10 Best Shotgun Microphones For Film, Video & Interviews 2023


Shotgun microphones are ubiquitous across film sets and extremely helpful for capturing dialogue whether we are talking filmmaking, corporate videos, interviews, or vlogging.

Their versatility and range make them usable in many different situations, and their directional pickup pattern gives filmmakers plenty of control in the audio they record.

That said, there are many different brands (and prices) within the world of shotgun microphones. There are also many different features between these microphones which may affect their usability depending on the project.

The microphones listed below are some of the best shotgun microphones on the market.

In order to service all filmmakers, I have included selections for minimal budgets as well as professional-grade shotgun mics.

I have also made sure to include a variety of microphones, from long shotgun microphones that are very sensitive and have extremely directional pickup patterns to DSLR mounted on-camera shotgun mics.

In this list, there are options for everybody.

1. Rode VideoMic Pro+ Camera-Mount Shotgun Microphone

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Weight: 4.30 oz / 122 g

Dimensions: 111 x 66 x 170mm / 4.37 x 2.60 x 6.69″

Polar Pattern: Supercardioid

Frequency Range: 20 Hz to 20 kHz

Connectivity: 1/8″ / 3.5mm minijack (detachable)

Power: LB-1 Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery, 2 x AA, or micro-USB

Strengths: The Rode VideoMic Pro is a great on-camera shotgun microphone that can be mounted on DSLRs and mirrorless cameras via a shoe mount or used with a boom pole with a 3/8” thread.

This microphone also features a two-stage high-pass filter and a gain switch (0, +20, -10db), which allows for more control over your audio.

The mic can be powered by 2 x AA batteries, LB-1 Litium-Ion rechargeable battery (included), or continuously via micro USB. It also features an integrated shock mount to reduce handling noises.

It also turns off automatically when you detach it from your camera.

Weaknesses: Due to its short length, the pickup pattern of the Rode VideoMic Pro is not very tight. In order to not collect background audio, you will need to be relatively close to your subject.

Using a 1/8” cable is not super secure and has some hiss compared to a balanced XLR-connection.

Description: The Rode VideoMic Pro+ is one of the most common cameras mounted microphones and with good reason. It is affordable and collects great audio for run and gun filmmakers and independent filmmakers.

Though possible to mount on a boom, this microphone’s strengths and size make it ideal for operating as a camera mounted microphone. For the best results, try to keep within three feet while using the Rode VideoMic Pro+.

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2. Rode NTG2 Shotgun Microphone

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Weight: 5.68 oz / 161 g

Dimensions: 0.87” x 11.02” / 22 mm x 280 mm

Polar Pattern: Supercardioid

Frequency Range: 20 Hz to 20 kHz

Connectivity: XLR 3-Pin

Power: AA (or Phantom)

Strengths: The Rode NTG2 is a very solid microphone at an affordable price. At 11” long it is still quite directional while remaining easy to carry.

It has an option to run on an AA battery or phantom power which gives you flexibility with your set up. It is also possible to buy it in bundles, with a shock mount and windscreen included.

Weaknesses: The Rode NTG2 is not the most ergonomically built microphone. When used with a shock mount and dead cat, it is difficult to change the battery.

Additionally, there is no warning light or indication of a low battery. Be sure to use this microphone with a good preamp. Compared to more expensive microphones, its sound is also a bit more hallow.

Description: The Rode NTG2 is a great entry level shotgun microphone to use with a boom or other set up. Multiple power options make it versatile, and an XLR connection makes it much more secure than the VideoMic Pro. For a first shotgun microphone on a low budget, this is a great choice.

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3. Audio-Technica AT897 Shotgun Microphone

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Weight: 5.11 oz / 145 g

Dimensions: 0.83” x 10.98” / 21 mm x 279 mm

Polar Pattern: Lobar, Supercardioid

Frequency Range: 20 Hz to 20 kHz

Connectivity: XLR 3-Pin

Power: AA

Strengths: The Audio-Technica AT897 Shotgun Microphone is well-built and great for recording audio in the field or a studio. It does well to limit extraneous and off-axis noise and is most effective at up to three feet, though can still be used from further distances.

Weaknesses: Depending on your preferences, the fact that this microphone is only usable with an AA battery may be a negative. The audio is also not as rich as more expensive microphones, and a little bit of background noise can be heard.

Description: This microphone is a great shotgun microphone for lower-budget productions. It is very directional, making it extremely useful in the field or studios. To run it requires an AA battery, and the AT897 should be paired with a shock mount (and windscreen if outside).

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4. Rode NTG4 Shotgun Microphone

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Weight: 4.44 oz / 126 g

Dimensions: 0.87” x 8.86” / 22 mm x 225 mm

Polar Pattern: Supercardioid

Frequency Range: 20 Hz to 20 kHz

Connectivity: XLR 3-Pin

Power: Phantom

Strengths: The Rode NTG4 is an upgrade from earlier entry-level shotgun microphones such as the NTG2. It is more balanced and has better mid-range sounds. The build quality is very solid, and it has a built-in high pass filter, decibel boost, and picks up very little noise.

Weaknesses: The regular NTG4 has no battery and relies on phantom power. NTG4+ has the option for battery power, but it is longer in order to accommodate that. The directionality of the NTG4 is pretty average, with the microphone working best at around three feet away. There is also some self-noise from the microphone.

Description: The Rode NTG4 is a great mid-level microphone. This shotgun microphone is great for picking up audio for an independent filmmaker and does a great job at capturing rich and well-balanced mid-range sounds.

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5. Shure VP83F LensHopper Shotgun Microphone

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Weight: 7.6 oz / 215.46 g

Dimensions: 3.8” x 6.6” / 96.52 mm x 167.64 mm

Polar Pattern: Lobar, Supercardioid

Frequency Range: 50 Hz to 20 kHz

Connectivity: 1/8″ / 3.5 mm

Power: 2 x AA

Strengths: The Shure VP83F is an amazing on-camera shotgun microphone and extremely useful for run and gun filmmakers and guerilla-style filmmaking.

It features a built-in shock mount and comes with a windscreen which is great for filming outdoors.

It also can record directly to an internal SD card and be synced later, which allows you to not rely on a camera preamp and can be more secure.

Weaknesses: The build quality of this microphone can feel a bit flimsy, especially with the joystick menu controls. The short length also limits side rejection of sounds, making it less directional than other shotgun microphones.

The menu controls are also somewhat cumbersome and the battery life shorter than competitive models at around 10 hours.

Description: The Shure VP83F is a wonderful on-camera microphone and is very useful for filmmakers on the go. It features a compact size, while still recording rich audio.

Additionally, the option to record audio to an SD card lets you avoid having to rely on camera preamps, which can leave a lot to be desired.

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6. Sennheiser MKE 600 Shotgun Microphone

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Weight: 4.52 oz / 128 g

Dimensions: 0.79” x 10.08” / 20 mm x 256 mm

Polar Pattern: Lobar, Supercardioid

Frequency Range: 40 Hz to 20 kHz

Connectivity: XLR 3-Pin

Power: AA or Phantom Power

Strengths: The Sennheiser MKE 600 is a mid-range shotgun microphone that offers filmmakers great audio and a very directional pickup pattern.

A switchable low-cut filter allows you to minimize wind noise, and it is possible to get this microphone packaged with a windshield and shock mount.

The MKE 600 also features AA and phantom power options, increasing the microphone’s versatility.

Weaknesses: There are not a lot of weaknesses with the MKE 600, especially considering its affordability. That said, the audio is a bit lacking in the low range and the included shock mount not great.

Like most shotgun microphones, picking up a separate shock mount and windscreen is suggested.

Description: The Sennheiser MKE 600 is a wonderful mid-range shotgun microphone. Still accessible to independent filmmakers, this microphone offers exceptional sound and is highly directional.

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7. Sony ECM-678/9X Shotgun Microphone

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Weight: 7 oz / 198 g

Dimensions: 0.79” x 9.9” / 20 mm x 251.46 mm

Polar Pattern: Supercardioid

Frequency Range: 40Hz to 20kHz

Connectivity: XLR 3-Pin

Power: Phantom

Strengths: The Sony ECM-678/9X is an incredible microphone that produces amazing and very clean audio. Its directionality makes it very well suited for field use and the high sensitivity allows you to capture audio at impressive ranges.

Weaknesses: This microphone is entering prosumer grade quality, making it less accessible to low budget filmmakers. It only operates via phantom power and does not feature certain controls such as low pass filters and decibel boosts.

Description: The Sony ECM-678/9X is not a commonly discussed microphone, though that shouldn’t stop you from considering it. The audio is professional-grade at a decent price. Though it lacks certain features that make other microphones more user-friendly, this shotgun mic is still capable of picking up quality audio.

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8. Rode NTG8 Long Shotgun Microphone

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Weight: 12.17 oz / 345 g

Dimensions: 0.75” x 22.01” / 1.9 cm x 55.9 cm

Polar Pattern: Supercardioid

Frequency Range: 40 Hz to 20 kHz

Connectivity: XLR 3-Pin

Power: Phantom

Strengths: The Rode NTG8 is an extremely high-quality microphone. It is well built and designed to withstand high humidity and adverse environments. There is very low self-noise and the NTG8 is sold with a shock mount to reducing handling noise.

Weaknesses: The biggest weakness of the Rode NTG8 is the price. This is a professional-grade microphone and is inaccessible for most indie filmmakers.

This microphone is also 22 inches long which can be cumbersome. The power supply is also only through phantom power which can affect usability.

Description: If it is within your budget, it is hard to go wrong with the Rode NTG8.

This microphone is extremely directional, has high sensitivity, and is durable.

It produces extremely natural-sounding audio while emitting hardly any self-noise. Being weather proofed is a huge plus, putting your mind at ease and letting the microphone be used in a variety of settings.

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9. Sennheiser MKH 416-P48U3 Shotgun Microphone

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Weight: 6.17 oz / 175 g

Dimensions: 0.75” x 9.84” / 19 mm x 249.94 mm

Polar Pattern: Lobar, Supercardioid

Frequency Range: 40 Hz to 20 kHz

Connectivity: XLR 3-Pin

Power: Phantom

Strengths: The Sennheiser MKH 416 is a professional grade microphone and performs as such. It is highly sensitive and directional with great noise rejection.

The MKH 416 is used professionally in film, television, and voice over with good reason. It is also moisture resistant, allowing the microphone to be used in a variety of conditions without worry.

Weaknesses: There are hardly any weaknesses to the Sennheiser MKH 416 except maybe the price.

Description: The MKH 416 is used professionally in film and television and has been industry standard for some time. It captures voices richly up to six feet, and around 15 feet it can still collect acceptable audio.

Being moisture resistant and durably built, this microphone can be used in a variety of situations, from recording studios to fieldwork.

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10. Shure VP89L Modular Shotgun Microphone

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Weight: 6.1 oz / 172g

Dimensions: 15.21″ / 386.334 mm

Polar Pattern: Hypercardioid, Lobar

Frequency Range: 60Hz to 20kHz

Connectivity: XLR 3-Pin

Power: Phantom

Strengths: The Shure VP89L is another professional grade shotgun microphone. It has some of the best off-axis rejection of the microphones listed and picks up extremely natural audio.

The VP89 also has a low-frequency roll-off switch which can eliminate noise under 200Hz. This microphone is also modular, meaning it is possible to buy medium and short barrels to fit a variety of recording needs.

Weaknesses: There are not many weaknesses to the VP89 microphone. However, it requires phantom power, so you will need a separate audio recording device.

Description: The Shure VP89 is a super versatile microphone, and the long barrel ensures very directional pickup with minimal off-axis sound.

Being able to change the barrel between a medium and short length is a wonderful way to increase the usability of a singular microphone.

If it is within your budget, it is difficult to go wrong with the Shure VP89.

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No matter who you are as a filmmaker, a shotgun microphone will help ensure you have the best quality audio and can help set your mind at ease if used as back up audio.

Listed above are ten of the best shotgun microphones available to filmmakers on a variety of budgets.

Depending on your needs, some of these microphones may be much more useful than others, however, all are safe bets if you’re looking to improve your audio.

Many of the microphones mentioned require phantom power, so a separate audio recorder will be necessary.

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Personally, I recommend the Zoom H4N Pro (link to Amazon) for filmmakers on a budget. This will let you monitor your levels, adjust your preamp, and supply power to microphones that need it.

Also, picking up a boom pole in tandem with a shotgun microphone is strongly recommended to get the most out of your purchase.

An on-camera microphone may be all that’s needed for a project, however even if you’re collecting audio with lavaliers or another method, having a shotgun microphone as another source of audio can come in handy.

If you want to learn more about shotgun microphones and how they work, I have written A Guide To Shotgun Microphones And Boom Poles For Filmmaking that gives you an overview of their functionality and best practices.

If you’re only interested in on-camera microphones (like the first one from Rode on this list) you should check out our guide Top 8 Best Budget On-Camera Shotgun Microphones.

Cade photo round

Cade Taylor is a filmmaker and writer based out of Los Angeles. Originally from Seattle, he continues to work as the Outreach Coordinator for the Bigfoot Script Challenge, where he helps connect up-and-coming writers with industry professionals. When he’s not working on his own projects, helping out with Bigfoot, or covering desks, Cade loves to share what he knows with other filmmakers and promote great content.

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