Engage Blog

Audio is Half of Video

Engage Video

One thing many novice video producers overlook is capturing good audio. It can almost be an afterthought. You’ve set up the shot, lights, and have an awesome picture but after you hit the record button you realize the audio isn’t clean and clear. I made this mistake when I was just starting out and what a valuable lesson it was to learn.

Video is dependent on audio. You can have the most stunning image quality, but if the audio from dialogue isn’t right then it detracts from the overall quality of your work. But when you have both great video AND audio quality, your productions have that “WOW” factor.

I don’t think people realize the powerful relationship that video and audio have formed. For example, take the clip above. Any basketball fan will recognize this clip as a quintessential Michael Jordan clip. It’s been included in every highlight reel for MJ and several intros for the NBA on TV. Take a few moments to watch the clip, then read on.

A Spectacular Move by Michael Jordan

Marv Albert’s play-by-play comment is just as impactful as the actual move by MJ. I’ve seen this clip hundreds of times (and yes have tried to replicate it on my hoop outside when I was younger), but now looking at it through the eyes of a video professional my take away is that the audio is just as important as the video. Watch the clip again with the sound turned off and I bet you still hear Marv Albert in your head, “A spectacular move…”.

So if you’re just starting out in the world of video or if you’re a company trying to produce video in-house, one of my biggest nuggets of wisdom would be to make sure you have great audio. If any production is worth your time and energy to create, then capturing great audio needs to be a priority. Nothing is worse than “thinking” you’re production is stellar and then learning that the audio is terrible. Take the time to set up mics correctly, test them, and don’t be afraid to stop in the middle of a take to fix audio issues.

Not every video you produce will be like the MJ highlight above, but you can be sure that having great audio will help your videos have the impact you are aiming for.