Podcasting seems to have exploded in the past few years, even Google’s cashed in by developing its own podcasting app. The accessibility of the format is what draws so many listeners and creators to it. If you’re aspiring to be the latter, picking out your debut podcasting microphone can be daunting, which is why we’ve made this list to find the best podcasting microphone for you.
Editor’s note: this list was updated on February 13, 2019, to account for price changes.
Related: Best USB Microphones
The best podcasting microphone is the Shure SM7B
For its compact design, the Shure SM7B is an insanely powerful microphone. Much like Nebraska, the Shure’s frequency response is flat and wide. The frequency response of this dynamic mic ranges from 50 – 20kHz with an impedance of 150Ω. The cardioid polar pattern grants uniform recording, and its internals are no slouch either.
It sports a new cartridge shock mount which prevents small movements from showing up in your recordings, so feel free to build a mote of laptops, lights, and monitors around this thing. It proves that professional design doesn’t have to mean inconvenient.
The yoke mounting makes for simple mounting and dismounting along with precision control of the placement within your workspace. There are also optional accessories, windscreens, and replacement cartridges to ensure optimal recording quality. The included pop filter helps to mitigate plosives, and protects the mic from any rogue spit.
The SM7B is well-built, making it ideal for podcasters who are committed to the longevity of their product.
Vagabond podcasters should get the Samson Go Mic
Samson Technologies is renowned for its audio equipment and are used globally by professionals. If this is your first toe-dip into the world of podcasting, the Samson Go Mic is a wonderful low-risk option to consider.
Samson GoFull Review
The USB condenser style mic allows for complete ease of recording: just plug it into your computer and record. The frequency response is more than enough, ranging from 20Hz – 18kHz at 16-bit resolution. The Go mic also offers a cardioid recording option which is ideal for podcasting. And, it can record directly into whatever editing program you’re using. However, for better quality audio, prepare to shell out.
The best value podcasting microphone is the Blue Yeti
Blue Yeti’s mission is to make your recording experience as efficient and streamlined as possible with their USB microphones. Specifically, the Yeti Pro offers “tri-capsule technology” which allows for quality a cut above your average USB mic for only a little more. You may adjust the gain, and headphone output volume via the 3.5mm headphone jack.
Additionally, there are four pattern modes with this mic allowing you to choose which one best suits your given situation. Cardioid is ideal for podcasts, as it allows you to record sound which is immediately in front of the mic. Stereo mode acts as one would expect: recording sound from the left and right channels simultaneously to provide a better illusion the listener is in the room with you. Omnidirectional mode will record 360-degree sound, and bidirectional will record sound from the front and rear regions of the microphone.
The Electro-Voice RE20 produces an excellent sound as a podcasting microphone
The RE20 can capture a wonderfully wide range of frequencies (45Hz – 16kHz) and doesn’t succumb to the proximity effect; in “explain it like I’m five” terms, this is when the subject gets closer to the mic, causing a bass-bump in the recording. This feature is great for those looking to record instruments such as a kick drum.
It’s a broadcasting standard and the epitome of what a cardioid microphone should be. The pattern control is remarkably consistent and neglects pickup of undesirable sound at the 180-degree axis. The blast and wind filter prevents “pops” or cackles, allowing the speaker to get as close as they desire without worrying about excessive post-production work. The filter also prevents vibration-cased resonance thanks to its internal shock mount mechanism.
For studio use, get the Rode NT1
The Rode NT1 has been around for over 20 years, and the latest “A” model of the bunch is an unobtrusive and quiet piece of equipment; it emits an impressively small 4.5dB of noise while recording. This is great for those moments when you find yourself needing to apply gain or set up complex EQ curves. The frequency response ranges from 20Hz – 20kHz.
Rode Microphone NT1-A (Kit)
The NT1 uses a suspension-mounted HF6 capsule, allowing it to isolate its aluminum chassis’ natural resonance. This microphone is the whole package—literally. The NT1 kit includes a shock mount, and a stainless steel pop filter to nudge you in the direction of podcast success. This microphone has been praised all over the internet and for good reason: it’s a keeper. So if you’re serious about podcasting, you should seriously look into the NT1 Kit.
How we chose the best podcasting mics
While we typically subject headphones and earbuds to our in-house, objective testing, podcasting mics are a bit different. We made sure to do plenty of research on third-party forms and by scouring reviews on popular retailers. What’s more, we accounted for the reality of podcasting: it can be done from virtually anywhere. We wanted to respect the format’s versatility by picking out a wide array of options for readers to choose from.
- Audio-Technica ATR2500: Sound quality is excellent for a sub-$100 microphone. It’s easy to use since it’s a USB interface, too.
- Blue Snowball: This is a great alternative to the Blue Yeti microphone. It’s even easier to use and features a smaller, albeit more spherical, form factor. This USB microphone is available for ~$50.
- Beyerdynamic Fox USB Mic: If you want a versatile USB microphone that’s appropriate for gamers, podcasters, and musicians alike, the Beyerdynamic Fox USB Mic is a great option. It’s a bit pricey but users pay for the convenience, versatility, and slick design.
- Rode NT-USB: The NT-USB is much like Beyerdynamic Fox: both are USB microphones designed to perform well in a variety of situations. Rode’s version is slightly more expensive but it really comes down to personal preference.
Why you should trust us
Individually, each member of the SoundGuys team has accrued multiple years of keeping their thumbs on the pulse of the audio industry. When it comes to the best podcasting mics, we understand that users podcast in vastly different environments from a hotel bedroom to a full-fledged studio. Thus, we wanted to account for that diversity in our picks.
None of our writers benefit from recommending one product over another; as a matter of fact, they’ll never know if a link was ever clicked. Collectively, we want you to be happy with your purchase and, in the case of podcasting mics, we want it to be easy to use and increase the quality of your end product. If you have the time, we encourage our readers to learn more about our ethics policy.
Disclosure: We may receive affiliate compensation in connection with your purchase of products via links on this page. Even though we may receive compensation, we always give our honest opinions, findings, beliefs, or experiences on each product. See our ethics policy for more details.