Media Training Tip: Never Use a Computer’s Built in Microphone

Media Training Tip: Never Use a Computer’s Built-in Microphone


Built-in microphones on most computers are horrible; and if they aren’t, chances are that your mouth is too far away from them so the sound still ends up being horrible.


I am constantly amazed at how organizations will spend a lot of time, money and resources putting on a live webinar or seminar with people attending in-person and remotely via Go To Meeting, Skype, Google Hangouts or WebEx and nobody can understand the speaker because he/she is talking 10 feet away from a laptop built-in microphone.


My recommendation is to always use a microphone that plugs into either the computer or camera you are using. You don’t have to spend thousands or even hundreds of dollars buying a mic. I occasionally use a simple lavalier microphone I bought on Amazon for $6 dollars (and that was new, not used).


In general, any cheap microphone is going to be better than a commuter’s built-in microphone, even if your computer costs several thousands dollars. So I beg you, if you are in charge of putting on a webinar, speech or seminar where people are watching/listening remotely, please make sure all speakers are speaking into a real mic. Otherwise, you will find your audience signing off and abandoning he webinar very quickly.


Of course if you are going to do long-from podcasts on a regular basis, you do need a higher quality microphone. But for an occasional 10 minute to one hour webinar or conference that is being share via the web, almost any microphone will do the trick.


TJ Walker is president of Media Training Worldwide. You can find his online training courses here.

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