Best Microphone for Gaming Reviews
Zalman ZM-Mic1 High Sensitivity Headphone Microphone
As one of the cheapest options out there you’d be surprised at how well the sound from this little thing does. You’ll need separate headphones but as a basic microphone this is a functional and cheap choice.
There’s an optional audio splitter and headphone attachment too. It tucks into your shirt or collar and has three optional designs. It’s fairly sensitive and very easy to use and has a standard microphone jack.
It also has adjustable levels via the soundcard of your device.
- 3.5mm connector
- 3 clips for attachment
- 10ft cable
As a basic and tiny bit of plastic there’s not a lot to go wrong here. It’s light enough that dropping it won’t hurt it and other than tangling the wires and causing a short or stepping on it it’s practically indestructible.
The cord is pretty long so you’re not forced to sit right up close to your device and the connector is analogous to standard headphones so it will fit with any pair you have.
There’s also an option to “boost” the sensitivity in the sound control program if you want it to be even more sensitive.
There’s no mute switch, and it doesn’t have any noise canceling so while it’s very sensitive and will hear you well it will also hear everything going on (fans, family, dogs, cars etc) which can be very disruptive while gaming.
The clips are just for the cables and it’s also hard to keep attached if you don’t have a headphone wire in. It’s also not suitable for console use.
It’s not the best mic out there but it’s a good choice if you want to spend less than $10!
Antlion Audio ModMic Boom Microphone
With professional quality sound for less than $100 this is a cheap choice but it’s well above the Zalman level. It uses a cardioid capsule to reduce background noise and give better quality speech.
This can be clipped on to any pair of headphones and has an adjustable boom so you’ll always be able to have it positioned right.
It has a standard jack and is quick to set up. Also includes case and has a mute button remote. The copper cable is also shielded to protect from interference while in use.
This is the unidirectional version which helps to reduce background noise though there’s also a much more sensitive omni directional . It has a 38 dB sensitivity, a 3m cable, and 2.2kΩ impedance.
- Magnetic clip to attach to headphones
- Mute remote
- 9.7mm electret capsule condenser microphone
A clever way of attaching a boom to your favorite pair of headphones. This is a great way of being able to feel like it’s all one unit without actually buying it together.
The design has great performance and it’s comfortable. The real gem is being able to choose between the uni and omni directional mics so you can get the level of sensitivity you need.
The positioning is limited based on the type of headphones you are using, and if you’ve not got closed earphones then you’ll also get some leak into the mic.
The boost feature causes a slight hissing to be heard by other parties when it’s at it’s loudest setting. The rotation feature is also hit or miss and may or may not work if you want to push the mic out of the way. The Y adapter for consoles is separate.
Blue Yeti SB Microphone Blackout
With one of the best audio qualities out there it’s still relatively well priced. It’s adaptable and easy to set up while still working well even if it’s not positioned perfectly.
The foam padding helps to absorbdesk vibration and there’s an option to fit it into a suspended mic stand so that it’s not in your way.
You can sit this a little further away from you than other desk mics and still get good sound which is much more convenient.
It comes in four colors and here’s a pop filter to prevent breathing noise as well as a bidirectional cardioid design.
- mute button
A hinged design that can sit just about anywhere on the desk and still pick up your sound. It’s stylish and classic looking with it’s own 3.5mm headphone jack for real-time listening.
There’s also an option to adjust gain and pattern selection.
It’s sensitive enough to pick up keyboard clacks and even with the foam it will pick up desk noise so you’ll want to put fabric or foam under that to prevent it getting through.
The desktop sitting isn’t ideal and it’s easy to knock over if you’re mobile. It’s also not suited for console use.
Blue Snowball Condenser Microphone
Despite being cheap this is almost as good as the Yeti with an optional pop filter for breathing and a custom dual condenser capsule for perfect clear audio.
The table top design is plug and play. It has a tripod base so it can stand on uneven surfaces (read–cluttered).
It has switchable patterns so it’s ideal for different apps and has a shockmount if you don’t want to use the tripod and prefer to avoid vibration noise.
It comes in 6 colors and uses a USB socket. The cardioid mode is ideal for blocking out background noise.
- 3 modes
- dual condenser
- pop filter/shockmount
Another easy to use option that fits well in a boom mount though the shockmount itself performs well.It’s well above entry level and quality for the price.
It’s USB and with three useful modes you’ll always be able to cancel out the noise you don’t want. There’s al so an impulse response reverb and the base is sturdy.
It’s nice and portable but it’s a little delicate so you don’t want to be too rough with it.
Unless you’re buying direct from the company there’s a good chance you’ll get an older version and those do not work with newer computers.
The recording volume has to be up pretty high to get good sound from it and this affects the quality significantly.
There’s not a lot of support from the company if you do have problems with it and it has to be fairly close to your mouth to get clear sound.
Samson Meteor Mic
As the name implies it looks rather like a rocket ship. It has a large 25mm diaphragm which makes itone of the better condenser microphones out there.
It comes in a sleek finish with three options and a sturdy tripod base that plugs in via USB.
The design has a folding leg set up so you can tuck them away if you want to use it in a suspension rig. There’s a mute button and it’s plug and play.
There’s also a convenient carry pouch. It uses cardioid measuring for close pick up and is clear even with more distance. It’s also compatible with Apple’s Camera Connexion Kit for iPad.
- 16 bit
- 1/8” jack
- Mute button
- Folding legs
It’s amazing at canceling out background noise, but sensitive enough that vibration and computer clacks can be an issue if it’s not mounted with a shock absorber.
There’s no popping even without a pop filter and the carry bag is ideal for storage. It’s user friendly and reasonably priced which makes it one of the better condenser microphones.
It’s solid and well made and will fit well with any stand or rig.
The folding legs only have an open or closed shape so it can be a bit bulky to fit on a small desk. It’s not USB 3.0 compatible and can be a touch oversensitive.
It’s also not intended on being long term or heavy use and while the sound quality is good at first it’s likely to last about a year.
Floureon BM-800 Condenser Studio Microphone
Firstly this is a best seller because it’s cheap. It’s a very specific device that needs a 48V phantom power supply and will need extra connection for power than just a laptop. It has a unidirectional
cardiod with feedback suppression.
There’s two color options and it has a built in shock mount toprevent vibration noise, though this can be removed to sitit into a suspension rig or other stand and it also fits standard pop filters.
It has a similar range to t he Samson and sensitivity of 45dB. Its sturdy and comes with a USB adapter, though some versions come with a soundcard instead.
- Shock Mount
- External Power Supply (Separate)
- 3.5mm jack
It can be used without the external power supply and while it’s a little bassy in that case it still gives impressive sound. For a mic this cheap it’s especially good and feels professional.
The foam cap is removable and its steel mesh exterior protects it from damage. Using a power supply means it’s a lot more powerful than a battery option or one that just uses power from the mic jack.
There’s also a USB dongle so that you can adjust the features via a USB interface.
You’ll need to purchase an external power supply if you want your sound to be loud enough and this makes the cheap cost a lot less cheap.
It’s a side address mic and while it will work with a computer it’s meant more as a studio mic for the depth of sound and design. It does capture a fair amount of ambient noise and there’s no mute button either.
It’s not tablet compatible despite being headphone compatible.
Razer Seiren Pro Elite XLR USB Professional
As the most expensive here, the difference is that this is a professional grade studio microphone.
This is going to be simple overkill for most gamers but if you’re determined to have pro grade sound then this is a great upgrade from standard desk mics.
It has HD sound and 4 patterns including bi-directional, omni directional, cardioid, and stereo.
There’s quick controls to adjust the gain and a headphone volume. There’s also a built in amplifier and it’s plug and play for easy use.
It’s also got a high pass frequency filter to filter noise below 100hz for clearer sound. It uses a standard aluminum base with a built in shock mount and is versatile.
It’s a three capsule design and also requires a 48v power supple like the Floureon but it can work on USB alone.
- 4 Patterns
- 120dB max
- High-pass filter
- Shock Mount
This offers superior clarity to anything else here and is truly in a different, professional league. The sound is amazing and clear especially with the added power pack.
The high pass filter is ideal for getting rid of ambient noise like pc fans and with the pop filter it is abrilliant combination.
The quality is solid and durable with and aluminum body and convenient adjustment buttons.
It’s rather expensive in comparison to most others, and it’s not quite professional professional level sound, despite the price.
The cables are weak and usually need replacing and often cause white noise interference because of their poor quality. It’s quite tall which can also get in the way of your screen while using it.
While it’s obvious that the Razer offers an entirely different quality experience it’s likely to be overkill for most gamers. The Yeti and Snowball are by far the most popular options and come at a more reasonable price.
Overall, if you’re looking for the best microphone for gaming there’s no need to spend hundreds at a professional level but upgrading from the Zalman to something a little more suited is probably a good idea.