One thing I frequently mention in the Fan Filmmaker's Primer thread
here is that "sound trumps picture", and rotten sound demolishes everything. I always stress to fan filmmakers that they need to get decent mics, record sound to something other than the camera, and set up a proper acoustical environment on set to ensure decent sound (e.g. sound blankets). In fact, sound is so important that some professionals get thrown off in rough cuts because of the uneven/unmixed sound. This is very true of fan filmmakers, too, so much so that when showing rough edits to those people I do a lot of sound work on the rough edits so that people will not be distracted by it, even though I really shouldn't mess with the sound at all until the edit is locked.
Oh I do agree with that, I'll take bad video over bad audio.
I've seen a lot of independant films. I've heard audio so bad that the microphones kept buzzing and hissing at different levels. It's because one take the mic volume was too low, and when they amplified it, they amplified the RF noise. And I kept thinking "Some copper tape and electrical tape would really come in hand for that microphone cord (to increase RF shielding).
And then I've heard audio where they are outside talking and the wind is blowing and all I can think of is "wind screens are your friend"
And of course all the scenes in laundry mats and the like with so much background sound and I am thinking either do voice overs, or wait until people turn off the machines.
And there is that weird phenomenon where in one shot the sound is fine, but when it cuts to a second camera to get the persons reaction you hear a loud buzzing. I am guessing each camera had a different microphone.