Shotgun microphones are common in the film business because they allow audio recordists to capture noises from far away. While these microphones are mostly used by pros, advances in audio technology have resulted in a plethora of products that appeal to independent filmmakers, providing pro-level quality at a reasonable price.
Shotgun mics have been increasingly popular in recent years, mainly to an increase in independent productions and more cheap technologies in the music, film, and broadcasting industries. A good shotgun mic will allow you to capture clean, sharp audio while rejecting most ambient noise, which will make a huge impact in your productions.
- Ideal video camera/camcorder microphone: Able to handle the most demanding filmic challenges
- High directivity: Picks up sounds coming from the direction in which the camera is pointing and effectively attenuates noise coming from the sides and...
- Switchable "Low Cut" filter: Minimizes wind noise
The Sennheiser MKE 600 is a super-cardioid short shotgun mic that works with a boom or camera mount.
It may run on battery or phantom power, adapting to the situation, and its concentrated directional features and resistance to structure-borne noise provide acoustic outputs that are well suited to a variety of applications. This is the greatest shotgun mic in our opinion. Even when used alongside loud camera preamps, the Sennheiser MKE 600 has excellent sensitivity and low-noise circuitry for increased sound quality without severe boost.
The MKE 600 has a natural roll-off at 40 Hz and a tunable low-cut filter at 100 Hz for good intelligibility and low-frequency noise reduction. Its frequency response also features a slight treble boost to help with voice clarity. The MKE 600 is a lightweight and sturdy metal casing that adds solid toughness to your setup without adding too much weight. The 10′′ long MKE 600 employs an interference tube and a super-cardioid/lobar polar pattern to give notable on-axis directivity as well as strong attenuation of sound entering from the sides and rear.
This makes the MKE 600 far more effective at catching distant sources than conventional cameras’ omnidirectional mics. This shotgun mic is compatible with a range of handheld audio recorders, field recorders, and mixer adapters, as well as built-in preamps on many camcorders and movie cameras, thanks to its 3-pin XLR output and compliance with 48 VDC phantom powering.
The MKE 600 can be powered for up to 150 hours by a single AA battery when used with devices that don’t support phantom power, with approximately 8 hours of operation from the time the low-battery indicator turns red. A foam windscreen on the MKE 600 reduces unwanted wind noise from breezes, fans, heaters, and air conditioners by up to 25 decibels. Overall, this is an excellent option, and it’s no surprise that it’s our top pick in this roundup.
Audio-Technica AT897 Line/Gradient Shotgun Condenser Microphone
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Due to the narrow acceptance angle of the line + gradient design, this high-performance short shotgun provides excellent long-distance audio pickup. It also has superb off-axis rejection of sound coming from the sides and back of the mic, as well as smooth, natural-sounding on-axis audio quality.
The Audio-Technica AT897 is a versatile microphone. Film/TV/video productions, professional recording, wildlife recording, and broadcast applications all benefit from it. It attaches to a DV camcorder without adding much weight, and it stays out of the way even with compact digital cameras. This small shotgun mic provides excellent long-distance audio pickup at a low cost, making it our top value pick on this list.
The Audio-Technica AT897 shotgun microphone has a smooth on-axis tone and excellent off-axis sound rejection, and it has a small enough form factor to be used with a camera. Its operation is versatile, since it can be powered by phantom power or an AA battery. When used with high-gain, low-noise microphone preamps, the AT897’s moderate sensitivity delivers the best results. It has a low-cut filter with a customizable cutoff frequency of 80 Hz that may produce clean sound while reducing noise and bass buildup. Additionally, to improve intelligibility, its full-spectrum frequency response uses a moderate rise in high frequencies.
This shotgun microphone is well-made, with a sturdy casing that ensures rigorous dependability while remaining lightweight. It employs an interference tube with a super-cardioid polar pattern to provide focused on-axis directionality while attenuating and rejecting sound from the sides. The AT 897 has a high-pass filter that can be set to flat or 80 Hz to filter out low-frequency noise from things like air conditioners and traffic.
The AT897 is compatible with many handheld audio recorders, field recorders, and other devices thanks to its 3-pin XLR output and compatibility with 11 to 52 VDC phantom powering. The AT897 may be powered by a single AA battery when using devices that don’t have phantom power (included). A foam windscreen is included on the AT897 to prevent unwanted noise from breezes, fans, heaters, and air conditioners. Overall, for those on a budget, this is the greatest option because the number of features available for the price is just unparalleled.
Rode NTG5 Location Recording Microphone Kit
- Shotgun Condenser Microphone with Supercardioid Polar Pattern
- Annular Line Tube Technology
- Moisture-resistant Design
The NTG5 is a compact, ultra-lightweight shotgun microphone designed for use in high-volume recording environments. It has an acoustic design that replaces the linear slots found in other shotgun mics with circular ports, providing great transparency and a natural, uncolored sound. It also has a smooth off-axis response and low self-noise, as well as a controlled frequency response.
The NTG5’s body design has been totally reworked, building on the NTG3 and NTG4. Instead of linear slots, it has round acoustic ports. This design is the result of months of research and development, and it provides exceptional acoustic transparency and natural sound for a number of applications. The NTG5 is one of the most compact professional shotgun mics on the market, thanks to its short, lightweight aluminum design.
This is ideal for boom operators on long shoots, as well as filmmakers and sound recordists who want a more portable and lightweight equipment that nevertheless offers high-quality audio. The NTG5 also has a smooth off-axis response, regulated frequency response, low self-noise, and a highly directed super-cardioid polar pattern.
Overall, the NTG5 is a significant upgrade over RDE’s earlier NTG3 and NTG4 models, and it’s an excellent pick for anyone looking for a dependable and well-researched shotgun microphone.
- Compact pressure-gradient microphone with short interference tube for film, radio and television
- Rugged and highly immune to humiditiy due to its RF condenser design, making it ideal for outside applications
- Featuring high directivity, low self noise, high consonant articulation and feedback rejection
The Sennheiser MK416 is designed for folks who are serious about getting high-quality audio. Except for the Neumann microphone below, this short shotgun microphone’s tremendous directivity is unequaled by any other on this list. Because to the RF condenser architecture, this tiny pressure-gradient microphone is particularly resistant to dampness. This makes it ideal for working in a variety of settings, both indoors and out.
When recording at a distance, the supercardioid pattern combined with the short interference tube allows for exceptional precision. The low end is shut off at 40Hz by a wide-range frequency response, which is ideal. It has a low self-noise level and comes with a windscreen for filming outside. This shotgun microphone’s SPL (Sound Pressure Level) is 130dB, allowing you to record very loud audio sources without distortion.
Rode VideoMicPro Compact Directional On-Camera Microphone with Rycote Lyre Shockmount
- A true shotgun microphone designed for camcorders, DSLR cameras and portable audio recorders as primary and reference audio
- The 1/2" condenser capsule provides broadcast-quality audio via a 3.5mm connector with an incredibly low self-noise of just 14db
- The Rycote Lyre based shock mounting system provides isolation from external factors that may cause unwanted rumble and vibrations
The RDE VideoMic Pro+ is an excellent choice for mobile journalists, vloggers, and budget filmmakers looking for a versatile camera-mount shotgun mic that also works well on a boom. Because of its battery/USB power options, enhanced RF immunity, adjustable gain, and other clarity-enhancing features, it has a versatile design.
The RDE VideoMic Pro+ is a small, lightweight shotgun microphone with an integrated shock mount for direct camera or boom pole attachment. It has a redesigned windscreen that decreases wind noise, making it an excellent choice for outdoor shooting. The VideoMic Pro+ has a 3.5mm TRS output and detachable cable for optimal camera connection, and the selectable safety channel prevents inadvertent distortion by delivering a lower-level duplicate audio signal.
The RDE VideoMic Pro+ uses a super-cardioid polar pattern to focus on sound from the front while attenuating sound from the sides and back. Its low-noise circuitry and sensitive condenser element provide more detailed audio than ordinary camera and portable recorder mics. A detachable straight 3.5mm cable is available for simple camera connection. The 3.5mm TRS port of the VideoMic Pro is wired in a dual-mono configuration, ensuring that the mic signal is routed to both input channels of your camera.
It also comes with a rechargeable and detachable lithium-ion battery that can last up to 100 hours. If necessary, it can also be powered by two AA batteries. This RDE mic has an auto on/off function in addition to a power button, which helps to save battery life. When connected to a suitable camera, the VideoMic Pro+ automatically turns on or off in response to the presence or absence of plug-in electricity.
A high-pass filter on the VideoMic Pro+ may be tuned to 75 Hz or 150 Hz to filter out low-frequency noise from sources like air conditioners and traffic. RDE also incorporated a configurable high-frequency boost, which improves treble detail and clarity.