Top 10 USB Microphones 2012


Home recording has become extremely popular in the last several years. Those who are interested in recording themselves for musical or podcasting purposes should consider purchasing a USB microphone to help them get their sounds on disk. Following is a breakdown of the Top 10 USB microphones 2012 to assist in choosing the ideal mic.

Samson C03U

The Good: This mic provides a full and rich sound that is great for recording vocal performances.

The Bad: The included software can be difficult to use, and it may not work with some computer systems.

Summary: This Samson C03U USB Condenser MicrophoneUSB Condenser microphone is ideal for podcasting and recording vocal performances. Since it can be purchased for approximately $100, it is also a great value.

This USB mic is best suited to those people who want a crystal clear vocal sound from an inexpensive and easy to operate device. It is perfect for spoken vocals, but it can be used for musical instruments, as well. For greater diversity, the microphone comes equipped with three different pickup patterns which can be selected with a switch located on the microphone.

MXL 990

The Good: This amazingly affordable microphone is terrific for recording vocals, plus it comes with a mini-tripod stand and a durable case.

The Bad: This mic can produce a distracting humming sound in certain situations, and it does not offer the quality of microphones with better construction.

Summary: The MXL 990 Condenser Microphone is a terrific entry-level USB condenser microphone, but it might leave more experienced recordists wanting more.

With a price of approximately $150, the MXL 990 is a great choice for those who want to get into recording at the entry level. It comes with everything a person will need to start recording, and it is quite versatile. However, it is best suited to spoken vocals. The sound quality is adequate, but it will leave professionals wishing for a more expensive microphone.

Samson CO1UCW Studio

The Good: This mic includes a large diaphragm and it features a flat frequency response that is ideal for capturing uncolored sound from a variety of sources. It is also very affordable.

The Bad: The CO1UCW Studio will not work with Pro Tools software. Also, it does not feature multiple pickup patterns other than the basic cardioid pattern.

Summary: The Samson C01U USB Studio Condenser Microphone is a terrific microphone for those searching for a simple and cheap means of recording themselves. It allows users to enter the world of digital recording easily, but it may not offer the sound quality that some users will demand.

Users with little or no experience in the world of digital recording will be pleased with this microphone. It offers decent digital sound quality, plus it comes with everything needed to get started. At less than $100 retail, it is a great choice for the budget-minded, as well.


The Good: This microphone is affordable and versatile. It features a large gold diaphragm and it is capable of recording in stereo.

The Bad: The included editing software is difficult to learn and use. Also, the unit’s audio quality is not up to the level of more expensive mics.

Summary: The MXL USB007 USB Stereo Condenser Microphone is an affordable gold diaphragm condenser microphone that works well for amateur recordists on a budget. It uses a versatile XY pattern for recording which gives people great-sounding vocals. The mic comes with a case, stand, USB cable and a manual.

People who have a computer and want to record without buying expensive recording software or equipment will do well with the MXL USB 007. It is capable of producing clean and clear sounds, but professionals may notice some undesirable artifacts. Since it can be purchased for less than $150, it is a great value for recordists with tight budgets.

Samson SAC01UPAK

The Good: This recording package includes the Samson SAC01 condenser microphone along with everything a person needs to get started with podcasting.

The Bad: The microphone only includes one polar pickup pattern. Also the included software can be difficult to use. Additionally, experienced recording engineers will find fault with the sound quality.

Summary: The Samson SAC01UPAK USB Microphone is designed to be the perfect entry-level package for podcasting enthusiasts. It includes the microphone, a USB cable, a mini stand, a shock mount and a heavy-duty carrying case. It also includes software to help with recording, editing and arranging.

People who are interested in podcasting are the target market for the Samson SAC01UPAK condenser microphone package. The microphone provides adequate sound quality, and the included accessories make recording easy. The mic is not for everyone, but it is ideal for beginners.

AKG Perception 220

The Good: AKG is known around the world for its excellence, and this product does not disappoint with great sound quality and ease of use.

The Bad: This mic provides adequate sound quality, but people with experienced ears may notice some flaws. Also, it is not ideal for recording certain loud or high-pitched instruments.

Summary: The AKG PERCEPTION 220 Professional Studio Microphone is responsible for creating some of the world’s most beloved microphone models. The Perception 220 is an affordable microphone created for newcomers to the world of recording. Considering its price, the Perception 220 is an amazing model.

People who want a high-quality vocal microphone for music or podcasting will be pleased with the AKG Perception 220 microphone. It can be purchased for less than $150, and it offers great sound for the price. Those who are starting their own studios can use this microphone as a great, all-around transducer option.

Samson G Track

The Good: More than just a microphone, the Samson G Track can also be used as a high-quality recording interface for maximum versatility. For such an inexpensive microphone, it sounds great, also.

The Bad: Many users have reported noise which is present at higher than acceptable levels. If users are only planning on recording vocals, the extra features of this mic might be unnecessary.

Summary: The Samson G Track USB Microphone is a complete recording solution for those interested in creating podcasts or music. The condenser microphone has a terrific sound, plus it includes inputs for instruments, as well as mixer controls to adjust levels. Though the microphone is not professional-quality, it is adequate for hobbyist use.

Those who are looking for a comprehensive recording package at an affordable price should consider the Samson G Track. The microphone sounds wonderful, plus it is very versatile. People who want to start recording and pay less than $150 should consider the G Track.

Rode NT1A Anniversary

The Good: Featuring an extremely low noise floor and terrific vocal reproduction, the NT1A Anniversary from Rode is a quiet and effective vocal microphone.

The Bad: At about $230, the NT1A Anniversary may be too expensive for some people. Also, the mic may not be durable enough for heavy-duty use.

Summary: The best vocal recording microphones in the world can cost thousands of dollars, but the Rode NT1A Anniversary Vocal Condenser Microphone offers professional sound in a package costing less than $250. This condenser mic is capable of capturing high sound pressure levels, and it does so without producing unwanted noise.

Vocalists looking to improve the sounds of their voices in recordings should try this amazing Rode condenser mic. It eliminates the frustrations associated with noisy mics, plus it sounds wonderful for a number of applications. It is even suitable for recording instruments such as pianos and acoustic guitars.

Audio-Technica AT2020

The Good: This is one of the most popular and affordable condenser mics in the world. Many recordists both professional and amateur use this mic to capture pure sounds of vocals and acoustic instruments.

The Bad: The microphone can add some unwanted color to recordings. Also, it can be too sensitive for some users since it can pick up numerous sounds in any location.

Summary: The Audio-Technica AT2020 USB Condenser USB Microphoneis one of the world’s most popular microphones for vocals. It is easy to set up and it sounds great without a tremendous amount of tweaking. Since it can be purchased for around $100, it is also a terrific value.

This microphone is best suited to recordists who are looking for a durable and affordable mic to use in many different applications. It is ideal for podcasting, but it can also be used for singing and recording various instruments. The mic is very sensitive, but its frequency response is fairly flat, making it ideal for capturing the realities of music and other sound sources.

Yeti Blue Microphone

The Good: This microphone sounds outstanding and it features four different polar patterns for maximum versatility.

The Bad: At 3.5 pounds and nearly a foot in length, the Yeti from Blue Microphones can be too bulky for some people. Also, the volume and gain controls tend to be less than precise.

Summary: The Blue Microphones Yeti USB Microphone offers a tremendous amount of versatility. It features three condenser capsules, plus it is capable of four polar pickup patterns which means that it can be used for a number of applications. Additionally, it is very easy to set up and begin using.

Ideally, this microphone would be used for podcasting and performing interviews. However, it is also adequate for recording musical vocals and other sound sources thanks to its versatility. At around $100, the Yeti Blue Microphone is a great choice for the budget-minded consumer, as well.


The Top 10 USB Microphones 2012 comprise a great cross-section of models. Recording is fun, but it requires the right equipment. Any one of these microphones will make a great choice for someone, but the details will determine which mic makes the most sense. The best thing about these mics is that they are easy to use and they deliver results effectively at affordable prices.

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