It's easy to take and edit quick videos on the iPhone, but getting great audio isn't always as simple as pointing and shooting. Whether you have an iPhone 7, an iPhone X, or a fancy new iPhone XS: the iPhone microphone isn't too shabby at close distances, but when you're trying to film in a crowded room, it's not quite enough. Here are three ways to avoid tinny, awkward or terrible sound when shooting iPhone video!

Products used in this guide

Our picks

If you're trying to shoot something a little more high-quality, chances are you'll want to pony up a little cash for an external microphone. There are a few different categories here: on-device mics, wired lavalier mics, and wireless microphones.

There are a bunch of on-device mics available for your iPhone or iPad, depending on what you plan to record. I've personally heard good things about Blue's Mikey Digital ($85), and the Zoom iQ6 ($100); the two are designed more for single-room recordings and music captures.

In the wired lavalier section, you've got the Movo PM10 as a cheap, but well-reviewed $15 option, and the $63 Rode smartLav+.

Use another iOS Device

Of course, you don't have to get close to your subject when using an external microphone. If you have an older iPhone or iPod touch, or you can borrow a friend's, you can use it as a portable microphone with little problem. Use your iPhone to film how you'd like, then set up the second iPhone near where you want audio. (If you're filming interview-style, you can even hold it like a portable microphone or hide it, mic-side-up, in a jacket breast pocket.)

To record, just open the Voice Memos app on the second iPhone and dictate what clip you're shooting ("Christmas party, kids playing with new toys"). Then set your video camera to record, and clap your hands in front of the frame — it's an old trick, but a good one.

When you finish shooting, you'll have the video and a separate audio track; you can bring both into iMovie on the Mac and edit accordingly.

Top equipment picks

Top pick

Blue's Mikey External Microphone

Keep it portable and sounding fantastic with this external mic

If you're someone who wants the feel of a professional mic without whipping out your DSLR, this mic is for you.

The Blue's Mikey External Microphone is a portable, highly-rated little piece of gear that makes recording on the go effortless. You can record natural, pure sound with this mic which makes it the perfect tool for toting around and recording.

Wide-range pick

Zoom iQ6

Perfect for recording your surroundings.

Record your surroundings effortlessly with this highly-rated, well made microphone. This particular mic can adjust from 90 degrees to 120, making it ideal for recording your surroundings.

Budget pick

Movo PM10

Clear voice recording

If you want an affordable, reliable, and portable microphone for your iPhone, then take a gander at convenient the Movo PM10.

Tiny yet powerful

Rode smartLav+

Clip away with this tiny mic

Want a mic that works more like a lav, but that'll still work with your iPhone? Check out the Rode smartLav+ that can effortlessly clip to clothing and record everything you need.

Additional Equipment

While these mics are all great options to consider, recent hardware changes might make things more complicated.

Lightning to Headphone jack adapter ($9 at Apple)

With the lack of headphone jack that's been implemented more and more with newer iPhones, using these microphones could be a bit tricky. This adapter is key to getting around that

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