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Record video with a USB mic on Android

We just started recording video clips for the blog a couple of weeks ago. We used our Sony Xperia Tablet Z5 for the recording and the video quality is acceptable. But it didn’t take long for us to realize that the sound was lacking in more than one way. The volume was too low, background sound was too high and it just gives a cheap and unprofessional feel to the whole video. Solution? Lets just record video with a USB mic on Android.

USB mic with androidSo we looked around and found that the Yeti, from Blue Microphones, was a good and quite affordable mic. What we didn’t realize was that the people recommending the microphone were using it for recording podcasts and audio, not video. This came as a quite unpleasant surprise when we unpacked the Yeti and didn’t get it to work with anything. We were able to record audio, but which ever camera app we tried on the tablet, the only audio it picked up was from the internal microphone. By bedtime I had gotten it to work on our Windows 10 laptop. The trick there was to inactivate the internal mic. But since the computer has a like 2 MP webcam we didn’t want to use the as an alternative.

Normally in these situations, the internet is ones best friend. You make a couple of searches and find the answer in some tech forum where someone has had the same concern as you. But the only results we found was that Android 5.0 finally enables USB audio. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work while recording video with your camera. Or does it?

The solution:

After installing, testing and uninstalling a dussin camera apps or so I finally found one that works! Best thing is that its free! The app that allows and can find an external USB microphone (like the Blue Yeti) is Open camera. How you get it to work? Simple:

  1. Download and install open camera on your Android device. Make sure you device has Android 5.0 or higher and supports OTG (On-The-Go) USB.
  2. Connect the Blue Yeti to your device via a USB OTG cable with, a male micro USB connector-to-female full size USB port.
  3. Make sure your device has found detected the USB mic. If it has, the microphones diode will light up. If it doesn’t do this automatically, try going to setting -> device connectivity -> Connect USB device (on an Xperia).
  4. Start the Open Camera app.
  5. Go to settings -> video setting -> audio source and choose “External mic (if present)”.
  6. Set any other settings you need to get the right video quality and start recording your video.

There are probably other camera apps out there that work with a USB mic other than Open Camera. If you’ve found any alternatives that work well, please write in the comments below.

Good luck!

Detta inlägg skrev vi på engelska eftersom vi upptäcke att det inte fanns ett svar på vår fråga någonstans i våra söknigar och vi vill kunna nå och hjälpa andra vilsna googlare.

17 kommentarer till “Record video with a USB mic on Android”

    1. Hi Ken!
      If you have a mic that supports an aux audio via 3.5 mm jack it should work. I haven’t tried this so I can’t say for sure.
      But in my search for an app that worked with a USB device mic I found that there were more apps that supported external mics via 3.5 mm.
      Good luck!

  1. I’ve been searching for this solution for months. Thanks for the tips, I can now use my USB mic on my Android phone 🙂

    1. You’re so welcome! If you find another better recorder app, please comment. Open camera is OK and all, but some time I wonder if there might be something better out there. Then again, we could always hope for android to fix the issue so that it works everywhere.

  2. Incredible but true! I have a Blue Yeti Pro microphone for over 3 years. When I bought my new Samsung A5, just a couple weeks ago, I tried hooking it up to my phone… did work as a soundcard, but not as a microphone. Today I got the chance to buy a standard Yeti for a real bargain price. Tried it on my phone, without hope of it working. Guess what? Works flawlessly!! So a cheap used microphone works better than a super expensive, top of the line one! Just a little downside, you have to put the gain really low if not it distords if you are really close to it, as well as in Windows. Guess the Yeti were all like that. But hey, finally got my problem sorted out! Thanks guys!

  3. yuhuuu, thank you so much. I was trying a lot. Audio recording was no problem, but i had trouble to record video and audio via usb from my zoom h5. With tis camera app it was easy! Thank y@ou for saving me tring hundreds of camera apps!

  4. Can’t get it to work on Huawei P9. There is a USB setting in developer options where I can set USB mode to audio source but can’t get any of my usb audio interfaced to work with Open Camera. I tried two interfaced: Digitech RP500 and Korg Pandora PX5D. I also trief with different camera app – Cinema FV-5 Lite but with no success. Both of my audio interfaces have their own power supply so the power is not the issue.

  5. This worked … BUT – the video and audio are out of sync, seriously: like several seconds out of sync at the end of a 40 second video test.

    I did some research and it appears it’s an issue of sample rates: Open Camera supports 41k and Blue Yeti is 48k. As far as I can see there’s no way to change Open Camera’s audio sample rate and Blue Yeti flat out says on their web site that they don’t support users changing it — they actually say, “Sorry, geeks.” Nice.

    It’s frustrating that everything worked up to a point. Oh well. If you have any suggestions I would love to hear it.


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