ASMR Articles

What to Look for When Buying a Microphone for ASMR

If you’ve been following the growth and popularity of ASMR, then you might be wondering how you, too, could get in on this strange yet intriguing phenomenon. There are thousands of new ASMR videos popping up all over video sharing websites each and every day, and while they may seem like a strange concept at first, you might be surprised at how many people find comfort in the sounds. Becoming an ASMR artist – or ASMRtist – could be a challenging yet rewarding way for you to bring peace and happiness into people’s lives, so learning more about this interesting practice is your first step in your journey to producing your own ASMR videos.

What is ASMR?…

While you may not have heard the term a lot in your life, you may well have already experienced the sensation that ASMR produces in a person. Categorized as a type of euphoria, ASMR is a tingling sensation that is brought on by a specific sight or sound, known as a trigger, starting on the top of your scalp and radiating through your whole body. The feeling is often achieved by accident, and you’ll know this if you’ve ever felt all tingly when someone whispers in your ear. However, seeking out this feeling for the relaxing feeling that it produces is extremely popular for people who have mild insomnia or trouble letting go of their stress at the end of each day.

The triggers that stimulate the ASMR reflex vary widely from person to person but typically include soft and repetitive sounds or motions. Whispering is one of the most popular and catered-for triggers, but you’ll find that the range of sounds can extend from the boring and monotonous to the outright bizarre. It’s not uncommon to find videos of people smacking their lips, brushing their teeth and character role-play along with a whole audience of people that experience tingles while watching them.

Why is your ASMR microphone important?…

Given the huge importance of sound in an ASMR video, it should come as no surprise that the microphone is considered the most important tool in the budding ASMRtist’s toolkit. Without a strong and clear sound, you’ll find that you lack the drawing power that can turn your ASMR video into a work of art. While there is no microphone that is considered the best for a person who wants to make ASMR videos for the world to enjoy, you can certainly be selective in finding the right kind that can work for the kinds of sounds that you want to create.

When you’re starting out in making your videos, you will be limited to whatever kinds of sound that your smartphone or tablet can produce. While the microphone on these devices may be simple, they can certainly allow you to get your footing as you navigate through this interesting world. However, once you begin to get more viewers and gain popularity, you may want to consider investing in a microphone that can enhance the effects you are trying to create. Your productions will feel cleaner and more professional, giving you a foot up in your ASMR career.

It’s all about noise…

The most important issue that can plague you in your ASMR journey is the problem of self-noise. As the triggers you are targeting are often whispered or soft-spoken, the noise that the microphone produces all by itself can result in distractions, leaving your videos falling flat. While it may sound kind of obvious, the most important factor to consider when choosing a microphone for ASMR the noise that it can produce. Your listeners are going to be focused on the sounds you’re creating, and a cheap and nasty microphone will add extra noise to your performance that can detract from the overall experience.

Not every microphone is built the same, and the self-noise specifications are going to vary from one to another. Removing noise in the post-production process isn’t the solution, as these unwanted frequencies can overlap with those of your whispers, and cutting them out completely can make your audio hollow and unlistenable. Paying careful attention to the kind of microphone you choose will allow you to deliver the best performance no matter what.

Binaural microphones…

Understanding the different microphone types can help you to appeal to specific audiences. Browsing ASMR collections, you’ll often see the word “binaural” in the title. This is often used as a buzzword to draw people in because the sound produced by binaural microphones is far more desirable than that of regular microphones. Binaural microphones utilize two directional microphones to replicate the sounds that a person would hear naturally, and listening to sounds produced by these types of microphones can allow you to feel even closer to the sound. Producing this kind of audio comes with a price tag, however, as these microphones are expensive, but a better experience for your audience can lead to money in the bank for you, so the investment might be well worth it.

Omni-directional microphones…

A cheaper alternative to a binaural microphone is an omni-directional model. A common and well-developed technology, omni-directional microphones allow you to record sound from all angles, which is perfect for single microphone setups where you want to be sure you capture every sound. Whilst the result that is delivered is less desirable than those produced by the binaural models, only the pickier ears will be able to hear the difference, making them a cheaper option when you’re just getting started. If you want to create a binaural sound later in your career, you can always set up two onmi-directional microphones to capture and direct your sound.

Though the magical world of ASMR may just be beginning to gain ground, the technology used to produce these amazingly intriguing and relaxing videos has been well developed for years. Knowing how to optimize your microphone set up so that you can capture and mesmerize your listeners is the key to your ASMR success, so give this area a little thought before you embark on your journey so that you can work to the best of your abilities.

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