The 7 Best Acting Self Tape Tools Under $20

Did you know that sound is the most important element of a film or tv show? Without realistic, good quality sound, even the most beautiful looking movie could fall flat. Top Line Film agrees, “Sound is important because it engages audiences: it helps deliver information, it increases the production value, it evokes emotional responses, it emphasizes what’s on the screen and is used to indicate mood. When put to good use, language, sound effects, music, and even silence, can elevate your video dramatically.”

So let’s get your sound game on point for your self tapes! With these recommendations below, you can’t go wrong. First thing’s first–if you have a newer iPhone you’re filming on, you’ll need THIS adapter. Don’t make the rookie mistake of being without one!

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3 Awesome Lavalier Mics

1) POPVoice Lavalier – Super Low Price and Great Reviews

This is a cost-effective lapel microphone, which is sure to be better quality than your built-in mic. You can easily hide this under your clothes to give a sleek look while doing your self-tapes. Be sure to test your sound before you do your flawless audition to make sure there’s no rubbing or interference.

2) Rode SmartLav – Amazing Quality, Industry Standard

You really can’t go wrong with a RODE microphone. The price is a bit steeper than the first mice listed, but you’ll get broadcast quality sound with this professional-grade Lavalier Mic with a TRRS Jack. This guy has a high-quality omni-directional condenser capsule; discrete 4.5 millimeter miniature microphone. It’s also kevlar reinforced cable ensures that you never stretch or snap your microphone!

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3) SoLID Lavalier 2 Pack – Amazon’s Choice

These lavalier microphones have exceeded people’s expectations! This two pack is great for you and your self tape partner off camera to sound like pros. SoLID has included everything you need to use the microphone out of box without having to worry about compatibility issues. Once again, this set is great for the price, and will give you good quality audio without static or buzzing.

3 Stellar Shotgun Mics

1) Movo Shotgun Mic – Best Seller on Amazon

This shotgun mic has universal compatibility for your devices. The durable aluminum construction and battery-free design includes a sturdy integrated shock mount to minimize handling noise. It’s a great compact shotgun microphone for your self tapes that comes with a furry windscreen, soft case, and all the cables you’ll need to be compatible with your smartphone. Also, there’s a 1 year warranty!

2) Comica Shotgun Kit – The Whole Rig for Your Home Studio

This is a great way to take your smartphone self tapes to the next level and provide better sound and overall shooting experience. This mic is made specifically for avid smartphone photographers, filmmakers, actors, journalists and travelers. The cardioid microphone with a professional shock mount is super shielded and anti-interference. It’s got great reviews, and for your home studio, it can’t go wrong!

3) Moukey Shotgun Mic – Great Price and Quality

This mic has universal compatibility with smartphones and most DSLR cameras. With a unidirectional microphone it is primarily sensitive to sounds in front of the camera and can reduce background noise, which is great for self tapes! It has an aluminum-made body which protects the sound recording quality from the interference by a high level of radio frequency. This shotgun features a shock-absorption shock mount, which is super effective at minimizing unwanted vibrational noise.


ULANZI U Rig Pro Smartphone Video Rig, Filmmaking Case, Phone Video Stabilizer Grip Tripod Mount for Videomaker Film-Maker Video-grapher for iPhone Xs XS Max XR iPhone X 8 Plus Samsung

This is the rig mount I referred to earlier. This will allow you to mount a mic, lights  and other accessories to your phone. Plus you can mount the whole thing on top of your tripod. It’s a great way to allow for better and better gear done the line. 

AmazonBasics Tripod Boom Microphone Stand

This is a simple mic stand you can use to mount some of the shotgun mics or other mics you might get. Mounting the mic closer to the performer, above the camera and just out of frame get the best results. 


Peak Music Stands Music Stand (SMS-20)

This music stand can be used to set an audio recorder on or anything else really (props or something for the scene). Use it like a table if you like. Plus it folds up smaller than any music stand I’ve ever seen!