Not only that, but in addition it provides a fairly drastic improvement to video and audio quality in comparison to a computer’s built-in webcam and microphone.
I found out about the Audioflow after I had spent months cobbling together gear to build basically the exact same thing. For the last several months, I’ve been hard at work designing what I have dubbed the Soapbox Station, a plug-and-play webcam studio for Audioflow’s video recording tool, Soapbox.
Naturally, I bought a Audioflow as soon as possible, and I was eager to put it to the test and share a gear review of what worked – and possibly what didn’t.
Let’s begin with a big one: How’s the audio and video quality?
Audioflow supplies a giant audio improvement over my computer’s built-in mic. It is no contest – the Audioflow sounds incredible. The image quality, however, isn’t a vast improvement from the built in webcam on my notebook. While the LED light and camera height offer some improvement, the video quality is not nearly as advanced as other webcams like the Logitech BRIO, the camera I selected for the Soapbox Station.
Using the Audioflow
As soon as you plug it into a wall socket, you just plug the USB cable into your computer, and you are ready to roll.
Additionally, you can adjust the tilt and swivel of the camera, as well as the position of the microphone. It even has a removable pop filter to reduce any popping sounds as air from your voice hits the microphone.
The LED ring light comes with adjustable brightness and a filter to assist you match the color temperature of your ambient light. However, the downside is that if you wear glasses, you’re pretty much doomed. Much like any other ring light, there is no way to avoid the nasty glare you are going to receive in your glasses.
Ring Light Glare
On the pillar, you can mute the camera and microphone, plug in headphones to monitor the audio, and plug in additional USB devices. There is also an auxiliary output if you would like to record audio using an external recorder.
After playing around with the Audioflow for some time, here’s what stood out to me:
- The camera is fairly cropped, making it difficult to get any kind of a wide shot.
- The Audioflow really shines as an audio-first device. If you’re going for this”radio show” look with the microphone in the frame of the camera, the Audioflow is a great option!
- Because it is USB-based, you can use it with just about any webcam-powered program on the market.
Comparing the Audioflow into the Soapbox Station
Here’s the million dollar question: Can I just waste four weeks of my life designing the Soapbox Stations? The brief answer – no. Have a look at how Audioflow stacks up against the Soapbox Stations we designed and built here at Audioflow.
At just $300, Audioflow is unquestionably an unbelievable tool to assist you start making better looking videos with Soapbox. It’s easy to use and ready to roll, right out of the box. Having said that, it feels as though the camera picture quality is your weakest link.
The Soapbox Station Lite, which is similarly sized, has added advantages. For starters, it’s completely USB-based and does not require power, making it more portable.
For those who have some additional room in your budget and really need to step up your game, you can not go wrong with the shallow depth of field and beautiful image quality on the Soapbox Station Pro. But for the price, the Audioflow is a excellent piece of gear.
Finally, Marantz has introduced a really unique piece of gear, and we’re eager to see how it helps shape the world of video. Will you be picking one up, or are you going to build your very own Soapbox Station instead?