The Best Microphone For Streaming: Factors To Consider, Top USB And XLR Options, Accessories, Tips, And Troubleshooting

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Looking for the best microphone for streaming? Consider factors like sound quality, compatibility, connectivity, microphone type, and price range. Explore top USB and XLR options, microphone accessories, for usage, and troubleshooting common issues.

Factors to Consider when Choosing a Microphone for Streaming

When it comes to choosing a microphone for streaming, there are several factors that you should consider. Each factor plays a crucial role in determining the overall quality of your sound and the compatibility with your streaming software. To help you make an informed decision, let’s dive into these important factors one by one.

Sound Quality

The sound quality of your microphone is perhaps the most important factor to consider. After all, your audience will be listening to your voice, and you want it to be clear and crisp. Look for a microphone that offers a wide frequency response range, as this will ensure that it captures both high and low frequencies accurately.

Additionally, pay attention to the microphone’s sensitivity. A more sensitive microphone will pick up even the faintest of sounds, which can be beneficial if you have a quiet voice or if you plan on recording in a noisy environment. On the other hand, if you have a loud voice or if you are streaming in a controlled environment, a less sensitive microphone might be a better option to avoid distortion.

Compatibility with Streaming Software

Another crucial factor to consider is the compatibility of the microphone with your streaming software. Before making a purchase, check if the microphone is compatible with the streaming software you intend to use. Some microphones are specifically designed to work seamlessly with popular streaming platforms like Twitch or YouTube, while others may require additional software or drivers to be installed.

Make sure to read the specifications and reviews of the microphone to ensure that it is fully compatible with your chosen streaming software. This will save you from any potential headaches or frustrations down the line.

Connectivity Options

When it comes to connectivity options, there are two main types of microphones to choose from: USB and XLR. USB microphones are the most common choice for streamers due to their ease of use and plug-and-play functionality. These microphones can be directly connected to your computer or streaming device via a USB port, eliminating the need for any additional audio interfaces or mixers.

On the other hand, XLR microphones offer a more professional audio experience. They require an XLR cable and an audio interface to connect to your computer or streaming device. While this setup might be more complex, it allows for more customization and control over your audio settings. XLR microphones are often preferred by professional streamers or those who require higher audio quality.

Microphone Type (USB, XLR)

As mentioned earlier, the type of microphone you choose will depend on your specific needs and preferences. USB microphones are generally more beginner-friendly and are suitable for streamers who want a hassle-free setup. They are also more affordable compared to XLR microphones.

On the other hand, XLR microphones offer greater flexibility and control over your audio. They are commonly used in professional recording studios and are favored by streamers who prioritize audio quality above all else. Keep in mind that choosing an XLR microphone means investing in additional equipment, such as an audio interface and XLR cables.

Price Range

Lastly, consider your budget when choosing a microphone for streaming. Microphone prices can vary greatly, depending on the brand, features, and overall quality. Determine how much you are willing to spend and look for a microphone that falls within your price range.

Remember that while it’s important to stick to your budget, compromising too much on sound quality or compatibility might negatively impact your streaming experience. It’s worth investing in a microphone that will provide you with the best possible audio for your streams.

Top USB Microphones for Streaming

When it comes to streaming, having a high-quality microphone is essential to ensure clear and professional-sounding audio. USB microphones are a popular choice among streamers due to their ease of use and plug-and-play capabilities. In this section, we will explore some of the top USB microphones that are perfect for streaming.

Audio-Technica ATR2500x

The Audio-Technica ATR2500x is a fantastic USB microphone that offers excellent sound quality and versatility for streamers. It features a cardioid polar pattern, which means it captures sound from the front while minimizing background noise. This microphone also comes with an analog-to-digital converter that delivers a high-resolution audio signal, ensuring crystal-clear sound for your streams.

Blue Yeti

The Blue Yeti is a household name in the streaming community, and for good reason. This microphone offers exceptional audio quality and a wide range of features, making it a top choice for many streamers. With its multiple polar patterns, including cardioid, omnidirectional, bidirectional, and stereo, you can easily adjust the microphone to suit your streaming needs. The Blue Yeti also provides a built-in headphone jack, allowing for real-time monitoring of your audio.

Razer Seiren X

If you’re looking for a sleek and compact USB microphone, the Razer Seiren X is an excellent option. This microphone is specifically designed for streaming and gaming, offering professional-grade sound in a small package. It features a supercardioid polar pattern, which focuses on capturing sound directly in front of the microphone while minimizing background noise. The Razer Seiren X also comes with a built-in shock mount to reduce vibrations and a zero-latency headphone monitoring port.

HyperX QuadCast

The HyperX QuadCast is a versatile USB microphone that delivers exceptional audio quality for streaming. With its four polar patterns (stereo, omnidirectional, cardioid, and bidirectional), you can easily switch between different recording modes based on your streaming needs. This microphone also features an anti-vibration shock mount to minimize unwanted noise and a convenient tap-to-mute sensor for quick and easy control.

Samson G-Track Pro

The Samson G-Track Pro is a feature-rich USB microphone that is perfect for streamers who require versatility. This microphone not only offers excellent sound quality but also includes an audio interface, allowing you to directly connect instruments or other audio sources. With its dual 1″ condenser capsules and three polar patterns (cardioid, bidirectional, and omnidirectional), the Samson G-Track Pro provides exceptional flexibility for various streaming setups.

Top XLR Microphones for Streaming

When it comes to streaming, having a high-quality microphone is essential to ensure that your voice comes through loud and clear to your audience. While there are many options available, XLR microphones are often preferred by professional streamers due to their superior audio performance and versatility. In this section, we will explore some of the top XLR microphones for streaming and discuss their features and benefits.

Audio-Technica AT2020

The Audio-Technica AT2020 is a popular choice among streamers for its exceptional sound quality and affordability. This microphone features a large diaphragm condenser design, which allows it to capture every nuance of your voice with great detail. The AT2020 also has a cardioid polar pattern, which helps to minimize background noise and focus on your voice. With its rugged construction and impressive performance, the Audio-Technica AT2020 is a reliable option for any streamer looking to enhance their audio setup.

Shure SM7B

The Shure SM7B is a legendary microphone that has been used by professional broadcasters for decades. It is known for its warm and smooth sound, making it a favorite among streamers who want to achieve a professional sound quality. The SM7B features a dynamic microphone element, which provides excellent noise rejection and allows for close microphone placement without sacrificing audio quality. Additionally, this microphone has a built-in pop filter to reduce plosive sounds and a bass roll-off switch to adjust the low-frequency response. If you’re looking for a microphone that delivers top-notch performance and durability, the Shure SM7B is definitely worth considering.

Rode NT1

The Rode NT1 is a highly regarded microphone in the streaming community for its exceptional audio clarity and low self-noise. It is known for its transparency and accuracy, making it an ideal choice for streamers who want to produce professional-quality audio. The NT1 features a gold-plated diaphragm and a cardioid polar pattern, which ensures precise sound reproduction and excellent off-axis rejection. With its sleek design and impressive performance, the Rode NT1 is a microphone that will elevate your streaming setup to the next level.

Neumann U87

The Neumann U87 is widely considered to be one of the best studio microphones ever made, and it has found its way into many streaming setups as well. This microphone is renowned for its smooth and natural sound, making it a go-to choice for recording vocals and instruments. The U87 features three selectable polar patterns (cardioid, omnidirectional, and figure-8), allowing you to tailor the microphone’s response to different streaming scenarios. Additionally, it has a built-in high-pass filter and a pad switch, providing further control over the microphone’s performance. If you’re looking for a microphone that offers unparalleled audio quality and versatility, the Neumann U87 is an investment worth considering.

Electro-Voice RE20

The Electro-Voice RE20 is a dynamic microphone that has gained popularity among streamers for its exceptional sound reproduction and robust build quality. This microphone is known for its smooth and rich sound, making it a favorite among broadcasters and podcasters. The RE20 features a variable-D design, which minimizes proximity effect and allows for consistent tonal balance regardless of the microphone’s position. It also has a built-in pop filter and an internal shock mount, reducing unwanted noise and handling vibrations. Whether you’re a professional streamer or just starting out, the Electro-Voice RE20 is a microphone that will deliver outstanding audio performance.

Microphone Accessories for Streaming

Streaming has become an increasingly popular way for individuals to share their passions and talents with a wide online audience. When it comes to streaming, having a high-quality microphone is essential for delivering clear and professional-sounding audio. However, in addition to a good microphone, there are several accessories that can greatly enhance your streaming experience. In this section, we will explore some must-have microphone accessories for streaming.

Pop Filters

One common issue that streamers often face is the dreaded “popping” sound that can occur when pronouncing certain syllables or sounds. This can be especially problematic when using a microphone with a high sensitivity to capture every nuance of your voice. Fortunately, a pop filter can help minimize these unwanted noises.

A pop filter is a screen-like accessory that is placed in front of the microphone to intercept plosive sounds, such as the “p” and “b” sounds. It acts as a barrier between your mouth and the microphone, diffusing the air and preventing it from directly hitting the microphone’s diaphragm. By doing so, it reduces the impact of plosive sounds and helps maintain a consistent, clear audio quality.

Shock Mounts

Another accessory that can greatly improve the audio quality of your streams is a shock mount. Shock mounts are designed to isolate the microphone from vibrations and handling noise, ensuring that only your voice is captured and not any unwanted sounds caused by movement or bumps.

A shock mount typically consists of an elastic suspension system that holds the microphone securely in place. It absorbs any vibrations or shocks that may occur, preventing them from being transmitted to the microphone. This is particularly important if you tend to move or adjust your microphone frequently during your streams. With a shock mount, you can enjoy a steady and uninterrupted audio experience, free from any unwanted noise disturbances.

Boom Arms

Having a stable and adjustable microphone position is crucial for achieving optimal sound quality during your streams. This is where a boom arm comes in handy. A boom arm is a flexible arm that attaches to your desk or table, allowing you to position your microphone at the perfect angle and distance from your mouth.

By using a boom arm, you can easily adjust the height, reach, and angle of your microphone, ensuring that it is positioned correctly for optimal sound capture. This not only helps to eliminate any unnecessary background noise but also allows you to maintain a comfortable and ergonomic streaming setup. Whether you prefer to sit or stand while streaming, a boom arm provides the flexibility you need to achieve the best audio quality.


When streaming, it’s important to be aware of any environmental factors that may affect the sound quality of your microphone. One such factor is wind noise. Even if you are streaming indoors, air conditioning or fans can create a slight breeze that can cause unwanted noise in your audio.

To combat this issue, a windscreen can be used. A windscreen is a foam cover that fits over the microphone to reduce wind noise and other unwanted sounds caused by airflow. It acts as a barrier, preventing gusts of air from directly hitting the microphone diaphragm and causing distortion or interference. By using a windscreen, you can ensure that your audience hears your voice clearly and without any distracting background noise.

Microphone Stands

A sturdy and reliable microphone stand is an essential accessory for any streamer. It provides a stable platform for your microphone, allowing you to position it at the desired height and angle. A good microphone stand will also help reduce handling noise and vibrations that can affect the sound quality of your streams.

There are various types of microphone stands available, including desk stands, floor stands, and boom stands. The type you choose will depend on your streaming setup and personal preference. Desk stands are ideal for those who stream from a fixed location, while floor stands provide more mobility and flexibility. Boom stands offer the most adjustability, allowing you to position your microphone precisely where you need it.

Tips for Using a Microphone for Streaming

Streaming has become an increasingly popular platform for content creators to engage with their audiences and share their passions. One crucial element in ensuring a high-quality streaming experience is choosing the right microphone. In this section, we will explore some essential for using a microphone for streaming, including proper mic placement, adjusting gain and volume levels, noise reduction techniques, regular maintenance and cleaning, and experimenting with mic settings.

Proper Mic Placement

Proper mic placement is vital for capturing clear and professional sound during streaming sessions. The distance between the microphone and your mouth plays a significant role in achieving optimal audio quality. Ideally, the microphone should be positioned about 6-12 inches away from your mouth. This distance helps to capture your voice accurately without picking up excessive background noise.

Additionally, consider using a pop filter to minimize plosive sounds caused by strong bursts of air, such as the “p” and “b” sounds. A pop filter acts as a barrier between your mouth and the microphone, reducing unwanted noise and ensuring a more pleasant listening experience for your viewers.

Adjusting Gain and Volume Levels

Adjusting the gain and volume levels of your microphone is crucial for achieving balanced audio during streaming sessions. The gain controls the sensitivity of the microphone, while the volume level determines the overall output level.

To find the appropriate gain level, start by setting it to a neutral position and then gradually increase it until your voice is clear and audible without distorting or clipping. Avoid setting the gain too high, as it can introduce background noise or cause your voice to sound distorted.

Once you have set the gain, adjust the volume level to ensure that your voice is consistently audible throughout your stream. Monitor your audio levels using the visual indicators provided by your streaming software or a separate audio interface, if available.

Noise Reduction Techniques

Background noise can be a significant distraction for your viewers and diminish the overall quality of your stream. Fortunately, there are several noise reduction techniques you can employ to minimize unwanted sounds.

Firstly, consider streaming in a quiet environment. Choose a location with minimal background noise, such as a dedicated streaming room or a well-insulated space. If external noise is unavoidable, using a noise-cancelling microphone or a dynamic microphone with a cardioid polar pattern can help reject ambient sounds and focus on capturing your voice.

Additionally, using a shock mount can isolate your microphone from vibrations, such as those caused by typing or moving equipment, reducing the chances of unwanted noise being picked up.

Lastly, consider investing in acoustic treatment for your streaming space. Acoustic foam panels or bass traps can help absorb reflections and echoes, resulting in cleaner and more professional audio.

Regular Maintenance and Cleaning

Regular maintenance and cleaning of your microphone are essential for preserving its performance and prolonging its lifespan. Over time, dust, dirt, and debris can accumulate on the microphone’s diaphragm, affecting its sensitivity and sound quality.

To clean your microphone, start by gently removing any visible debris with a soft brush or a microfiber cloth. Be careful not to apply excessive pressure or use any liquid cleaners directly on the microphone’s sensitive components.

If necessary, you can also use a small amount of isopropyl alcohol on a clean cloth to wipe the microphone’s surface. Ensure that the microphone is completely dry before using it again.

Remember, each microphone model may have specific cleaning instructions, so consult the manufacturer’s guidelines for detailed instructions.

Experimenting with Mic Settings

Every content creator has their unique voice and streaming style, and experimenting with mic settings can help you find the perfect sound that best represents your personality. Don’t be afraid to adjust various settings such as equalization (EQ), compression, and reverb to achieve the desired sound.

Equalization allows you to fine-tune the audio frequencies, enhancing or reducing specific ranges to suit your voice and overall streaming environment. Compression helps to even out the volume levels, making softer sounds more audible and louder sounds more balanced.

Reverb, on the other hand, adds a sense of space to your audio, simulating the natural acoustic environment. Experiment with different levels of reverb to find the right balance between a dry and overly reverberant sound.

Remember to take note of the changes you make and listen back to your recordings to determine what works best for you. Don’t hesitate to ask for feedback from your viewers or fellow streamers to further refine your microphone settings.

Troubleshooting Common Microphone Issues for Streaming

Background Noise

Are you tired of dealing with annoying background noise when streaming? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Background noise can be a major issue that affects the overall sound quality of your stream. But fear not, there are several steps you can take to minimize or even eliminate background noise.

First and foremost, make sure you’re in a quiet environment. Find a room or space where you can minimize external noise as much as possible. Close windows, doors, and turn off any noisy appliances or fans. Creating a quiet space will significantly reduce the chances of background noise interfering with your stream.

Secondly, consider investing in a microphone with good noise-canceling capabilities. There are many microphones on the market specifically designed to reduce background noise. Look for models that feature technologies like cardioid or supercardioid polar patterns, which are known for their ability to pick up sound primarily from the front while rejecting sound from the sides and rear. This will help to isolate your voice and minimize background noise.

Additionally, using a pop filter can also help reduce background noise caused by plosive sounds. Plosive sounds occur when you pronounce certain letters like “p” and “b,” and they can create unwanted bursts of air that can be picked up by the microphone. A pop filter acts as a barrier between your mouth and the microphone, diffusing these bursts of air and reducing the chances of them being picked up as background noise.

Lastly, if you’re still experiencing background noise despite taking the above steps, you can use audio editing software to clean up your audio. There are many software options available that allow you to remove or reduce background noise in post-production. These tools can be a lifesaver when it comes to salvaging audio that has been affected by background noise.

Audio Distortion

Audio distortion can be a real buzzkill when it comes to streaming. It can ruin the listening experience for your viewers and make your content appear unprofessional. Luckily, there are ways to troubleshoot and fix audio distortion issues.

One common cause of audio distortion is having your microphone’s gain or volume levels set too high. When the input levels are too high, it can cause the audio to become distorted and clipped. To solve this issue, try lowering the gain or volume levels on your microphone. You can do this through your streaming software or by adjusting the physical controls on your microphone if it has them.

Another potential cause of audio distortion is a faulty cable or connection. Check all your cables and connections to ensure they are secure and in good condition. If you notice any loose connections or damaged cables, replace them to see if it resolves the distortion issue.

Additionally, make sure that your microphone is compatible with your streaming software. Some microphones may require specific drivers or software plugins to function properly. Check the manufacturer’s website for any updates or guides that may help resolve audio distortion issues.

If you’re still experiencing audio distortion, it may be worth considering upgrading your microphone. Higher-quality microphones often have better built-in filters and components that can help eliminate distortion. Do some research and read reviews to find a microphone that is known for its clean and distortion-free audio.

Low Volume Levels

Is your stream suffering from low volume levels? It can be frustrating for both you and your viewers when the audio is barely audible. Fortunately, there are a few steps you can take to troubleshoot and solve low volume level issues.

First, check the volume settings on your microphone. Ensure that the volume levels are set to an appropriate level. If the volume is too low, try increasing it gradually until you reach a comfortable and audible level. Be cautious not to set the volume too high, as it can lead to audio distortion.

Next, check the volume settings within your streaming software. Most streaming software allows you to adjust the audio levels for your microphone. Make sure that the levels are not set too low. Adjust them accordingly to increase the volume output.

If you’re using a USB microphone, try plugging it into a different USB port. Sometimes, certain ports may not provide enough power to drive the microphone at optimal levels, resulting in low volume output. Switching to a different port can often resolve this issue.

In some cases, low volume levels may be caused by a faulty cable or connection. Check all your cables and connections to ensure they are secure and in good condition. If you notice any loose connections or damaged cables, replace them to see if it improves the volume levels.

If none of the above steps help, you may need to consider getting a microphone preamp or audio interface. These devices can boost the signal from your microphone and provide better control over volume levels. They can be particularly useful if you’re using a dynamic microphone, which typically requires more gain than USB microphones.

Connectivity Problems

Are you experiencing connectivity problems with your microphone while streaming? It can be frustrating when your microphone suddenly stops working or disconnects during a stream. But fear not, there are a few troubleshooting steps you can take to address connectivity issues.

First, check all your cables and connections. Ensure that everything is securely plugged in and that there are no loose connections. Sometimes, a loose cable or connection can cause intermittent connectivity problems. If you notice any damaged cables or connectors, replace them to see if it resolves the issue.

Next, try plugging your microphone into a different USB port or audio interface. Sometimes, certain ports or interfaces may not provide a stable connection, resulting in connectivity problems. Switching to a different port or interface can often solve this issue.

If you’re using a wireless microphone, make sure that the batteries are charged and that the microphone is within range of the receiver. Weak or dead batteries can cause connection issues, so always keep spares on hand.

If you’re using a USB microphone, try updating the drivers for your microphone. Outdated drivers can sometimes cause connectivity problems. Visit the manufacturer’s website and check for any available updates or troubleshooting guides that may help resolve the issue.

Lastly, if none of the above steps work, it may be worth contacting the manufacturer’s customer support for further assistance. They may be able to provide specific steps or recommend a solution based on your microphone model.

Echo or Reverb

Dealing with echo or reverb issues in your stream? It can be quite distracting for your viewers and diminish the overall audio quality. Luckily, there are ways to troubleshoot and minimize echo or reverb.

One common cause of echo or reverb is the room’s acoustics. Sound waves can bounce off hard surfaces, such as walls, floors, and ceilings, creating a reverberant or echoey environment. To combat this, consider adding acoustic treatment to your streaming space. This can include foam panels, diffusers, or bass traps, which help to absorb or scatter sound waves, reducing the chances of echo or reverb.

Another solution is to use a noise gate or noise suppression filter in your streaming software. These tools can help eliminate background noise, including echo or reverb, by setting a threshold for when the microphone should be active. When there is no sound above the threshold, the microphone will automatically mute, reducing echo or reverb.

If you’re using a USB microphone, try adjusting the microphone’s gain or volume levels. Sometimes, echo or reverb can be caused by the microphone picking up sound from speakers or headphones. Lowering the gain or volume levels can help minimize this issue.

Lastly, if you’re still experiencing echo or reverb, you may need to consider using a different microphone. Some microphones are designed to have better off-axis rejection, meaning they are less likely to pick up sound from the sides or rear. Look for microphones with cardioid or supercardioid polar patterns, as they tend to have better off-axis rejection.

In conclusion, troubleshooting common microphone issues for streaming requires a systematic approach. By addressing background noise, audio distortion, low volume levels, connectivity problems, and echo or reverb, you can ensure a high-quality audio experience for your viewers. Remember to consider the environment, microphone settings, cables and connections, and explore additional tools or equipment if necessary. Happy streaming!

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