There was a time, not so long ago, where USB Microphones were not up to much. Fine, perhaps for chatting over the net or gaming purposes but for high quality audio quality you needed a lot more gear than simple USB plug and play mics. In fact, before we had something of a tech boom in this area, you would have needed a costly audio interface or mixing desk and a quality XLR style microphone to record anything that required a high level of clarity. Nowadays, fortunately, we have some of the best USB microphones available to us at a reasonable price, which are able to do a quality professional standard job on the following:
- Recording vocals and singing.
- Recording sound effects.
- Recording vocals for youtube videos.
- Podcasting or broadcasting live to an audience over the internet.
- Voiceovers for movies or other videos.
- Skype or other video/audio chat services.
- Recording instruments such as guitar, piano and more.
- Anything else you need to record
Can The Best USB Microphones Be As Good?
This is a subject that does divide opinion in recording studios everywhere. It is generally accepted that the best, old fashioned, analog microphones, fed through the top hardware and then into a computer, will yield the best results, but let’s be honest, who has the time and money to invest in doing so? Let alone the fact that so many of us now want to record on the go, and we can’t very well take a recording studio in our laptop bag. That’s where USB microphones really come in. So the question really is whether a USB microphone can provide adequate results that we are happy with, at a similar cost to that of a good quality microphone, and the answer in my book is a resounding yes.
So What Are The Best USB Models of Microphone?
Time to look at some models, I’ve selected some of the best for different purposes. For example, a mic that is ideal for vocal recordings might not be so great for recording instruments. The models of top chart and below are the best of the best and I’m certain that at least one will suit your purposes.
Blue Yeti Pro USB MicrophoneI have included the blue yeti pro USB condenser microphone to my favorite list due to it being so very versatile! I love this mic and have used it for many different purposes, gaming, youtube video recording and others since I first bought one. It comes in integrated custom design and has a flawless plug and play functionality.
- Easily plug and play on either PC or Mac
- Stand and swivel mount for easy positioning.
- No new software required for either mac or PC
- Multiple mic patterns that can be set to suit your purposes, designed to cope with everything from loud garage bands to softly spoken podcasts.
MXL 009 USB Condenser MicAs you can see, the MXL 009 USB condenser mic is a very high quality and versatile mic that is designed to make your life as easy as possible! Three recording modes make for the best results whatever you’re trying to record.
- Great for vocals and voice work such as podcasts and voiceovers, also suitable for instruments.
- Record louder sounds and it makes sure clipping is not an issue.
- Picks up sound from all angles, great for field recordings, sound effects or recordings of full band practices for example.
The thing I love most about the MXL 009 USB condenser mic is that it has found a way into pro recordings and that lots of bands are happy to endorse the mic. It is perfect for recordings while on tour.
Audio-Technica PLUS USB MicrophoneAudio-Technica PLUS is an amazing deal for a USB condenser microphone. The newest Audio Technica AT2020 USB provides studio-quality articulation as well as intelligibility. This plugs directly into your current computer’s USB drive. It works with almost all software immediately, meaning little to no computer know how to get started. A favorite microphone for you-tubers, as well as home studio, musicians. This is a USB microphone that is also ideal for podcasting, as well as voice over work with.
The benefit of this microphone is definitely ease of use, you can maybe get better sound quality for the price, but this is plug and play, and best of all it’s from audio Technica, a reliable brand.
The Audio-Technica PLUS USB Microphone is fully compatible with the typical recording applications of Windows & Mac computers, as well as the Apple iPad etc. In order to use on the Apple iPad, it is required that there be a suitable USB connection adaptor, such as the Apple iPad Camera Connection Kit. The Audio-Technica PLUS USB Microphone features a headphone monitoring jack, which allows you to monitor the microphone input in realtime! Also, there are dials to adjust the monitoring level and mix between the computer/iPad audio and the microphone input.
Rode NT USB Condenser MicrophoneAs the name suggests, this is a microphone devoted to recording voices for podcasts. Rode NT is a name synonymous with high quality audio equipment, and especially microphones, so it is not a surprise that they have delved into the world of USB. The podcaster boasts “broadcast quality audio” which means it would not sound out of place on a professional radio broadcast or similar, and will vastly improve the quality of most homemade podcasts.
The price tag is something that might put some people off, and understandably so when we look at how affordable the blue snowball is, but if you need absolute crystal clear podcast quality and your budget suits, you’ll be blown away by the podcaster. As with most models of USB, it is completely portable however it is pretty heavy, a little heftier than you would perhaps expect. Nevertheless, if you’re sticking it in a home studio for voice or even sung vocal recordings, then you won’t be disappointed by the excellent Rode.
Samson G-Track USB Condenser MicrophoneSamson is known for their manufacture of affordable microphones that don’t compromise on ability, and their excellent selection is now accompanied by a USB model, the Samson G-Track. Affordable indeed, but how does it stack up against its competitors?
This is the very definition of a cool design. Foldable with an awesome case, this slips into your laptop bag or even iPad case to go with you wherever you want to make recordings. This is a versatile mic with multiple modes of recording for different instruments or purposes and is great for everything from podcasting to recording guitar and more.
Comes with Microphone, USB cable, clip, stand adapter and zip up Carrying Pouch, and currently available for a reasonable price. There is debate over whether the quality is good enough for professional standard recordings of songs. Having used it, I would have no hesitancy in using it for vocal or instrument tracks in a song.
MXL UR-1 USB Ribbon MicrophoneThe MXL UR-1 USB Ribbon Microphone is ideal for radio broadcasting, voice-over, and recording in a studio. There a many features for convenience such as angle adjustment, a screw adapter if you would like to use a different stand than what is provided, and a locking on and off switch for easy transition to recording/broadcasting. Because of it’s easy to use design, this microphone is ideal for beginners looking to start recording vocals (music or voice-over), broadcast podcasts, or even simply have a kareoke night. It comes in blue, black, and pink so you’ll have no problem choosing a style that’ll fit you. All in all, the MXL UR-1 USB Ribbon Microphone provides simply clean recordings for a great value.
The MXL UR-1 USB Ribbon Microphone high-performance isolation with dampening foam surrounds your mic to impede unwelcome sounds coming from contaminating your recordings. Your defense results in a good acoustic boundary throughout the mic which enhances recordings by stopping un-delightful sounds from coming into the actual recording creating area. Attain wealthy, highly detailed, thoroughly clean sounds favored by musical professionals and gain studio-quality efficiency. Your shield will be convenient to use and set up. The item works just as well using round base stands. Properly take in music runs, while trying to keep room atmosphere out, to produce a clean rendering. This is particularly important when trying to record inside rooms using lower than excellent acoustics or perhaps inside noisy places.
Blue Spark Digital Condenser MicrophoneYou can build unequaled recordings and also deliver them the right to your personal computer with Blue Spark Digital Condenser Microphone. This makes use of Blue Microphone’s little-known tri-capsule technological know-how to make perfect, studio-quality recordings. The item characteristics 4 distinct style settings so that you can history words, a key component music, podcasts, or even interview in manners that might usually need a number of microphones. Using straightforward adjustments pertaining to headphone quantity, style selection, fast mute, and also mike acquire, you’ll be generating remarkable recordings proper out from the pack.
Having its adjustments pertaining to headphone quantity, style selection, fast mute, and also mike acquire, your Yeti positions a person accountable for just about every degree of your taking process. In case you are suffering from distortion or even suggestions whilst taking an especially high in volume resource, simply adapt your microphone’s sensitivity using the acquire control. Or, if you need to have a bust in the middle of a podcast, utilize the fast mute switch. The particular mike comes with a 3. 5-millimeter headphone jack port and also lets you tune into what you happen to be taking in real-time, without having latency delays. You are able to adapt the amount of the headsets employing a control for the front of the mike.
The Blue Spark Digital Condenser Microphone comes with a visual pattern prompted by simply basic taking equipment–a stylish, retro artistic that could match any computer program. The steel grille and also gleaming, chrome-toned figure recognition the looks regarding old-timey microphones. Because it can be designed on the joint, you can adapt and also pivot your mike in relation to your sound resource, improving sound excellent. When you have the item at the sought after the point of view, you should utilize your arranged screws for you to secure the item set up. The particular mike may also be flattened along pertaining to effortless portability or even removed totally via its starting pertaining to subject recordings.