bad audio, very often the video does not carry
the entire story. You can have basic slides, but
compelling audio can easily keep your audience engaged.
Making sure you have audio that is clear
and present is critical. It might sound like I am
over-hyping this one particular feature, but I
have seen so many live streams where the video was not enjoyable because I could not clearly make out what was being said. The ability
to do streaming from a cell phone has emboldened people to think that the cell phone across
the room is capturing great audio, and that is
just not the case.
Getting a lavaliere microphone, such as a
RØDE Lav, that plugs directly into an iPhone is
the simplest way to get high-quality audio with a
single-camera/single-person solution (Figure
5). Or consider a clip-on/plug-in directional,
or short-shotgun mic. These are also handy if
you’ll have the phone in some sort of gimbal
stabilizer, as they are small and light, and there
are no wires.
A lav mic can plug into the “headphone” port
using the second ring of the connector to provide mic-level audio to the phone. But if you
have a phone without a headphone jack, or use
the clip-on directional mic, it may need the lightning connector.
There are higher-end solutions that enable
you to connect multiple microphones. The Samson Go Mic Mobile solution includes two microphones and a wireless 2. 4 GHz receiver that
connects directly to an iOS device through the
lightning port or through the headphone jack.
There are a plethora of interfaces that enable you to plug in line- or mic-level devices to
your iPad. The ones I see discussed most often
are the iRig solutions, available in mono or “
stereo” (actually, dual mono, as it doesn’t mix either side to center). These enable you to handle
most any mic to line-level source and adjust the
level so you have a good signal coming in to the
“headphone” jack of the iPad (where the microphone input is, as well).
Pay particular attention to handling the audio before you feed it to your streaming solution. Make sure you have the ability to adjust the
equalizer for the different microphones so they
match. This is particularly important if you’re
using handheld and lavaliere microphones in
the same production.
Another critical part, I find, is to apply a bit
of compression to your audio before handing
it off to your streaming device. Phones do this
with their internal mics, but when you plug in
an external microphone or use a mixing board
with multiple microphones, then you need to
compress the audio before handing it off. This
can be done either with a mixer with built-in
compressors, such as the Behringer 1202USB
(Figure 6), or by utilizing an external compressor after your audio mixer. I own the compact
FMR Audio Really Nice Compressor, but there
are plenty of other solutions out there.
The goal with the compressor is to let you
bring up the quieter parts of the program without overloading the louder parts so that you get
a more even audio level throughout. You should
be using the audio mixer’s individual channel
The RØDE Lav
plugs directly into