Discover all the USB microphone reviews for Podcasts, Gaming or Studio. The advantage of USB microphones is that you don't need an audio interface to connect it to your computer (the converter is integrated). The most prestigious brands are Blue Microphones, Rode, Antelope, Apogee, IK Multimedia, Shure and Lewitt.
Good to know: USB microphones are used for voice recording for Podcasts or Gaming but also for studio recording, because they are easily transportable.
One of the first things you check before buying a microphone is its three-pin output jack. It should actually be compatible with a laptop or computer. Fortunately, thanks to advances in technology, microphone designers have been able to develop a new variant called the USB microphone. Even though it may not have all the advantages of other types of microphones, this one is an excellent alternative that deserves your full attention.
A USB microphone is a transducer, like all other types of microphones. By the way, its general operating concept is the same as that of a conventional microphone. It will pick up sound and translate it into an electrical signal. It allows you to make a voice recording or a voice audio broadcast.
In other words, it’s easy to use and suitable for everyone. It offers premium recording quality on your computer or tablet in minutes. One of its major assets is the fact that it is portable. It’s a plug and play, it works perfectly on PC, Mac, iPad.
Choosing a USB microphone for your recordings also saves you from spending a small budget on devices and gadgets. You don’t need any special skills to install it on your computer. Just plug it in and it will install the necessary driver for its operation.
It’s a microphone that you can carry with you anywhere. Whether you are a nomad, a traveler, an explorer, a USB microphone will always satisfy you. It’s a versatile, multi-platform tool. If you buy one, you should be able to use it on your laptop, Mac, iPad or desktop. In other words, it’s the economical option for clear, crisp, high-quality sound on your PC, tablet or smartphone.
Technically, if you purchase a USB microphone, it will come with all the hardware that allows it to be immediately operational. The microphone will then come with all the necessary cabling to easily connect to a USB port. This allows the user to record immediately. On some models, a USB microphone is equipped with a headphone output. This is a significant advantage, as it allows the user to listen to the sound directly through headphones.
A USB microphone is a very good way to record vocals and instruments. Usually it has a cardioid directivity that allows it to focus on the main sound source. This makes it ideal for voice-overs, podcasts, radio broadcasts, conferences, and chat programs such as Skype or Teams.
You want to make a good quality recording? You don’t have the time or the budget to buy all the necessary components for your home studio? A USB microphone is the best solution. You no longer need a mixer, external power supply, phantom power or amplifier. All you need is a good audio interface to get the equivalent of a good studio recording.
Your computer already has a sound card for sound playback. This is another advantage of the USB microphone. You don’t need to buy anything else, it’s just a matter of using the USB microphone.
According to your budget, some manufacturers offer USB microphones with an integrated sound card. One example is the Rode Procaster.
In this situation, the sound quality will be even better. Other types of USB microphones are also equipped with a jack plug, like the Rode Podcaster USB. This is an option that will allow you to record and listen to the microphone feedback at the same time.
It depends on you and your expectations. In any way, a USB microphone is a great tool to start recording on your computer. It doesn’t require a lot of technical knowledge. It doesn’t require the skills of a sound engineer to produce quality sound. It’s an easy tool that gives good results.
You want to set up a small recording studio in your room and record several materials at the same time? Start by banning all the equipment (all the musical instruments: keyboard, acoustic guitar…) and your USB microphone. And you are ready!
It’s important to note that for some applications, you may need to use some gadgets. Note using a pop filter, wind filter or windscreen to reduce background noise. To reduce handling noise, you can use a tripod, or a microphone pole.
If you are a beginner, using a USB microphone will help you not to be overwhelmed by the other items you need to buy. However, it’s a microphone that will probably satisfy your needs while being very easy to use. Later on, you can always upgrade your recording studio. In this event, the USB microphone will always find its place in your microphone park.
Currently, most microphones claim to be versatile. But the choice of a microphone should be based on its use and the result you are looking for. Nevertheless, to guide you, here is a list of requirements to consider before investing in a USB microphone.
Microphones share a set of characteristics that allow users to make a comparison. Among these requirements are the following:
Directivity refers to the sensitivity of a microphone to sound, depending on the mode from which it comes. There are several types of directivity:
This is a microphone with equal sensitivity in all modes. This means that the USB microphone is very sensitive to the ambience of the room in which it will be used. In other words, it will be impossible to isolate an instrument when several musicians are playing at the same time. This type of directivity is also sensitive to feedback.
Microphones with this type of directivity are mainly used in the studio. They can be used in many different situations. However, you should have a room with good acoustics. Usually they sound very natural. They are excellent for use on overheads, drums and delicate instruments such as piano.
An example is the Blue Yeti Pro. It’s a USB microphone not dedicated to professional use, but it will still be suitable for recording voice-overs in a podcast context, commentary on a video tutorial…
Bidirectional directivity is also known as figure-8 directivity. It’s characterized by the sensitivity of the microphone in the front and in the back. It also has an angle with a sensitivity of 90°. This means that the microphone will not pick up sounds from the sides.
A USB microphone with figure-of-eight directivity is primarily used to pick up opposing sound sources. For example, it can record two singers at the same time, or it can be placed between two drum sets.
This type of microphone can also be used for recording a podcast. The result will be just as stunning. You will probably not find this type of microphone on a movie set. However, many people use it as a backup microphone for a talk show. One USB microphone with this directivity is the Superlux E431U. This is an electret microphone with switchable directivity.
Le microphone USB possède cette fois-ci un diagramme polaire en forme de cœur. C’est le type de directivité que l’on emploie le plus souvent dans un studio d’enregistrement. Cela s’explique par le fait qu’il est sensible uniquement aux sons provenant de l’avant. Ils sont alors moins sujets aux larsens, et on peut facilement isoler les différentes sources sonores que l’on veut enregistrer.
Les directivités super et hyper cardioïdes sont tout simplement des variantes de la directivité cardioïde. Elles se caractérisent par une sensibilité à l’avant réduite par rapport à l’arrière.
En ce qui concerne l’utilisation, ce type de directivité est sollicité pour l’enregistrement d’une source sonore directionnelle. On peut citer par exemple l’enregistrement de la performance d’un chanteur, pour piquer un ampli guitare, pour enregistrer les éléments d’une batterie (caisse claire, grosse caisse…). Le Blue Yeti Pro se dote également de ce type de directivité. De par sa conception, c’est un microphone USB polyvalent.
This is a characteristic of USB microphones with bidirectional directivity. Simply put, the closer the microphone is to the sound source, the more bass is produced. Depending on the user’s needs, this can be a good thing for the microphone.
Bandwidth is simply the ability of a microphone to pick up and reproduce frequencies.
The response curve can be defined as the personality of a USB microphone. It takes the shape of a diagram which shows the bumps and dips in relation to the frequencies picked up.
It represents the voltage that the microphone is able to supply in relation to the sound pressure received by the diaphragm.
It plays an important function in terms of frequency response. The larger the diaphragm of the USB microphone, the more low frequencies it will pick up.
This is the maximum pressure the microphone can handle without distortion.
A USB microphone is the simple solution for recording audio on your computer. It can be plugged directly into your USB port and allows you to record directly to your computer. Everything is done without the need for additional hardware.
All you have to do is plug in your microphone and make some settings. Then you are ready to start making quality recordings. They are as easy to use as any headset you may know.
They are effective for recording voices such as singing, podcasting, voice-overs and musical instruments. Some USB microphones come with a headphone output. This allows you to directly control the audio you record through your headphones.
One limitation of a USB microphone is that you can only use one microphone at a time. So if you want to record more than one voice, this may not be the best solution. Unless you choose a microphone with an omnidirectional directivity.
On the market, you can find several types of USB microphones. Here is our official selection of the best microphones you can find.
The Rode Podcaster is the reference microphone for your podcasts and voice-overs. It offers unbeatable value for money. It’s a dynamic microphone. It’s based on a simple electromagnetic system. It connects directly to your PC through a USB cable. It’s very effective in filtering unwanted noise to produce excellent sound quality.
The Audio Technica AT2020 USB is a condenser microphone with a cardioid directivity. It offers a very good sound quality. By the way, its design was inspired by the AT2020, a legendary studio microphone. It’s a small, easy-to-carry microphone. With low self-noise, it can be used with all types of recording equipment. Very rugged, it is your ally if you are always on the move.
Rode is known for its production of high performance microphones. The Rode NT-USB is no exception. It delivers spectacular sound: crisp, clear and natural. It is remarkably insensitive to plosives and hiss. It’s a very practical condenser microphone for recording voices. In the studio, it also helps singers and instrumentalists.