Tag Archives: Sound Quality

5 Reasons Why You Shouldnt Overlook Sound On YouTube

Mic Check

Mic check! Wait a second. This isВ YouTube. Why should I care about sound quality? After all, isnt video quality what the Tube is all about? Most people know sound quality is important but they still tend to focus more onВ HD videos. Technically, YouTube is all about video but dont overlook the importance of sound. There are plenty of reasons why you shouldnt pass on sound quality, especially if you are making or thinking about making videos. We are so spoiled byВ 1080pВ videos that sound quality is an afterthought. We dont usually place an importance on sound but there are plenty of reason why it shouldnt be overlooked. You may not know it, but audio quality can determine whether you finish watching a video or whether you click somewhere else. Im going to list 5 of them. Ill bet my money that if you visit YouTube daily, you will relate to all of these reasons. Lets get to it.

 

1. Clarity

This one is easy to understand. When audio is clear, you dont have to work to understand or decipher it. A good microphone will eliminate background hums and white noise. These noises are stressful and distracting. When you are watching a bad or distracting video, its easier to minimize or look away compared to muting or lowering the volume. If youve ever worked a third shift job, you will understand the significance of background noise and the effects it has on your body. Noise is louder during the day than at night. This may not seem like a big deal to those with normal schedule, but these noises can result in low-quality sleep and added stress. This is the same reason houses near highways are generally cheaper to rent/own. While you probably wont lose sleep over a YouTube video, background noise will annoy you. Keep background noise down with a good mic. No one want to hear hums and hisses. Think about this. When you are watching a YouTube video and you can barely hear the person speaking, what do you do? Most people will turn up the volume. What if background noise is present? Most people will just leave the video. Having clear, accurate audio is just as important as having clear video. Some would argue more so.

 

2. Alt-Tabbers

When I am on YouTube, I often have multiple tabs opened. Having multiple tabs open helps with multi-tasking. Lets sayВ I am looking for a headphone review. I would have one tab opened on YouTube and another on Google or Bing looking for written reviews. While I am listening to a video, I would read or skim through a written review. This goes for research too. I would look for information on YouTube while browsing through Wikipedia. Unfortunately, others do this too. In fact, I would bet that you have done this at one point or another. An engaging video becomes a podcast and the HD video quality becomes a nonissue. Now, you only have sound to connect to the video. Good video quality helps engage viewers and good sound quality helps engage listeners.

 

3. Music When Youre Doing It Right/Wrong

Everyone loves music but not everyone loves your music. If you like country and thinking about adding music to a video, dont count on your viewers having the same taste as you. A common mistake people make when they are making videos is adding over-played or annoying music. One great example is 009 Sound System Dreamscape. This song is un-officially known as the YouTube National Anthem because so many people use it for their videos. Its a bad joke that wont die like Chuck Norris and In Russia jokes. There is a time and place to add music. Dont put up skateboarding compilations using Drowning Pool Bodies. Bad music will make viewer leave in 3 seconds. Good music will have people asking Whats the name of the song? Another thing to consider when adding music is correcting the levels. Dont blast the music in the background if you want to talk. No one will hear you. If you hurt your viewers ears, you will get a big red bar of dislikes.

 

4. Entertainment

People are on YouTube for many reasons. To get information, to learn, to connect with others, and to be entertained. Sometimes, a good, well animated voice will be enough to get you subscribers. Even if you have a great voice, you may be shooting yourself in the foot with a crappy mic. A bad mic can make you sound monotone and boring. A good voice is something you cant really help but you can at least get a good mic to keep your voice clear and your viewer engaged. Its strange at first but you have to pretend like you are talking to real people. You cant talk like youre reading a script. Thats boring and people can instantly tell. When you have guests over, do you talk to them like a robot? No, so why would you do that in a video? Good audio quality creates a more personal experience with your viewers. This will help increase comments and activity. Maybe even more likes and favorites. People love to be entertained and poor sound quality ruins the mood.

 

5. Patience

The last reason why you shouldnt overlook sound quality is patience or rather, the lack-of. People are impatient. Most people will decide to watch the rest of your video after the first 5 seconds. Long pauses or spikes in sound levels test this patience. It is easy to find clues of this. Throughout YouTube, you will see top rated comments saying 3:12 to skip the boring part or You wasted 45 seconds of my life. People have busy lives. They dont want to be bothered with crap and although this is not solely a sound issue, if a viewer watches your video and has to work to hear you, youre in trouble. No one wants to increase the volume when they dont have to. No one wants to hear background noise. And no one wants to listen to head-banging music on a video review. Dont test a viewers patient. More often than not, you will lose.

 

So thats it. These are 5 quick reasons why you shouldnt overlook sound on YouTube, especially if you are making videos. Clarity is about reproducing your sounds accurately. Audio quality becomes most important to Alt-Tabbers who turn from viewers to listeners. Music can make or break your video. Entertaining voices can keep viewers. And finally, everyone is impatient. Probably the simplest way to improve your videos audio quality is investing in a good mic. Usually, the stock microphones that come with digital cameras suck. Most people would rather watch through a video with good sound and bad video quality than one with good video quality and bad audio quality.

 

Surprisingly, The Best Jogging Earphones: Bose IE2 Headphone Review

Bose, a mainstream brand when it comes to sound, but do they live up to the hype with with their IE2s? Well, I bought these headphones to put them to the test: my life. My daily routines consists of hard running everyday so I need a good pair of ear buds to keep my iPod shuffle and I company. I had previously used all the standard name brands that you hear today: Apple, Skull Candy, Monster, Vmoda. I am the type of person who buys things after searching for reviews week after week. I was looking for that “great” in ear headphones to run with and all the reviews pointed me out to the Bose IE2. And to be blunt, they are just that: Great. But to be fair, they are not great solely from sound the sound quality. So don’t be disappointed if the sound quality doesn’t sound fit for your. (ZERO PUN INTENDED!)This review will cover the following that I thought was important while buying, what I thought expensive, headphones: sound quality, durability, value, comfort and how well they stayed in my ear while running. Lets get to it!

 

 

Sound quality 8/10

When it comes to the sound quality, I have heard many mixed feelings. Some people have said that these headphones were AMAZING. Others said they were just subpar. I am in no way an audiophile but in my opinion I can honestly say, they are just GOOD. Just a step above the average apple headphones. Keep in mind; I thought 100 bucks was stretching it for a pair of ear buds so I had a bias thought on it from the start.

Bose IE2 In Ear Headphones

 

 

 

But, I do admit that the bass on these ear buds are much, much, much more impressive than my apple ear buds. (As Expected.) On the Bose IE2’s, I would say, you could play your music at a lower volume and hear everything you would hear on the apple ear buds at a much higher volume.

 

They are NOT sound isolated and they do not claim to be. The back of the box clearly states, “Not designed for noise reduction.” As I run everyday with these ear buds I don’t miss noise canceling ear buds at all. I personally like to hear the cars and people around me. I rather not get hit by one for the sake of noise isolation.

 

 

Durability 9/10

I don’t intend to put these through a stress test. (Because I cant afford another 100 bucks =]) I can say, however, from two month of usage these show zero sign of wear or tear. I dropped them a few times but they’re still looking spanking new! Thanks Bose! They aren’t made like those indestructible monster ear bud because they’re plastic, but nonetheless they are very durable. And maybe it’s just my luck, but these headphones have not once tangled up on me. They even give a little case to put your headphones and ear tips in when you’re not using them. HORRAY

 

Value 8/10

I’d say if the sound quality were a tad bit better, these would be my ideal earphones. But for what they are, I give them an 8/10. Don’t get me wrong, they are great earphones but I thought 100 bucks was a tad pricey. But I guess there are many other brands that go for much more. So I can’t really complain!

 

 

Comfort 10/10

Comfort is where these ear buds shine. When I pop them in my ear at times, I swear, I forget that I have them on. Unlike sound canceling ear buds I never have to take them off to give my ear a breather.

 

They give you three different size tips and I found that the medium size did much justice. These ear buds don’t go deep into your ears; so as far as comfort, these shouldn’t be a problem! Even when I’m just relaxing on my bed, with these headphones I feel like I can fall asleep at any moment in comfort. Another huge thumbs up to Bose!

 

How well did they stay in my ear while running?

Best headphones yet. They developed what Bose call “Stayhear tips.” At first I thought, “Eh another gimmick” Boy was I wrong. These were legit! They may take some time to getting use to. But when you wear them they feel like they are molded into your ears. (Quite comfortably nonetheless.) Actually even without the Stayhear tips, the regular tips never once fell out while running. So you can only imagine how well the Stayhear tips stay in.

 

And if youre worrying whether the tips fall easily or not, worry no further. You sort of have to hook the tip on, as my picture shows below. Once hooked on it is very secure and tightly fit. On top of all of that they are incredibly light. (Due to the plastic material of course) Overall I must say I am impressed.

 

So Do I recommend?

Yes I definitely recommend this buy. Especially If you like to do physical activities while listening to music. They sound good, better than your average ear bud. They fit comfortably and snug so you won’t ever have to worry about them falling out. And even if you intend to just listen to them at home, I find falling asleep with these ear buds much more satisfying than any other.

 

 

 

 

High Definition In A Compact Form Factor: Sony HDR-CX500V Review

Sony CX500v HD camcorder

Sony, a company that knows what they’re doing, and their Sony CX series are no exception to that matter. I initially had owned Canon’s t2i but the lens was flawed so I ended up returning the entire package. When I returned it, I had in mind for a smaller camera. One that I could a carry anywhere and be able to pull it out quickly to record in HD. So after reading many reviews I picked out this little piece of hardware, The Sony HDR-CX500v with a beautiful and clear 3.0” touch screen. A huge 32gbs of built in memory, shooting at a full 1080p. I’m putting this camera to the test to see if it lives up to its hype. Like any camera of course it has its stronger and weaker sides. I had this camera for over a year and while I no longer own it, I enjoyed my usage as it it did its job well. While sony has released many newer models of the CX500v as the CX560v, the CX500v is still an extremely capable one and you currently can find with a very reasonable price tag. So let’s see how it does.

 

 

Video Quality

Superb. To start, shooting with good lightning this camera brings out some of the best quality I’d ever seen. The texture in the picture is just outstanding and crisp. I was very impressive. In low light this camera (along with many other cameras) has a dedicated actual mode for low light shooting and it’s very good for what it does. Of course it wont be better than today’s current advance DSLR’s with a separate lens for low light shooting. But this camera still gets the job done quite well. You do have the option to shoot in a lower quality, to get longer record time but if your getting an HD camera, I don’t see a reason to record in anything less.

 

Battery Life

Sony CX500vIt says it right on the camera and box. “13hrs of RECORDING”….in small print underneath (at 5mbps). Which is the lowest quality you can record in on the CX500V. The highest reaches up to 16mbps. I obviously didnt expect 13 hours of recording on full Hd. However I did get a good 4 -5 hours of recording before I had to recharge. If you’re not satisfied with that you could always pick up an extra battery!

 

 

 

Still Photos

Sony CX500v ScreenI had mixed feelings about it. I suppose I had higher expectations coming from the t2i (in which I shouldnt have) but I originally took a few snaps and I just thought Id never us it again. I returned my t2i and I actually got back into using this. Its a 12mp camera and with good lighting the camera gets the job done. (For a camcorder) Its not the best but it does do it right and it’s nice and convenient to have if you need it. I’d say better to have it subpar then to completely leave out the feature. So thanks Sony for keeping it! (Another neat feature is taking stills while recording!)

EDIT: When using this camera youll definitely need the flash on. With flash plus natural lighting (Or any extra lighting) the pics actually come out pretty crisp for a camcorder. Here are a few comparison shots with flash on and off. (Note these pics were all shot during the day with plenty of light in the room.)

 

Sample Shots taken with the CX500V

 

CX500v Wish Flash #2
CX500v Wish Flash #2
CX500v Without Flash #2
CX500v Without Flash #2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Storage

It comes with 32gbs of built in memory. I currently have about 5 hours in the camera of full 1080p recording and it still says 4.8 gigs left. If that’s not enough you could also add in Sony’s memory stick. For me 32gbs is just fine lol. I’m pretty sure after recording 6 hours of footage in full HD I’ll back it up and start it back at 32gbs. But that’s all in personal preference.

Mic/sound quality

I’d say above average. My first project was a documentary for school and one of the interviewee had had to whisper in a library that had a presentation going on. There was a lot of noise in the background and my interviewee whispered, but even then, the camera picked up what she had to say just fine. What I dont like however is Sony’s way of doing things; if the mic isnt good enough for you and you need or want some sort of boom mic, youll need to pick up Sonys mic because its shoot at the top is proprietary. (It’s the same thing with Sony’s and their memory sticks.)

 

Other Functionalities

1)The camera offers a three-way shake cancelation. At first I thought this may have been a gimmick like thing, but Ive actually ran around with the camera while recording and I really did notice a big difference. Ive ran and recorded with a few cameras (The t1i which probably wasnt the best idea) an older Sony Handicam, a few point and shoots and also the canon M30 and Ill say this camera tops all of them with shake cancelation.

 

2) Theres a GPS option in the camera but I just leave it off to save battery because I dont really travel to often. It pretty much keeps track of the film you record and where exactly you recorded it.

3)The camera has adopted the feature many cameras have, face detection. It’ll focus on your subject while recording.

 

4)You also do have control of the white balance, exposure and focus points. There’s a little wheel you can use to control the depth of field but I don’t find it too useful. I notice I’m scrolling with my thumb as fast as I can and it takes forever to focus on a subject from one distant to the other. But again, its better to have it than leave it out.

 

Downside

The screen is a touch screen. While many new cameras are adopting touch screen, I personally rather have a physical button because it is more responsive. CX500v screen response is fine but I found it a little slow to navigate around the menus with the touch screen.

 

All in All

Great camera. It’s very small and compact. The Battery life is great with the option of a removable battery. Very good shake cancelation. Impressive low light for a camera this small. Great video. Pretty good still image snaps. Great Storage. The only downside is sonys proprietary connections and also the manual focus. It is what you make out of it. It’s pretty much the complete package. So if your looking into getting an HD camera I’d highly recommend checking out the Sony CX500v.