Podcasts are being created because the technology making it happen is readily available. The software, podcasts platforms, and hardware are easily accessible. If push comes to shove, you can even use your smartphone to launch and broadcast your program. The point is a podcast will increase your customer base and give you a platform in which you can engage with your audience.
Having a good quality podcast mic will pay off, and best of all it doesn’t have to be very expensive. Since you are going to be using your voice, the quality of the voice transmission will determine if your listeners will stay for the long run. First impressions being what they are if there is a lot of static and interference, you might lose your audience before they have a chance to hear what you have to say.
With that in mind, here are 20 podcast microphones for under $200.
The Best Budget Microphones for Podcasting
The Pyle PDMICR42R has a retro design that is great to look at. But it also provides the basics so you can comfortably deliver your podcast with professional-sounding results. The microphone retails for $29.00 and has a dynamic moving coil element with a cardioid polar pattern and a frequency response rate of 30Hz-15kHz.
ECOOPRO Studio Condenser Recording Microphone
The ECOOPRO is a side-address condenser microphone that uses a cardioid polar pattern with HD broadcasting capability. The plug-and-play function and 3.5mm audio lets you plug it into any standard laptop or PC and use the sound card to make any adjustment to improve sound quality. At $39.99, it is a bargain to be sure.
The Stony-Edge has simple designed for portability and can plug into smartphones, tablets and PCs. For just $20.00, it features noise blocking technology, built-in windscreen and a goose neck frame so it can easily be adjusted.
Blue Microphones Snowball iCE is a cardioid condenser microphone that plugs in directly with a USB cable. It doesn’t require any drivers, and it is Skype certified. It has a frequency response rate of 40 –18 kHz and sample/word Rate of 44.1 kHz/16 bit. For $42.00 it delivers considerable features.
CAD U37 USB
The CAD U37 is a USB studio condenser recording microphone with cardioid pick-up pattern and 10dB overload-protection switch to minimize distortion. Retailing for just $49.99, it has a bass-reduction switch diminishing room noise and frequency response rate of 20Hz – 20kHz.
The Samson Go, which retails at just $39.00, has switchable cardioid and omnidirectional pickup patterns with a frequency response of 20Hz–18kHz and a resolution of 16-bit, 44.1kHz. The compact design and USB plug makes it easy to clip on your laptop or carry anywhere. The company offers the Samson Sound Deck Noise Cancellation Software as a paid download, which is a great feature if you are in a noisy environment.
Behringer Podcastudio USB
If you want a full recording studio for just $99.99, the Behringer PodcastStudio includes a USB audio interface, mixer, microphone, headphones, and downloadable professional audio software. This bundle offers all the tools you need to get hands on experience at an affordable price. It includes the UCA200 audio interface, XENYX 502 mixer, HPM1000 headphones, the Ultravoice XM8500 dynamic microphone, XLR mic cable and two stereo RCA cables.
MXL 990 Condenser Microphone
At just $74.98, the MXL 990 condenser microphone with shock mount has solid construction with a vintage look. It comes with a large 3/4″ gold-sputtered diaphragm, 30Hz-20kHz frequency response and 130dB maximum Sound Pressure Level (SPL).
Shure MV5 Digital Condenser Microphone
The Shure MV5 digital condenser microphone has DSP preset modes for vocals, flat and instruments with automatic gain application, EQ, compression and limiting for better control. It also has a built in headphone output for real-time monitoring and it is Apple MFi (Made for iPhone/iPod/iPad) Certified for direct connection to any iOS device. The $99 price tag is also a selling point.
NEAT Widget C Desktop USB Microphone
If you are looking for a microphone with a modern design, the $115.71 NEAT Widget C is for you. It has a plug-and-play with Mac/Windows feature with an integrated pop filter and an internal shock-mounted condenser capsule. It includes a full-range 96kHz/24 bit audio and frequency response of 20 Hz – 20 kHz.
M-Audio USB Condenser Microphone
The M-Audio has a large 16mm cardioid capsule protected by wire mesh to guard against unwanted noise. It can capture 16-bit recording at CD quality and more at -44.1 or 48 kHz with the USB connection. And at $98.75, it is certainly a bargain.
Audio-Technica AT2020USB PLUS Cardioid Condenser USB Microphone
A bit pricier at $149.00, the Audio-Technica AT2020USB PLUS comes from a proven brand delivering high quality A/D converter with 16 bit, 44.1/48 kHz sampling rate. It also includes a headphone jack with high-output internal headphone amplifier and mix control.
Blue Microphones Yeti USB Microphone – Silver
This is another entry from Blue Microphones, which manufactures professional grade equipment used in the recording industry. Retailing at $109.00, the Yeti has a tri-capsule array 3 condenser capsules to record in almost any environment with a multiple pattern selection of cardioid, bidirectional, omnidirectional and stereo. The frequency response is 20Hz – 20kHz, and a sample rate of 48 kHz.
AKG P420 High-Performance Dual-Capsule True Condenser Microphone
The AKG P420 is a studio grade condenser microphone with dual-element design that accommodates cardioid, omni, and figure-8 patterns. Retailing for $179, it includes a shockmount and a metal case with a -20dB pad switch and a bass cut filter switch to eliminate unwanted low frequencies.
sE Electronics X1 Large Diaphragm Condenser Mic
At less than $199, the sE Electronics X1 packs a punch. It has a 1″ hand made, diaphragm, 10dB pad and Bass cut with a solid build. The frequency response is 20Hz-20KHz, with -32 dBV/Pa (25.1mV/Pa) sensitivity and a cardioid polar Pattern.
Behringer B-2 Pro
The Behringer B-2 Pro is a German designed microphone with professional 1” gold-sputtered dual-diaphragm condenser. It has frequency response from 20 Hz to 20 kHz and two selectable pickup pattern, omni for capturing sound in all directions and cardioid. It retails for $149.99.
Blue Microphones Spark Condenser Microphone, Cardioid
The Spark from Blue Microphones has a premium condenser capsule with professional grade recording features for a bit more: $199. It includes a pop filter and custom-designed shockmount to reduce plosives and distortion while delivering isolation during recordings. The company also provides a detailed recording guide with professional tips and a three-year manufacturer’s warranty.
Rode NT-USB USB Condenser Microphone
Meanwhile, $169 will get you the Rode NT-USB condenser microphone compatible with recording applications on both Windows and Mac OS based computers as well as on any other recording app that accepts an external microphone. It comes with a premium pop-filter to minimize plosives (hard ‘B’, ‘T’ or ‘P’ that, when spoken, produce a harsh sound) during speech recordings.
Studio Projects B1 Vocal Condenser Microphone, Cardioid
The $145 Studio Projects B1 is a cardioid condenser microphone with a true 1 inch 3 um gold sputtered large diaphragm to capture high quality vocal recordings. It has a selectable filter for 75Hz and 150Hz, as well as selectable pads for -10dB and -20dB.
Marantz Professional MPM-500A
Marantz has been developing high fidelity audio systems for more than four decades, and the MPM-500A is a professional grade hi-quality 45mm cardioid condenser microphone that is a testament to that legacy. The $176.49 mic comes with shock mount, desktop tripod stand and windscreen, a frequency response of 30–20,000Hz, and complete voice-recording system for interfacing with a computer sound card.
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Michael: I will link to your post on my resources page (netcasts) on EGO NetCast. I am using a Samson Meteor USB microphone together with an USB lightning cable to my iPhone 6S Plus. I record my solo shows with Boss Jock studio app, and interviews with Ringr app and an iRig Mic Cast. I put the iPhone with iRig microphone / Samson Meteor microhone in a small mobile recording booth called SnapRecorder. I am sitting with my back against a piece of sound absorbing material.
I use Auphonic post production service.
I would love to hear your thoughts about this setup.
I am thinking of getting a iRig Mic HD or iRig Mic Field, for interviews on the go, e.g., food trucks owners in the street.