Best USB Microphones

Best USB Microphones

Best USB Microphones 2018/2019

Buying the perfect USB microphone to record your vocals or instruments is not easy. There are many options, and although when they first became available they left a lot to desire, some of these microphones have evolved to deliver very good results.

Luckily, we have done a lot of research in order to prepare this guide, with the aim of helping you choose the ideal USB microphone for your needs.

USB microphones are a great option for simplicity and ease of use. The world of audio professionals can be quite complicated and getting started in recording audio with microphones has a steep learning curve that could cause you many headaches and lost time.

Microphones that are not USB usually have an XLR connection, and need to connect to an audio interface. Sound cards/interfaces are a whole world and deserve their own separate guide.

If you are interested in the subject you can read our: Guide to buy the best cheap audio card.

Briefly, an audio interface contains mic preamps which are responsible for amplifying the sound captured by the microphone. Hence, the quality of the sound that we capture not only depends on the microphone that we are going to use, but also the quality of the audio interface and its preamps.

There are many interfaces on the market, as well as hundreds of microphone options…. the number of possible combinations is huge and making the right choice is not always easy.

However, with a USB microphone, things are considerably simplified; as they do not need to be connected to the preamp of an audio interface, they do not need extra cables. Simply connect them to the computer (or even a tablet, iPad or similar) and you are ready to capture the audio.
Reasons to buy a USB microphone:

  • Your microphone needs are not complex: podcasting, voice acting, recording screens or gamings, voice-over recordings on a musical mix, etc …
  • You are starting out and want to do some basic recordings.
  • Simplicity and ease of use is a priority.
  • You do not have or want a traditional audio interface.
  • You have a tight budget.

This guide focuses on finding the best USB microphones, mainly for producers, singers, artists and musicians in general.

Our last bit advice if you are considering buying a USB microphone:

A  USB microphone is very practical and comfortable, although a little less flexible than a traditional XLR mic.

Some say that USB microphones have lower sound quality when compared to traditional microphones. This may have been true when they first came out, but generally speaking these devices have since improved vastly.

At the end of the day you need to choose the best microphone for your specific recording needs and price range. If a USB microphone covers all your recording needs and satisfies you in terms of quality, you don’t really need to spend any more money buying or worrying about other equipment. Important note: Condenser microphones are generally more sensitive than dynamic mics and typically offer more pickup patterns. This means the room you record in plays a more inportant role with condensers, as they are more sensitive than dynamic mics. It doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with dynamic mics, in fact, they are what we would recommend if you don’t have a treated space to record in!

These are our conclusions:

Low budget:

These may not deliver the greatest sound quality, but you certainly can’t argue with the prices! They are fine for demos, podcasting and the likes, but are not recommended if you are looking for pro results.

the t.bone MB 88U Dual

 

Superlux E205U

 

Mid range:

Better quality options here, some offering more flexibility than others.

Samson C03U

 

Audio-Technica AT2020 USB+

  • LDC
  • Cardoid pickup pattern
  • Headphone output with volume control
  • One of the best for price to quality ratio
  • More info here!

Rode NT-USB

  • Cardoid LDC
  • Headphone output with volume control
  • Mix control to balance vocal volume with playback from your computer
  • Comes with accessories like pop filter and tripod stand
  • Great reviews!
  • Info, price and reviews here

 

Blue Yeti Studio

  • Triple capsule LDC
  • 4 pickup patterns including stereo option!
  • Mute button
  • Volume and mic gain controls
  • Comes with a stand and some free software!
  • More details here

 

High end:

Let’s face it, if you are thinking of buying a high end USB mic you may well be better off grabbing yourself an interface and an xlr mic! However all our needs differ, so we have chosen to include one expensive option:

Blue Spark Digital

  • Cardoid LDC
  • Mute button
  • Volume and mic gain controls
  • Focus control for coloration options
  • LED meter
  • Comes with a stand and suspension mount
  • Info, price and reviews here!

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: