Having a home studio is essential to aspiring and professional musicians, YouTubers, podcasters and to anyone who regularly records audio.
One of the most important pieces of equipment, if not the most important, is a microphone. The number of microphone choices out there may confuse you if you are someone who wants to have the best studio recording microphone in your home studio.
The most common types are condenser, USB, dynamic, and ribbon. All of these microphones can also have wireless microphone versions.
The appropriate type for your home studio will depend on your specific purpose and budget. Here, we have made a list of five recommended microphones along with their respective features, pros, and cons. But before reading the list, it is important for you to understand the four basic types of recording microphones.
Best Studio Mics – Reviews
Those who want to achieve high-quality professional sound usually buy condenser microphones, which can pick up very subtle nuances. These microphones require power for the capacitor inside of them to work and to boost the signal to a usable level.
However, these microphones are quite expensive so those who are on a budget and don’t mind low-quality sound go for reasonably priced USB microphones, which are very easy to set up.
USB microphones have a built-in preamp and an analog-to-digital (A/D) converter so you don’t have to buy a separate mixer or a preamp to plug the microphone in your computer.
As for those who want to record outdoors, dynamic microphones do the job perfectly so you can amplify them with the minimum amount of feedback and they are fairly resistant to moisture.
When you speak into a dynamic microphone, a little magnet inside it produces vibrations that are converted into electrical energy through induction. Dynamic microphones are less prone to feedback than condenser microphones. Those who need to record coveted warm sounds of their guitar cabinets and acoustic instruments use ribbon microphones.
However, these microphones require special care and are not supposed to be used when performing onstage. Another thing to consider when comparing recording microphones is their polar pattern.
The polar pattern of the four types of microphones can be either cardioid or omni. Those with a cardioid polar pattern are less sensitive to the sides while omni ones evenly pick up sound from all sides in a spherical manner.
Having understood the four basic types of recording microphones and their polar pattern, you are now ready to check the four products we are recommending to you.
Its manufacturer Blue Microphones, which is headquartered in Westlake Village, California, was founded by American session musician Skipper Wise and Latvian recording engineer Martins Saulespurens in 1995.
- It is compatible with PC and Mac.
- It has a USB cable.
- It comes with an adjustable desktop stand.
- It has a custom condenser capsule.
- It is stylish and durable.
- You can simply plug and play directly to your PC or Mac.
- There are no drivers to install.
- Compared to most USB microphones, this product produces clear and crisp audio.
- You don’t have to worry about echo.
- It rejects extraneous noise.
- Since it comes with the swivel, you can adjust it in almost any direction so you can properly point it towards the source of the sound.
- No recording software is included in the microphone.
- The microphone has no other audio outputs or inputs.
- The recording mode switch isn’t intuitively labeled.
- The volume may be low if you use the microphone with Skype and check the option to automatically adjust microphone settings.
- This microphone requires outboard sound cards, large pro-audio cables, and microphone mounts, which can be cumbersome.
You can achieve clear audio when you use the Blue Microphones Snowball iCE Microphone for FaceTime, Skype, Messages, and WebEx calls.
This microphone features HD audio so you can use it to create podcasts, record vocals, instrument and live music for your YouTube channel or add narration to your home movies.
Voice actors who do voiceover auditions from home, businessmen who record product demos and present examples for sales teams and professors who record learning materials for students can also depend on this microphone.
If you are using an iPhone or an iPad, use either Apple’s Lightning to USB adapter or the USB to 30-pin adapter.
Also, take note that this particular microphone does not have the dual-microphone microphone capsule that the Blue Microphones Snowball Microphone has.
This USB microphone is one of the best-selling products of Blue Microphones. It is a multi-pattern microphone known for its versatility and advanced features.
It has THX certification, a set of industry standards for audio reproduction created by Tomlinson Holman while he was working with Lucas film Studios.
The certification means that the sound coming out of the 5.1 surround sound or other speaker system of this microphone is being heard exactly as the audio engineer intended for it to sound while recording and mixing it, according to Lifewire.
- It is compatible with PC and Mac.
- Its triple capsule array allows you to record in stereo or your choice of three unique settings, which are cardioid, omnidirectional and bidirectional.
- It has an analog-to-digital converter, a headphone amplifier that’s built-in, a simple dial control and a mini USB port.
- Expect very low distortion, balanced frequency response and high fidelity from this microphone.
- Singers and speakers can get high-quality sound as the microphone picks up the full range of the voice while headset microphones tend to pick up only certain ranges.
- You do not need to edit your recorded voice because the voice coming through this microphone is ready to go. You do not need to take care of variances, gaps or level issues.
- You are given recording capabilities usually reserved for multiple microphones.
- You can send incredible audio fidelity directly to your computer.
- You have zero-latency monitoring.
- You can quickly change headphone volume and pattern selection. You may also switch to mute all from the microphone.
- There is nothing to setup or adjust as the plug-and-play setup is quick and easy.
- It may picks up some background noise if the room is not soundproof. To fix this, you will need some free software.
- The monitor volume knob does not seem to be of high quality.
- The microphone may be a little too large.
- There is a tendency for the microphone to have a hard time connecting with iMac. Sometimes, the microphone will show up in the sound settings but it will not have any audio coming into the computer.
CAD Audio is a brand known to professionals. In particular, this condenser recording microphone is commonly used for recording singing, speech, and instruments in professional studios. When you record with it, play or speak into the side that has the CAD logo.
This side-address design is used by broadcast, TV and recording studios. The microphone also has two switches on the front.
The first one is a 10dB overload-protection switch that decreases the sensitivity of the microphone. The second one is a bass-reduction switch that reduces the pickup of deep-bass sound.
- It is compatible with PC and Mac.
- Its large condenser is great for rich and warm recordings.
- It has a cardioid pickup pattern.
- Its extended frequency -10dB Overload-protection switch Bass-reduction is smooth.
- It comes with a 10-foot USB cable for flexible microphone placement.
- It has a responsive cyan LED that helps indicate power or recording level.
- You can minimize background noise and isolate the main sound source.
- You can minimize distortion from loud sound sources.
- It is very easy to install. You don’t need driver software and all you need to do for it to work is just plug it in.
- When you set the microphone on a table, it is at just about the perfect height for recording.
- Considering that this is a lightweight microphone, you may be surprised by the good quality of the sound it records.
- It is easy to set up and use its little table tripod stand.
- The microphone stand can be mounted nicely on a boom mic stand.
- It is very sensitive so it will pick up all sounds in the room including sounds that you may find unnecessary such as computer fans. On the other hand, this can be fixed by music processing software.
The CAD U37 USB condenser microphone is excellent for musicians who want to record vocals and instruments. Podcasters and YouTubers will find this microphone very useful, as well.
To achieve optimum results, you have to uncheck UGC on your microphone settings, input volume between 25 and 50 and set the button on the mic to -10.
Take note that this microphone may work better from 12 inches than the standard 2-4 inches that most recording microphones prefer. You can even go farther than 12 inches. This makes it the ideal microphone for solo acoustic guitar performers.
If you are recording solo, take into consideration that this microphone will pick up about the same quality and positioning as the human ear as it picks up external noise.
Use it to record guitar, bass, drums, and vocals. You can also expect excellent sound quality if you use this microphone to record a group of performers singing simultaneously.
If you want to capture rich, full-bodied sound from sources directly in front of the microphone, this black condenser microphone will do the job excellently.
This is a great tool for vocalists who want to assess their singing skills by listening to their recorded voice.
This microphone will restore your original voice without any distortion.
- It is compatible with PC and Mac.
- It’s tabletop microphone mount has a professional dual-layer acoustic filter that improves vocal recording quality.
- It has a 5 stereo plug that fits for all kinds of PC.
- It has a microphone clip and a 360-degree flexible rotation desktop microphone stand.
- It has a USB plug that works with any USB-equipped computer.
- It has a headset adapter.
- Its cord is 1.5 meters long.
- Because of the ultra-compact design of the microphone, you will enjoy its maximum portability.
- It has a special design for online chatting over Facebook, Skype, QQ, YY and MSN as well as singing over the internet.
- You can reduce popping.
- You can adjust the distance between the microphone and the filter.
- Setting up the microphone is very convenient.
- The microphone tends to work better on smartphones than on computers.
- If your recording environment involves loud noises, this microphone is not for you as it is very sensitive.
The Professional condenser microphone is good for singers and musicians who play instruments. This is also a useful tool for those who do broadcasting, podcasting, interviews and video conferences.
If you use this microphone with a PC, a laptop, an Android phone or an iPhone, you need to have a Y splitter cable adapter. For Macbook recordings, the microphone will work well if you use it with a sound card adapter, which will give you a better sound effect.
Best Studio Microphones – Final Verdict
Recording microphones are a great investment for YouTubers, podcasters and musicians. If you are one of those who take recording seriously, it is necessary for you to do some extensive research when choosing the best recording microphone for you.
Upon buying your chosen microphone, you should continue studying the features of the microphone. It is important you understand your microphone well, particularly its pros and cons, so you can enjoy its optimal performance.
If you are recording outside, interviewing people or video blogging, go for a dynamic microphone.
But if you are a musician or a YouTuber who do most, if not all, of your stuff in your home studio, better use a condenser microphone in a soundproof room. For recording songs and broadcast, it is ideal to use a cardioid condenser microphone.
This will work best with a room that has low background noise. But if you are recording in a noisy environment, go for a cardioid dynamic microphone so it will reject your background noise.
For musicians recording small acoustic instruments or solo vocals in a quiet home studio, a small-diaphragm cardioid condenser is highly recommended.
But if you are recording as a group of singers or instrumentalists, use a large omni condenser microphone. Place the microphone in the middle of all the main sources of sounds so it can pick out the sounds evenly and effectively.
The Best Studio Microphones – Round Up Reviews
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- Best Home Recording Studio Package
- Best Gaming Microphones
- Best Gaming Headphones without Microphone
- Best Karaoke Microphones
- Best Karaoke Machine for Kids!
- Best Recording Microphone for Rap
- Best Microphone for Singing Recording
- Best CAD Microphones
- Best Audio Interface for Mac
- Best Choir Microphones
Best Studio Microphone Reviews
- MXL 770 Cardioid Condenser Microphone Review
- XIAOKOA Professional Condenser Microphone
- Blue Microphones Snowball iCEPlug ‘n Play USB Microphone
- Blue Yeti’s Multi-Pattern USB Microphone Review
- CAD U37 USB Studio Microphone
- Samson Meteor Mic USB Studio Microphone Review
- Samson Q2U USB Microphone Review
- Samson C01U Condenser Microphone Review
- AKG D5 Microphone
- AKG Pro Audio C214 Condenser Microphone Review
- LyxPro LDC-10 Cardioid Condenser Microphone
- EarambleBM800 Professional Microphone Review
- Audio-Technica ATR2500 Condenser Microphone Review
- Aokeo AK-107 Mic Review
- Marantz Professional Pod Pack Review
- Rode NT1-A Cardioid Condenser Microphone Review
- Fifine Recording Microphone Review
- Dansrue USB Microphone Review