The reason to shop for the best microphone for gaming is that the regular headphones’ mic, as well as the highest-quality microphone for studio recording, don’t fit the gamers and streamers’ needs. The former doesn’t provide the required quality and no-latency feature, while the latter is usually too massive, requires a separate stand and specific software to be set up.
Microphones offered for gamers feature several parameters:
- Connection type. Most of the microphones feature either the XLR-cable or the USB port. While the latter is handier for direct audio transfer to the tablets and smartphones, the former usually stands for the higher sound quality. The wireless mics make another option for those not fond of messing up with cables.
- Sound quality. There are mics picking the frequencies as low as 15Hz, letting use the music efficiently during the streaming or for making a video about games. However, for just connecting to the teammates, the tweakable EQ and large diaphragm might be an overkill.
- Latency. While the latency is unfavorable for any microphone activities, a small amount can be acceptable for beginner game bloggers. Still, both for quality streaming and speaking to the buddy gamers, the zero latency is an important factor.
- Stand and mount type. Depending on the gaming activities, the stand-alone mic or the headset one could be a pick. Some models already have a tripod built-in, while others might require additional appliances to be purchased.
Great options for the best mic for gaming are gathered below. Choose yours!
Microphone for Gaming Reviews
BLUE Yeti X Condenser Microphone
A high versatility, compatibility with multiple types of OS, and high quality of sound transmission would let call this device the best microphone for gaming. However, its bulky appearance and low portability might be the deal-breakers for some gamers and streamers.
The innovative engineer design incorporates three condenser capsules that let the microphone catch the large range of sound waves. It’s good at recording vocals reflecting the softness of the audio and transmitting the variations precisely.
The multiple options for the polarity and the direction of sound “caption” let adjust the mic for each particular situation. For the streamers, it allows creating the effects with the omnidirectional and stereo mode, while the cardioid pattern works great for direct gameplay streaming and team communication, cutting the environment noise completely or leaving it on a distant backstage.
This microphone is compatible with all types of Windows OS including the XP version. It also fits the MAC of 10.4.11 or a more recent variant. The connection and setup is simple plug-n-play action.
The mic is easy-to-handle even for newbies. It features a dedicated knob for the pattern selection, the one for regulating the gain, the volume, and the mute button.
- Fits for co-op playing and streaming thanks to the precise 8-type picking mode.
- No latency for any connection including the headphones’ one.
- Wide frequency range and good sample rate (48 kHz) allow for sharp clean sound transmission.
- Light on a mute button can be distracting and interfere with the video shooting.
- The pattern changing knob is tough to turn.
Neewer NW-700 Professional Condenser Microphone
The cleanness of the sound, efficient sound source capture and isolation, simple setup make this microphone stand out among many gaming mics. While it’s supplied with various protection appliances.
This condenser mic has a standard XLR phone connector, which allows for the fast and distortion-free sound transmission. The pickup pattern is cardioid; the mic takes the signal from the front speaker and muffles the medium-loud environment noises. It processes the sound and transmits it within a good frequency range letting the voice stay soft and natural, relaying the trills and variations clean and in full.
The audio output can be further enhanced by using a sound card (not supplied). The sound becomes richer, the sound stage fills with more detail and the minor digital interference is cut out. The high-pitched voice sounds clean, featuring no shrill or metal tone.
The Neewer NW-700 setup might take time due to multiple things to adjust; yet, it is quite simple. The supplied suspending stand is handy to use while recording or streaming, and can be used for two or more streamers in turn simply by moving the stand arm.
- Comprehensive gain setup through Windows settings lets adjust the mic for different conditions.
- Supplied pop filter and wind mask provide for spit and hiss effect cancellation.
- Sturdy all-steel mount with easy-to-adjust junctions.
- Needs an external power source, not a good portability.
- Doesn’t support MAC OS, as well as laptop / tablet connection.
BLUE Snowball iCE Condenser Microphone
Good audio quality suitable for most games, trouble-free setup, and wide compatibility make this product a worthy gaming microphone. While it isn’t as versatile as other models by the same manufacturer, its low price and comfortable size make up for it being a good choice for streaming, team communication, and playing.
One condenser capsule is integrated into the microphone and with a cardioid receiving pattern. It catches the sound from the front and transmits it preserving the tone, loudness, reverberations, and other details. The voice sounds soft and rich, while the background is next-to-flat.
The audio is picked up within the frequency range from 40Hz to 18 kHz capturing all the individuality of the human voice and drawing each sound precisely. The 16-bit depth supported by the 44 kHz sampling rate serves for the clear and fast audio transmission. Both high-pitched and bass voices are recorded focused and sharp.
The mic is lightweight and small; it would fit most of the PC. Its big bonus is a built-in tripod letting install it securely almost on any horizontal surface. It connects through the USB port and supports both 2.0 and 3.0 formats (the latter works through the backward version support USB function).
- Easy sensitivity adjustment through PC settings cuts even the slight background noise.
- No driver installation is needed — simply plug-n-talk, both for Windows and MAC OS.
- Rubber feet on the stand don’t scratch the desk surface.
- Picks the plosives easily, needs a pop filter.
- A red light on the front is very bright and can be distracting.
Rode NT-USB USB Condenser Microphone
Crisp, precise, and rich sound, efficient background isolation, convenient USB format don’t make the full list of pros for this really good microphone for gaming. It’s easy to install and connect; the only major con is its price, which makes it a worthy purchase for a recording studio or a commercial blog than for regular gaming activities.
The premium 0.50’’ capsule provides the cardioid capture pattern at the 16-bit resolution and 48 kHz sampling rate. The audio received is conveyed in a natural way, without interference and environment noise. The voice sounds clear, with mellow and expansive mids and sharply outlined highs.
The microphone features good sensitivity transmitting the clean and source-identical sound even at 110 dB output. It implements the direct mix control allowing to convey the sound with the zero latency to any source.
A dial on the side lets control the mix of mic input / PC sound. There’s also another one to regulate the output volume. The microphone is connected through 20-feet long USB cable enabling wide choice for mic positioning.
- The sensitive and detailed scale of gain setting.
- Can be used with an iPad via USB adaptor.
- High-quality embracing pop-filter cuts the plosives and spitting sound.
- No on/off switch on the mic.
- The plastic junction between the mic and the tripod stand seems not sturdy enough considering the weight and positioning angle.
Audio-Technica ATR2500-USB USB Microphone
This solid all-metal microphone has been developed for the professional recording studio needs. However, its no-lag transmission, various compatibility options, and reliable build make the ATR2500 a good option for gamers.
The condenser mic supports the cardioid pickup pattern and is highly efficient against the ambient sounds. The front-coming audio is captured in full, with all the effects from as far as 6 ft and relayed in a detailed focused manner. The incorporated AD converter features the standard 16-bit depth at 44-48 kHz sampling rate and provides for the high-quality digital recording, with the voice richness and variations preserved.
The sensitivity is high; the frequency range varies between 20Hz and 20 kHz. The sound is mellow and distortion-free. It transmits both low and high-pitched voices in a focused dense manner drawing each tone variation precisely.
The microphone has a reliable build, with sturdy metal body and junctions. It has medium size and weight, letting it fit well the PC desk space. The mic can be mounted onto a tripod or a standard microphone stand, by means of the pivoting appliance.
- The XLR and USB ports can work for simultaneous output, which is great for conferences and voice monitoring at digital recording.
- No latency at headphone sound monitoring lets check and adjust the audio performance during recording.
- Output volume can be adjusted by pressing the up-and-down buttons on the mic.
- The highest sound quality is only achieved with the source tight-close to the mic.
- The USB port doesn’t feel to be reliably fixed and may become loose over time.
Samson G-Track USB Condenser Microphone
The highly sensitive sound capturing ability, incorporated audio interface, and controllable gain make this mic a worthy option to consider for gaming recording. While not fully fitting into the category of cheap microphones for gaming, it provides top sound quality and handy controls for the price at least two times less than competitor models with similar features.
The microphone is equipped with the 19mm diaphragm, which works two ways allowing for the supercardioid pickup pattern. The audio is conveyed clear, with the thinnest high tunes being distinct and comprehensive. The voice sounds soft and natural; the overall soundstage is vast reflecting plenty of detail. While it might seem to be less focused than a regular cardioid-bound mic, it outlines the audio pattern with accuracy, which doesn’t decrease with the volume winding up.
The integrated AD converter and mixer let out the Hi-Fi sound providing for immediate audio transmission and reproduction. The 3.5mm jack lets connect the headphones to control the performance, while the dials on the front of the mic allow tweaking it to the speaker’s liking.
The mic’s setup is simple, requiring the USB connection to be established. It works well with both Windows and Mac-powered computers, as well as any audio software, and is recognized immediately by the system.
- Easily switching between mono, stereo, and PC monitoring modes.
- Flat frequency response makes the voice sound spacious and professional.
- The sturdy build of the mic, ports, and the stand.
- Low-profile stand and downward connections can cause the cables twisting.
- The two-channel voice recording isn’t set by default; need to change settings for getting the stereo sound.
Audio-Technica AT2020USB USB Microphone
The powerful built-in amplifier, immediate sound transmission, and onboard controls let consider this model as a suitable PC gaming mic. The high price of this microphone is backed up by the reliable build of the mic and accessories, as well as high-quality audio reproduction.
This professional microphone incorporates the polarized condenser and backplate letting it efficiently capture and reproduce any sound within the 20Hz – 20 kHz frequency range. The built-in amplifier gets power from the standard USB connection and boosts the analog signal, which is worked out by the incorporated AD converter. The cardioid pattern brings the dense sound with the highly articulated voice and distinct clearly outlined variations.
The mic is supplied with various mounting means letting fix it in different conditions and at various positions. The included USB cable is 10 ft long allowing to move the microphone around. The protective pouch is a good bonus for keeping the sensitive device dust-free and safe while carrying around.
- The high clarity of the output audio.
- Mix control incorporated.
- Tripod is heavy enough to hold the mic securely; features folding legs for better portability.
- Picks up the environment noise a bit.
- USB connection might show temporary handshake issues.
Tips for Picking the Best Gaming Microphone
Having a high-quality microphone might seem not so important for streams or communicating with your team because many players think that only the gameplay matters. However, the clarity of sound and minimal noise picking account for the good articulation of the gamer’s voice. The user’s comfort means much as well. The mic’s portability, size, and weight, presence or absence of onboard controls might make the recording or team talk a pleasure or a nightmare.
In order to save your time and limit the range of choice to several mics, consider the following factors:
- Purpose. Do you need to record the gaming videos, explain some facts and tricks in the game, or just talk to your teammates while playing? Do you plan to record in a quiet place or will there be some background noise you don’t want to be picked by the mic? Do you plan on using the stationary mic or should it be a portable one?
- Budget. Though a mic is an important piece of the gaming gear, the gamer is less likely to invest in it than, for example, in high-quality headphones or gamepad. Consider the amount you are ready to spend on a gaming microphone; it can be fairly low one since the mic manufacturers offer the quality product in each pricing category. Whether you are opting for a sophisticated and solid Audio Technica one or for a small and simple Zalman clipon microphone, you can get the good sound and the level of comfort.
- Plug. While XLR-powered mics are usually considered as transmitting clearer audio, the latest models of USB bus-powered microphones don’t fall behind as well. The USB connection is suitable for direct streaming to a PC, and usually means less hassle with setup. Some models support the plug-n-play functionality allowing the player to connect the USB cable and use the mic right away, without tweaking the settings and installing the drivers. Still, the presence of both connection types is more versatile; besides, it lets the user monitor the sound output from the mic.
- Sound quality and transmission. The distinct well-articulated voice on a recording or during team communication is a primary thing to look for in a gaming mic. However, the professional studio models featuring the several condenser capsules, large diaphragm, switching between stereo, and mono modes, etc. might be an overkill. Besides, such mics require at least minimal knowledge of the audio gear setup and equalization. Still, the time spent on getting them right will result in a professional sounding soft voice against a flat background.
- Latency. This is the factor to be avoided as much as possible in gaming microphones. Having latency will spoil the team game and will require audio-video adjustment due to lip-sync issues. The zero-latency is a must-have for gaming mic, as it also helps monitor the mic output in real-time and adjusting the sound reproduction accordingly. To ensure the no-latency performance, choose a mic with sturdy connection ports and cables.
Hi everyone! I’m Thomas Moody, also known as Guitarzan.