Sometimes, the action camera mics onboard microphones don’t work well enough. You need better sound quality, so you either have it or you’d like to buy some.
You have your action camera to capture amazing video and photos. Why not use standalone audio equipment that can also be used for recording the footage?
This page lists and ranks the top action cameras that have an external mic input. You can add a microphone to some of the cameras in this list by purchasing a Mini USB-3.5mm Female Jack adapter. This adapter may be necessary to improve audio quality with your microphone equipment.
An action camera can be used with an external microphone if it has USB type-C connection. This also includes the 10 pins needed to send the audio signal through, such as mini USB.
We also offer sorting options. If you don’t have the budget for a high-end action camera, you can still get one with an external mic input and a battery length option.
Which action cameras work with external microphones?
An action camera can be purchased with a mini USB input or 3.5mm Jack input. You can also use an external microphone in most cases.
The type-c micro USB camera must have the firmware installed to allow for an external microphone to be used.
The Yi 4K has micro USB Type C and you couldn’t use an external mic with it when it was released. The firmware update was released and you can now use external microphones by connecting a microphone with a microUSB Type-C converter.
You’d be better off buying an action camera with miniUSB or at least 3.5mm ports to ensure it can work with an external mic. However, some cameras will also work with external mics that have the USB type C.
Why an External Microphone
There are many reasons you might need separate audio recording. Many people will have completely different needs after using an external mic. We have the best action cameras with external microphone input.
There are many uses for this. Vloggers are the first to come to mind. You come in many shapes and sizes, and can vlog about anything from product reviews to everyday life to motorcycle vlogging. An external microphone input is a great addition to your action camera. This will allow you to communicate clearly with your audience, especially if your activity involves motorcycling or other activities that may be difficult for you.
An action camera has a microphone, but how can I connect it?
There are many connection options available when buying an action camera. You may need to purchase additional equipment to connect your microphones to the camera.
The first is the 3.5mm female Jack input. This will accept a 3.5mm male lead from any microphone you already own or want to purchase. Although this is an easy option, it is not the most common on action cameras.
You can also choose a mini USB or micro USB Type C camera. These have the 10 pins that are required to transmit the audio signal from your mic to the camera. These adapters will need to be purchased to convert the mic into a female 3.5mm audio connector. You can then plug in your microphone to the camera.
USB Type C to 3.5mm Female Jack Converter.
Mini USB to Female Jack Converter.
While some action cameras may not have their own mic input equipment, there are many available on Amazon, Banggood and Gearbest.
Once you have this, you can start to look into getting a simple Lavalier mic setup for your action camera.
Action cameras with mini USB ports
You can buy mini USB mics at a lower price directly from the manufacturer with mini USB ports. SJCam is an example brand that allows you to plug the mic right out of your camera.
This is the most cost-effective way to add an external microphone to your action cam. You can simply plug the mic in to any one of these action cameras, or a mini USB port, and start recording better sound.
SJCam offers a mini USB microphone that can be used with your GoPro, and it is very affordable compared to other accessories, mods, and adapters.
SooCoo also has an external mini USB microphone, which works only with their cameras.
Action Cameras with 3.5mm Audio Mic Jack
Here are some action cameras with an integrated 3.5mm audio port. This allows you to plug in a microphone directly into the port.
This is the fastest, most cost-effective and easiest way to add an external microphone to your action cam. It should have a 3.5mm audio port so you can plug in any microphone with a male 3.5mm jack.
They are not compatible with the USB-C camera adapters we discuss below or the mini usb microphones that SooCoo and SJCam used above.
You can plug in any microphone that you have with the 3.5mm audio port and go.
Action cameras with USB Type C
You can connect an action camera microphone attachment to USB Type C. This allows you to record external audio outside of the built mics on your action camera.
These cameras have USB Type C. You can purchase an adapter depending on your brand and plug it into your camera’s USB Type C female port. Then plug in a microphone attachment of your choice.
However, this is not the case with all action cameras. Some manufacturers block you from using third-party microphone attachments and force your purchase of their brand.
This is a list that includes attachments to allow you to use your action camera with an external microphone. If your brand is not on this list, don’t worry. You still have options with mini USB ports and 3.5mm Jack if you’re interested in a new action cam.
DJI Osmo External Microphone Adapter
If you need external audio recording, the USB–C to 3.5mm microphone adapter can be used with your DJI Pocket.
You can also use a third-party like the Cynova Osmo Action dual 3.5mm adapter, which is much cheaper and offers a great alternative.
GoPro External Microphone Adapter
The mic adapter is available for older GoPros such as GoPro Hero 3+, GoPro Hero 3+, and GoPro Hero 4 Black. This allows you to plug in any 3.5mm microphone you wish to record to your GoPro.
You can use this mic adapter to convert your GoPro from USB-C into 3.5mm if you have a newer GoPro such as the GoPro Hero 5 Black Session, GoPro Hero 6 Black and GoPro Hero 7 Black.
Insta360 One External Microphone Adapter
You will also need a special Insta360 mic adapter if you want to use external microphone on your action camera, you can buy that from the Insta360 official store here