Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews › Forums › Technique › Sound › Shotgun Mic Recommendations for Cannon XA20
I just joined the forum so I am sorry if this is in the wrong place.
It’s been a long time coming but I finally purchased my first “real” video camera. I bought a Cannon XA20 and I am now looking for a shotgun mic that will fit into the mic attachment piece. I am on a budget so I am looking for an affordable but good quality mic. If anyone has some good recommendations on a brand and a size to fit my camera that would be great!
Ah yes, the “will it fit the mic holder” problem. Luckily, the microphone makers publish dimensions. I love my Sennheiser MKE600 which is 0.8 inches in diameter (20mm). So there you go.
But, in my experience, getting the mic close is more important than microphone quality, so the worst place for a microphone is on your camera. To record a voice, for instance, you need to get the shotgun within inches of the speaker’s mouth and that’s impossible if it is clamped in the mic holder.
And whatever your budget, make sure you set aside money for a boom pole, cables, and a dead cat. And of course a decent pair of headphones.
Sometimes we don’t have a choice about where to put the mic, and everyone sometimes still uses a camera mounted mic,even if it’s only for sync. Canon sensibly errs on the side of making the holder wider than most shotgun tubes – it’s harder to fit a wide barrel into a narrow holder than to wrap something, like a piece of rubber foam tube, or even a piece of kitchen sponge wipe around a narrow barrel to make it wider. So practically any shotgun will fit. Basically you get what you pay for, but I’m quite happy with an old Rode NTG1.
Excellent points. But for wrapping your mic to fit the holder I would suggest a material from the craft store called Fun Foam.
It’s a flexible, tough, black, closed-cell foam that is easily cut. It’s about 1/8 inch thick and comes in 8×10 sheets.
And with a strip of gaff tape, it makes a great camera flag. It comes in a variety of colors including white so you can make reflectors and props with it.
There’s also a version with adhesive on one side.
The non-slip material that is sold at grocery stores to line the bottom of your drawers/cupboards is the absolute best. I use it on everything, even to prevent laptops from sliding off of surfaces on set. It's thin enough to wrap around your gear more than once, if you have a mic that's too small to fit.