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Multimedia Literacy

This research guide will help you to get started on your multimedia project.

Mic It

Sound is the first thing people notice when they find something irritating about a video.

Although video cameras have built-in microphones, try to use an external microphone whenever possible and connect it to the camera's mic jack.

  • ‚ÄčA lavalier is a small microphone that can be clipped onto a piece of clothing about 6-8 inches below the speaker's mouth. Lavalier microphones are good if you want to keep microphones hidden. (Make sure that the speaker’s jewelry, hair, or clothing don't interfere with the audio.):

Sony UWP-V1 Wireless Lavaliere Mic Kit

  • A handheld microphone can work well in an on-the-street interview situation:

Sony UWP-V2 Wireless Handheld Mic Kit

  • A shotgun microphone on a boom pole can be placed outside the video frame:

Boom Mic

RODE Videomic with Boom Pole and Accessories

If you find there is too much echo, try to use cloth to dampen the sound. Record your footage with subjects sitting on cloth chairs or move the subjects closer to drapes or wall-hangings. Hanging blankets out of sight of the camera, especially behind the camera, can help dampen stray noise.

While interviewing, leave a bit of ambient noise before and after questions. These quiet intervals can be helpful when editing the footage.

Avoid taping an entire session only to find out in the editing process that the audio was not recorded well. At the start of your shoot, plug some headphones into your camera and listen to make sure the audio is how you want it to be. 


Photo credit: Student Multimedia Design Center


Vimeo Video School has great tutorials on capturing good sound that are worth taking a look:

Microphones: The Proximity Effect from Videopia on Vimeo.


Introduction To Audio With DSLRS. Canon Cinema Caravan (2010) from stillmotion on Vimeo.


Vimeo Tutorial: External Microphones from Vimeo Video School on Vimeo.