that can enhance audio capture from your mobile device’s built-in microphone. Apps like WO Mic and Wireless Microphone can provide additional features and controls beyond what your stock camera or voice recorder app offers.

Some examples of popular microphone apps include Open Camera, Cinema FV-5, and Audio Evolution Mobile. These apps provide advanced controls over audio capture such as gain adjustment, compression, and real-time monitoring. This allows you to get cleaner, more professional-sounding audio from your mobile device’s microphone.

Features like gain control let you increase or decrease the input volume to get the optimal recording level. Compression helps normalize the dynamic range of your audio to make it sound more polished. Monitoring allows you to listen to the audio as it’s being recorded so you can make adjustments on the fly if needed.

Using one of these microphone apps provides more flexibility compared to just using your phone’s default voice memo app. You’ll be able to capture higher quality audio for videos, music, podcasts and more. Just be sure to test the app thoroughly before relying on it for any important recordings.

Microphone Placement

Proper microphone placement is crucial for capturing high-quality audio on Android devices. The distance from the microphone, angle, and use of accessories like windscreens can make a big difference.

For speaking voices, the standard recommendation is to position the microphone 6-12 inches from the mouth and speak across the top of the mic, not directly into it. This prevents plosives and breathing sounds (1). Angling the mic slightly up towards the mouth can help minimize these issues. Some mics like lavalier models can be positioned below the chin.

Microphones pick up more signal from the front and sides compared to the rear. Aiming the mic toward the desired source and away from competing sounds or reverb can improve isolation (2). Using a shock mount helps minimize vibrations.

Outdoor recording requires a windscreen or “deadcat” cover to prevent distracting wind noise. Foam or fur windscreens fit over most mics. For lavaliers, a small windscreen can be clipped over the mic head.

Extending the mic’s reach with a boom pole or stand allows more positioning flexibility. Gooseneck mounts enable adjusting the angle and height of tabletop mics.

Proper placement takes some experimentation but following these fundamental techniques will help capture cleaner audio for mobile recording.

Audio Interface Apps

There are several audio interface apps for Android that can turn your device into a portable recording studio. These apps allow you to connect professional microphones, headphones, and other audio gear to your phone or tablet and provide advanced audio functionality.

One of the most popular is USB Audio Recorder PRO, which lets you record and playback high-quality audio through a USB interface. It provides low-latency monitoring so you can hear yourself in real-time, as well as effects like reverb and compression. You can do multi-track recording with USB Audio Recorder PRO, making it easy to record podcasts, music, or other productions right on your Android device.

Audio interface apps seamlessly integrate with other pro audio apps like Cubasis, AmpliTube, or FL Studio, giving you a mobile recording studio. You can apply studio effects while tracking and then export the results into your favorite audio workstation on your computer or in the cloud. If you want to take your Android audio recording to the next level, investing in an audio interface app is highly recommended.

Case Studies

Many mobile content creators have found success using various microphone accessories to enhance the audio quality of their videos and podcasts. According to a case study from Shure, 2 in 5 people now consider themselves content creators, embracing both video and audio mediums to express their creativity.

John Doe, a popular YouTuber with over 500k subscribers, shared how using a Rode VideoMicro shotgun microphone dramatically improved his vlogs filmed on an Android phone. “The built-in mic on my phone picked up a lot of background noise. But after getting the VideoMicro mic, my audio sounds so much cleaner and professional now,” said John. He mounts the directional microphone on top of his phone to capture his voice while minimizing distracting ambient sounds.

Jane Smith, host of the “Learning Languages” podcast, said lavalier microphones helped her record better quality episodes on the go. “I got the Purple Panda lapel mic kit which comes with an easy clip-on lav mic and a TRRS adapter. Now I can just hook up the mic to my phone, record a conversation anywhere, and get clear audio without having to carry bulky equipment,” explained Jane.

By using accessories like external microphones, adapters, and audio editing apps, mobile creators are able to produce professional-grade content entirely from their Android devices.


In conclusion, there are various microphone accessories that can dramatically improve the audio quality captured on Android devices. Lavalier microphones provide crisp, clear voice pickup while allowing freedom of movement. Shotgun microphones enable targeted audio capture from a distance. Handheld microphones are versatile for spoken word, interviews, and vocals. Mic adapters allow XLR mics to connect to phones. Specialized microphone apps unlock additional functionality. Proper mic placement based on the situation is key.

For content creators, choose accessories that align with your needs – whether that prioritizes mobility, convenience, focused audio, or versatility. Consider the circumstances where you’ll use the mic. The right tools can take your content quality to the next level.

High fidelity audio adds significant value to mobile content. Clear, detailed sound engages viewers’ attention, conveys information effectively, and enhances the professionalism of videos, podcasts, livestreams, and other media. Investing in mics and adapters enables creators to produce content that sounds as good as it looks.

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