If you are a professional streamer or aspire to be one, then the list of microphones below is for you! In this article, we’ll explore together what mics are better to buy for broadcasting, streaming, and other activities that you can do from the comfort of your home. If you are new to this website, hi! For a very long time now, we’ve been searching for good microphones that suit different tastes and purposes. I’m glad to be your guide in finding the best microphone for playing games and video streaming. Of course, only you decide what gear to buy! I’ll just try to outline the essential characteristics of the models most relevant to your purpose. Let’s dive right into the reviews!
1. Audio-Technica AT2020USB PLUS
Audio-Technica AT2020USB is one of the most popular microphones out there applied in many different areas. Undoubtedly, it is suitable for livestreaming and gaming. It will carry out the job impeccably! There are three main advantages of the mic that make it special – convenience, excellent price-quality ratio, and durability.
First, let’s start with convenience. AT2020 can be connected directly to your PC, Mac or Windows – it doesn’t really matter. All you need is a USB cable (which is by the way included in the shipping package) and a USB input. All you do is plug the cable in and that’s it! The plug & play principle does its magic.
Secondly, the microphone can produce high-quality sound despite the fact that its price can be categorized as a budget one. There is a wide frequency response that makes sure you can both record streams and vocals if you need to. A cardioid polar pattern means no off-axis sounds enter the recording or the stream. Noise suppression eliminates humming. All in all, there is everything for creating clear and smooth audio.
Last but not least is the quality of the mic’s construction. The mic looks and feels quite stable. There are volume controls, mix controls, and a headphone jack on the corpus. If you want to monitor what you’re saying, you can plug in your headphones and do it. Besides the aforementioned cable, the shipping package includes a case, a tripod, and a shock mount. So there is everything you need to set up the mic and start playing! Thus, this is a really nice microphone that is definitely worth close attention.
2. Rode NT-USB Versatile Studio-Quality USB Cardioid Condenser Microphone
In many ways, Rode NT-USB is similar to the option above. It also has a USB connection. The microphone can be used not just with PCs or laptops but also with tablets such as iPad. The polar pattern is cardioid which is the most convenient one for recording one speaker. In case you don’t know what cardioid polar pattern is – it is an area in the form of heart which is sensitive to audio waves that come into it. All the other spaces that surround this area don’t capture sound, thus leaving all that comes from the back and from the sides out of the recording.
The other similarity is excellent sound quality provided by flat frequency response, noise elimination, and a pop shield. The pop shield that you can see in the picture is used to minimize undesired plosives as well as other sharp sounds. If you have a shrieky kind of voice, it is a must for you to use it.
The body of the mic also features a headphone jack for real-time monitoring. There are some controls as well that will help you to regulate sound as you progress in a game. A tripod, a mount, a pouch, a cable – all of that is shipped together with the mic so you needn’t worry about additional purchases. Rode NT’s only difference from AT2020 is probably the price. As for all the other features, they are basically the same. Some customers give preference to this option due to a more appealing look or the fact that it is Rode. Others find the sound produced by this one somewhat better. It is up to you to choose the best model! All I can say is that both options are valid.
3. CMTECK USB Computer Microphone
If you don’t really need professional or even semi-professional hardware, you can look for cheap yet workable options such as this one. CMTECK computer microphone was created for average users whose needs don’t go over skyping, playing games, and hanging out on social media platforms. If you feel like this is about you, read on!
This is a gooseneck microphone which is very flexible – you can position it in whatever way you like. In order to avoid side noises, you can place the microphone very close to your mouth. It can be important since the polar pattern is omnidirectional. Omnidirectional polar pattern, unlike the cardioid one, captures sounds from all the sides – back and front, left and right.
On the body of the mic, there is a mute button. There are also LED lights indicating the status of the microphone – whether it is working or not. Lastly, it is worth mentioning the cool design of the mic. Not only is it convenient in use but it also creates a special mood for playing (and winning!). So, if you are looking for a cheap microphone that will improve the quality of your communication, you have found one!
4. Blue Yeti Nano Premium USB Mic for Recording and Streaming
Blue Yeti Nano is a microphone that was inspired by the famous Blue Yeti (we’ll talk about it later). The mic is everything you need for a perfect podcast, stream, or voice-over. First of all, it is small in size. You can either place it on the table in front of you or use a stand to make it come right to your mouth. Either way, the sound will be fantastic, so it is all a question of personal preference.
Secondly, the microphone has two polar patterns – omnidirectional and cardioid. If you are streaming alone, you can use the cardioid polar pattern to highlight your voice and reduce side noises. And if you are talking to someone while streaming, you can switch to the omnidirectional polar pattern so that all the voices and sound sources in your room were heard clearly. In many ways, this is a convenient feature – you’ll certainly figure out how to make use of it.
All the Blue microphones are known for their quality. Most of them are USB so there is that plug n’ play principle – all you need to do to make the mic work is plug it into your computer. On the body of the mic, there is a mute button which allows you to turn off the sound of your streams any time you want to. There are also a headphone jack and headphone volume controls. All in all, Blue Yeti Nano is a great mic for playing games and streaming. A nice bonus is an acceptable price.
5. Blue Yeti USB Microphone
Blue Yeti USB Microphone is probably the most popular model among the Blue Microphones’ microphones. If you are looking for a universal recording solution, this is it. The mic can be used in a number of different situations due to its four polar patterns, wide frequency response, excellent noize reduction, and more.
As for the polar patterns, there are cardioid, omnidirectional, stereo, and figure eight. You can read about all of them and how they can be applied in various circumstances. For game streaming, it is better to use cardioid polar pattern, however, you can play with this. The most important thing is that you can adapt this mic to any situation.
On the body of the mic, there is a mute button which can be very convenient in case your mom, siblings or other people you live with try to interrupt your streaming. You can quickly reach for the button and leave your personal conversation off the record. There are also volume controls and headphone jack, so basically everything you might possibly need while streaming.
The only drawback of this mic is that it has quite a big size. This might affect your ability to follow the game, so maybe it is better to look for smaller, more compact models. Of course, you can always place the microphone somewhere near the screen and not in front of it, or even hang it for that matter. All in all, if not for the size this mic would be a perfect solution for anyone who wants to improve one’s streaming quality. And not just streaming. You can try to record vocals and musical instruments with it as well.
6. Blue Yeticaster Professional Broadcast Bundle
Previously, we were talking about how the size of the Blue Yeti microphone can be inconvenient. Well, this is a great solution to this problem! Blue Yeticaster represents that same Blue Yeti hanged with the help of a boom arm and a special shock mount. Such a set up will look very professional in your streams. You can even make your followers believe that you are a real pro. And if you are a real pro, then the hardware like this is what you definitely need to take a look at.
The characteristics of the microphone are all the same – USB connection, four polar patterns, mute button and volume controls, headphone jack, and so on. The only difference is how you set the mic up. You can watch a video created by the Blue Microphones to see how it will look in real life. Then you can decide what way of setting you like best. All in all, this is another great option.
7. Blue Snowball USB Microphone
Did I mention that Blue microphones come in different colors? I try to choose pictures of neutral models in grey or black but there are so many other options you can choose from – green, blue, silver, and so on. If you have some special interior or your computer looks in a particular way, you can pick up a microphone that perfectly suits the rest of your setting.
The colors are of course not as important as the features of the mic and what it can do in order to deliver the best sound possible. The Blue Snowball has excellent characteristics. There are two polar patterns – cardioid and omnidirectional – that can be used in many different situations. There is also a third polar pattern which is a cardioid with a slightly decreased sensitivity to load noise. In case you like to shout, choose this one.
The sound quality of the mic is amazing. It is so much better than the one of your embedded computer mic or even the mic that comes with your headphones. You don’t need to do much to make the Snowball work – just like with any USB mic, all it takes is a connection. A lyrical pause here would be – that works with people as well. Once the mic is ready to be used, the LED light will show you that.
If you are looking for a reliable budget microphone, this option is what you should definitely check out. The price of the mic is a lot lower than one hundred dollars. Despite this, the mic is awesome for game streaming, podcasts recording, skyping, and more.
8. Samson Meteor Mic USB Studio Microphone
Samson Meteor Mic is a relatively new USB microphone created by Samson. The mic is very compact, which helps you avoid possible inconveniences while playing. More than that, the microphone has folding legs so you don’t need to set it on a tripod or any other stand – just unfold the legs and start playing. Since there is a USB connection, there shouldn’t be problems with the setup.
The polar pattern is cardioid which is exactly what you need for live streaming, radio recordings, broadcasting, and so on. What is great about the model is wide frequency response. Here it is 20 – 20 000 Hz, which means smooth and natural sound. Besides, more freedom to play with the settings in case you want to edit the recordings.
All in all, this is an excellent mic for gamers and streamers. Its easy setup and high-quality sound reproduction make the mic a desirable purchase. If you don’t want to mess around with big and expensive microphones, choose this option.
9. ASUS ROG Strix Magnus USB 3.0 Portable Gaming Condenser Microphone
ASUS makes microphones? Yes, it does! Most certainly this one is made to satisfy all the gamers out there. After all, live streaming has become quite popular these days – any company would want to earn money on producing gear for this activity. Although maybe this is not the case and Asus’ developers genuinely wanted to create a good microphone for gaming related activities (as it often happens in today’s market economy). But let’s not discuss the intentions. Let’s discuss the results!
ASUS ROG Strix Magnus is a very stylish microphone suitable for live streaming. Its price is a bit too high compared to the traditional Blue, Rode or AT models. However, it has certain peculiarities. First of all, it is compact – you can put it next to your cup of tea and forget about it. Secondly, there are cool LED lights on the mic – you can make them red, blue, green, any color you like actually. And, finally, the mic is designed in such a way so that all the clicking and tapping noises from your keyboard and mouse were left out of the recording.
There are two polar patterns – standard cardioid and stereo. The stereo one is used when there are two people talking. You can stream together with your friend, for example, to make the streaming even more entertaining. There is also a special mode in which the microphone rejects all the side noises that may come from your environment. So, if you’ve got noisy neighbors or crazy traffic outside your window, you can turn this mode on to make the audio of your streams clearer.
All in all, this is a great mic for those who choose the style. Its quality is amazing, however, the money you pay for it can be used in a more rational way. Of course, if you haven’t got problems with cash, you can go for this option! However, it is good to know that there are other mics out there that cost considerably less and can do just as great.
10. Razer Seiren Elite
Razer Seiren is another mic specially made for gamers and streamers. What is special about all these specially made microphones is that they are very beautiful. The designers must have worked really hard in order to create such an appealing look. However, as they say, don’t judge a book by its cover. So, let’s take a look at the more essential characteristics.
This mic has a wide flat frequency response which can capture lots of different sounds of various frequencies. Yes, I know, I can be your captain sometimes. As well as the sound of your voice, this mic can also capture some background humming noises. This is a normal thing characteristic of like every microphone that exists out there. The good thing is that this mic has a high-pass filter which reduces the noises and makes the sound crisp and clear.
This is the first dynamic microphone on our list. Dynamic mics are a bit different from the condenser ones. They are usually more bassy and less sensitive as well as tougher and more rugged. The interface of this rugged microphone includes volume regulation, headphone regulation and, of course, there is a headphone jack.
In general, the sound quality is decent but for a price close to two hundred bucks they could do better. Here, you pay for the design mostly. By the way, it comes in different colors – black. pink, and white. There is the whole series of items that go well with this microphone – a headset, a keyboard, a mouse. So if you want to collect the whole package, you can splash out. If you want to be wise though, it is better to go for a Blue microphone or some other microphone that is designed for different applications, not just streaming. At least, that’s what I think. You are free to disagree with me and go check this item!
11. Apogee MIC PLUS
Apogee MIC PLUS is a microphone produced in the USA. The mic connects through a USB cable so if for one moment you thought it was XLR, you can relax – it is not. Less stress in life for those of us who don’t know what XLR means.
The microphone has a cardioid polar pattern. It can be used not just for streaming & gaming but also for other activities such as recording your favorite guitar songs, vocals, and more. The condenser unit of the mic is reliable and precise. It will capture even the elusive sounds of your voice.
You can use this microphone not just with your computer but also with your phone or tablet. Android and iOS compatibility broadens your horizons in the recording which is always a good thing. The mic comes with a tripod stand so you can simply put it on your table. If you want to, you can use a microphone stand to position the mic closer to your mouse and in such a way reduce the keyboard noises. Another advantage of the microphone is that it is really small, much smaller than the ones we called small before reviewing this one.
Taking everything into consideration, this is a very versatile microphone that would be great for streaming. Some people doubt its durability but few say bad words about the sound quality. The choice is yours!
12. Movo MC1000 Conference USB Microphone
No, this is not a mouse. This is a so-called boundary microphone. Boundary microphones are usually used in conference rooms or other settings where it is important to capture the voices of several speakers. They are applied in online conferences as well – for example, when one group of researchers wants to connect with the other one. Why is this mic on this list? Pretty simple – you can use it for streaming.
And why wouldn’t you? First of all, it is cheap. Secondly, it can be a bit directional if you want it to be (most of the time these mics are omnidirectional). And, thirdly, it can be connected to your computer through a simple USB cable just like all the other microphones on this list. It even has a headphone jack for real-time monitoring.
The only concern is about the background noises, humming, clicking, and all of that. If you don’t have many of those in your environment, you should certainly check this option out. If your surroundings are a bit noisy though, it is better to give preference to some other option.
And if you are interested in what other boundary microphones are out there, check out this article.
13. Zalman Zm-Mic1 High Sensitivity Headphone Microphone
Maybe you don’t need a microphone? Certainly, you do since you’re here! But do you really need a full-fledged microphone that will take lots of place on your table and cost you an arm and a leg? If the answer is not really, then you might want to try this simple headphone microphone. Sometimes the streamers come across this very common problem when your headset continues to function but the microphone that goes with it breaks down. For these situations, there are special separate microphones that can get you rid of the necessity to buy a brand new headset. This is one of them.
Zalman is a miniature mic that you can connect either directly to your computer or to your headset if there is such a possibility. The sound you get from this mic is alright. Many customers seem to be satisfied with it. What is great is the price of this piece – it is highly affordable, practically everyone can get this mic. So if the ability to speak while streaming is already a wonder to you (and I’m not talking about all of the bottled-up geeks out there), then go ahead and order this option!
Thus, there are many various microphones you can use for gaming and streaming. Sometimes the looks can mislead you into buying junk and paying a lot for it too. Be careful in deciding whether to buy a mic ‘specially made for streaming’ and be free to explore all the options that are available to you. Most of all, enjoy playing & have fun streaming!