Bilal here, and in this article, I just want to talk about sound. Which microphones you should use that are within aspiring indie developer budget, can be used for developer video logs, streaming game development, and using YouTube to market your video game. I’ve talked about marketing for indie developers before, and I always recommend to do everything you can ASAP to expose your game. That includes YouTube videos, developer log videos, developer log articles, podcast series, and others. That said, let’s investigate the topic of audio in these cases.
Now, right off the bat, I’d like to mention that since we are not performing audio engineering or production, we don’t have to worry too much about the quality right now, but you’ll want your voice to sound professional. You won’t need to do any kind of soundproofing or recording in a small room. We just need to make sure you have a high quality microphone.
Let’s start off with what you shouldn’t use: a headset. If you play a lot of online games, it would make sense that you have a headset, but these simply have low audio quality for the most part. It’s fine to start off with one of these, but never purchase one for the purpose of recording videos. With that said, let’s compare some of my favorite high quality budget microphones that you can get today!
The Blue Snowball is by far one of the best budget microphones. It is a cardioid microphone available for only $70 here, and enables you to quickly get started making any kind of content, such as YouTube videos or online podcasts.
The setup for the Blue Snowball is also very minimal, although the microphone has a hardware switch for three different input configurations, you can typically just plug it in and get started recording anything.
Now, if you’re looking for something a little less pricy, we can go even cheaper with the Blue Snowball iCE, which you can purchase for $50 here. There are not a lot of differences between the Snowball iCE and the Snowball, but what you need to know is that you lose some configuration details, like adjusting the height of the microphone. Aside from these minor details, the Snowball iCE does not sacrifice audio quality.
Finally, to give you some perspective on the quality, here is a video where I use a Blue Snowball to record a voice over:
Moving on, let’s talk about a higher quality, more expensive lavalier microphone, Audio-Technica’s PRO 70. One of the main reasons I currently use this microphone is because of the convenience of a lavalier microphone, combined with the quality of an Audio-Technica microphone, and the affordable price in comparison to many other lavalier microphones.
With this microphone, I can record videos with a DSLR, on my desk without loud keyboard noises, and with my phone, all while getting clear audio. In my opinion, this microphone wins against the Blue Snowball, but the quality is so different that you need to start with this one. If you’re not interested in spending much at all right now, I definitely recommend getting the Blue Snowball. If you’re willing to splurge a little, go with the PRO 70.
Here is a video I’ve recorded using the Audio-Technica PRO 70 to give you an idea of the great quality:
Audio Quality in Videos
Now that we’ve gotten the hardware options out of the way, let’s talk about using software to ensure the quality of our audio is up to par. Personally, I use Adobe Creative Cloud’s Premier to edit my YouTube videos and online courses, and I don’t have to edit too much to make sure my audio quality is great.
If you’ve ever recorded anything and hear an annoying whining noise or static in the background, you’ll need some kind of noise reduction. Now, while programs like audacity have this feature, it hasn’t always worked out well for me. Personally, I just use the Adaptive Noise Reduction effect in Adobe Premier to get rid of the noise, and it works very well! The default settings often work best for me, but you might have to play with them a little bit if you’re editing your Audio Gain.
Okay, that’s all I have on this subject for now, and I want to thank you for reading this far in! Good luck working on videos and getting the correct microphone!
Until next time,
P.S. If you’re interested in making high quality content on YouTube, on your website, for your game’s web graphics, and to get more game sales, I always recommend getting Adobe Creative Cloud. It includes the software for creating Game Art, Web Graphics for your website, Steam page, and others, Online Videos, and Audio Management. If you’re convinced, you can check out this awesome package here: