Since August 2017, when I purchased this camera, I’ve been using an Olympus Tough TG-4 waterproof digital camera for all of my photography and filming needs.
One of my biggest disappointments with this model has been the quality of audio recorded while filming outdoors. There’s not much I can do about the noise from the camera lens but I have often found the wind noise to be unacceptable (even with ‘wind noise reduction’ setting activated.
For a few months, I survived with a home-made remedy, with a strip of double-sided tape and a piece of 8mm thick foam mat on top… But the foam wasn’t to last very long and it would almost go too far in reducing the capture of audio generally.
So, quite recently, I decided to invest in the Micromuff Skinny wind muffler.
Along with the original model (which is probably best-suited to SLR cameras), Micromuff have produced the Skinny (which fits my point-and-shoot camera well) and they also have the Fat Boy muffler, which looks to be a good bet for a more conventional camcorder.
To determine which one will fit your camera, you simply need to locate the microphone(s) and measure them. Then compare these measurements with the dimensions given online for each of the velcro rings.
These rings (they’re square or rectangular, rather than round) stick to the camera with a self-adhesive backing on the underside, while the velcro on the top connects with the mating half underneath the actual muffler, which means you can easily remove it when not required (or, when it might be raining).
I was reluctant to spend £12 on such a small package. But already, I’m impressed with the results and it’s less troublesome that trying to make your own and source the materials that you may not have on hand.
Each kit comes with two of the self-adhesive rings. One could be viewed as a spare… Alternatively, you may have two cameras and wish to share the one ‘dead cat’ between them.
If I had to try and get scientific about things, I’d say that the Micromuff Mini reduces the interference of wind noise by around 90%. I think it would be very difficult to completely eradicate it on a camera like this, where the top surface isn’t perfectly flat and – as you can possibly see above – this means the velcro doesn’t sit flat and may allow gusts to creep in.
I’m now using this configuration in my YouTube videos and you’ll be able to decide for yourselves, as time goes on.
In an ideal world, I’d have a camera with an external microphone port and that mic would be fitted with its own muffler. I realise that, even in today’s day and age, it’s a bit much to expect a £300 camera to take good quality photos, film AND sound quality without a compromise or two along the way.
While I like using this camera for photography and timelapses, I’d like something that does a slightly better job at filming. Over the next year, I’ll either be looking at a GoPro (probably the Hero 5) or possibly a waterproof camcorder (like the JVC Everio, although they lack a mic-in port and it looks as though you cannot easily swap batteries… But they are waterproof).
My debate over which camera/camcorder to purchase is a topic I’ll save for another day and probably in 2019.