9 Best Gaming Microphones to Stream Perfect Audio Quality in 2017
If youre a serious gamer, you know how crucial microphone audio quality is, as communication is the key to winning modern day games. Whether you need to communicate with your team members or with your competitors, having a decent mic is very important. And unlike an attached mic on the gaming headset, a dedicated standalone microphone offers far better audio quality.
So, opting for a standalone mic would be a good choice if youve been planning to upgrade your gaming rig for a while now. There are numerous microphones on offer and picking the right one can be a tricky task. Weve made your job slightly easier and have come up with reviews of some of the best gaming microphones on offer.
The Best Gaming Microphones to Stream Perfect Audio Quality in 2017
- Blue Yeti USB Microphone for Gaming
- Blue Yeti Pro USB Condenser Gamers Microphone
- Audio-Technica ATR2500 Cardioid Mic for Streaming
- Antlion Audio ModMic Attachable Boom Microphone
- Blue Snowball iCE Condenser Gamers Microphone
- Razer Seiren Pro Elite XLR and USB Digital Microphone
- Audio-Technica AT2020USB Professional Recording Mic
- Rode NTG2 Condenser Shotgun Microphone
- Samson Go Mic Portable Travel USB Condenser Mic
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How To Set Up a Microphone For Gaming
Gamers are incredibly picky with technical details such as microphones for computers and consoles, and this can be a reason that soft-core or beginner gamers tend to get confused when picking a PC microphone to begin their hardcore gaming lives with. There are a variety of choices, and picking the right mics with the best audio quality possible can be essential to the quality of your gaming experience.
Picking the Microphone
There are several kinds of mics for gaming, but they have been narrowed down to three broad categories:
- Standing mics
- Attachment mics
- Budget Mics
These Mics are the best quality microphones of the lot and are used by high-end professionals quite often due to their crystal clear audio quality and polished look.
- Great sound quality
- Highly adaptable
- Good price to quality ratio.
These mics are affordable and are worth the money put in due to their portability and audio quality. Their main advantage is that they do not have to be set close to the mouth to be able to pick up the clear sound and can be placed on a nearby desk or surface. They do a good job of eliminating background noise and keeping the focus on your voice.
These microphones are perfect for gamers, both for voice chats and live streaming.
While these mics are not as professional or clear as a standing microphone, they make up for it with convenience and affordability. They are generally attached to headphones but can be detached as required.
- Convenient to use
- Acceptable audio quality
- Does not pick up on keyboard clicking or movement of the mouse
Due to the place of the attachment mic too close to the mouth, it tends to pick up on loud breathing and emphasized words, and thus may cause a bit of distortion. However, this can be minimized with the use of a pop filter.
Thus, due to these reasons, the attachment microphone is generally used for gaming voice chats and is not preferred for live streaming.
Budget / Headset Microphones
Budget Microphones tend to come along with a gaming headset, or clip onto the cord of a set of headphones. While the audio quality of these headphones is not amazing, they tend to be incredibly cheap and are able to transmit your voice as a mic should.
- Extremely cheap
- Acceptable audio quality
- Good for recording a single person
- Perfect for playing with headphones on
However, these mics tend to pick up background noise, and thus do not suit for live streaming, as they are not entirely without distortion. But in a good environment, with the correct settings and position, these mics perform their jobs with a surprising quality when considering their dirt-cheap pricing.
So, they are usually used to record podcasts or play games with voice chat, as quality is not of concern in those activities.
Testing the Microphone
Testing the quality of the chosen microphone is essential to determining its worth and deciding which brand of the microphone to go for. There are four categories to go through before you pick the mic you want to buy:
- Recording Quality
When checking the recording quality of a microphone, one must check how much background noise the mic picks up. Testing it against your voice is another must, as it must make the voice of the user sound good and clear. It also must not pick up on keyboard clicking and fast moving mouse taps.
Certain microphones only sound good when placed six inches from the mouth and mounted on shock absorbent material. The ideal mic must be one which picks up the voice from a convenient and ideal place, without the help of props and filters.
When live streaming a video, a gamer must make sure that the mic is not too visible or distracting. A distracting standing mic may also affect the gamers concentration. Thus, one must make sure that the mics appearance is suited to its purpose.
An ideal microphone is a microphone which does its job well for the least price. Thus, a budget must be kept in mind when choosing the right mic.
Setting Up the Microphone
Once the ideal gaming microphone has been bought, you will have to set it up for your gaming system. Given below are the methods to set up a mic for three different gaming systems:
- X-Box Console
- Windows 8 Personal Computer
- MacBook (Post 2012)
For the wireless mic/headset:
- Turn on the console
- Establish a wireless connection between the receiver and the X-Box console. Press the connect button on the X-Box, which is direct to the left of the power button and wait for the microphone to connect to the X-Box
For the wired headset:
- Insert the headsets plug into the controllers expansion port, which is located at the bottom of the controller
For the wired mic:
- Plug the microphone into the television or central system that the X-Box has been connected to
Windows 8 Personal Computer
- Plug in the mic
- Enter the search screen of the computer and open the Manage Audio Devices tab
- Find the microphone and select it from the tab
- If the mic is connected properly and it is missing from this tab, right click and select the Disabled Devices option. Right click on the option enabling disabled microphones and blow into the mic to allow the computer to pick it up.
As Apple has combined the audio line-in with the headphone socket, one would have to use the headphone socket to connect their mic. If you are unable to connect the microphone to the headphone socket, an appropriate cord would have to be purchased. The apps to be connected to the mic may be connected as and when required.
And so, you now have a mic to use for podcasts, gaming voice chats, live-streaming your games and a variety of other uses.
Which one to go for?
If youre a serious gamer, having a good mic is definitely a must. Without a good microphone, youll not be able to communicate with your team members, resulting in a poor gameplay experience.
The Blue Yeti USB Microphone can be a good choice if youre looking to upgrade your gaming setup. As its quite clear from the name itself, this mic is huge a foot in length and weighs 3.5 pounds. This microphone features THX-certified sound quality, and along with four sound recording modes, you can get a great performance out of this one. If you are looking for a microphone for YouTube you should check out our full article here.
The design of Blue Yeti USB Mic is quite amazing, too. The mic also offers gain control, a mute button, and zero-latency headphone output to make it one of the finest gaming microphones on offer.
A top pick, this product can be a great add-on for your gaming setup.
USB microphones have come a long way since its inception. And for gamers, a good and reliable microphone is a must have these days. If youre looking to add a mic to your gaming setup, the Blue Yeti Pro USB Condenser Mic can be a good product to go for.
It offers three custom condenser capsules along with four polar pattern settings; making this device deliver a truly exceptional performance. When it comes to the looks, this product looks so stylish, thanks to its textured black and silver metal body. This gaming microphone features built-in headphone amplifier that ensures zero-latency monitoring.
It also has direct controls for headphone volume along with pattern selection, and mic gain, which comes in really handy during gameplay. Further, this microphone also features Cutting-edge A-D converter chip and separate analog circuit path that can be used with professional mixers. Overall, this mic is a premium choice that you can rely on, for all your gaming needs.
A good gaming setup isnt complete without a microphone. A mic allows you to communicate with your fellow team members with ease, resulting in an enhanced gameplay experience. The Audio-Technica ATR2500 packs style with a performance at quite an affordable price, making it a great product to go for.
This device has a great design and gives a stylish touch to the gaming rig. Connecting it to a computer is quite seamless, as you can use the side-address condenser mic with USB output to get the job done. It is quite a good choice for gamers as you can directly control your mic output without having to face any audible delay, thanks to the built-in headphone jack.
The front of the microphone has easy to use controls that you can use to alter the headphone volume with ease. With a lot of features on offer at such an affordable price, this device offers a great value for your money. Go for it!