Best USB Microphones: The Definitive List  [2021]

 by 

Jay Von K   -  


Updated: December 23, 2020

What about a microphone that can be connected to your computer without a sound card?

If you wish for a USB mic, you will find the best recommendations here!

This way you can really pick out the best mic for you out of dozens of different models that are available on the market.

Best USB Microphones
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But how did USB mics become so popular?

First of all, the principle of USB microphones is easy to grasp: they let you directly connect them to your computer, without requiring anything more.

This way, you save money because you don’t have to buy a sound card with phantom power! Plus, since they were mostly targeted to amateur musicians, there are many affordable USB mics.

Their increasing popularity over the years made the companies take them seriously and their quality and technology have vastly improved.

As a result, there are so many models available now that it is really hard to pick one...

But now, let’s take a look at the best USB mics currently on the market!

The 8 Best USB Mics of 2020 include:

1. Rode NT-USB

Rode - NT-USB Mic
General

The first mic of this list comes from a well-known brand in the audio niche…

Rode is well-known for versatile and good-quality mics, and the Rode NT-USB is no exception…

It is actually a premium-quality condenser microphone that comes with a cardioid polar pattern.

It records at a high sample rate (16 bit and 48 kHz) and it can capture all the audible spectrum, from 20 Hz to 20 kHz.

As you can guess, all these features add to great overall sound quality.

Rode NT USB Microphone

But it doesn’t stop there!

The Rode NT-USB ships with a long cable, a pop shield, a mic stand adapter, as well as a desktop tripod.

Moreover, this mic is compatible with both Windows and iOs computers, and it doesn’t need any drivers to work.

Plus, there is a headphone input that lets you hear your voice without any latency.

Sadly, this mic falls on the expensive side, but it is certainly worth its money!

PROS
  • Great sound quality
  • Useful accessories included
  • Wide compatibility
  • Zero-latency monitoring
CONS
  • Expensive
Compare Prices

All in all, if you are looking for a top-quality USB condenser mic and you are willing to spend some money, I would highly recommend the Rode NT-USB.

Rode NT-USB:

2. Blue Yeti

Blue - Yeti USB Mic
General

Does this mic’s name seem funny to you?

Well, this is actually a very serious option for those looking for a cost-effective USB mic.

Despite the low price, it delivers accurate and detailed sound performance.

The Blue Yeti is a condenser mic that comes with an amazing feature that makes it versatile for different occasions.

Blue Yeti USB Mic

Can you guess what that feature is?

You can switch between four different polar patterns: cardioid, bidirectional, omnidirectional, and stereo. That makes this mic suitable for practically everything you need to record!

Although you’d probably expect that Blue Yeti would come only in blue color, there are many colors to choose from, including platinum, silver, space grey, black, and white.

Plus, its design is very practical: the mic comes with a built-in tripod that allows it to sit conveniently on your desk.

However, note that this mic is a bit fragile, so you have to take good care of it.

PROS
  • Value for money
  • Many polar patterns
  • Comes in various colors
  • Convenient built-in tripod
CONS
  • Not the best build quality
Compare Prices

Overall, I would recommend the Blue Yeti to anyone on a low budget, especially if you plan to place it on a desk.

Blue Yeti:

3. Blue Snowball Ice

Blue - Snowball Ice USB Mic
General

You might already know this mic, from its previous version: the Blue Snowball Ice is the new and cheaper version of the popular Blue Snowball USB microphone.

The new version actually keeps most of the features of the Blue Snowball, but it has unfortunately dropped the ability to switch between various polar patterns.

Other than that, it can record high-quality sound at 44.1kHz/16 bit and it covers a wide frequency range from 40 Hz to 18 kHz.

It is very easy to set up: you just plug it in and it works, without the need for any software installation.

Snowball Ice USB Microphone

It has a compact and lightweight design that makes it easy to transport wherever you go.

In addition to that, its retro look is really beautiful, and it comes in two colors (black and white)

Do you think its value couldn’t increase more?

You’re wrong!

The package includes a small tripod to place the mic on a desk, along with a USB cable.

PROS
  • Competitively priced
  • Good-looking design
  • Compact size
  • No drivers required
CONS
  • No switchable polar patterns
Compare Prices

On the whole, the Blue Snowball Ice is a budget-friendly mic that is especially good for those who want to record podcasts or Youtube videos.

Blue Snowball Ice:

4. Audio-Technica AT2020 USB+


Audio-Technica - AT2020USB+ USB Microphone
General

Here comes a mic from a trusted brand: the Audio-Technica AT2020USB+ is a premium-quality condenser mic.

But how do I know that?

This mic is actually an updated USB version of the popular AT2020 that only has an XLR port.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the AT2020USB+ shines in audio quality, as it allows you to record 16bit and 44.1kHz or 48kHz over a 20Hz to 20kHz frequency response.

In addition to that, it has a headphone port with a dedicated volume knob so that you can monitor your performance without any audible latency.

AT2020 USB+ Mic

It is compatible with both Windows and iOs computers and it is particularly easy to set up.

Its metal construction adds to the overall sturdy build quality that ensures the durability of this mic over the years.

Although this mic falls on the expensive side, it comes fully equipped with a small microphone stand, along with an adapter for a normal stand, an external pop filter and a carrying pouch

PROS
  • Crystal clear, high-quality sound
  • Useful accessories included
  • Sturdy build quality
  • Easy to set up
CONS
  • A bit pricey
Compare Prices

Overall, if sound quality is a must for you, you will definitely benefit from the Audio-Technica AT2020USB+.

Audio-Technica AT2020USB+

:

5. Samson Go Mic

Samsung - Go Mic Portable USB Condenser Microphone
General

Do you need a mic that you can easily take with you everywhere?

Then the Samson Go Mic, as its name suggests, is a great solution for recording on the go!

This mic comes at the size of your palm, and you can either clip it to your computer’s screen or place it on your desk.

Don’t judge it by its size! It records crisp sound at 16-bit and 44.1 kHz, while it covers a wide frequency range from  20 Hz to 18 kHz.

It also allows you to monitor the recording without latency through its headphone output.

Go Mic

Surprisingly enough, this compact mic allows you to choose between a cardioid and an omnidirectional polar pattern. That makes it pretty versatile for different occasions.

Sadly, it’s not very good for loud sound sources, so don’t place it in front of your drums because it won’t perform very well.

On the other side, it is widely compatible with both Windows and iOs devices, and it is easy to set up: you plug it in and it works!

PROS
  • Compact and portable
  • Reasonable price
  • Latency-free monitoring
  • Different polar patterns
CONS
  • Not for loud sounds
Compare Prices

Summing up, the Samson Go mic is quite inexpensive, so it is a great low-budget, portable USB mic.

Samson Go Mic:

6. Apogee MiC+

Apogee - Mic Plus USB Microphone
General

If you are looking for a USB mic that will let you directly record on your portable Apple device, you need to check out the Apogee MiC+.

This premium-quality condenser microphone is compatible both with Windows and Mac computers, and it features an additional Lightning port that lets you record directly on your iPhone or iPad!

MiC+ USB Microphone

So, what about sound quality?

This mic actually records high-quality, crystal clear audio, without any digital signal processing that might alter your sound.

That allows you to record a very clean signal that you can later use any way you like!

It also allows you to hear your performance in real-time, without any frustrating latency issues.

The package includes a tripod, a mic stand adapter, a USB Type-C cable, a USB Type-A cable, and a Lightning cable.

Unfortunately, this mic is not very cheap, so you might not be able to afford it if you are on a low budget.

PROS
  • Pristine sound quality
  • Latency-free monitoring
  • Lightning connection
  • Tripod and cables included
CONS
  • Pricey
Compare Prices

All in all, the Apogee MiC+ is a great choice for recording directly on your Apple smart devices.

Apogee MiC+:

7. Samson Meteor

Samson - Meteor USB Studio Condenser Microphone
General

Don’t you just love it when products incorporate clever and ergonomic design?

If you said yes with enthusiasm, then you will love the Samson Meteor USB mic.

This is actually a condenser mic with a cardioid pickup pattern, that records in high quality (16-bit, 44.1/48 kHz) and covers the whole audible frequency range (20 Hz to 20kHz).

Bear with me a little more, before I get into the design details.

Meteor USB Microphone

The Samson Meteor features a dedicated headphone port that lets you hear your voice as you record, without any latency. There is also a dedicated dial for the monitoring volume.

In addition to that, there is a mute button that lets you mute your voice without touching your computer.

Now let’s move to the best part.

The mic itself incorporates a tripod, that you can use anytime by unfolding its legs!

Plus, the package includes a nice carrying pouch that allows you to easily carry it around.

Moreover, it has a robust build quality that adds to the durability.

PROS
  • Built-in tripod
  • Mute button
  • Monitoring without latency
  • Sturdy build quality
CONS
  • none
Compare Prices

All in all, if you want a good-quality USB mic with clever design, then you will be very satisfied with the Samson Meteor.

Samson Meteor:

8. Shure PG42

Shure - PG42 USB Mic
General

Last but not least, the Shure PG42 is an amazing USB microphone that works impressively with vocal performances.

In addition to its high-quality audio, it comes with a high-pass filter that lets you easily remove any unwanted sound in the low end.

Furthermore, as you would probably expect from Shure, this mic has been made with carefully selected materials that ensure both sturdy build quality and durability.

PG42 USB Mic

What about listening to your performance while recording?

Well, that is made easy, by using the incorporated headphone port and the volume knob to control what you hear.

Plus, this mic is very easy to set up, and it is compatible with both Windows and iOs software: you plug it and hit record!

Note however that the PG42 is not very cheap, but it is a great investment if you have the money to afford it.

PROS
  • Good for vocals recording
  • Robust build quality
  • Onboard high-pass filter
  • Latency-free monitoring
CONS
  • Not very cheap
Compare Prices

In short, if you want a high-quality mic that will last for years, the Shure PG42 is optimal for you.

Shure PG42:

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Final Thoughts

As you have seen, there are many high-quality options for a USB mic.

Plus, there are many options to fit any budget restriction.

So, now is the time to do it.

Take a look again at these mics.

Pick one, order it, and start recording right away!

Next level audio production and studio recording
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