17 Best Microphones for YouTube Content Creators of All Levels

The best microphones for YouTube make it easier for content creators to deliver high-quality videos with crystal clear sound quality.

My eLearning World: Training Techno...
My eLearning World: Training Technology Without Borders

YouTube has become one of the most effective ways to share your life with the world, but it’s also become one of the easiest ways for entrepreneurs to make money.

Although you need good camera equipment and lighting if you want to produce pro-quality content, your microphone choice is just as important.

Whether you’re recording audio using voice-over mics to go along with your videos or you’re recording on-camera audio, you need to have a good mic by your side that can deliver clear, crisp results so your viewers (and transcription software programs if you’re making a transcript or captions) can actually understand what you’re saying.

Microphones come in a variety of forms, and all of them have different uses. In other words, a microphone that’s great for singing live on stage might not be the best microphone for YouTube content creation.

In fact, you may need several different types of devices to get the right audio in different recording environments.

Additionally, you’ll want to remember that a mic is just a tool that is used to pick up and transfer sound. Afterward, you’ll want to have a way to process the captured sound so that it matches the tone of your video.

Thankfully, there are a number of amazing YouTuber mics available right now to match virtually any need and budget. I’ve taken the time to thoroughly test and explore all of the features and functions of today’s top microphones for YouTube videos, and you can check out my reviews below.

 

The Best Microphones for YouTube: Quick Picks

Don’t feel like reading this full guide? While I do recommend checking out our full guide to YouTuber mics, I understand you might not have the time to do that.

With that in mind, I’ve provided a couple of my picks for the best microphones for YouTube right here so you can get what you’re looking for:

My Top Pick

Blue Yeti

What’s inside?

  • 4 different pattern modes
  • USB plug-and-play compatibility
  • Works with all major recording software
  • Zero-latency monitoring
  • Excellent audio quality
  • Affordable on nearly any budget

Killer feature: Best value

Check price on Amazon →

Check price on Blue →

Check price on B&H →

While the Blue Yeti shines for a number of different reasons, it isn’t the only YouTube mic I want to highlight. Below is another pick that I also fell in love with:

Also GreatPowerDeWise Professional

PowerDeWise

What’s inside?

  • High-sensitivity capsule for detailed recording
  • Reduces wind and background noise
  • Compatible with smartphone recording apps and more
  • Ultra-portable
  • Easy to hide during on-camera recording

Killer feature: Portability for studio and remote recording

Check price on Amazon →

Just wear it and start recording without thinking about where the device is because it is always on you.

4 Steps to Choose the Best Microphone for Youtube Content

Before you ever even hit the record button for your next viral video, you need to find the right device. Although YouTube video creation offers a lot of flexibility, you still want to capture clean, clear audio in almost all cases.

Buyer's Guide

Below are some easy-to-follow steps you can take to buy the right YouTube microphone for your needs:

 

Step 1: Consider the Content You’ll Record

An audio capture signal path begins at the source, right? This means you’ll need to consider the type of content you’ll be recording in order to find the right device. Will your YouTube videos feature talking or live music? Will there be dynamic changes in volume levels during a single recording session? How many people will need to be recorded at the same time?

RIght Mic for Your Content

Some YouTuber mics are better than others for different recording needs.

If you’re recording a presentation or voice-over work, a condenser microphone might work best.

If you’re recording live audio or loud sounds, a dynamic one might be what you’re looking for instead to get the best sound quality on your Youtube videos.

Mics for In-Studio Recording

Mics for Live Recording

  • Dynamic
  • Lavalier (with windscreen)
  • Shotgun
  • WMS (within certain ranges)

You should also factor in power considerations. Many condenser microphones require external power, but this can often be supplied via USB connection or XLR cable. WMS may use rechargeable battery packs, but some will need standard disposable batteries.

 

Step 2: Analyze Your Budget

Everyone wants to save money and still get quality. Thankfully, there are plenty of recording products available today in the pro audio industry that can deliver amazing results without spending an arm and a leg.

Also, you can always upgrade your recording gear in the future, so even if you start out small, you have the ability to scale as your YouTube channel grows and requires better quality.

Analyze Your Budget

Although it may be tempting to spend a lot on a microphone, a higher price doesn’t always equal a better recording experience. In fact, some of the best microphones for YouTube videos are very affordable.

There are plenty of budget-friendly choices out there that can compete with more expensive options. In many cases, top names in the recording industry will actually offer a pro version of a particular model while also offering a budget version that has some scaled-down features.

There are pros and cons to spending a lot for a microphone, including:

Pros

  • Often manufactured with higher quality
  • May deliver better performance
  • Will potentially last longer

Cons

  • More money spent now means less money for new gear later
  • May only receive slightly upgraded features
  • Changes in technology may make the unit obsolete

Remember that it pays to do your research while figuring out your budget. Read my reviews and carefully consider your needs before spending a lot on a microphone.

 

Step 3: Consider Your Recording Environment

After thinking about the type of content you’ll be producing and considering your budget, you also want to factor in your recording environment.

Will you be recording YouTube videos in a studio or live? Will you have control over the volume level of your recording environment or will you be contending with crowds and unpredictable wind noise?

Recording Environment

You should also think about your post-processing capabilities.

Today’s digital audio workstation software makes it easy to make adjustments and fix errors in recordings, so you may have more leeway in your mic choice if you can use software to make changes in post.

With this stated, capturing a clean signal is key regardless of recording environment.

Post-processing can fix many things, but software isn’t magic. If a recording is muddled because you needed a condenser microphone and you used a dynamic one, there’s only so much that can be done to make changes after the fact.

Tips to tame your recording environment:

  • Ensure that your studio has the proper acoustic treatments to control audio reflections
  • Scout out live recording environments ahead of time to see if there may be unwanted sound sources popping in
  • If recording on a stage, utilize monitors instead of relying on amplifiers for sound reference

Even the best microphones for YouTube will deliver poor performance when used in the wrong recording environment. This may mean that it makes sense to have several different types of microphones available at all times to tackle different recording scenarios.

 

Step 4: Choose the Right Type of Microphone

Choose the Right Type

The final step of the process is choosing the right type of microphone, but don’t let the range of options scare you.

While the amount of choices, brands and types can seem daunting, you can read through my reviews to learn about the models I’ve tested so that you can get a better sense of which device will be right for your needs.

At its most basic, YouTuber mic choice generally boils down to:

  • Condenser – best for recording vocal detail in quiet environments
  • Dynamic – great for recording loud sounds in noisy environments
  • Lavalier – good for recording on-camera talent, offers freedom to move around
  • Portable Digital Audio Recorders – useful when recording on the go or for interviews in the field
  • Shotgun – Perfect for recording on-camera talent and audio sources that are facing the camera at all times
  • Wireless Microphone Systems (WMS) – excellent when recording multiple audio sources that are moving or that are a reasonable distance from your camera
The Best Microphones for YouTube
Rotde NT-USB

This zero-latency USB microphone is compatible with iOS and Android devices for podcasting and general speech recording

Category: Condenser
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →
Blue Yeti

An affordable and stylish device for YouTube content creators of all experience levels from a trusted brand

Category: Condenser
My choice among Condenser microphones
Amazon →Blue →B&H →
HyperX QuadCast

HyperX packs plenty of features into this eye-catching model for streamers and voice-over content producers

Category: Condenser
Amazon →HyperX →Guitar Center →
Shure SM7B

Easily control sound with customized roll-off controls for your professional voice recording

Category: Dynamic
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →
Samson Technologies Q2U

Maximize your choices by selecting either XLR or USB for podcasting and live broadcasting in noisy environments

Category: Dynamic
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →
Behringer XM8500

It offers durability and reliability backed by the Behringer name. Record live or in-studio at high volume levels with ease

Category: Dynamic
SweetWater →
PowerDeWise Professional

Perfect for mobile recording and YouTube videos featuring studio presentations. Features a full frequency response for great sound

Category: Lavalier
My choice among Lavalier models
Amazon →
RODE smartLav+

Experience a new level of freedom in mobile recording with iOS and Android devices in a studio environment

Category: Lavalier
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →
BOYA BY-M1

Lightweight and portable, it utilizes omnidirectional sound capture to pick up more of what you want with added clarity for studio presentation recording

Category: Lavalier
Amazon →B&H →
Zoom H1

Perfect for live recording and instrument capture in the studio, it utilizes stereo capsules and a feature-packed digital menu system for professional recording

Category: Portable Digital Recorders
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →
Zoom H4N Pro

Features 24-bit/96kHz recording capabilities and can utilize XLR and 1/4” cabling for more options and recording podcasts and interviews

Category: Portable Digital Recorders
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →
Zoom H5

Multi-track recording audio for YouTube videos on the go to be edited later

Category: Portable Digital Recorders
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →
Shure VP83

Mitigates off-axis noise with ease, affordable on nearly any budget, and provides a full frequency response for amazing sound in your YouTube videos

Category: Shotgun
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →
RODE VideoMic GO

Easily connects to a variety of cameras and stands through this mic’s integrated cold-shoe mount for on-the-go YouTube video recording

Category: Shotgun
Amazon →B&H→SweetWater →
RODE Wireless GO

Suitable for content creators who need a versatile in-studio and remote recording solution

Category: WMS
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →
Saramonic Blink 500 Ultracompact 2.4Ghz

Nice for interview and remote recording, and presenters who need to have their hands free

Category: WMS
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →
Sennheiser EW 112P G4-A

Best for studio recording in large areas and for independent filmmakers

Category: WMS
Amazon →B&H →SweetWater →

 

Condenser Microphones

Condenser models are the go-to choice for capturing detail and crisp vocal takes. If you’re recording YouTube videos in a studio environment, a condenser microphone is going to be your best bet.

They are designed to pick up subtle audio and even ambient noise. As a result, they should only be used in environments where you have total control over your audio sources. You may also want to ensure that you have good software available for post-production and processing so that you can shape your recording later.

1. RODE NT-USB

RODE is known in the recording industry as a pioneer in its design. The company produces top-quality devices for use in voice-over work, podcasting, studio use and more.

RODE NT-USB
“It is fully compatible with all mainstream recording applications on both Windows and Mac OS based computers, as well as the Apple iPad using RØDE Rec, GarageBand, or any other recording app that accepts an external microphone.” — rode.com

The RODE NT-USB microphone provides a fast, easy experience for YouTube content creators who are looking for a plug-and-play solution. Featuring onboard mix controls, the NT-USB offers studio-quality audio at an affordable price, and it’s perfect for podcasters and YouTube content creators who want to add voice-over tracks to streaming clips.

Some of the streamers use document cameras to show the way they play using the keyboard. If you’re looking for a document camera click here and check my personal list!

Features

  • USB zero-latency monitoring
  • Direct mix control within the device itself
  • Compatible with iOS smart devices

Pros

  • Bundle includes cable, tripod desk stand and ring mount
  • Frequency response from 20Hz up to 20kHz
  • A/D converter for 16-bit/48kHz audio quality

Cons

  • No XLR support
  • May not be suitable for loud environments
  • Plain design may come across as bland
RODE NT-USB
Credits: rode.com

Best For

  • YouTube streaming and voice-overs
  • Podcasting and general speech recording

Check the following video to learn more about all of the awesome features of the RODE NT-USB.

Pro tip: Remember that condenser microphones often have a low-threshold for noise, so be careful when using a condenser to record high-volume sounds.

Buying Options

2. Blue Yeti

Blue is one of the biggest names in microphones and has created some of the most unique and eye-catching designs in the industry. Although many of Blue’s studio-quality models can be quite pricey, the company offers an affordable alternative in its Yeti line, and it’s one of the best microphones for YouTube you can buy.

Blue Yeti
“Trusted by millions of creators and streamers, Blue Yeti is the #1 best-selling USB microphone for YouTube, Twitch, podcasting and more.” — bluemic.com

The Blue Yeti looks sleek, features multiple different polar patterns from which to choose and it delivers uncompromising performance and efficiency through USB connectivity. Zero-latency monitoring means you’ll always get an accurate read on your levels, and the Yeti can also be mounted in different ways to personalize your experience.

Features

  • Variable capsule for omnidirectional, bidirectional, stereo and cardioid recording
  • Eye-catching design stands out from the crowd
  • Zero-latency monitoring for accuracy

Pros

  • Can be used with a variety of mounts and other accessories
  • Blue Yeti Pro model features XLR support
  • Frequency response ranges from 20Hz to 20kHz
  • Great for recording YouTube videos

Cons

  • USB-only for standard model
  • Blue Yeti and Yeti Studio models limit recording to 16-bit
  • On-board gain control may confuse those new to recording
Blue Yeti
Credits: bluemic.com

Best For

  • Voice-over work for YouTube videos
  • General speech and conversation recording
  • Low-volume instrument recording in a studio environment

Want to know more about why the Blue Yeti is my top pick? Check out the video detailing more about the amazing Blue Yeti.

Pro tip: When using the Blue Yeti, angle the unit so that your subject is speaking toward the bold face of the device instead of at the tip. This will pick up more detail and clarity.

Buying Options

3. HyperX QuadCast

HyperX gives you the chance to truly stand out from the crowd with the QuadCast microphone. One of the things that makes the QuadCast the perfect microphone for YouTube videos is that it looks out of this world with built-in lighting effects, and this can give your videos a bit more style.

HyperX QuadCast
“With four selectable polar patterns, this mic’s prepared for nearly any recording situation and also features a conveniently-located gain control dial to quickly adjust your mic input sensitivity.” — hyperxgaming.com

The HyperX QuadCast offers four different polar patterns to choose from, so it can be used in a variety of recording situations. It’s also supported by Android and iOS, making it a great choice for YouTubers who want to record using their smart devices.

Features

  • Customizable lighting effects
  • 4 Different polar patterns for multi-directional recording
  • Internal pop filter

Pros

  • Supported by most iOS and Android devices
  • Onboard gain control for easy monitoring options
  • Includes mount adapter

Cons

  • Design may be a bit distracting when used in low-light environments
  • Tap-to-mute feature could be triggered inadvertently
  • Gain control is placed in an awkward position under the unit
HyperX QuadCast
Credits: hyperxgaming.com

Best For

  • YouTube presenters who want to get noticed
  • Streamers and voice-over content producers

Watch this video to find out more about the HyperX QuadCast and all of its incredible features. I think it’s a great model, and after watching this video, I think you’ll agree.

Pro tip: While lighting effects on a device can be neat, you don’t want to distract your viewer. When using a microphone with built-in lights, try to film in a properly lit area to reduce the attention given to the device.

Buying Options

 

Dynamic Microphones

Dynamic YouTube microphones are best for recording in environments where detail isn’t important, but you still demand clarity.

A dynamic model is good for recording vocal takes in semi-noisy environments where you don’t want to pick up a lot of low-volume sounds.

Many YouTube video creators utilize them when conducting man-on-the-street interviews or when recording in a crowd.

They are often unidirectional, meaning they pick up more sound from a single direction as opposed to all around. As a result, you’ll want to focus your audio source toward the device at all times for the best results.

4. Shure SM7B

When you want quality in a microphone, you want a Shure SM7B. Shure devices are known far and wide as some of the top products in pro audio gear, and the SM7B is no exception. This model delivers clear, warm sound in a variety of recording environments, and it also allows you to control low-end frequencies through the device itself.

Shure SM7B
“You can sing or speak at a comfortable angle and it captures the sound, just as you want it, with minimum coloration.” — shure.com

You can also count on the Shure SM7B to capture loud sounds with ease due to its ability to handle high decibel levels. This makes it perfect for situations where you need to broadcast a live stream for your YouTube channel at a large event like a concert or other public gathering.

Features

  • Flat and low-cut settings for more control
  • Can capture up to 180dB of sound without distorting
  • Cardioid polar pattern for rejection of off-axis audio

Pros

  • Frequency response shines in mid- and top-end vocal clarity
  • Electromagnetic shielding greatly reduces hum and RF interference
  • Dynamic capsule can handle both voice and instrument recording

Cons

  • Price point may be a bit much for beginners and hobbyists
  • Plain appearance
  • XLR output requires an interface or dedicated recording hardware
Shure SM7B
Credits: shure.com

Best For

  • YouTubers who demand professional voice recording
  • Live voice-over work for video narration and live event audio capture

Watch the video explaining more about the features included with the Shure SM7B. It’s a solid product from a trusted brand known for delivering quality in pro audio.

Pro tip: Because a dynamic model is not going to be as sensitive as a condenser microphone, your audio source may need to be adjusted. Having a monitoring system in place with gain controls will allow you to gain stage your audio as it is fed into your recording source for proper amplification.

Buying Options

5. Samson Technologies Q2U

One of the toughest choices to make when it comes to selecting the best microphones for YouTube videos is deciding between USB and XLR. Both connections have their pros and cons, but picking one over the other usually constrains you to that choice.

Samson Technologies Q2U
“The Q2U is a great mic for home recording. Its dynamic capsule is great for miking vocals, instruments and amplifiers. Onboard, high-quality analog-to-digital converters provide excellent audio reproduction.” — samsontech.com

Thankfully, the Samson Technologies Q2U solves this problem by offering a dynamic model that includes the ability to use both USB and XLR. On top of that, you can record audio to your favorite mobile devices, and the mic also comes with a headphone jack onboard to easily monitor levels during recording.

Features

  • Utilizes both USB and XLR support
  • Onboard headphone jack
  • Compatible with iOS and Android devices

Pros

  • Includes XLR cable, USB cable, windscreen and more
  • Built-in A/D converter
  • Rugged construction for tough environments

Cons

  • Only available with unidirectional polar pattern
  • Dynamic capsule may not pick up as much vocal detail
  • Frequency response range only reaches 50Hz on the low end
Samson Technologies Q2U
Credits: samsontech.com

Best For

  • Podcasting and live broadcasting in noisy environments
  • Instrument recording at louder volumes

Check this video link to learn more, and find out why users love the Samson Technologies Q2U.

Pro tip: You can use a dynamic model in a studio setting if the mic needs to be handheld. This is as opposed to a condenser microphone that should remain in a fixed position without being bumped around.

Buying Options

6. Behringer Ultravoice XM8500

Behringer is known across the music industry for designing affordable gear that can challenge the most expensive brands.

Behringer Ultravoice XM8500
“With an integrated shock mount system and spherical wind and pop noise filter, and coming packaged with a mic stand adapter and an impact-resistant carrying case, the XM8500 just may be the only microphones you will ever need.” — behringer.com

The Behringer XM8500 is no different, and it provides clean, crisp recording along with a durable finish for use both on stage and off. Whether you’re recording a YouTube video in your home studio or you’re streaming live, the Behringer XM8500 can handle tough jobs while still delivering quality audio and a simple recording process.

Features

  • Two-stage pop filter helps to reduce noise and unwanted sound
  • Easily handles louder sound sources in all environments
  • Moisture-resistant for extended durability

Pros

  • Affordable choice for recording YouTube videos on nearly any budget
  • Cardioid characteristic reduces feedback
  • Sturdy construction for use in live recording environments

Cons

  • Frequency response ranges from 50Hz to 15kHz
  • Only available with an XLR connection
  • Can only utilize unidirectional polar pattern
Behringer Ultravoice XM8500
Credits: behringer.com

Best For

  • Remote YouTube streaming
  • Recording voice lines and interviews in live environments

See more amazing features included with this device by clicking on this video that explores the Behringer XM8500.

Pro tip: Dynamic models are good for recording in louder environments, so if your video subject will be providing audio on a stage or outdoors, a dynamic model is usually best. They also work well for louder sounds, so your subject won’t have to worry as much about volume shifts.

Buying Options

Lavalier Microphones

Using a lavalier model, you have more freedom to move around and use your hands. They attach to your shirt and are small and discreet for easy placement on on-camera talent. You may want to use it when recording talent that needs to turn away from the camera, but also when your audio source is not stationary and you can’t move a standard device with the subject.

Lavalier models are often used with wireless transmitters, allowing for an extended range of movement. This can be a big benefit in large indoor and outdoor areas when shooting a big scene.

7. Power DeWise

The Power DeWise gives you the ability to free up your hands and move around on camera. This is a huge benefit for content creators who broadcast live, but it also gives more creative freedom rather than being constrained to a desk or mic stand.

Power DeWise Professional
“No more quiet, echo voice. With PowerDeWise lapel microphone sound in your video will be high quality” — powerdewise.com

It also delivers a full frequency response for rich sound, and you can also use this device for mobile recording on your favorite smart devices.

Features

  • 3.5mm jack for use with portable recording devices
  • Frequency response as low as 20Hz and as high as 20kHz
  • Attractive price point for new YouTubers

Pros

  • Discreet size and design allows the device to blend in easily
  • Omnidirectional recording reduces muffled vocal recording
  • Adjustable to fit most clothing choices

Cons

  • No built-in monitoring capabilities
  • Extension cords may become tangled easily
  • Windscreens could be difficult to replace
Power DeWise Professional
Credits: powerdewise.com

Best For

  • YouTubers who need to use their hands on-camera
  • Videos that require non-stationary vocal recording

Click on the video to see a review detailing more about the Power DeWise Professional on YouTube.

Pro tip: When using a lavalier model, the person wearing it should speak naturally and avoid angling to talk into the device. This will not only look better on camera, but it will also deliver better audio with less potential for distortion or large swings in volume.

Buying Options

8. RODE SmartLav+

One of the biggest problems when it comes to using a lavalier model is tangled cords that end up damaged. RODE, a leader in the pro audio industry, solves this by reinforcing its cabling on the RODE SmartLav+ with Kevlar. This is the same material used to make bulletproof vests, so you know the company takes durability seriously.

RODE SmartLav+
“With the smartLav+ the user simply mounts the microphone on the talent, connects it to a smartphone or tablet headset jack and records via the RØDE Reporter App for iOS, or any other audio app of their choice.” — rode.com

You can also depend on the RODE SmartLav+ for mobile recording as it easily integrates with smart devices for on-the-go recording. This model is one of the best mic models with an omnidirectional polar pattern. If you want to find more omnidirectional microphones check my reviews here.

Features

  • Kevlar-reinforced cable for added durability
  • Utilizes TRRS jack
  • Works with both iOS and Android recording devices

Pros

  • 4.5mm size makes this model easy to hide while on camera
  • Included mounting clip securely attaches to most articles of clothing
  • Condenser polarization picks up more vocal detail and clarity

Cons

  • May not be suitable in noisy environments
  • 4 ft. cable may be too short for some applications
RODE SmartLav+
Credits: rode.com

Best For

  • Recording presentations in a studio environment
  • YouTube videos requiring on-camera talent to have free use of their hands

Want to know more about why this model may be the perfect fit for you? Check the following video to see a review detailing the features of the RODE smartLav+.

Pro tip: Lavalier model cords should be run up sleeves or up through shirts to best hide them when on-camera. Make sure to include enough slack to avoid any cords becoming damaged or unplugged.

Buying Options

9. BOYA BY-M1

Although you may want directional recording for some situations, omnidirectional often works best when a mobile mic solution is employed during video creation. Thankfully, the BOYA BYM1 provides omnidirectional recording capabilities to capture on-screen talent with ease.

BOYA BYM1
“The lavalier microphone features an Omni pickup pattern, for full, 360-degree coverage.” — boya-mic.com

You can use the BOYA BY-M1 with most smart devices that utilize a 3.5mm jack, and the its low handling noise provides a clear signal without worry about artifacts coming through.

Features

  • Omnidirectional sound capture provides clear sound
  • 3.5mm and 1/4” adapters work with most recording devices
  • Inline on/off switch for easy control

Pros

  • Lightweight and portable
  • Easy plug-and-play design
  • Low handling noise

Cons

  • Requires replaceable batteries
  • Frequency response only ranges from 65Hz to 18kHz
  • Cabling can become a tangle issue
BOYA BYM1
Credits: boya-mic.com

Best For

  • Studio presentation recording
  • On-camera audio recording from a single presenter

Check this video detailing more about the BOYA BY-M1. It’s dependable, affordable and this video explains all about its features.

Pro tip: If you record audio to an SD card or other portable media, make sure you format the card properly before use. Failing to have the right file format can lead to confusion between your recording device, the SD card and any device you attempt to transfer data onto.

Buying Options

 

Portable Digital Audio Recorders

Even if you record YouTube videos in a studio, there may be times when you need to record on-the-go. When faced with a remote recording situation, portable digital recorders allow you to easily and professionally capture audio, both on-camera and off.

Although many smartphones and similar devices these days include audio recorders, having a dedicated portable audio recorder makes more sense when you want to ensure quality and consistency. On top of that, you won’t have to worry about a text message or phone call coming in and interrupting a shoot or ruining a take.

10. Zoom H1N

Portable digital recorders have been around for a while, but many of them suffer from the same problem: loud sounds cause distortion. Zoom addresses this issue perfectly with the Zoom H1N, a portable digital recorder that can handle sound at up to 120 dB with ease.

Zoom H1N
“The X/Y technique provides a great way to cover a wide area while still capturing sound sources in the center with clarity and definition, making it perfect for all types of live stereo recording.” — zoomcorp.com

Using twin condenser model situated in an X/Y pattern, the Zoom H1N records stereo sound and can even double as a shotgun model when mounted to a camera.

Features

  • Two condenser models
  • Digital screen for menu access and control
  • Handles up to 120 dB without distorting audio

Pros

  • Camera-mountable
  • Built-in vocal processing
  • Compact for handheld use in the field

Cons

  • Records to SD card
  • Utilizes alkaline batteries
Zoom H1N
Credits: zoomcorp.com

Best For

  • YouTube audio recording to be edited in post
  • Audio for video cameras that don’t include a built-in mic solution

Click to watch the Zoom H1N in action. This video explains more about the recorder’s features and demonstrates how it can be a huge help in capturing amazing sound.

Pro tip: Keep spare SD cards on-hand anytime you’re recording remotely. You should also avoid completely filling an SD card as this can potentially lead to data corruption. Make sure to accurately label each card as you finish with it using the date, time, location and subject matter to avoid confusion later.

Buying Options

11. Zoom H4N Pro

There are plenty of choices for recording on the go these days. Smartphones, tablets and more, all have built-in microphones and recording software, but if you really want to get high-quality sound capture, you need a portable digital recorder like the Zoom H4N.

Zoom H4N Pro
“Stereo Mode can be used with the built-in X/Y microphones or external mics, and is convenient for recording live performances, acoustic instruments, and more.” — zoomcorp.com

Lightweight and portable, the Zoom H4N records at 24-bit quality with a sample rate of up to 96kHz, meaning you can get sound quality as good or better than many professional studios.

Features

  • Includes two XLR/1/4” combo jacks
  • Lightweight design only weighs 10.6 oz
  • Four-channel recording capabilities

Pros

  • Records at 24-bit/96kHz
  • Compatible with OSX and Windows
  • Pre-record and auto-record functions built in

Cons

  • Battery powered
  • Monaural speaker
  • May be a bit expensive for beginner and hobbyist use
Zoom H4N Pro
Credits: zoomcorp.com

Best For

  • Podcasting and interviews
  • Remote instrument recording

Click to learn more about the Zoom H4N Pro, and see a video explaining all of it incredible features in the studio and for live recording.

Pro tip: When using a handheld portable audio recorder for voice recording, hold the device about 6 inches away from the subject who is speaking. Being too close can lead to distortion, but moving too far away can cause your microphone to pick up reverb and echo.

Buying Options

12. Zoom H5

Recording remotely can be done with ease using any old digital recorder, but what happens if you need to record various sources in a multi-track setup? If you’ve ever found yourself in this situation, you’ll be happy to know that a solution is available in the Zoom H5.

Zoom H5
“Four tracks of simultaneous recording and interchangeable mic capsules make the H5 flexible and powerful enough to meet the evolving needs of today’s creators.” — zoomcorp.com

The Zoom H5 offers four-track recording capabilities using one device, and it also includes the ability to use XLR and TRRS for easy connectivity.

Features

  • Four-track audio recording
  • Includes two XLR/TRRS inputs
  • USB output for easy file transfer

Pros

  • Can capture audio at up to 140dB
  • Rubberized housing makes this device highly shock resistant
  • Low-noise pre-amps built right in

Cons

  • May not fit beginner and hobbyist budgets
  • Battery powered
  • Advanced menus may seem complicated
Zoom H5
Credits: zoomcorp.com

Best For

  • Recording audio for YouTube videos to be edited later
  • Remote interviews and live music recording

Check out the following video to see the multi-track recording capabilities of the Zoom H5 in action.

Pro tip: Keep spare batteries available any time you use a portable recording solution. These should ideally be replaced each time you leave for a shoot, and battery levels need to be monitored throughout the day to avoid any unwanted surprises.

Buying Options

 

Shotgun Microphones

Shotgun models are an efficient way to better utilize your video recording gear. They attach to professional video cameras to capture audio from the source that’s on-camera in real-time.

You can also mount many of them to stands for separate placement and control.

These models are highly directional, so they are usually only utilized in situations where a subject is stationary or the device can move with the subject.

If a subject will be moving around or facing away from the camera, you may consider using a lavaliere one with a wireless transmitter and receiver instead.

13. Shure VP-83

Shotgun models are often designed to only work with high-end handhelds, but the Shure VP-83 can fit both traditional camcorder-style handhelds as well as DSLR cameras. Additionally, this microphone has built-in RF immunity to reduce and eliminate unwanted signal interruption from nearby electronics. This alone can be a huge advantage when shooting in today’s ever-crowded digital world.

Shure VP-83
“Superior RF immunity avoids unwanted audio artifacts from cellular and RF devices.” — shure.com

You’ll also love the fact that the Shure VP-83 utilizes a condenser capsule so that you can pick up crisp details in your recordings that other es might leave out.

Features

  • Unidirectional design rejects off-axis noise
  • RF immunity reduces potential for artifacting
  • Full frequency response for clarity in vocal and music recording

Pros

  • Condenser capsule picks up added vocal clarity
  • Compact design fits a range of camera sizes
  • Integrated shock mounting system isolates mic from camera noise

Cons

  • May price out some budgets, especially for flash-enabled model
  • Battery-powered
  • Dual mono inputs
Shure VP-83
Credits: shure.com

Best For

  • Recording YouTube videos in a studio environment
  • YouTube videos shot on location in quiet environments

Click to see a video about the Shure VP-83, and find out more reasons why it is a must-have for shooting video on the go and in-studio.

Pro tip: Although unidirectional devices can offset surrounding noise, you should still try to keep things quiet at your shooting location. Ideally, the only audio you want to be hearing is the audio coming from in front of your shotgun model.

Buying Options

14. RODE VideoMic GO

The RODE VideoMic GO is uncompromising in its durability and portability. Built using ABS construction, the RODE VideoMic GO only weighs in at a surprisingly light 73g. This makes it a must-have for YouTube content creators who are frequently on the move and need an adaptable shotgun model to fit a variety of cameras.

RODE VideoMic GO
“The VideoMic GO has no complicated switches or settings and is powered by your camera’s external microphone input, requiring no batteries to operate, ensuring you never miss a great shot.” — rode.com

The RODE VideoMic GO doesn’t need batteries, and it integrates a cold-shoe mount in the design for less hassle when mounting and unmounting to different cameras and stands.

Features

  • Lightweight at only 73g
  • Includes windshield to reduce unwanted noise
  • Integrated 3/8” cold-shoe mount

Pros

  • 3.5mm jack for easy adaption
  • Built-in shock mount system
  • Solid ABS construction

Cons

  • Can not be used with a variety of popular Nikon and Canon cameras
  • May have to play with audio settings to avoid low-level noise
  • Frequency response only ranges between 100Hz and 16kHz
RODE VideoMic GO
Credits: rode.com

Best For

  • On-the-go YouTube video recording
  • Interviews without multiple subjects

Click to see a video detailing all of the awesome features packed into theRODE VideoMic GO. Users love working with RODE products, and this video demonstrates why the VideoMic GO proudly represents the RODE brand.

Pro tip: Be sure to check your device mountings throughout the day. Loose mountings can cause unwanted noise that you may not notice until you begin working on your audio in post.

Buying Options

 

Wireless Microphone Systems (WMS)

For the ultimate in freedom when recording audio for YouTube videos, WMS can’t be beaten.

Most of these systems utilize a base unit that can receive audio from a single or multiple mics in range, and you can use this to your advantage when moving around on a set or when recording remotely.

Keep in mind that many wireless systems will only allow for one device to be connected to one transmitter, so you’ll want to ensure you find the right solution for your needs before making a purchase.

You don’t want to find out too late that you don’t have enough transmitters and too many microphones on the day of shooting.

15. RODE Wireless GO

Using WMS can offer a lot of freedom when filming YouTube videos, but these systems can also be a hassle. Cords can get tangled from mics to transmitters, batteries need to be replaced in the middle of shooting and some systems offer such a short range to operate within that it’s easy to miss out on a take.

RODE Wireless GO
“The transmitter features an in-built omnidirectional condenser capsule and can be used as a clip-on mic or with a RØDE lavalier, sending crystal-clear, broadcast-grade audio via 2.4GHz digital transmission to the on-camera receiver.” — rode.com

With the RODE Wireless GO system, you don’t have to worry about any of that because RODE has taken all of the worry out of wireless recording, making this one of the best microphones for YouTube videos in the wireless category. The RODE Wireless GO system features rechargeable batteries, a 70m range and the transmitters can also double as microphones.

This leads to less stress for you and a more efficient experience for your on-camera talent when you record YouTube videos for your channel.

Features

  • Transmitter functions as both a clip-on mic and as a belt pack for a lavaliere one
  • 2.4GHz transmission works well in dense wifi areas
  • Transmitter and receiver pair almost instantly

Pros

  • Built-in rechargeable battery
  • Output padding settings help control sound
  • Up to 70m of range between receiver and transmitter

Cons

  • Unable to use 5GHz transmission
  • May need additional adapters or connector cables for some mics
RODE Wireless GO
Credits: rode.com

Best For

  • YouTube content creators who need broadcast-grade audio quality
  • Content creators who need a versatile in-studio and remote recording solution

Want to learn more? Click on the video to see how the RODE Wireless GO can be a huge asset when recording wirelessly.

Pro tip: While 2.4GHz is optimal for long ranges, certain RF signals and wifi can interfere with transmission. Even if you’re using 2.4GHz to send audio, try to minimize the amount of other devices nearby transmitting signals. This includes smartphones, tablets, wireless routers and similar devices.

Buying Options

16. Saramonic Blink 500

The Saramonic Blink 500 is a favorite WMS among YouTube content creators because of its flexibility. The system offers the ability to adjust gain on each unit individually, and it also utilizes the 2.4Ghz band for better security at greater distances without the worry of losing connectivity.

Saramonic Blink 500
“It provides two wireless transmitters and two lavalier mics, so you can put mics on two separate people with only a single ultracompact receiver on your camera.” — saramonic.com

The really nice thing about this system is that the transmitters double as microphones, meaning less for you to keep up with while filming and less equipment to carry around when shooting remotely.

Features

  • Built-in gain controls to adjust recording levels as needed
  • Transmitters can double as mics
  • Easy mounting using shoe mounts on a variety of stands and cameras

Pros

  • Can be used with cameras and mobile devices
  • Utilizes 2.4GHz for greater range
  • System can be expanded with multiple microphones as your YouTube channel grows

Cons

  • Battery life is only five hours
  • Operating range only extends to 30m
Saramonic Blink 500
Credits: saramonicusa.com

Best For

  • Interview and remote recording
  • Presenters who need to have their hands free

Check out the following video to see the Saramonic Blink 500 in action, and learn why this system is trusted among YouTube content creators and video professionals alike.

Pro tip: Although each manufacturer provides a range within which a wireless system can operate, try to avoid pushing the outer limits. These ranges are provided with the understanding that no objects are blocking signal paths and that no interference is weakening a signal.

Buying Options

17. Sennheiser EW 112P G4-A

Sennheiser stands as one of the world’s most sought after brands in pro audio, and the Sennheiser EW 112P G4-A certainly lives up to the company’s reputation as being among the best.

Sennheiser EW 112P G4 A
“With up to 100 meters of range and a battery life of 8 hours, it’s easy to see how the durably constructed ewG4 transmitters and receivers will perform when you need them to.” — sennheiser.com

The Sennheiser EW 112P G4-A offers customizable channels that allow you to create your own network of wireless models, all while delivering broadcast-quality sound capture. You’ll love the eight hours of service time, and with up to 100m of range, you won’t have to worry about missing a beat because a device moved too far away.

Features

  • Delivers broadcast-quality sound
  • Utilizes standard 3.5mm jacks
  • 12 programmable channels

Pros

  • Easily attaches to cameras for portability
  • Can reach distances up to 100m
  • Offers eight hours of continuous use

Cons

  • May be out of reach for some budgets
  • Battery door has given some users trouble
Sennheiser EW 112P G4 A
Credits: sennheiser.com

Best For

  • Remote YouTube video shoots
  • Studio recording in large areas
  • Independent filmmakers

Click on the video to learn why the Sennheiser EW 112P G4-A is the go-to solution for mobile recording and content creation when freedom and flexibility are imperative to success.

Pro tip: If your WMS utilizes replaceable batteries, check them often throughout a shoot. You don’t want a device to die in the middle of a shoot because you forgot to put in fresh batteries.

Buying Options

 

Must-Have Accessories for YouTuber Microphones

Even after you’ve found the best microphone for YouTube recording, there are still other essentials you’ll want to have on-hand to maximize your recording experience.

As a reminder, the best YouTube mics will only perform when you have them set up alongside accessories meant to maximize your efforts.

Below are some must-have items I always have at the ready to ensure I get the best audio for each YouTube video I create:

1. ChromLives Microphone Windscreen →

Getting clean, clear vocal recordings is only half the job when making YouTube videos as you also have to factor in background noise and wind noise. Small amounts of wind outdoors or a fan running in the background indoors can ruin a recording, but through the use of a windscreen, like the ChromLives microphone windscreen, you can reduce these unwanted sounds without a lot of post-production.

ChromLives Microphone Windscreen

Windscreens are not a total solution, however, and recording in a windy environment may still generate unwanted noise if the airflow is too high.

2. InnoGear Microphone Stand →

Mic stands are essential when you need to free up your hands and still maintain dynamic range. InnoGear stand options give you flexibility in mic positioning while providing adjustable height options to match your needs. The best part is that you can use InnoGear stands with most traditional models, meaning you can swap out gear as needed.

InnoGear Microphone Stand

When selecting a microphone stand, consider your needs in terms of placement. Some stands include the ability to tilt and move a boom arm, but others are straight and only allow for the mic angle to be adjusted.

3. AUPHONIX PRO Black Shock Mount for Blue Yeti →

I’ve already mentioned that Blue Yeti is my top pick when it comes to YouTube microphones, but this model is even better when combined with a shock mount like the AUPHONIX PRO black shock mount. Using a shock mount, your Blue Yeti will be securely suspended to avoid unwanted noises from bumps and knocks.

AUPHONIX PRO Black Shock Mount for Blue Yeti

This also adds an extra layer of protection to keep your device from getting damaged through accidental touching. Shock mounts can also offer better sound and isolation from mechanical noise if your device is near other equipment. Keep in mind that even low-level humming and buzzing from nearby equipment can sometimes be picked up by sensitive models that are catching vibrations.

4. Aokeo Professional Microphone Pop Filter →

Pop filters, like the Aokeo, help to control sibilants and plosives. These are the bursts of air that are created when making the sound of certain consonants and vowels during normal audio recording. Using a pop filter, you can reduce the impact of these harsh sounds and prevent breathing sounds on your audio recordings, and your recordings will sound more natural and require less post-production.

 

Aokeo Professional Microphone Pop Filter

When using a pop filter, try to position it a few inches in front of your device to avoid the filter touching the mic. Remember that the filter may move slightly due to air pressure from a sound source, so try to account for this movement in your placement.

5. Gearlux XLR Microphone Cable →

While USB devices are fantastic options for YouTube video recording, you may also want to use a traditional device that utilizes an XLR connection. These connections require an XLR cable, like the Gearlux one, to transfer audio to an interface or recording device. The cable lineup is made from solid materials for durability, and these cables connect to any model with a conventional XLR output connection.

 

Gearlux XLR Microphone Cable

When using XLR cables or any other audio cables, don’t allow them to be stepped on, and when you’re finished for the day, wind them back up properly and store them securely to avoid kinks, twists and damage.

 

Useful Resources

 

A Final Word on Microphones for YouTube

Although all of these YouTube microphones are great options, you may need a few different types of mics to handle different recording needs.

I find that a condenser microphone is invaluable for voice-overs and personal storytelling on camera, but having a lavaliere mic and a dynamic mic in conjunction with a portable recording device gives me more options to record whenever, wherever.

Also, remember that the best microphones for YouTube videos aren’t always the most expensive ones. There are plenty of budget microphones out there that can provide amazing results when used properly, especially when paired with a proper studio setup where acoustic foam tiles and other equipment is used to ensure premium audio quality.

While many of the most expensive models cost a lot for a reason and are often the best mics for YouTube streaming, this doesn’t mean that they are the only option. Budget microphones can be a great way for beginners to learn about the basics of recording, but they can also be useful in the hands of a skilled professional.

Want to become an even better YouTube personality? Consider taking an online public speaking class to become a more confident host on your channel.

Have any questions about finding the best microphones for YouTube videos? Comment below and we’ll help you out. 

Leave a Comment