What do pro gamers look for while naming the best gaming microphones worthy of their gaming empire?
If your guess is in the line of price, sound quality, flexibility, ease of setup and looks, you have the genetic makeup of a sworn gamer.
Hats off for you! Pro gamers in our community shared thoughts with us after passing a list of over 20 gaming mics and helped us tone it down to just 10. That’s what we have for you right here.
A short and sweet analysis of the best gaming mic reads: It should measure up to your budget, never make your audience strain to hear what you say, sound great no matter the kind of stand it sits or hangs on, should join the rest of the gaming arsenal without a fuss and must look good on camera.
Yes, it looks count in this, so there you have it!
And with the whole protest about going USB for easy setup versus staying in the XLR league, don’t let that bother you.
Technology now allows USB gaming mics to sound as good as their competitors.
Besides, they are ABC easy to set up; plug and play. But should you find yourself madly in love with the XLR mics, don’t sweat it.
If it falls in the category of the greatest gaming microphones of all time, it is worth buying a pre-amp mixture.
We will explain the ‘How-to’ as we discuss the particular XLR mic in the list.
With all fears banished, here is your list of best gaming microphones this year.
Blue Yeti USB Mic
Blue Yeti obeys the rule of plug and play allowing you to connect to your PC or Mac instantly. It works with all Windows systems from XP and later and comes with a 6.8 feet USB cable to seal the deal.
You are assured of broadcast quality sound throughout your gaming episode.
Blue Yeti doesn’t restrict you to game streaming though, it is good for recording podcasts, YouTube works, Skype calls, interviews, conference calls, and music recording.
That means you can brag of your gaming talents online with a clear voice.
This microphone puts you in charge throughout the game with four main controls; headphone volume, microphone gain, instant mute when you don’t need to transmit all your words and pickup pattern selector.
The latter allows you to stream or record in four different ways: Omni, Bidirectional, Cardioid, and stereo.
Being a tabletop microphone, Blue Yeti doesn’t restrict you to one position.
It has an adjustable pivoting allowing you to bend to a favorable angle for voice gathering and improved sound quality.
It uses 3 condenser capsules allowing it to record in almost any situation and has a 16-bit/48kHz resolution.
Blue Yeti USB microphone has a stunning design that blends well with your entire gaming arsenal. For a price tag below $130, it is worth owning.
Blue Snowball iCE USB Mic
It has a custom condenser capsule and operates on cardioid pickup pattern only; suitable for one person’s use in-game streaming, one-person podcast, recording vocals and narrations for your home videos.
It marries well with both Mac and PC without the need for drivers or another interface.
Being Skype and Discord certified, expect crystal clear audio at 16-bit/44kHz resolution.
It has a stylish retro look inspired by classic audio gear revitalizing your desktop into an A-list gaming empire.
It comes with a fitted but adjustable tripod stand enabling it to own its position on your gaming desk.
Though looking so simple, Blue Snowball iCE USB mic is likely to be the cheapest, most effective gaming mic you will ever get in the market.
Even when sitting a foot away from your lips, it picks the sound with utmost perfection and filters most of the background noise. Your listeners won’t hear the keys clicking as you work your keyboard away.
The best sound managers have a hard time believing its kind of output.
The only unfortunate thing about this mic is the absence of a mute button. Either use software to shut the world out or risk spilling the beans. Your choice!
Rode NT-USB USB Microphone
Rode NT-USB Microphone comes as a complete sound package for your gaming arsenal.
You are looking at a tripod desk stand, premium pop shield, ring mount, a 20 feet USB cable and storage pouch in case you need to carry it about you many workstations.
It connects to your PC or Mac with no fuss, plugs it and gets on with the war.
It also marries well with Apple iPad using RØDE Rec, GarageBand and most recording apps that work with an external microphone. Use a USB connection adaptor to connect to the iPad.
You are assured of high-quality sound and if podcasting your voice will feel as it is.
Due to its sensitivity, use it in quiet locations, it has a habit of hearing more than you want it to.
Every noise in the background including your cat lapping milk several feet away!
The mic operates at 16-bit/48kHz resolution, uses a cardioid pickup pattern only and has a 0.5-inch capsule.
It features zero-latency stereo headphone monitoring using a 3.5mm jack that allows you to plug your headphones so you can hear exactly what the mic is outputting to your laptop.
You will also know when your voice is too soft or too loud.
Beyond gaming, recording podcasts or other vocals with Rode NT-USB USB microphone reduces your editing work bearing its clarity.
Unless you want to add sound effects to your content, it is all you need in your home studio.
It costs less than $170 and when you register it on the website, you get two years extended warranty. What’s not to like about this gaming microphone?
Audio-Technica AT2020USBi USB Microphone
The permanently polarized condenser mic with a fixed-charge back plate operates on a cardioid pickup pattern to keep off background noises and improve the quality of your voice.
You are assured of terrific audio quality courtesy of superior analog to digital converter with 16-bit/ 48 kHz resolution.
The mic’s gain control allows you to adjust how loud or soft the input sound is so your listeners hear you well.
This makes Audio-Technica AT2020USBi USB Microphone suitable for podcasting, voiceover, field recording, home studio, and game streaming. It works with both Mac and PC.
The gaming mic comes with a pivoting stand mount, tripod desk stand, 4.9 feet USB cable, 4.9 feet Lightning cable for audio output and a cool protective pouch for storage.
Though it doesn’t have a stunning look, it fits in well with your gaming arsenal and cost less than $200.
Samson Go Portable USB Mic
Unlike most gaming mics, Samson Go Portable USB Mic has a unique advantage, it is portable.
It is small, foldable and has a clip that allows it to attach well on top of your laptop or sit on your table next to your desktop during recording or game streaming.
It allows you to choose between cardioid pickup pattern when alone and omnidirectional when you have a whole cheering squad on board during the gaming nights.
Switch between the two patterns whether you are gaming, recording or Skyping.
Either way, you are guaranteed of superior quality sound at a resolution of 16-bit/44.1kHz. The mic is compatible with both Mac and PC without the need for drivers.
Samson Go Portable USB Mic has an onboard headphone amplifier and the jack allowing you to plug in your headphones and listen to your voice. The output can also be connected to powered speakers.
The pocket-sized mic is the perfect companion for recording or game streaming on the go and cost less than $50. It spells the end of game-less life whenever you travel.
HyperX QuadCast Gaming Microphone
The electret condenser microphone allows you to choose from four polar patterns whether you are game streaming, recording, Podcasting or Skyping; stereo, bidirectional, omnidirectional and cardioid. Regardless of your choice, you are assured of superb sound at a resolution of 16-bit/48kHz.
It has a built-in headphone jack, anti-vibration shock mount, built-in pop filter to quieten annoying punchy sounds in your voice or background and a convenient gain adjustment control.
Use the tap-to-mute function on top of the mic to mute and prevent recording or sending the audio signal that you don’t need to.
The LED mic status indicator helps to tell when the mic is on or off; if ON, the mic is active.
HyperX QuadCast Gaming Microphone also comes with a mount adaptor that fits 3/8 inch and 5/8 inch threaded setups to help mount the mic on various stands or boom arms.
This gaming mic is compatible with Mac, PC, and PS4. It is compatible with most broadcast software such as XSplit and OBS Studio.
Here is a chance for you to play and show off your expertise as you whack your opponents behind in your favorite game on Social Media.
Blue Yeti Nano Professional Condenser USB Microphone
This microphone boasts of sending your voice out loud and clear. It ensures that you leave a mark everywhere your voice goes whether during podcasting, game streaming, YouTube producing, making voiceovers or Skype call. It is not about the size, it’s about the sound.
Blue Yeti Nano Professional Condenser USB Microphone has two custom capsules, a mute button, headphone volume control and it allows you to switch between two pickup patterns; omnidirectional when you have more than one gamer on your side cheering and cardioid if you are a lone ranger.
At the bottom of the mic, you have access to the USB port for output; a USB cable is provided during purchase, headphone output, and thread mount. It comes with a desktop stand.
Should you need to access gain control, use a desktop app, the physical option isn’t available.
The need to hear exactly what those who are listening to you hear is well catered for in this microphone.
Plugin your headphone through the port at the bottom of the microphone and find out if there’s any latency in your recording or streaming.
The microphone has a resolution of 24-bit/48kHz.
The beautiful night blue microphone is worth showing off on camera when conducting the YouTube demos of your games. And it cost less than $150.
Samson G-Track Pro Professional USB Microphone
If you are looking for yet another great gaming microphone that offers more than carrying your voice across to the required audience, Samson G-Track Pro Professional USB Microphone has your back.
It goes beyond your usual game streaming mic to enable you to record your music, podcasts and the audio side of your YouTube videos from beginning to end all alone.
The USB interface allows you to output your audio signal straight into your computer without the need for drivers. Just connect it and start your audio software.
Its interface includes 1/4 inch instrument input to connect your guitar or related instrument, there’s a volume control to regulate how high or low the instrument goes.
It also has the headphone jack with level control for zero-latency monitoring; ensuring that your voice isn’t lagging.
When you no longer want to speak to your fellow gamers, mute the mic with the button availed.
Samson G-Track Pro Professional USB Microphone has a dual 1-inch condenser capsule to capture every detail of your voice during your gaming escapades.
You are assured of high definition audio at 24-bit/96 kHz resolution and three different polar patterns; cardioid, bidirectional and omnidirectional.
This gaming mic is ready for rough handling. It has an all-metallic build; die-cast zinc construction with heavy gauge mesh lattice.
It comes with a metal desktop base that is strong enough to handle the instant adjustment of the mic to the desired position.
While it is majorly raven with limited decor, it is worth showing off in our YouTube videos or whenever you want to silence fellow gamers in the league. Prepare to pay at least $120 for this.
Rode NT1-A Anniversary Vocal Cardioid Condenser Microphone
While most of the mics in this review are USB based, Rode NT1-A Anniversary Vocal Cardioid Condenser Microphone isn’t.
It uses a 20-meter XLR cable to output your voice instead. Its performance, however, won it a spot on the list.
Known as the World’s quietest studio mic, it operates on cardioid pickup pattern only and eliminates all chances of collecting background noises during recording.
It has a 1-inch capsule with a gold plated diaphragm, true condenser, a pop shield, and an SM6 shock mounting. You are also provided with a dust cover for safe storage and an instructional DVD with lots of recording secrets!
Since Rode NT1-A Anniversary Vocal Cardioid Condenser Microphone uses XLR connection instead of USB, you need to connect its XLR cable to a pre-amp mixer with a USB interface and support for phantom power to deliver digital output expected by your laptop.
One of the best pre-amp mixers in the market is the NOVIK NEO Mixer NVK 802FX. It amplifies the signal from your microphone and makes it strong enough for your computer’s use.
And since this mic is the condenser type, not dynamic, phantom power support comes in handy. It costs below $150 on Amazon.
A simpler option to connect this XLR microphone to your computer is by using a USB mic converter like Icicle XLR to USB Mic Converter/Mic Preamp.
It has a built-in mic preamp with analog mic gain control and a 48V phantom power.
No drivers needed for it to work, it has a balanced low noise front end and comes with a free 6 foot USB cable.
The process is easier than when using NOVIK NEO Mixer and it cost less than $50.
Though its sound quality compares to that of high-end gaming microphones such as the Sennheiser MK-416 going for $1000, this mic costs less than quarter the amount.
eBerry Computer USB Microphone
This microphone defines beauty at a very fair price. It has a 360 degrees flexible gooseneck that curves to any angle your gaming life demands, assumes a unique tulip design, superior ABS material with a high-gloss surface. It makes your gaming desk sparkle!
You only need to plug it to your computer’s USB port using the 6.5 feet cable provided and you are ready to broadcast.
It is unidirectional, very sensitive to the point of capturing your voice from 10 feet away but has a mute button on the base to let you operate in silence.
Whether used for gaming, podcasting or recording your YouTube videos, every Computer USB Microphone promises high fidelity vocal, your audience will never strain to hear what you say.
The Best Gaming Microphones by Type: Condenser vs Dynamic
As a gamer, you may have come across dynamic microphones and now you have a list of 10 great condenser mics. Which type should you use for gaming?
Condenser microphones are built on electronic principles where acoustic energy is converted to electrical based on electric field laws making them very sensitive to background noises.
Whether you are gaming or podcasting, a condenser microphone will pick the least of noise around you even when set to cardioid pickup pattern; unidirectional.
To kick off the background noise, take your game to an enclosed room free from unnecessary noise, your audience won’t hear anything beyond your voice.
Dynamic mics convert acoustic energy to electrical based on magnetic field principles.
That makes them less sensitive to background noise. However, you have to keep them close to your lips for them to deliver your message right.
Now, that doesn’t feel comfortable for a gamer, does it?
Setting up the Best Gaming Microphones for the Party!
Now that you have quite a variety of gaming mics to choose from; all necessary matters considered, let’s set up your gaming empire so you can go about bragging to your opponents, shall we?
Once your computer is on, plug the USB cable from the preferred gaming microphone to a free USB port.
In case you have an XLR mic, make sure you have the pre-amp on or the converter in place so the USB cable is available for use.
The mic should seek local drivers from the operating system upon connection. It is instant. If it doesn’t, either check for drivers from the packaging the mic came with or online from the manufacturer’s website.
For Windows users, access Control Panel and click the Sound icon. Choose your preferred speakers from the Playback tab and select Set Default.
Proceed to Recording tab, select the gaming mic you have just plugged in and also set it as default.
If you are operating from a room with a bit of noise, the meter beside your selected microphone should show that it is sensing the noise.
If not, speak near the mic and see if the meter blinks to your voice.
If you are a Mac user, go to System Preferences and click on the Sound icon.
On the Output tab, select your preferred speakers then proceed to select the gaming microphone you have just installed in the Input tab and exit.
Physical setup on the gaming mic includes selecting the right polar pattern; stereo, cardioid, bidirectional and omnidirectional for the occasion.
If you are hosting your whole pack for a gaming sleepover, consider setting your gaming microphone to omnidirectional and place it at a central point on the gaming desk.
Otherwise, set it to a stereo mode for a threesome. If you are all alone, keep it at cardioid so all the focus is given to you.
But if you have one cheerleader, set it to figure 8; the bidirectional mode ensuring that the other gamer sits on the opposite side and the mic is placed in the middle.
Remember to adjust the gain control to ensure that your voice is regulated; not too low or too loud.
Plugin your headphones to feel your current volume and detect any latency.
Don’t forget to hit the mute button every time you need to keep your conversation private.
Pimp Your Best Gaming Microphones Further
To ensure that your hands are free during gaming, consider mounting your gaming microphone on a stand and positioning it at a suitable distance on your desk.
Most of the best gaming mics recommended above come with a basic desktop stand.
But if you want the mic to hang from above, use a suspension boom clamp; the Pyle Suspension Microphone Boom stand (PMKSH04) leads the pack and costs about $33.
It comes with a shock mount to prevent vibration from the mic stand from interfering with the mic’s diaphragm.
You don’t want vibration from anyone walking around in your gaming empire caught and transmitted to your opponents, do you?
A pop filter is the other piece of ammunition necessary in your gaming arsenal.
The circular screen-like shield helps to eliminate the punchy noise when you pronounce letters like ‘P’, ‘B’ and sometimes ‘SH’.
You don’t want your audience blocking their ears from that annoying noise.
Place the pop filter up to 3 inches away from the microphone, you should observe up to 12 inches distance away from the gaming mic especially when the mic is set to cardioid mode.
Consider YOTTO microphone pop filter for the work, it has a flexible gooseneck and a clamp suitable for most stands. It cost about $12.
Now you are set for the game!
One more thing…
Is it Possible to Convert USB Mic to XLR?
Since XLR microphones can now be converted to USB, to connect to your computer, is the reverse possible?
Converting a USB microphone to XLR isn’t a very clever idea. Now that you have the best gaming USB microphone delivering digital output that is readily acceptable to your computer, taking it to XLR is reversing the process.
The output from XLR is analog; you will need to convert the signal to digital again so your computer can use it. Although it is possible, it makes no sense.
Finally, if you are still wondering what microphone pro gamers use, the list above answers the question.
It is clear, USB gaming mics with condensers win the war. Now it’s your turn to equip your gaming empire with the best gaming microphone and follow suit!