As the diversity of uses increases, the same happens to the variety of devices available and some guidance can be very useful to lead us to the best choice.
Best Computer Microphones
That is why we build this guide, to help you choose the best one for your specific case/use, considering its features and advantages.
When it comes the time to choose what to buy, use the detailed information of each computer microphone you will find below, but also have in mind some common factors while shopping:
- How will you use it
Will you use the usb microphone just occasionally, for some web conversations, or in a regular and professional way? That may be a decisive factor to choose the right one.
- Your Budget
Always something to have in mind to evaluate the investment. Usually, a little more money can get you much more quality, but we have included options for every pocket.
- Pickup pattern
Not all microphones can capture the sound of the same way, so that in consideration the pickup patterns you may need:
. Cardioid/Unidirectional is the most common pattern in USB microphones and only records what’s in front of it.
. Omnidirectional is the pattern that will pick up sound from all directions (front, back, below and above).
. Bi-Directional is the pattern that only record the front and back of its surroundings.
1 – Blue Snowball iCE – Quality & Certification
Blue Snowball iCE Condenser is a good example of that. It has been around for a while but is still light years ahead of your computer’s built-in microphone.
Its cardioid condenser capsule offers crystal-clear audio for communicating, creating and recording. In addition, it works automatically with your Mac or PC.
- Plug ‘n Play USB Microphone
Easy connect directly to Mac or PC (no drivers to install).
- Custom condenser
Its condenser capsule offers crystal clear audio for Skype, Messages and FaceTime.
- Crystal clear audio
Record instruments or vocals, create podcasts, add narration to your home movies or HD audio to recordings for YouTube, SoundCloud and more.
- Quality Online Calls
Snowball iCE is Skype certified so you’re guaranteed to get great-sounding results.
- Plug and Play, on Windows and Macintosh
- Skype certification
- Cardioid Pick-up Pattern
- Desktop Stand Included
- Record instruments or vocals
- Professional Quality USB Audio (16bit, 4.1kHz)
- Equipment is a little heavy (Item weight:1.8 pounds)
2 – Blue Yeti – Crystal Sound
Blue Yeti is a very advanced and versatile multi-pattern USB microphone, a great for creating amazing recordings, directly to your computer.
It can record in stereo or your choice of three other unique patterns, including cardioid, omnidirectional, and bidirectional.
Uses a high-quality A-D converter, a built-in headphone amplifier for zero-latency monitoring, and direct controls for headphone volume, pattern selection, instant mute, and microphone gain.
- Stereo Mode
This mode uses both the left and right channels and is ideal for capturing a realistic, general sound image.
- Cardioid Mode
Well-suited for podcasts, vocals, or game streaming, cardioid mode records sound sources that are directly in front of the microphone.
- Omnidirectional Mode
This mode picks up sound equally from all directions. Great for situations when you want to capture the feeling of an event or performance.
- Bidirectional Mode
This mode records from both the front and the rear of the microphone. Good for capturing the nuance of a musical instrument, or recording an interview between two people.
- 4 different pattern settings
- Proprietary tri-capsule technology to produce studio-quality recordings
- Multiple pattern selection – cardioid, bidirectional, omnidirectional & stereo
- Great for vocals, musical instruments, podcasting, voiceovers, interviews, field recordings, conference calls
- Plug ‘n play, on Mac and PC
- Very unique design, available in 9 colors
- 2-year warranty
- Some users report the microphone has difficulties connecting with iMac.
3 – Shure MV5 – On The Move
Is very light (weighs just over one pound fully assembled), and can plug directly into an iPhone or iPad.
Shure MV5 is considered Apple MFi, which means it is made for iPhone/iPod/iPad and is certified for direct connection to any iOS device without the need for any additional adapters or connection kits
Also made to be highly portable, it measures only 2.5 inches / 7 cm tall (5.5 inches / 14 cm on included stand). As for connections, it includes one MicroB-to-USB cable and one MicroB-to-Lightning cable.
- Apple MFiCertified
Ready for direct connection to any iOS device without additional adapters or connection kits.
- DSP Preset Modes
Vocals, Flat and Instrument.
- Headphone and CapsuleBuilt
In headphone output for real-time monitoring and custom-tuned microphone capsule to provides the best audio
Included anodized aluminum desktop stand and integrated thread mount compatible with any standard 1/4″ camera tripod thread
- Made for iPhone/iPod/iPad
- 3 DSP Preset Modes
- The light does not always indicate that it is actually on.
4 – XIAOKOA – Clear Vocals
Perfectly compatible with computer or smartphone/ iPad, XIAOKOA Professional offer high-quality recordings and plug directly into your mobile devices. It works with any recording software or communication platform, so you don’t have to download special drivers or tools.
Ideal for recording singing and musical performances in addition to spoken applications such as podcasting and voice-over.
The 3.5mm Aux Jack Condenser Microphone Allows you to use the microphone with either laptop or desktop system / Windows or Mac computer.
- Foldable Tripod
Compact design for maximum portability.
3D stereo, active broadband to reduce noise, double voice coil microphone, sensitive pickup your voice.
Good for Vocals, Musical Instruments, Broadcasting, Podcasting, Interviews, Voice Recording, Video Conference, Singing over the Internet, Online Chatting such as Facebook, MSN, Skype, Youtube.
- Dual-Layer Filter
Tabletop microphone mount comes with a professional dual-layer acoustic filter to prevent from popping and improve vocal recording quality; adjustable distance between the mic and the filter.
- Professional Condenser Microphone
Allows capturing rich, full-bodied sound from sources that are directly in front of the microphone.
- Plug & Play
- Large compatibility
- No need to plug in the power supply,
- Foldable Tripod
- Professional Condenser Microphone
- The microphone is very small compared to what you may expect the size to be (Product Dimensions: 16 x 3.2 x 3.2 cm)
5 – Samson Go – Compact Design
Easy to plug and play microphone to a PC or Mac and start using fast, no drivers needed.
Because of its custom, compact design, the Samson Go Mic can clip right onto your laptop or sit unobtrusively on your desk. And with his high-quality components, you can get remarkably clear audio reproduction.
Has a switchable cardioid and omni polar patterns, so you can pick whichever pattern is more appropriate for your specific situation. The cardioid pickup pattern is good to have when recording a podcast, acoustic guitar or vocals. The omnidirectional is perfect to the pattern to capture an entire room sound.
- Compact Design
The Go Mic can clip right onto your laptop or sit unobtrusively on your desk.
Switchable cardioid and omni polar patterns to choose from.
- Audio Specs
With a frequency response of 20Hz – 18kHz and a resolution of 16-bit/44.1kHz, you can get really getting professional audio specs in a compact device.
- Clear Voice
Ideal for voice recognition software, iChat, VoIP and webcasting.
- Plug and Play
- Mac and PC compatible
- Custom design
- Includes USB cable, cable clip and carry case
- The foot USB cord could be longer
- Hard to store the mic and USB cable in the case.
6 – Razer Seiren Elite – Professional Grade
It’s a versatile multi-pattern USB digital microphone with the recording capabilities of a professional-grade studio set up all in a single plug and play device.
Razer Seiren Elite comes with an aluminum-stabilizing base that is great for recording and streaming in different situations and surroundings. The mic can sits securely on your home or studio desktop without the need of an additional mic stand, making it perfect for recording and streaming.
Has exceptionally high recording resolution (192 kHz and 24-bit) and is worth the budget it requires
- High definition studio-grade recording
With the use of Shock Mount and Pop Filter (not included). Built into the Razer Seiren are three 14mm custom-tuned condenser capsules in an array that is capable of 4 different recording pattern configurations.
- Dedicated recording patterns for multiple applications
Prepared to be used in streaming, podcasts, voice-overs, instruments, vocals, conference calls, events, interviews or even duets.
- Zero-latency headphone output for accurate monitoring
Comes with a headphone amplifier built-in, compatible with any 3.5mm headphones. With zero latency output when plugged directly into the Razer Seiren Pro, accurately monitor recordings in real time.
- USB plug and play recording
Plug it into any system and install Razer Synapse software to get the latest up-to-date drivers for the microphone.
- Dedicated recording patterns
- Easy setup
- Zero latency headphone
- Stabilizer aluminum base
- Easily switch up to four different dedicated recording patterns
- Zero latency output
- Shock mount for minimal noise available but not included
- Pop filter for zero hissings available but not included
7 – Audio-Technica ATR2500 – Quality Conversion
This computer microphone is recommended for podcasting, home studio recording, field recording, and voiceover use. Can be used just by plug-and-play, is compatible with both PC and Mac and works with any recording software you are using.
This affordable computer microphone has CD-quality in terms of sound quality and comes with an asymmetrical tripod stand to improve stability.
The Audio-Technica ATR2500 large-diaphragm side-address condenser offers a USB output for recording to your computer, a quality analog-to-digital converter and a headphone output with level control for monitoring.
- Cardioid polar pattern
Reduces pickup of unwanted sounds from the sides and rear, improving the isolation of desired sound source.
- Headphone Jack
Built-in headphone jack allows you to directly monitor your microphone output without audible delay
High-quality AD converter with 16 bit, 44.1/48 kHz sampling rate
- Low-mass diaphragm
Provides excellent frequency response
- Low self-noise
Ideally suited for digital recording equipment
Pivoting, threaded stand mount attaches securely to the supplied tripod or to a conventional microphone stand.
- Cardioid Condenser
- Built-in headphone jack
- High-quality AD converter with 16 bit, 44.1/48 kHz sampling rate
- Compatible with Windows and Mac
- The stand has a tendency to tip over with bumps.
8 – Rode NT – Versatility
The device is compatible with recording applications on Windows and Mac computers, as well as the Apple iPad (but in this case but you will need to get a USB connection adapter for that).
Rode NT has a zero-latency stereo headphone monitoring jack, and a premium pop-filter is also included (it fits onto the base of the microphone).
Another interesting accessory included is a stand mount with industry standard 3/8 inch thread, desktop tripod stand that allows the NT-USB to sit at a comfortable height on a tabletop, and a pouch for storage of the microphone when not in use.
Pop shield, Tripod desk stand, ring mount, storage pouch, and 6m (20’) USB cable included
3.5mm stereo headphone jack for zero-latency monitoring
Direct mix control between mic input and source output.
2 year extended warranty when you register your microphone
- High-quality studio
- Ultra-low noise
- On-mic mix control
- Includes Tripod stand, pop shield, and ring mount
- Better to use for close range audio capture (when you move away, may get a lot of background noise)
- The Stand could have a wider base for stability
9 – CAD U37 – Quality Tradition
CAD Audio continues to build on over 85 years of innovation in the audio industry by delivering useful solutions for performers, engineers and a wide range of audio professionals
This mic USB has a good balance between quality and price and is a good option for small budgets. It features a large cardioid pick-up pattern for good sound isolation, 10dB overload-protection to prevent distortion, and a Bass-reduction switch to give you some more custom options.
The CAD U37 has 2 switches on the front. With the first switch, you can decrease the sensitivity of the microphone so the sound quality is clear for extremely loud sounds. As for the second switch, that one is designed to reduce pickup of deep-bass sounds.
Good quality recording with variable settings on the mic.
Very easy to install, no need for driver software.
Responsive cyan LED to help indicate power/recording level.
- Smooth, extended frequency response
-10dB overload-protection switch minimizes distortion from loud sound sources
Good dimensions for the microphone, for the table tripod stand and also, comes with a generous-length cable.
- Large condenser microphone
- Cardioid pick-up pattern
- Bass-reduction switch
- A ten-foot USB cable for flexible mic placement
- Desktop mic stand included
- Better to use on “studio conditions”, on a live performance the background noise pickup and feedback potential would be immense.
10 – AMZtronics – Performance & Style
If for you the design is as important as the performance, the AMZtronics PC USB Microphone may be a very good choice for you.
Especially if you don’t want to spend too much on a computer microphone and want to have the guarantee that people will say WOW when they look at your desk. The sexy black durable aluminum alloy metal construction and a gold plate mesh look will ensure that result.
But this computer microphone has much more to offer than style. The AMZtronics condenser microphone with pop filter is ideal for Vocals, Musical Instruments, Broadcasting, Podcasting, Interviews, Voice Recording, Video Conference, Singing over Internet or karaoke, Online Chatting such as Facebook, MSN, Skype, etc.
Check all the potential it has to help you get great audio.
- Plug & Play
Just plug the 3.5mm audio cable and USB charging cable to your desktop computer, laptop or notebook, select this microphone as your input device in your software settings, and you are ready to create your own audio.
- Portable & Durable
Metal construction to ensure long-term durability.
- Noise Cancellation
High-quality condenser microphone chip, to increase sensitivity and filter out background noises.
- Foldable Tripod
You can fix the microphone on the provided foldable tripod.
- Elegant Design
- Adjustable volume and echo button on the microphone
- Plug and Play, on Windows
- Foldable Tripod
- Noise Cancellation
- Not compatible with Apple MacBook
- For Notebook/ laptop/ tablet with only one 3.5mm combo headphone/ microphone port, a Headset Mic Y Splitter Cable Adapter may be needed (not included).