Best Camera and Sound for Street Magic Videos

I have filmed and uploaded hundreds of street magic videos to my social media. Through trial and error I have found the best camera and audio to use for incredible quality videos every time.

The absolute best camera is The Canon G7X (click to see on Amazon). The video quality is amazing, the camera is small (not much bigger than a deck of cards), and it is super easy to use. I keep it on AUTO and press record. That’s it! Anyone can hold the camera and film you.

Sound quality is so important, I learned this the hard way. For every single video I make I use the Tascam DR-10L Digital Audio Recorder (click to see on Amazon). It is a lavaliere microphone that clips onto your shirt with a tiny receiver (half the size of a deck of cards) that either goes in your pocket or clips on your belt or waste line. It is light and very easy to use. I turn it on and press record.

I recommend you get both of these items. If you are considering purchasing only one, definitely go with the audio recorder.

Tascam DR-10L Specs

  • Half the size of a deck of cards.
  • Weighs less than a deck of cards.
  • Easy to carry.
  • Easy to use.
  • Amazing sound quality.
  • Can be setup and ready to go in 30 seconds.
  • Takes 1 AAA battery which lasts forever.
  • All I press is power on and record.

Why You Need an External Microphone

If you use the audio from the camera it will be hard to hear and muffled. Even when I film in my quiet apartment and I am close to the camera I use the Tascam. I have tested the sound with and without the Tascam and the difference is night and day.

When filming street magic you have to capture your spectator’s reactions and be able to hear what you say and what they say. A lavaliere microphone picks this up beautifully.

Microphone Setup

I usually put the base in my back pocket. If I have no free space in my pocket I clip it onto my waste line or belt. The Tascam is super light and small and doesn’t get in the way. I have tried other types of external microphones that are too big and heavy and usually get in the way.

street film

I snake the wire along my waste line and tuck into my pants so it is hidden. I then run the wire up my shirt, out the top, and clip it onto my shirt. If you look closely you can see the microphone in all the pictures. It is hardly noticeable. That is me performing street magic in real time with the Tascam and G7X.

Many times when filming an intro or outro where it is just my upper body I don’t even clip on the microphone. I just hold it below camera level while I speak.

Syncing Audio and Video

You can use this microphone with any video, even your phone. You will have to sync the audio and video which is very easy to do and well worth the effort. I edit in Final Cut Pro. All I do is import the audio and video files, highlight both, control click, and click synchronize. That’s it, done! It takes 2 seconds. If your editing software doesn’t have this feature you can still sync it by sight. I used to do this when I edited in iMovie. It is easy.

What Makes Tascam The Best

I have tried a bunch of other external microphones. I have a very expensive one that automatically syncs directly with the camera. It has a transmitter and a receiver. Both units are heavy and complicated and you have to sync their frequencies each time. It doesn’t work with the G7X or your phone and requires a much more advanced camera which is unnecessary.

I own a Rode mic that goes on top of your camera. It is bulky and the sound doesn’t even compare to the Tascam. That sits in my drawer.

I bought a really good digital microphone that plugged into my iphone. The unit broke several times. In fact, when I was about to perform for Justin Timberlake one time the unit wasn’t responding. I was so mad and swore I would find a better way. After that I consulted with professional wedding videographers who make videos for a living at real events. They have no room for error. They recommended the Tascam.

The Tascam has never failed me. The battery life is incredible, the sound quality is the best there is, and it is easy to use so I can focus on my magic tricks.

Canon G7X Specs

  • Slightly larger than a deck of cards.
  • Weighs less than a pound.
  • Easy to carry.
  • Easy to use.
  • Always ready to go.
  • Amazing video quality.
  • You can zoom while recording video.
  • All I press is power on and record.

Does Size Matter

The size of your camera is so important. People don’t like to be filmed, in general. Yet they will usually tolerate it. If you have a big DSLR camera people are going to be far less willing to let you film them. If you have a small camera most people will be ok with it.

The G7X is small and easy to carry around with you. Many times I have pressed record and handed it to someone I don’t know. I usually ask them to please film my performance. I tell them to film the tricks and then the reactions. They don’t have to press anything, all I show them is the zoom if they want to use it. People are happy to help. I would not want to hand anyone a big camera. This is why the G7X is perfect.

What Makes The G7X The Best

The video quality is amazing, consistently. The auto focus is awesome. I have better results with the G7X than I do with any of the other cameras I own. I own 4 cameras. 2 are DSLRs, 1 is a mirrorless. I have filmed with all of them plus I have filmed with my iPhone. The G7X by far is the best camera for filming street magic.

Can You Use Your Phone

Absolutely. The quality is pretty good. I am putting a link below to a street magic video I made. The first half was filmed with my iPhone, the second half was filmed with the G7X. The G7X is definitely better and more consistent, especially when the lighting isn’t great.

YouTube Video Filmed with Iphone & G7X

If you are just getting started or your budget is tight, use your phone. If you can afford it and want the best quality video possible, I highly recommend you invest in the G7X.