9 Best Podcast Microphone for 2022

As a podcaster, your microphone is your principal tool of the trade. It can make or break your show. A top-notch mic will help you sound more professional and polished. 

But, which model is the one?

We’ve assembled the finest collection of both budget and pro-level microphones, fit for any skill level and setup. 

We have all the info you need in one place:

  • A comparison table with all the main specs
  • Detailed reviews covering features, polar patterns, and pricing 
  • An easy-to-follow guide on how to find your best podcast microphone.

So, tune in and read on!

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Top 9 Best Podcast Microphone 2022

1. Blue Yeti

As a contender for best microphone for podcasting, the Blue Yeti is a classic choice for all fledgling podcasters. This USB condenser mic has it all: sound quality, ease of use, and versatility — for only $129.99. It supports multiple polar patterns for maximum utility. You can also fine-tune your recordings with the Blue VO!CE software. Full Review

  • Mac and PC compatible
  • 1/8’’ headphone jack
  • Multiple pattern selection

As a contender for best microphone for podcasting, the Blue Yeti is a classic choice for all fledgling podcasters. This USB condenser mic has it all: sound quality, ease of use, and versatility — for only $129.99. It supports multiple polar patterns for maximum utility. You can also fine-tune your recordings with the Blue VO!CE software. Full Review

2. Rode NT-USB

The Rode NT-USB will please both newcomers and veterans of the podcasting scene. It’s a USB condenser mic with a cardioid pickup pattern optimized for solo vocal recordings. Count on additions like the pop filter, headphone jack, and on-mic mix control, and you have a complete package — for $167. Full Review

  • Mac, PC, and iPad compatible
  • Detachable pop filter
  • 1/8’’ headphone jack

The Rode NT-USB will please both newcomers and veterans of the podcasting scene. It’s a USB condenser mic with a cardioid pickup pattern optimized for solo vocal recordings. Count on additions like the pop filter, headphone jack, and on-mic mix control, and you have a complete package — for $167. Full Review

3. ATR2100x-USB

The ATR2100x-USB is a budget-friendly dynamic mic that will accompany you on all your travels. It’s a dual output model: XLR and USB-C. Its low price of $100 doesn’t reflect its sound quality. On the contrary — the ATR2100x can give mics thrice its price a real run for their money. Full Review

  • USB-C and XLR output
  • D/A converter
  • 1/8’’ headphone jack

The ATR2100x-USB is a budget-friendly dynamic mic that will accompany you on all your travels. It’s a dual output model: XLR and USB-C. Its low price of $100 doesn’t reflect its sound quality. On the contrary — the ATR2100x can give mics thrice its price a real run for their money. Full Review

4. Shure SM7B

When considering microphones for podcast recording, don’t overlook the Shure SM7B, which is practically synonymous for professional sound recording. This dynamic cardioid XLR mic is truly a force to be reckoned with. It comes with a complete set of noise-reducing equipment and three frequency response switches. It costs $399 to elevate your podcast studio with the SM7B. Full Review

  • Pre-installed pop filter and shock mount
  • Three selectable frequency responses
  • Foam windscreen, close-talk windscreen, and locking yoke mount included

When considering microphones for podcast recording, don’t overlook the Shure SM7B, which is practically synonymous for professional sound recording. This dynamic cardioid XLR mic is truly a force to be reckoned with. It comes with a complete set of noise-reducing equipment and three frequency response switches. It costs $399 to elevate your podcast studio with the SM7B. Full Review

5. Rode Procaster

The Rode Procaster delivers broadcast-quality sound in all recording conditions. This reliable XLR dynamic mic has an internal pop filter and shock mounting to bolster its solid construction. Its cardioid pattern will give your voice a real chance to shine. You can get it for around $225-250 — extended 10-year warranty included! Full Review

  • Durable all-metal case
  • Frequency response: 75Hz-18kHz
  • Integrated pop filter and shock mount

The Rode Procaster delivers broadcast-quality sound in all recording conditions. This reliable XLR dynamic mic has an internal pop filter and shock mounting to bolster its solid construction. Its cardioid pattern will give your voice a real chance to shine. You can get it for around $225-250 — extended 10-year warranty included! Full Review

6. Heil PR-40

When considering good podcast mics, the Heil PR-40 is a true audio connoisseur’s choice. It can capture both vocals and tricky instruments with extreme cardioid precision. And it’s got style! The base price for this cool dynamic XLR mic is $329, but can increase to $399 for the more extravagant chrome and gold models. Full Review

  • Frequency response: 28Hz-18kHz
  • Internal breath blast and shock mount
  • Tuned for both vocals and instruments

When considering good podcast mics, the Heil PR-40 is a true audio connoisseur’s choice. It can capture both vocals and tricky instruments with extreme cardioid precision. And it’s got style! The base price for this cool dynamic XLR mic is $329, but can increase to $399 for the more extravagant chrome and gold models. Full Review

7. Shure MV7

If you value flexibility, the Shure MV7 might be your pick. You can customize every little thing, starting with your voice signature and mic position. Or, you can just kick back and let the mic auto-adjust your optimal settings. No matter your style, this XLR/USB dynamic model will match it for $249. Full Review

  • USB/XLR output
  • 1/8’’ headphone jack
  • Auto Level Mode and Manual Mode

If you value flexibility, the Shure MV7 might be your pick. You can customize every little thing, starting with your voice signature and mic position. Or, you can just kick back and let the mic auto-adjust your optimal settings. No matter your style, this XLR/USB dynamic model will match it for $249. Full Review

8. Samson Q2U

Do you want to start a podcast without wreaking havoc on your wallet? The Samson Q2U is possibly the best cheap podcast microphone candidate, then! This trusty dynamic cardioid microphone costs only $59.99. Its dual XLR/USB output can handle most types of configurations, and you can even connect to your iPhone or iPad. Full Review

  • USB/XLR output
  • 1/8’’ headphone jack
  • Mic clip, desktop tripod stand, and windscreen included

Do you want to start a podcast without wreaking havoc on your wallet? The Samson Q2U is possibly the best cheap podcast microphone candidate, then! This trusty dynamic cardioid microphone costs only $59.99. Its dual XLR/USB output can handle most types of configurations, and you can even connect to your iPhone or iPad. Full Review

9. Rode PodMic

Studio-level quality doesn’t have to cost a small fortune. The Rode PodMic is proof of that. You can count on this dynamic XLR microphone to consistently deliver high-quality sound. Its vast frequency response range promises to capture every little detail. The PodMic costs $99 — a small price for such a stellar device. Full Review

  • Frequency response: 20Hz-20kHz
  • Specialized for podcast recording
  • Integrated pop filter and shock mount

Studio-level quality doesn’t have to cost a small fortune. The Rode PodMic is proof of that. You can count on this dynamic XLR microphone to consistently deliver high-quality sound. Its vast frequency response range promises to capture every little detail. The PodMic costs $99 — a small price for such a stellar device. Full Review

Best Podcast Microphone for 2022

Here’s the all-star cast of podcast mics for 2022:

 

Detailed Reviews

Blue Yeti
Blue Yeti
Blue Yeti

BEST FOR

Beginner podcasters

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  • Mac and PC compatible
  • 1/8’’ headphone jack
  • Multiple pattern selection
  • Mute and gain control buttons

The Blue Yeti mic was released back in 2009. It’s a legendary (cryptozoology pun fully intended) name in audio circles, and well-deservedly so!

The Yeti is beloved because of its simplicity. It’s a USB podcast mic that you can just plug in and play — no installation required. That makes it perfect for recording podcasts, interviews, gaming, vocals, and musical instruments without having to fiddle around with drivers or software. 

It’s Mac and PC compatible, so no worries on that front.

Overall, the Yeti is a small but heavy microphone. It also comes with a sturdy desk stand so that you can adjust its position. The mic alone weighs 1.2 lbs, and the stand is 2.2 lbs. If you’re thinking of switching up the default mic stand, keep in mind that you’ll need one that can support such weight.  

Now, let’s talk about features.

What makes the Blue Yeti such a versatile podcast recording microphone is its multiple pattern selection. It has three condenser capsules with four polar patterns: 

  • Cardioid — picks up sound directly at the front
  • Bidirectional — picks up sound from two opposite sides of the mic
  • Omnidirectional — picks up sound from all directions at the same time
  • Stereo — provides a clear separation of left and right channels.

You can record in all conditions with such capacity, though cardioid is the recommended mode for podcasts. 

The accompanying Blue VO!CE software lets you play around with advanced effects, voice modulation, and HD audio samples.

This podcasting microphone also has some nice little practical touches

  • Built-in headphone volume controls, along with a 1/8’’ jack 
  • Gain control for adjusting the sensitivity
  • Mute button with an LED indicator.

All in all:

For the fair price of $129.99, the Blue Yeti is a brilliant podcast microphone for beginners.

Rode NT-USB
Rode NT-USB
Rode NT-USB

BEST FOR

Intermediate-level podcasters

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  • Mac, PC, and iPad compatible
  • Detachable pop filter
  • 1/8’’ headphone jack
  • On-mic mix control

The 2014 Rode NT-USB is a sophisticated choice that combines convenience with high audio quality. As a plug-n-play USB mic, it doesn’t require any additional audio equipment or drivers. It’s compatible with PC, Mac, and iPad.

It’s designed primarily for voice-overs and podcasts. That doesn’t bode well for NT-USB’s versatility, but it makes up for such with exceptional audio clarity.

This modest side-address microphone is fit for any desk. It weighs 1.15 lbs and comes with a tripod and ring mount. A 20’ USB cable is also part of its default equipment.

A mic for podcast recording is only as good as its features. So, let’s have a look!

The Rode NT-USB has a premium-quality 0.50’’ condenser capsule. It only supports a single polar pattern — cardioid. That makes it ideal for solo vocal recording but unsuitable for interviews or ambient sounds.

This model has a couple of tricks up its sleeve, though. These elements make it a strong contender for being the best USB microphone for podcasting

It comes with a detachable pop filter. The pop filter softens the explosive sharpness of consonants like T, P, and B. The pop shield lets you get really close to the mic and play around with the proximity effect.

There’s a convenient knob for on-mic mix control. Additionally, you can easily adjust the monitoring level and mix between your microphone input and source output. 

The NT-USB comes with a 1/8’’ headphone jack, so you can hear your voice spoken with zero latency.

All things considered, it’s one of the best podcast microphones for under $200 — $167, to be precise. Both beginners and podcasters who are a bit more serious about their craft will be more than pleased.

ATR2100x-USB
ATR2100x-USB
ATR2100x-USB

BEST FOR

Podcasters on the move

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  • USB-C and XLR output
  • D/A converter
  • 1/8’’ headphone jack
  • Frequency response: 50Hz-15kHz

The 2019 ATR2100x is a top entry-level podcast mic, plain and simple. Don’t be fooled by its humble price tag! This Audio Technica model is an absolute powerhouse. 

It’s a hand-held dynamic microphone, fit for both live performances and intimate podcasting settings. 

Thanks to its dual USB-C/XLR output, it stands out from the USB mic crowd. You can simultaneously plug it into your computer and mixer, for example.

This versatile budget podcast mic also comes with an analog to digital converter. You can count on 24-bit high-fidelity audio, with up to 192 kHz.

Generally speaking, it’s a pretty light model, made with portability in mind. It weighs only 0.6 lbs and comes with a foldable tripod desk stand.

The ATR2100x-USB comes with three cables:

  • 6’6” USB-C to USB-C 
  • 6’6” USB-C to USB-A
  • 9’8” XLRF to XLRM.

By design, its 120° cardioid pattern picks up front vocals and reduces side and back noise. To make the best use of this USB podcast mic, you will have to get up close and personal.

Another stand-out aspect is its fantastic sound quality. The ATR2100x-USB deftly works the frequency response range of 50Hz-15kHz. Many users claim in their reviews that its sound is comparable to microphones three times its price. 

It also has a 1/8’’ headphone jack and volume control. That way, you can directly monitor your mic input. 

Finally, its low price is the cherry on top! For around $100, this Audio Technica model is a real bargain. It combines flexibility, accessibility, and great sound — what’s not to love?

Shure SM7B
Shure SM7B
Shure SM7B

BEST FOR

Professional podcast recording

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  • Pre-installed pop filter and shock mount
  • Three selectable frequency responses
  • Frequency response: 50Hz-20kHz
  • Foam windscreen, close-talk windscreen, and locking yoke mount included

The iconic SM7B is often considered a vocalist’s dream mic. But, it doubles as a remarkable Shure podcast microphone. The 2001 model has been at the top of its game for decades now.

Here’s why.

The SM7B is a dynamic mic aimed at professionals. Everything about it suggests that, from the build quality to the price tag. 

You also need some serious equipment to pair it with. After all, it does sport an XLR connector and impedance of 150 Ω. It will fit perfectly in a podcast studio with a quality audio interface and preamp. 

At a glance, it’s a sleek yet sturdy device. It weighs 1 lb and has a solid enamel,  aluminum, and steel case. 

This Shure podcast mic comes with a pre-installed pop filter and shock mount. For two reasons, this is great. First, you can minimize the harshness of plosives whenever talking close to the mic. And second, you can reduce unwanted ambient sounds like clicking, hitting your desk, typing, etc.

Also included with the mic is a locking yoke mount, foam windscreen, and detachable close-talk windscreen. As such, you don’t need to buy any extra gear, except perhaps a boom arm.

But, the SM7B’s shining moment is the crystal-clear vocal reproduction. Even Michael Jackson relied on its predecessor’s powers to record Thriller. The powerful cardioid polar pattern ignores off-axis noise and focuses on your voice only. It makes the SM7B one of the finest microphones for podcast recording

And there’s more:

This mic has three switches to alter frequency responses:

  • Bass roll-off — accentuates the lower ends 
  • Flat — maintains a neutral, natural sound
  • Presence boost — emphasizes mids and treble.

The flat setting is ideal for podcast recording. Overall, the frequency range is a respectable 50Hz-20kHz

You can have the complete set,  including all the noise reduction accessories, for $399.

Rode Procaster
Rode Procaster
Rode Procaster

BEST FOR

Longevity and extended use

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  • Durable all-metal case
  • Integrated pop filter and shock mount
  • Frequency response: 75Hz-18kHz
  • Extended 10-year warranty

In 2007, Rode released its first USB mic. The Rode Podcaster microphones were a smash hit. Soon enough, the Procaster followed as a Rode XLR variant — and the rest is history.

This is a highly specialized model for voice-overs, broadcasts, and podcasts. It’s dynamic and made for a broadcast environment. It’s also an XLR microphone, so your sound will depend significantly on your preamp, digital recorder, or mixer setup.

If you’re looking for something you can simply plug into your computer, this isn’t your product. A USB Rode podcast mic, like the NT-USB, would be a better fit in that case.

The Rode Procaster is a solid device. Its all-metal case weighs 1.64 lbs. This model is made to last. It even comes with a one-year warranty that you can easily extend to 10 years. All that’s needed is to register your purchase for free on the Rode website.

The microphone comes with a ring-mount stand, but you’ll probably want to invest in a desk mount or boom arm. It has an internal pop filter and shock mounting, which is a great touch. This combination should minimize unwanted sounds.

Like all good podcast mics, the Rode Procaster employs a cardioid pickup pattern. It’s designed for solo, directional use while blocking out exterior sounds. It’s also worth noting that this is an end-address type of mic. You will have to talk into the top of the microphone and not from the side to achieve the desired results.

As a dynamic mic, it’s a bit less sensitive than its condenser colleagues. Still, that kind of nuance isn’t crucial for recording podcasts. As it is, the 75Hz-18kHz frequency response will be more than enough for your needs.

At $224, this quality device is worthwhile for any podcaster looking to elevate their recording process.

Heil PR-40
Heil PR-40
Heil PR-40

BEST FOR

Balanced sound quality across ranges

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  • Frequency response: 28Hz-18kHz
  • Internal breath blast and shock mount
  • Tuned for both vocals and instruments
  • Great rear rejection

An exceptional podcast XLR microphone doesn’t have to be a Shure, Rode, or Neumann one. Heil might be a relatively lesser-known brand, but its attention to detail rivals industry leaders.

The Heil PR-40 will treat both vocals and a wide range of instruments correctly. It’s awe-inspiring on sonically challenging instruments, like bass guitars, acoustic guitars, and kick drums.

This mic stands out because of its looks. At a glance, you might think it’s just a typical condenser side-address microphone. 

Actually, it’s a dynamic end-address one! Home recording podcasters will, without a  doubt, greatly benefit from such due to far too often inadequate soundproofing. A dynamic microphone for podcast recording won’t pick up every little noise from your neighborhood.  

Its steel body comes in various colors, like black, champagne, chrome, and gold. Despite its bulky aesthetics, it’s relatively light, at 0.84 lbs.

The PR-40 is stunning on the inside, too. It has an internal breath blast filter that softens sibilance and plosives. The 1’’ diaphragm is surprisingly light and shock-mounted

The rear rejection is also notable. You can freely use two mics in close proximity without any feedback noise.

But, the thing that makes the Heil PR-40 one of the best mics for podcasting is its balanced performance across all ranges. Vocals sound smooth and natural, without any boominess. Keep in mind that the cardioid polar pattern picks up your voice effortlessly.

Heil’s frequency response is also unexpected for a dynamic microphone28Kz-18kHz! Lower ends are satisfyingly warm and vibrant without being overpowering. The mids and treble are nuanced yet neutral. 

The PR-40 is very versatile, but it shines on percussions and vocals. The price varies depending on your pick of casing and details. The plain black PR-40 costs $329, while the fancier gold and chrome models cost $399.

Shure MV7
Shure MV7
Shure MV7

BEST FOR

Podcasters in need of a versatile microphone

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  • USB/XLR output
  • 1/8’’ headphone jack
  • Outstanding customizability
  • Auto Level Mode and Manual Mode

Released in 2020, the MV7 is a relatively fresh addition to the Shure podcast microphone collection. It’s a superb dynamic cardioid mic for podcasters, gamers, and streamers alike. It suits both casual creators and those who are very hands-on with their recording process

One of its most attractive features is the dual USB/XLR output

You can use both outputs simultaneously, which is an efficient time-saver. The Shure MV7 includes two 10’ cables: Micro-B to USB-C and Micro-B to USB-A. An XLR cable isn’t part of the deal.

The MV7’S minimalist aesthetic conceals its true capabilities as a podcasting microphone. It’s got a sleek touch panel with LED lights indicating gain levels and mute status. It’s also fitted with a 1/8’’ headphone jack in the back.

And that’s not all.

To fully experience this mic, you have to download the free desktop app — ShurePlus MOTIV. With numerous settings at your fingertips, this mic beats many expectations.  Your voice signature and mic position, for example! 

You may choose between three voice tones: dark, natural, and bright. The natural setting is considered best for podcasting purposes.

And you can switch between your Shure podcast mic alignment presets: near, far, or wherever you are.

Generally speaking, there are two modes of operating within the app. 

Auto Level Mode “lets your mic do the work for you,” as Shure puts it. All you need to do is set your preferred sound signature and distance from the microphone — and you’re finished. The MV7 will automatically adjust your levels as you’re recording.

The Manual Mode, on the other hand, allows for total control during your mic record session. You are free to fiddle with your gain, monitor mix, limiter, compressor, equalizer, and more.

You can tailor this smart model to meet all your audio needs for $249.

Samson Q2U
Samson Q2U
Samson Q2U

BEST FOR

Podcasters on a tight budget

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  • USB/XLR output
  • 1/8’’ headphone jack
  • iPhone/iPad compatible
  • Mic clip, desktop tripod stand, and windscreen included

The Q2U is known as a novice podcaster’s best friend. It’s a welcome addition to anyone’s starting setup. And with its less than $100 price tag, it will certainly fit your budget. Best of all: the Samson Q2U won’t outgrow its usefulness as you develop your podcasting skills.

Now, let’s see what makes it such a hit.

This budget podcast mic is dynamic with a cardioid polar pattern. This bodes well for your overall recording success for several reasons. 

First, it’s more durable than a condenser microphone. It aptly handles heat and humidity – setting you free to use on your mobile podcasting adventures. You can even pair it with your iPhone or iPad.

Second, a dynamic cardioid mic is more forgiving of noisy recording environments. The Q2U is overall less sensitive than its condenser brethren. But, that also means it will pick up fewer unwanted sounds.

Third, it doesn’t require phantom power. When using a condenser microphone for podcast recording, you have to pair it with mixers and preamps with a phantom power feature. Meanwhile, a dynamic model like the Q2U can work with a broader range of audio interfaces.

The Samson Q2U is also an XLR/USB model. It has the best of both worlds, output-wise. 

You can just plug it into your computer via USB and record. Or, if you have the gear and technical know-how, you can put its XLR output to use. On top of that, it also comes with a 1/8’’ headphone output.

The bundle includes XLR/USB output cables, a mic clip, windscreen, and a desktop tripod stand with an extension piece.

A cheap podcast microphone like this can benefit from a windshield. It will protect your mic from wind currents and breath blasts.

All in all, the Samson Q2U is practically a steal for $59.99.

Rode PodMic
Rode PodMic
Rode PodMic

BEST FOR

Advanced podcasters on a budget

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  • Frequency response: 20Hz-20kHz
  • Specialized for podcast recording
  • Solid all-metal case
  • Integrated pop filter and shock mount

The Rode PodMic is a small but powerful mic – bringing studio-level quality to all recording environments. You can guess its primary purpose by its name.

Yup, this is a podcast, broadcast, and essentially speech-oriented dynamic XLR microphone. It’s not a highly versatile model that will excel in countless situations, like recording instruments or field recordings. But, if you’re in the market for a specialized podcast XLR microphone — this is the one!

This device is quite robust and made to last. That’s obvious as soon as you take hold of the Rode PodMic. 

Its solid, all-metal construction and stainless steel mesh grille truly inspire confidence. And at 2.06 lbs, it’s not to be taken lightly.  

Its exterior features an integrated pop filter and shock mounting. Those parts will help you combat every podcast’s peskiest foes: harsh plosives and vibrations. With the correct precautions, you can avoid such and save yourself from time-consuming editing. 

When it comes to additional auxiliary equipment, this Rode podcast mic is relatively humble. It comes with a swing clip and nothing else. The clip feels stable and is compatible with table-top stands, boom arms, and mic stands.

Moving on to audio quality, the Rode PodMic is a delight to work with.

Its cardioid pickup pattern will define your voice with ease. And thanks to the pop filter, you can get close to it and achieve that warm, old radio tone. Just make sure to talk into the right end, as it is an end-address microphone.

The frequency response range is a very satisfying 20Hz-20kHz. It manages to capture sound without coloring it, the way only good mics for podcasting do. And you won’t even have to tweak it too much when finished recording! 

The biggest surprise is the price, though. The Rode PodMic costs $99, making it perfect for anyone looking to go analog without paying too high of a fee.

Buyer’s Guide

So, you’ve decided to look into a proper mic for your show! For sure a step in the right direction, though it may seem a bit daunting at first. There are many things to consider before committing to a specific model — almost too many.

But, we’re here to save you the headache and help you decide. This guide contains all the info you’ll need to identify your best podcast mic. We’ll cover:

  • Connection types
  • Mic transducer types
  • Polar pickup patterns
  • Budget 
  • Useful accessories like headphone jacks, noise reduction gear, and more.

Let’s jump right in!

USB and/or XLR, Connection

One of your initial concerns should be your mic’s connection type. It’s a fairly simple choice between USB, XLR, and dual output USB/XLR microphones.

But, your decision will influence your sound quality and audio equipment needs. Let us explain.

USB Microphones

USB models are beginner-friendly microphones for podcasting

Why? Well, you just need to plug them into your computer, and you’re ready to go to town. They’re a welcome relief when you’re too busy working on your content and don’t have the time to figure out more complex recording solutions. 

They’re also a cheaper solution than XLR models, which require extra gear (like mixers and audio interfaces) and investment. And they’re more portable!

Still, there’s a couple of notable cons.

Not even the best USB mic for podcasting can outperform an XLR one when it comes to raw sound quality

That’s because USB mics have a built-in analog-to-digital converter. Although convenient, it impacts audio quality. On the other hand, XLR models connect to external converter devices with superior conversion rates and sound processing.

It’s also impractical for multiple participants to huddle around a single USB mic connected to a computer. As such, they are most suitable for solo recording sessions.   

XLR Microphones

XLR models have a three-pin connector. It carries a balanced signal and isolates noise, ensuring high-quality sound recordings. 

They also have a spring lock mechanism that ensures a snug fit between the mic and its cabling. This standard feature alone makes XLR podcast microphones less prone to static than USB ones.

Unlike USB models, they don’t have an integrated A/D converter. As such, you’ll have to connect them with an audio interface. While this may be inconvenient to some, it also means you can use multiple microphones simultaneously. 

However, XLR mics are often more expensive than USB — and you will rack up additional expenses with all the compulsory gear. This auxiliary equipment also makes them less portable

Advanced podcasters with relevant experience and a sufficient budget can make the best use of XLR microphones.  

USB/XLR Microphones

You can also have both outputs in a microphone for podcast recording. 

Any creator can benefit from their versatility. Double output mics are especially suited for beginners and intermediate-level podcasters itching to grow their craft. They provide a convenient stepping stone for upgrading to more elaborate and professional setups.

Condenser or Dynamic

All microphones are essentially transducers that convert sound waves into electronic signals. There are anatomical differences between transducers that influence the way they work and their resulting sounds. The capsule is the primary difference!

In general, there are two types of mics — condenser and dynamic

Let’s see what each type can offer.

Dynamic Microphones

Dynamic models are beloved among beginners and are a common piece of podcasting equipment on a budget

Their build and design make them resilient to high sound pressure levels. They can weather high-energy live performances with no trouble.

For the most part, dynamic mics are tuned for loud and strong sounds, vocals, and instruments. On top of that, they are good at reducing background noises

This makes them an excellent choice for recording spaces that lack soundproofing. All bedroom podcasters can appreciate this struggle and better, yet, this solution.

And they don’t require a separate power source!

Still, there are specific scenarios where dynamic types aren’t the most viable option.

Studio environments aren’t their forte. They can’t pick up the full intricacies of quieter and higher tuned frequencies. In that case, you’re better off getting a condenser microphone for podcast recording.

Condenser Microphones

Condenser types are typically more sensitive — in construction and in picking up sounds. As you can guess, that makes them less durable than their dynamic colleagues but more accurate overall. 

They are also the more expensive option mostly reserved for professional studios. Be aware,  they will pick up every slight creak in your recording space.

There’s one more detail that sets them apart:

Condenser podcast microphones need to have a power source, like a battery or phantom power.

Phantom power, although spooky sounding, is actually quite mundane. Your audio interface or mixer usually provides it. It’s a small amount of power, between 9 and 48 volts.

Condenser mics also differ from each other in diaphragm size

Models with bigger diaphragms record lower frequencies better and are a podcaster favorite. Smaller diaphragms, in contrast, are more suited for higher frequencies

Polar Patterns

If you’ve been browsing for the best microphone for podcasting, you’ve probably encountered polar pattern charts. They might look intimidating, but the principle behind them is pretty simple!

Polar patterns represent how much sound a mic will pick up directionally. Each model responds differently to sound coming from various directions. Polar pattern charts are essentially a graphical representation of that response. 

Now, you’ll want to zoom in on a mic’s pickup pattern as it will influence your whole recording experience. The way you position it and talk into it can significantly affect the overall sound quality.

Some patterns are undoubtedly more suitable for recording podcasts. If you look at our review section, most microphones for podcasting rely on the cardioid polar pattern.

Still, it doesn’t hurt to know about all varieties for the sake of versatility. There are six main types in total:

  • Omnidirectional
  • Bidirectional
  • Cardioid
  • Hyper-cardioid
  • Super-cardioid
  • Lobar/Shotgun.

There are even models with multiple selectable patterns — like the Blue Yeti from our list!

Now, let’s see what makes each type of mic tick.

Omnidirectional

Omnidirectional microphones pick up sound from all directions with equal sensitivity. That characteristic makes them ideal for capturing the ambiance of an entire room

You might also think they’d make good microphones for recording podcasts with multiple participants. But that’s not the case! 

You won’t be able to single out any of the voices while making your post-production adjustments. Directional mics for each speaker are the way to go.

Bidirectional

Bidirectional microphones pick up sound in a figure-eight pattern. That means they capture sound from the front and the back but reject it from the sides.

Their specific polar pattern makes them suitable for lectures and discussions, where the moderator/lecturer and the audience go back and forth.

Similar to omnidirectional mics, bidirectional models aren’t appropriate mics for podcast recording. They can’t even help you with interviews because you can’t isolate any of the recorded voices

Cardioid

Cardioid microphones pick up sound from the front while rejecting sound coming from the back. They are designed for solo vocal recording. So, whether you’re singing, interviewing, or podcasting — this is the type of mic for you. 

This is also a forgiving polar pattern, meaning you don’t have to perfectly position your microphone to perform effectively. That makes it a solid pick for beginners.

Additionally, the front-oriented shape means it can focus on your voice even in relatively noisy environments

It comes as no surprise that the best microphones for podcasting use this pattern. 

Hyper-cardioid

Hyper-cardioid models have a slightly different pattern compared to cardioid ones. They reject more sound from the side while also capturing more from the back.

However, when it comes to their uses, you’ll find they’re nearly identical. So, a big “yes” to podcasts and other solo vocal work. They are also beginner-friendly and good at minimizing unwanted sounds.

There is one notable disadvantage to hyper-cardioid microphones.

They are sensitive to echoes! So, take care when choosing your recording space. 

Super-cardioid

Super-cardioid mics are essentially the more sensitive cousins of hyper-cardioids. They are narrower in the front, more focused, and precise. Even when used at a distance, they are often considered the best podcast mics

This excellence does demand some extra effort, though. 

Unlike the cardioid and hyper-cardioid models, to be effective, super-cardioids must be correctly positioned and aligned

Lobar/Shotgun

Lobar (or shotgun) microphones have the narrowest pickup pattern of all. They are extremely front-oriented and reject the most sound from their sides. This type of design is optimal for capturing specific sounds.

Still, lobar models require surgeon precision in handling and positioning. As such, you will find them primarily operated by professionals in tv and film production. All things considered, they aren’t good microphones for podcasts.

Features and Extras

Sound quality is the first thing your audience will notice, and we all know the importance of first impressions. An innovative mic equipped with anti-noise tools will give your show that coveted professional gleam. 

Let’s find out which extra features can be a huge help!

Headphone Jack

A headphone output on a mic can save a lot of post-production time and strain. It lets you monitor your recording in real-time. Or, put more simply: you’ll be able to hear yourself as you’re speaking into the microphone.

So, if anything goes awry, you’ll notice and fix it instantly!

Shock Mount

A lot of the best podcast mics from our list come with shock mounts. They help isolate microphones from various mechanical noises, like:

  • Vibrations from instruments
  • Footsteps
  • Clicking
  • Desk thuds
  • Handling noise
  • Typing

You get the picture — all the tiny imperfections that cause noise in the mic’s signal.

There are two types of shock mounts — internal and external.

Internal models provide integrated mechanical protection for the capsule

External shock mounts, on the other hand, are clips that hold the mic in place. They reduce the noise transfer from the stand to the entirety of the microphone.

Pop Filter

A pop filter is another piece of equipment that can help transform a good microphone for podcast recording into an outstanding one. 

It acts as a barrier between the blasts of air leaving your mouth and the mic capsule. Some sounds pop more than others. 

Take plosives, for example. 

Plosives are consonants like B, D, G, K, P, and T, known for their intense vocal releases or bursts. They can seriously mess up a recording!

Pop filters usually consist of acoustically transparent foam and mesh. Those materials shield the mic from plosives (bacteria and saliva, too) without dampening the overall sound.

Windscreen

Windscreens (or windshields) have similar but distinct functions from pop filters. 

Their chief purpose is to stabilize the surrounding air pressure and protect your podcast recording microphone from wind noises

Windscreens are in their natural element when you’re recording outdoors. They are usually made from foam and fit over microphones like snug little caps.

They also bring down the overall sensitivity of the mic. That’s both a good and a bad thing. A microphone with a windscreen picks up less background noise, but it also affects treble and high-frequency sounds. Pop filters are more subtle in this instance.

Mic Stand

Even the best podcast mic will perform shoddy if not positioned correctly. You will need a mic stand — unless of course, you plan on holding it all the time.

There are three types to choose from: 

  • Desktop mic stands — great for podcasters that record from their desk while seated
  • Boom arms — made for mobile recording, whether you’re sitting or standing
  • Floor mic stands — meant to be used while standing.

Out of the three, floor stands are the least advisable option for podcasters. They’re usually used by singers who have to stand during performances. 

However, desktop stands and boom arms will fit your style. 

Just make sure that they’re compatible with your chosen mics for podcast recording. You don’t want to commit to a stand that can’t hold your mic.

Budget

Lastly, your budget will be one of the deciding factors in choosing your microphone. There’s a wide range of prices, fit for any wallet.

You should know a couple of general rules that will influence the price of your mic.

Condenser models are typically more expensive than dynamic ones. The bigger their capsule size, the pricier they are.

XLR models also usually cost more and require extra gear, which means more expenses.

Still, finding your best mic for podcasting doesn’t have to be a costly affair. 

In fact, there are amazing models for well under $100 — like the Samson Q2U at just $59.99. Other mics reviewed in this budget category are the ATR2100x-USB ($100) and Rode PodMic ($99).

Wrap Up

Shopping for a podcast microphone can be challenging. There are many things to consider, like your budget, gear, mic portability, features, recording space, and more.

Luckily, our reviews and guides cover all those issues. There’s a perfect mic for everyone’s budget, newbies and veterans alike. Your best podcasting microphone is surely on our list — you can’t miss it!

FAQ

What kind of microphone is best for podcasts?

Microphones with a cardioid or hyper-cardioid polar pattern are your surest ticket to success. These patterns are the most forgiving and novice-friendly. They are also primarily focused on an individual voice. 

As for whether your mic for podcast recording should be dynamic or condenser, XLR or USB, that largely depends on your recording environment and setup. We’ve covered the issue in great detail in our buyer’s guide — feel free to check it out. 

But, TL;DR:  

  • Dynamic type — yes to recording in noisy spaces
  • Condenser type — yes to recording in soundproofed spaces
  • XLR type — yes to pairing up with a mixer, preamp, or audio interface

USB type — yes to pairing up with your computer exclusively.

Is a dynamic or condenser mic better for podcasts?

Either one can be the best podcast microphonejust depends on your recording space

You should get a dynamic microphone if you’re podcasting in your bedroom or office that lacks soundproofing. But, if you’re recording in a more professional setting, like a studio, a condenser model will serve you better.

Are Yeti microphones good for podcasting?

Specific Yeti models are a smart choice for sure! The Blue Yeti earned its spot on our list of best microphones for podcasting for a reason. It’s an affordable and easy-to-use condenser mic with multiple pickup patterns.