A Dynamic microphone can easily handle a higher volume to a large extent as compared to the condenser type. Next is the ribbon that makes the recording smooth and soft. Last but not least: an USB microphone, which can easily be plugged in a USB port of computers and laptops.
Recommended computer microphones
Bestselling Computer Microphone: Blue Yeti
If you are looking to create some of the best recordings possible from the comfort of your own home, then there is no better computer microphone than the Blue Yeti USB Microphone. This model is done in a stealth black, and is also known as the ‘Blackout Edition’. The Yeti USB microphone is known as one of the best USB mics available for home use.
- Tri-capsule array, which means 3 condenser capsules sound capture
- Four patterns to select from: Cardioid, bidirectional, omni-directional & stereo
- On board mic controls: Gain , mute button, zero-latency and headphone output
Blue Yeti USB Computer Microphone Features
The Yeti is known as one of the best and most celebrated USB microphones on the market today. The Yeti Blackout Edition utilizes the famous tri-capsule technology along with four pattern settings which are designed specifically to target vocals, instrumentation, podcasts, gaming as well as casual social media activities.
Overall construction of the Yeti is one of strength and durability. Its metal construction is a streamlined, smooth design. Easily adjustable, simply tilt in the direction you choose and tighten the knobs. The base is solidly built and designed to keep the Yeti steady during use.
The Yeti by Blue also offers you the ability to control not only the aforementioned patterns, but also headphone volume, mute and mic gain. In other words, you are not merely recording, you are in total control of the entire process. The Yeti comes complete with a 3.5mm headphone jack.
The Yeti will give you honest, crystal clear, professional quality recordings. With four different pattern settings available, you will have unparalleled flexibility for your music, podcasts, radio shows, video audio, narration and voice overs. Pattern settings include:
With stereo mode, the Yeti utilizes the left and right channels. This results in the capture of a bold, and realistic wall of sound. Stereo mode works well with music.
If you are into making online radio shows, podcasts, voice overs, etc., this is the mode you would choose. In Cardioid mode, you are recording from a source that is in front of the mic. This can also work quite well for those of you who use speech recognition software in order to surf and quickly gather notes, write books or collect data without having to bother to type everything out.
Just as the name alludes, this mode works to catch sound from all around the microphone. For instance, if you have a podcast on sporting events, and needed an introduction with sound effects of a cheering crowd, you’d pick this mode while in a stadium.
Bidirectional mode will grab sounds from directly in front of the mic and from directly behind the mic. This is perfect for those times you are holding your podcast and interviewing someone. Just place the mic between you and your guest, and you can be assured that there will be no distortion due to constantly moving your mic.
You are limited only by your creativity when you use a Yeti Microphone by Blue. In the home, school, business or out in the great outdoors, the award winning Yeti will give you the best sound ever with it’s 4 different recording patterns, on board controls and premium condenser capsules. All of which all lead to a computer microphone which creates the best possible audio at a price most can afford. creating the best possible audio on the market for a very affordable price.
Alternative: Snowball iCE Computer Microphone
Blue is one of the most trusted and well-respected manufacturers of USB computer microphones in the world today. The Snowball iCE Condenser USB Microphone has been designed to deliver exceptional audio quality. Blue’s custom condenser capsule with cardioid pattern is responsible for the high quality audio for your projects. All the convenience of a plug and play device with no software required. Simply plug the Snowball iCE into your computer and start recording!
- Custom condenser capsule technology results in crisp, clean and clear audio
- Adds HD audio to recordings for social media, personal projects, narration and gaming platforms
- Ease of use with convenient plug and play design
The Snowball iCE by blue is a nice, sweet little package for those of you into recording your own audio. The resulting recording will be clear as crystal due to the custom condenser capsule. Ease of use is dictated by the plug and play operation: Simply plug the Snowball iCE into a USB on your computer and you are good to go, no need for software or drivers to install. Once installed your audio editing programs such as Audacity will be able to recognize the mic.
The sturdy mic stand makes sure that there is no vibration or unnecessary movement. Whether you are recording for Skype or Youtube, you are guaranteed to have studio quality sound as a result. In fact, the Snowball iCE has been certified by SKYPE. With this unit you will be able to have polished and professional narration to home movies, instrumentation, and vocals. This microphone is invaluable for gamers who are looking for a way to make sure that their video game walk-throughs and tutorials have a professional sound.
Those of you who rely heavily on speech recognition software will most certainly be grateful for the quality achieved by this mic. Whether you are using speech recognition software to quickly surf and record notes as you come across them without typing, or a student who is using speech recognition software in order to gather online information to help in writing a paper or studying for am exam will find the Snowball iCE effective.
The Snowball iCE by Blue is composed of advanced technology which makes it superior in the realm of home audio recording. The Snowball iCE has a bit depth of 16 bits, a sample rate of 44.1 kHz and has a cardioid polar pattern. The operating principle is pressure gradient, frequency range is 40 Hz to 18 kHz and of course, the output connectors are USB. The Snowball iCE works on windows operating systems XP and higher,Mac OSX 10.4.6 or higher.
Summary of Snowball iCE Computer Microphone
The Snowball iCE is an outstanding audio recording device to add to your home, business, computer or gaming set ups. Designed to be durable, stable and yet simple to use, this microphone excels at capturing sound at its source, while minimizing background noise. Whether used for casual chats on social media, professional narration or conference calls, the Snowball iCE from Blue is a computer microphone that is designed with you, the user in mind.
Budget Tip: Fifine Plug and Play Computer Microphone
If you’re tired of using your computers integrated microphone and dealing with the fuzzy distortion and annoying feedback, then the Fifine Plug and Play Home Studio USB computer microphone is just built for you. Due to its ability to create studio quality audio at an affordable price, the Fifine K668 condenser microphone is a top choice among social media users and gamers alike.
Plug and play with no software to install•Cardioid pick up pattern which cancels noise and isolates the audio you with to record•Smooth and flat frequency response of 50Hz to 6KHz
Easy Setup, Easy to Use
The Fifine K668 condenser microphone is simple to use and easy to operate. Simply plug your K668 into a USB port on your PC or Mac and you are on your way. The housing is made of high quality, durable aluminum alloy metal with a silver plate mesh.
The Fifine K668 comes with 1 USB microphone with 5.9 foot audio cable, 1 anti-wind foam cap, 1 metal tripod stand and a user manual. There is absolutely no software or drivers to install in order to use the Ffine K668. This microphone is capable of working with any audio software you own, such as Audacity. The Fifine K668 is 8 x 6.9 x 2.6 inches and weighs in at a light 12.8 ounces.
Professional Audio for Your Social Media and Gaming Needs
The elegantly designed Fifine K668 microphone works for vocals, music, voice overs, gaming and podcasts, all while producing studio quality results. Those of you who enjoy creating gaming videos and wish to move on from the fuzzy audio of integrated microphones, will be happy to know that the Fifine K668 will help you create superior audio for your tutorials and gaming walk throughs.
With no software or drivers to download, the Fifine K668 lives up to its name as a plug and play computer microphone. Your audio projects will have less background noise and far better tonal range. The Fifine K668 is directional in design, due to its cardioid pick up pattern, which means it can eliminate extraneous environmental noise and record only the source sounds. In other words, if you are doing a podcast, it will pick up your speech, not the whir of the air conditioner.
Excellent for Use with Speech Recognition Software
This model also works well for speech recognition software. If you are one of the thousands who choose to organize your books, papers, homework and other projects, by taking online notes verbally as you surf, than the directional technology in this mic can make sure you record every important word or phrase which ensures a successful study session.
The Fifine K668 USB Microphone is sure to give your recordings a high quality, professional touch. No more scratchy, fuzzy background noise you usually get from your integrated microphone, as its cardioid pick up pattern works to make sure the only sound you hear, is the one you are recording. So whether you are chatting causally over SKYPE or involved in an important meeting, the Fifine K668 USB computer microphone is sure to give you the ultimate in recording performance.
Computer Microphone Features
Recording audio that is “nearly” studio quality is possible. You can hook up a high quality condenser USB microphone to your computer through the USB Port or use a USB microphone that can interface with the iPad through its lightning cable. You get nearly professional studio quality but not absolute studio quality because microphones used in studios are terribly expensive with specifications and performance to match.
Emile Berner invented a computer microphone in 1877. It helps in recording voice or any other sound, which is saved on the computer as wav files. Computer microphones are high in demand as its use is increasing by the day. It helps in communicating with family, friends and business associates by doing voice conferences or voice chat. You don’t need any software to use these mics.
You can record audio discussions between speakers, prepare your podcast or record a speech or an instructional audio using these USB microphones or computer microphones and the sound will be crystal clear. These are but representative use; it is up to your imagination how you use these high quality USB microphones. They are affordable and give top class performance.
Directional capability of a computer microphone
Microphones, along with their housing or capsule, determine directivity. Microphones are also classified as omnidirectional, bidirectional, sub-cardioid, cardioid, hypercardioid and shotgun. These characteristics determine the directional sensitivity. A ribbon microphone will pick up sound from front and rear but will reject any noise from the sides, giving it a specific advantage in broadcasting.
If you can get a microphone that allows you to select the directional pattern, it is far better since you can cancel out ambient noises by picking the right direction pattern.
Advantages of USB computer microphone
The Blue Microphone Yeti and the Rode NT-USB – to name just two brands, use large 25 mm diaphragm condenser modules in their USB microphones. With a larger surface area, it is obvious it will be more sensitive than the tinier microphones.
These USB computer microphones are designed to have a flat frequency response from 20 Hz to 20 KHz. The significance of this comes into play if you are recording a band playing music. The flat frequency range means the microphone will convert the sound, regardless of frequency, into a normalized electrical output.
Higher dynamic range means it can record sound at a low volume and sound at a larger volume with equal ease, without distortion or “clipping”. This translates to greater clarity.
Larger diaphragms also make USB studio condenser microphones more sensitive. If you want quality recording go for 16 bit 44 Khz resolution.
Then there are minor things like the housing, the pop filter on top and the base, which should influence your buying decision. A good quality computer microphone will give top performance right out of the box.