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How to record video with an external microphone on a Samsung S9+

How to record video with an external microphone on a Samsung S9+

How to record video with an external microphone on a Samsung S9+

I recently had to record a quick testimonial video and got a good Rode VideoMicro at my disposal. It also had a nice cable and worked perfectly on an iPhone, great combination, good results, I could see from previous work.

But I have no iPhone.
I have to admit I never bought an iPhone before, and I think I never will. That's free for everyone to chose, I'm happy with my uncle Sammy stuff, I bought 'm since they launched, and I was happy. So I stuck to Android.

And to be honest: I love iPads, and MacBooks. And I also love to use Windows 10.

I'm not into a "this is better than" discussion, it's a free world, you can do whatever you please. I love good tools and great software. So I use a lot of everything. 
I currently use a Samsung S9+, I think it's a very good phone, and it does great stuff when recording video.

For that testimonial I needed to shoot, I had about 4m distance between my phone and the person.
"Use a microphone" was the first thing that came to mind.

I picked up the Rode VideoMicro (which is a great microphone, it really is).
Easy as pie you would guess: plug in the whole shebang and off you go:
Open camera, hit video and record. 

In short: That doesn't fly.

On a Samsung Galaxy S9+, things do work, but you have to take a couple of things into account to record video with an external microphone

First, the audio jack takes TRRS on a Samsung S9+ to record.
So make sure your Rode (or other microphone) has TRRS, there is an optional cable available.

Second, you have to tell your phone it has to select external audio from an external microphone.
And that’s the really tricky one: You can search in the standard Camera software... there is no option to do so.
No can do.

So how do you record video on a Samsung S9+ with an external microphone?

Solution:

1) Install the Open Camera app (it's free, no ads).
Look it up in the Play store, and select the right one ("Open Camera"... that simple).

2) Make sure you have an external microphone, and to be on the safe side, check if the audio jack contact has TRRS.

A TRRS audio jack and TRS audio jack

I bought a lavalier microphone recently (an audio-technica) to do some testing, and that comes with a sort of 'dongle' that also splits audio in and audio out. Using that practical dongle, you can connect audio in and out.
And you can also see the difference between TRRS and TRS clear on the picture.

3) Fiddle around in Open Camera's settings to make sure you check these two options.
Go to 'gear', select 'Video Settings'.

- First, you have to indicate to record audio when recording video.
Don't forget that.

Make sure to indicate record audio when you record video so flip this toggle switch too in Open Camera

- Second, tell Open Camera to use an external microphone if there is one present

Tell Open Camera to select an external microphone to record audio

 

Now, that's all there is to it. It’s no rocket science, and pretty easy.

Since I didn't find any simple practical explanation online, other than video's telling you can do it (I know you can) I wrote things down as simple as possible.

This should help you to figure out how to record video with an external microphone on a Samsung S9+

So that’s how you get things done when you need to record video with an external microphone on a Samsung S9+

Comments

Anonymous (not verified)

Fri, 05/17/2019 - 16:46

jazz

I tried this method with my samsung galaxy s9+. Open camera or default camera, using an old sony ecm 909 stereo mike.
stereo seems to work, but volume is extremely low. Not sure if the mic, will get a lavalier soon. Talking 1 inch away no problem, but using for vlogging or ambient sound 1 or more meters away for example, very low volume. The phone's mics are 5x louder (and pretty good sound). Have you see a big drop in volume compared to phone mic if 50 cm or more from source of sound? or is it just my microphone or the effect of the cable? i will have a cheap lavalier soon with ttrs connector will see if any difference, maybe a high gain mic is needed, and gain is not adjustable anywhere.

Frederik Van Hecke

Fri, 05/17/2019 - 18:10

Frederik
Yes, the Samsung galaxy s9+ mic is really pretty decent, truth be told. But I was looking for a "get-things-done" easy and cheap solution to capture audio from a person +2 meters away from the phone. Think of recording a video while you stand in front of a flipchart or screen. I put my phone on a tripod (see pic) and the lavalier mic has a pretty long cable (don't trip over the cable :). The phone mic doesn't capture audio too good from a that distance, that's why I came up with the idea of a lavalier mic. And got a bit stuck finding out how to get the audio from an external microphone recorded easily. Took me some time to figure out how to get it done. Hope this helps, keep me posted if all works fine.

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