Whether you intend to stream YouTube videos, games, or podcasts, you will need a good microphone to do it. But how do you tell which mics are good? A lot of factors go into making a durable microphone with good sound quality, and some mic features might be more important to you than others.
This article will first review 7 different products, weighing their pros and cons, and then discuss some tips for choosing a good microphone. When you have finished reading it, you will be able to discover the best mics for streaming. So, lets check the list and read all the reviews for picking the best one.
What is a good cheap microphone for streaming?
How do I choose a microphone for streaming?
Purpose – What will you be using your microphone for? Do you need a professional quality microphone or just an upgrade from a really basic one? What you will be using the mic for determines what type you need. Some microphones are built with particular uses in mind. You should at least pay attention to the sound pickup pattern and how it relates to your planned use of it. Some microphones excel at picking up vocals as opposed to instruments, for instance.
Price – What is your budget? Mics come in a huge range of prices. Professional quality ones are more expensive, but there are wide ranges of quality within a price range. Are you looking to spend under $30 on a microphone, or somewhere in the $100-$200 range? Whatever your budget is, you will want to find the best quality microphone for the price you are willing to pay.
Durability – Some microphones are extremely fragile and break easily, while others are designed with some degree of durability in mind. You should consider getting a mic that can stand up to some damage, especially if you are spending a fair amount on it. You don’t want to spend a lot of money on a microphone that stops working after a few months. It’s a good idea to look not only at the basic construction but also at whether the electronic components are easily rendered ineffective.
Sound Quality – You will want good sound quality for any streaming mic. The quality of sound you need depends in part on how professional your results need to be for your situation. It is worth looking at what features a microphone has that contribute to sound quality. A pop filter is always a good idea. Volume control can also be a useful feature, and there are a lot of design elements that contribute to a good sound, so don’t forget to consider this.
Compatibility – What device are you planning to use this microphone with? Most streaming mics connect to a desktop computer via a USB port and also use with the conference calls headphone. There are also some that use an XLR cable to connect to a soundboard or mixer. Some USB microphones require the installation of drivers, while others don’t and are referred to as having a “plug-and-play” setup.
It is important to make sure that the microphone you want is actually compatible with your computer’s operating system. Some of them are not compatible with newer versions of Windows or Mac. Some microphones also need phantom power, especially XLR mics. If a mic needs phantom power, make sure that your computer can handle the requirements, or get a phantom power adapter. These usually need to be purchased separately.
7 Best mics for streaming reviewed
1. Neewer NW-700 Microphone
This is a professional condenser microphone that uses a cardioid pickup pattern. It comes with an adjustable suspension scissor arm stand and a table clamp to go with it as well as other accessories. Some other equipment may need to be purchased separately, but it comes at an amazing price, considering the quality. It might be the perfect microphone for you.
Audio Features: Using a cardioid pickup pattern, this mic isolates the main sound source while keeping background noise to a minimum. The diaphragm is gold-sputtered, giving you accurate sound reproduction. The captured sound will be rich and full-bodied. This microphone offers good sound quality at an extremely low price.
Phantom Power Considerations: This microphone only works with a device that can provide 5V of phantom power. It can be used alone with a desktop computer, but if you are using it with a laptop computer, the laptop must be plugged into an electrical outlet, and even then, it may not work properly. A 48V phantom power adapter may be needed, depending on your situation, but it is not included. This mic will not work with a Mac computer or with a phone or tablet computer.
Scissor Arm Stand and Other Accessories: This mic comes with a scissor arm stand made of pure steel. It has double-braced arms that come equipped with a strong spring. The angle and height can both be adjusted. A table mounting clamp for the stand is also included, as are a metal shock mount, a pop filter, a ball-type anti-wind foam cap, and a 3.5mm male to XLR female cable.
- It offers pretty good sound quality
- It has great overall quality at an incredibly low price
- It is durable
- It comes with a scissor arm stand
- It is easy to assemble
- It is not actually professional quality, although it is good quality for how cheap it is
- It is likely to need phantom power, which must be purchased separately
Summary: If you are just starting out with recording, this mic is a good value for the price. It’s not as good as an actual professional quality microphone, but it is a lot better than other cheap microphones. For casual use, it may be just what you need.
2. Fifine 669B Condenser Mic
This is a USB plug-and-play microphone that works with PC and Mac desktop computers. It is easy to use and install. It has a sturdy metal design and is inexpensive. It uses a cardioid polar pattern and does not require phantom power. It could be just the mic you need.
Compatibility and Ease of Use: This mic is compatible with PC and Mac computers, and because it is strictly plug-and-play, compatibility is not a serious issue. You will not have to download any drivers or other tools to use this microphone, and you can use it for recordings. It plugs right into your computer and can be used immediately out of the box. There is no complicated setup required.
Sound Quality: A condenser microphone with a cardioid pickup pattern, this mic does a good job of picking up vocals while leaving background noise behind. You can adjust the voice input with volume control. The frequency response is smooth and extended, making this mic ideal for voiceover, podcast, home studio recording, and field recording. A normal speaking voice will yield clear and crisp results.
Construction and Accessories: This mic has a solid metal construction and comes with a durable tripod stand, making it convenient to use on a desktop. The tripod stand is also stable, so you won’t have to worry about your microphone falling down while you’re using it. It also comes with a USB plug and a USB cable.
- It is an inexpensive low-budget mic
- It uses a plug-and-play setup
- It is built with some durability
- It uses a cardioid pickup pattern
- It has volume control
- There have been reports of it not lasting long
- It might not be compatible with newer versions of Windows
Summary: This mic is reported to have excellent sound quality and be altogether fantastic for the price. It comes with customer support. If you are looking for an inexpensive mic that is still good quality, you may have found the one you need.
3. Klim Voice Desktop USB Mic
This mic is compatible with desktop PC, Mac, and PS4. It is highly sensitive and offers great sound quality. It will work excellently for gaming, streaming, podcasting, and YouTube. Inexpensive, easy to use, and with a lot of great features, this might be just the microphone you need.
Versatility and Ease of Use: This microphone is very easy to use and does not require the installation of any software to do so. It can simply be plugged into your computer via its USB port and it starts working immediately. Although it was built as a gaming microphone, that is not by far all that it is good for. It also works great for streaming, recording, and having conversations on Skype.
Audio Quality: The Klim Voice mic uses a patented audio filter that filters out background noise in order to focus on your voice. It is designed to give you a crystal clear sound and it also comes with a built-in pop filter to remove annoying crackling sounds from your recordings. Whether you intend to use it for gaming or for other voice recording purposes, it might be the best microphone under $30 you could get.
Design and Durability: The base of this mic is built from a combination of metal and reinforced plastic. Given that some microphones are very fragile, this one was built to be more durable. It is sturdy and stable. Additionally, the base has a pair of LED lights and a button that both toggles them and serves as a volume control wheel. It even has a smartphone stand so you can check notifications while gaming or streaming.
- This mic is fairly durable
- It is inexpensive
- It doesn’t need drivers or other software to be used
- It has a built-in pop filter
- It is designed for voice recording
- There have been complaints of staticky sounds and background noise
- It isn’t a professional grade microphone
Summary: The Klim Voice is not a top-quality professional microphone, but it is very good for an inexpensive microphone. It is a huge improvement over gaming headsets, and some have said it rivals more expensive mics in quality. If you want a basic and inexpensive mic to get you started streaming or recording, you may have just found the perfect one.
4. Blue 1967 Yeti Pro Microphone
This microphone uses three custom condenser capsules and lets you choose from four separate polar pattern settings. It is a digital recording microphone with an analog XLR output. Able to be used as a desktop or a studio mic, the possibilities for its use are endless. It could be just the mic you were looking for.
Pattern Modes: This mic features pattern selection, allowing you to choose from four polar pickup patterns. Stereo mode uses the left and right channels and lets you capture a realistic and general sound. The cardioid mode is good for picking up sound right in front of the microphone. It will give you a rich and full-bodied sound and is great for recording podcasts, vocals, and streaming games. The omnidirectional mode will capture sound equally from all directions, which is good if you want to record an ambient experience. Finally, bidirectional mode captures sound from the front and back of the microphone, making it a good option for recording musical instruments, or an interview between two people.
Digital and Analog: This Blue Yeti mic is a USB microphone that has both 24-bit/192kHz digital recording resolution and an analog XLR output. It has an A-D converter chip and a separate circuit path to be used with a studio mixer or preamp. It also has a headphone amplifier built in that offers zero-latency monitoring. Gain control, headphone volume control, and a mute option are also featured.
Compatibility and Accessories: This mic is compatible with Windows 8, 7, Vista, and XP desktop computers as well as Mac OS X 10.6.4 or higher. 256 MB of RAM is required, and it does not require drivers for Windows or Mac. Some people have suggested it might also work with Linux, although this is not official. If you use the analog XLR cable to connect it to a soundboard, it will require 48V of DC phantom power. It comes with a custom base and a threaded mic stand that has cable management, as well as a USB and an XLR cable.
- You can choose from four pickup patterns
- It offers both digital recording and analog output
- It can be used with a desktop computer without needing drivers installed
- It has a headphone output for zero-latency monitoring
- A USB cable and an XLR cable are included
- It will not work with Mac OS X Sierra
- There have been complaints of shorted USB connections
Summary: This is a versatile, good-quality microphone. It is not super cheap or the most expensive microphone, and it is said to have good quality for the price. If you are looking for excellent sound quality, you might have found what you need.
5. Turtle Beach Digital Stream Mic
This mic is designed for gamers who want to live stream from Xbox One, PS4, and PS4 Pro. It is a professional quality desktop microphone. It comes with a variety of recording patterns and mounting options and has a lot of features that will enhance your audio experience. If you are looking to stream console games, you may have found the perfect mic.
Processing and Pickup Patterns: Whether you use this microphone on top of a table or in the boom-mounted position, you will get high-definition voice pickup as well as amazing clarity. The pickup patterns are adapted with TruSpeak technology. It uses studio-grade digital processing, balancing EQ, gain, and compression. This will give you a professional sound.
Compatibility and Recording: This mic uses universal USB plug-and-play compatibility. It can connect to a PC, Mac, Xbox One, PS4, or PS4 Pro quickly and easily. It can be used on any device to get high-quality recordings, whether they are live stream comments, vocals, podcast voiceovers, or interviews.
Other Features: An onboard headphone output is featured that gives you zero-latency monitoring of the audio. This allows you to hear exactly what your audience will hear. If you download Turtle Beach’s Ear Force Audio Hub software, you can customize your audio experience. This mic is compatible with standard 5/8” microphone stands and booms, but they will need to be purchased separately.
- It is designed for streaming games
- It uses universal USB plug-and-play compatibility and can also be used with a desktop PC
- It offers good voice pickup and clarity
- It has a zero-latency headphone output
- It comes at a good price
- It has been reported to be cheaply constructed
- Reports say that it picks up too much background noise
Summary: If you are looking for a microphone for game streaming or just one that is compatible with PC for podcasting, this one might be good for you. It has a lot of good features and is inexpensive. If you feel that its good qualities outweigh the bad, you may have found what you need.
6. Audio-Technica AT2020USB Mic
This is a condenser microphone with a USB output and it can be used for digital recording. It can be plugged into a computer and it offers superb audio quality as well as mix control and volume control. It even comes with some accessories to make it convenient to use right out of the package. Maybe you have found the mic you need.
Audio Quality: This mic uses a high quality a/D converter that has a 16-bit, 44.1/48 kHz sampling rate. This gives you great audio. The frequency response is smooth and extended, making this mic ideal for podcasting and home studio recording. Reviews of this mic are overwhelmingly positive, and the price is very reasonable.
Compatibility and Control Features: This USB mic is compatible with Windows 7, Vista, XP, and 2000, as well as with Mac OS X. It features mix control, which allows you to blend your microphone signal with pre-recorded audio. Volume control is also featured for the headphone jack, allowing you to monitor the microphone signal without any sort of delay.
Accessories: Included with this microphone is a pivoted stand mount for 5/8”-27 threaded stands, as well as a 5/8”-27 to 3/8”-16 threaded adapter, a soft protective pouch, a tripod desk stand, and a 10′ USB cable. The desk stand and the long USB cable should make it convenient for you to use this mic with your computer. The pouch will allow it to be carried around safely. It comes with enough accessories for you to be able to use it immediately, and any additional ones you need can be purchased separately
- It offers a truly professional sound quality
- It is easy to set up
- It has mix control and volume control
- It is a huge upgrade from a headset
- It has a solid build quality
- It is not compatible with the latest versions of Windows
- It picks up a lot of background noise
Summary: This mic has overwhelmingly good customer reviews and has amazing quality for the price. If you are looking for a mic upgrade that doesn’t cost $500, you might have found exactly what you need.
7. Blue Yeti USB Microphone
This is a bundle that comes with both a Blue Yeti USB microphone and a Dragonpad USA pop filter. The microphone is compatible with both Windows and Mac desktop computers and has a lot of good features that will improve the sound quality. It might be the perfect microphone for you.
Sound Features: This microphone uses a tri-capsule array. With three condenser capsules, it can record in a wide range of situations. Multiple pattern selection is featured, so you can use a cardioid, omnidirectional, bidirectional, or stereo pickup pattern. Gain control is also featured. It comes with a mute button and a zero-latency headphone output. This mic can be used for recording vocals, musical instruments, podcasts, conference calls, and more.
Compatibility and Aesthetic: Designed to be plugged into a computer, this mic is compatible with Windows 10, 8, 8.1, 7, Vista, and XP, as well as Mac OS X 10.4.11 and higher. In order to use it, you will need 64MB of available RAM. It has an attractive appearance and can be gotten in 11 different colors.
Pop Filter: The Dragonpad pop filter included in this bundle is an economical way for you to improve your vocal recordings. It uses a swivel mount and has a windscreen. It will help to protect your microphone from spit and it has a gooseneck holder that can swivel 360°. It is both useful and easy to use.
- It has good sound quality
- You can use different pickup patterns
- It is compatible with PC and Mac
- It has a mute button and can be used with headphones
- It comes with a pop filter
- There have been a few reports of its malfunctioning after less than a year
- Some people have had trouble getting their computer to recognize it
Summary: This is a good mic with good sound quality, and it is not too expensive. It has an attractive design and many useful features. If you are looking for a mic upgrade to take your streaming to the next level, you may have found what you need.
The Final Words (Summary)
Choosing a mic for streaming can be complicated. There is such a wide range of options, encompassing both quality and price. Fortunately, you probably know more about what to look for in a microphone than you did before.
Looking at some different product specifications and reading about what to look for in a streaming mic will have made the decision-making process easier for you, and you will now be able to find the best microphones for streaming.
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