Neal Augenstein

Why I WON’T be using my new iPhone microphone

In Uncategorized on December 23, 2011 at 5:48 pm

I had high hopes for the new Tascam iM2 microphone — $79, compatible with iPhone 4s, iPads, iPods, looks cool, easy to operate out of the box. But after two days of field testing it, I’m not feeling it. Unfortunately, at least when used with my standard audio and video editing apps (VeriCorder AudioPro and1stVideo) the audio file has too much “digital noise.” While the noise is almost indiscernible with headphones or a speaker, by the time it’s multiplied by the radio station’s audio processing chain, the end user is bombarded with a fluttering or motorboating sound that obscures the desired audio. Outdoors, the iM2 (like many iPhone mics) is susceptible to wind noise. However, with its digital noise problems, a juryrigged windscreen isn’t going to help enough. Even in the best possible recording conditions, several coworkers agree it doesn’t have the range of response that the built-in microphone does. It sounds flat. Since my job in the field is to bring listeners to the scene, losing the ambience is a problem. So, for now I’m back to the built-in microphone and the ongoing search for something better. (Update: As of 6/2013, AudioPro and 1stVideo have been replaced by Voddio)

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