The GoPro action camera has great video quality but its audio quality is sorely lacking. Perhaps this isn’t surprising since the diminutive action camera is built for ruggedness rather than sound recording. But there are still plenty of scenarios where you’ll want to attach an external microphone to your GoPro. There are a few different GoPro microphones out there so you’ll want to pay attention to which model camera you have and what type of mic you’re looking for.
Lavalier & External Microphones for GoPro Cameras
Microphone adapter for GoPro Hero 5/6
The latest GoPro cameras don’t have a microphone input but instead have a USB-C port which you can attach microphones to. But since most microphones don’t work with USB-C you’ll need an adapter to go between them. This is the official GoPro microphone adapter that plugs into your camera on one end and provides you with a standard 3.5mm microphone input on the other end. It even provides you with a replacement USB-C port for charging purposes so you can record video with an external mic and charge your camera at the same time. Works with the GoPro Hero 6, GoPro Hero 5 Black, and the GoPro Hero 5/6 Session. (If you have an earlier GoPro model, keep scrolling down this article for another external microphone adapter option.)
Rode VideoMicro Compact On-Camera Microphone with 3.5mm jack
This small external microphone is well suited for GoPro cameras because of its perfect size. It doesn’t require a battery and supplies you with crisp, clean audio. To connect it to your GoPro camera you’ll need an audio adapter with a 3.5mm input, like the adapters listed in this article. Comes with a microphone shockmount and a furry windshield which you can take on and off.
Saramonic G-Mic Stereo Ball Microphone
This external GoPro mic works for Hero 3 and 4 cameras that have mini USB ports on their sides. It sticks out at a 90 degree right angle and has a sturdy microphone in a protected cage. It also comes with a foam windshield and a furry muff windshield for windier conditions. There’s no battery, additional mounts, or adapter required if you’re using this with a GoPro 3 or 4 or the original GoPro Session.
Omni-directional lapel microphone for GoPro Cameras
This clip on lapel microphone for GoPro cameras has a 3.5mm audio jack which can be connected to the adapter of your choosing (either for GoPro Hero 5/6 or 3/4). The cable between the microphone and the jack is quite long: 1.5 meters (59 inches or almost 5 feet!) which makes it useful for GoPros because you might have your camera mounted a little bit away from where you’re talking. To use this microphone, simply clip it to your shirt using the included mount. Comes with two replacement foam windscreens and a carrying travel pouch.
External Microphone & Mount Kit for GoPro Cameras
This kit provides everything you need to mount an external microphone to your GoPro camera (except the mic adapters, linked to elsewhere in this article). It includes a Rode external shotgun microphone with 3.5mm cable that you plug into your GoPro audio adapter, mic shockmount, a camera stabilizer cage, and a GoPro mount to attach your camera below the microphone. With a padded hand grip and feet this system allows you to pick up the camera, shoot with it, and put it down without worrying about it toppling over accidentally.
Go Pro 3.5Mm Mic Adapter for GoPro Hero 4 Cameras
This is an official GoPro USB to 3.5mm audio adapter for GoPro Hero 4 and original GoPro Session cameras. It connects to your action camera’s mini USB port on one end and provides you with a standard 3.5mm audio jack on the other side, which you can plug and microphone into that will fit.
This GoPro audio adapter is flexible so you’ll be able to can mount your mic at any desired angle.
Frequently asked questions about GoPro Microphones
Can I use a wireless lavalier microphone with a GoPro camera?
Yes! Here’s how to use a wireless microphone with a GoPro. You’ll need to use a GoPro audio adapter like one of the ones listed in this article and then you’ll need a wireless lav mic that has a 3.5mm output jack. Check out this related article with a list of wireless lavalier mics with 3.5mm jacks.
Are external GoPro mics waterproof? Generally speaking, no. Microphones are notoriously difficult to make waterproof due to their many holes. Additionally since sound works differently underwater it’s not really possible to get great sound while swimming anyway. Since GoPro mics are generally fairly cheap to begin with compared to professional audio gear, you may just wish to treat them as expendable gear (or not use them in wet environments).
Do external GoPro microphones need external batteries? That will depend on the specific microphone you use. Some larger mics will require additional batteries but most small sized 3.5mm microphones don’t need them. Be sure to check whether the model of mic you’re considering needs extra batteries because they can add additional weight and be another bit of gear you need to remember to bring replacements for.
How do I mount an external microphone on top of my GoPro camera? Since the standard clear plastic GoPro casing does not have an accessory mount built in, you may wish to get a case accessory like a this like one for the GoPro Hero 5/6 which has a cold shoe on top.
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