Most gamers could care a lot more about the quality of their gaming microphones. Usually, the need for transmitting high quality audio across to your teammates does not rank very high on gamers’ lists of must-haves.
As far as most console and PC gamers are concerned, so long as you can get your voice across to your teammates and organize them effectively, there is no need to demand more.
The same can be said of even gamers who do live streaming of their sessions to a live, online audience. Even though these are gamers who truly need stellar microphone audio as a matter of professional necessity, their sessions are usually plagued by terrible audio—and why wouldn’t they? Microphone manufacturers have really dropped the ball in this area, because there is no pressing demand for quality, and the result has simply been atrocious microphone audio quality.
Fortunately, these lackluster attitude exhibited by manufacturers towards microphone audio is not true for all of them. There are a precious few microphone manufacturers who are raising the bar and pushing the envelope as far as the quality of gaming microphones are concerned.
If you are looking for a great gaming microphone to give you the sort of strong voice that would make you a natural leader among your gaming buddies then read our list of the best gaming microphones in 2020.
Best Gaming Microphones 2020 Compared & Reviewed
A premium gaming microphone for a premium gaming experience; the Blue Yeti USB microphone ticks all the right boxes as a gaming microphone. And one of the most important features that the Blue Yeti has a microphone is the proprietary tri-capsule technology.
The tri-capsule setup consists of a tri-capsule array with three condenser capsules that enable the microphone to pick up the smallest sounds and record even under less-than-ideal environments or conditions.
In addition this gaming microphone comes with multiple pattern selection including omnidirectional, bidirectional, cardioids, and stereo pattern settings. This depth in variety endows this microphone with the ability to be effective in a variety of roles: video recording, podcasting, music, conference calls, and of course game streaming. You could kill several birds with one stone by deciding to shell out the money needed to get the Blue Yeti USB microphone.
And, unlike one sees in many other microphones, the control system that comes with this device doesn’t require any driver installed at all. All that is required is for you to plug the microphone into your device’s USB port using the USB cable provided.
Finally, there is the design to consider. This is one of the strongest reasons why the Blue Yeti USB microphone is such a hit with gamers around the world. It’s design is so modern and versatile. You could easily adjust the desktop stand and pivot mic in a manner that you see fit. You can also make use of the set screws provided to pin it to one suitable position from which you can proclaim all your gaming opinions in delightful audio. This gaming microphone is a must-have if you can afford it.
Looking for a gaming mic that would make your presence felt and turn connected digital heads as soon as you turn on your game? Look no further than the HyperX Quadcast. Even among other great gaming microphone options, the HyperX Quadcast stands apart as a great value option; and that is saying something given its relatively high price tag.
For many in the gaming community, the HyperZ Quadcast ranks top among gaming microphone on the back of its sheer audio quality and vocal warmth.
And it is no slouch in the design department, the manufacturers, HyperX, seem well plugged in to the idea that sometimes the quality of a gaming station can be seriously hampered by the overall aesthetics. Thus, this is one good looking mic.
Behind the cradle, you have a strikingly obvious red light to signal whenever the device is on or operational. Simply tapping the top of the microphone is sufficient to mute the device and turn off the light. But you don’t have to worry about knocking the mic too hard; the HyperX Quadcast is built with sufficient sturdiness to withstand the impact of your taps and remain standing so you can do what you have to do to regulate your microphone without interrupting your game.
If you are in search of gaming microphone that would help you stand out then you need not look any further than the HyperX Quadcast. Even the name ‘Quadcast’ is significant. It refers to a unique three-diaphragm design of the microphone that makes room for four polar patterns that include a rare stereo arrangement.
This Quadcast design would work best out of a gaming setup, especially in instances where there are two sound sources or a very large sound source like is common in a live recording environment. But this does not take away the best fit feeling that one gets when using this device exclusively for gaming.
Elgato are a well-known brand in gaming circles, and they really carve a niche for themselves when gamers decided to start showcasing their stuff online. However, up until the Elgato Wave:3 was unveiled, this brand was not a name associated at all with audio products.
But the fact that they are relatively new to the audio space should not be a cause for worry though. The same work ethic and creativity that has made them shine elsewhere also did them lots of favors in the audio space; the Elgato Wave:3 is a gaming mic that anybody would recommend to a friend in good faith.
If you are in search of a gaming microphone that comes with some advanced features you wouldn’t see on other admirable game microphones like the Blue Yeti USB (which we have previously seen on our list), then you can start with the Elgato Wave:3.
For example, not only does this microphone work with the Elgato Stream Deck, it also comes with Elgato’s Clipguard feature which effectively regulates audio volume.
These compatibilities and features make the Elgato Wave:3 perfect for Twitch streaming and YouTube high-resolution and compression recording, which gaming streamers are going to enjoy. But console gamers and PC gamers need not feel left out of the goodness because this mic works with the Playstation 4 and PC games as well.
The small size of the mic makes it highly portable, so you can throw it into a bag and move around if you need to.
The Elgato Wave:3 is a great mic to have if you are into live streaming your gaming. Only a few other gaming microphones, like the Blue Yeti X, can measure up to what the Wave:3 has to offer.
There is real value to be had here to back up the steep price involved.
It is quite common to come across the Blue brand on ‘Best’ lists, because of their dedication to producing quality products every single time. So there should be no surprises over another addition from this manufacturer on our list.
After all, the Blue Yeti X has been described by many as hands down the best microphone for streaming and podcasting. We’ve already sang the praises of the Blue Yeti USB microphone, but the Blue Yeti X kicks things up several notches in so many areas.
The Blue Yeti X can be described as a hybrid of the Nano and the original Blue Yeti, taking a bit from both worlds to create something better than the sum of its parts.
This solid mic comes with a front panel loaded with LEDs that make it easy for you monitor and regulate key features like volume levels. The sound quality is second to none, making it very attractive to those for whom audio quality is of paramount importance—streamers and podcasters.
Another area where the Blue Yeti X supersedes the original Yeti is in the number of condenser mic capsules it features. While the original Blue Yeti has three condensers, the Blue Yeti X sports four. Meaning the Blue Yeti X brings better sensitivity, improved audio quality, and can also handle a wider, more dynamic range.
In addition to that, the Blue Yeti X also comes with a wider array of customization capabilities and adjustments that put the original Blue Yeti in the shade quickly.
Another change worth noting is the fact that the Yeti X comes with a dial that swaps between the cardioids, omnidirectional, bidirectional, and stereo polar patterns. The ease with which this dial turns is something you are going to appreciate when you are in the heat of gaming and feeling the pressure from your gaming.
There is also the Yeti X’s Blue Voice software via G Hub that enables you customize your filters to better influence the sound of your own voice. Podcasters are going to love this. With a few tweaks, you could sound like a modern broadcaster or a chatty morning show host; it all depends on you.
You even get the chance to limit interference from outside sources like your AC or fan by leveraging the noise reduction feature. This is an important feature which should not be overlooked, given the fact that the Blue Yeti X’s four condenser mic capsules make it capable of picking even small clicks and clacks in your recording room.
Now, do you absolutely have to upgrade your Blue Yeti to a Blue Yeti X simply because the latter comes with enhanced performance, features, and pricing? No. The original Yeti will give you value for money and deliver where it counts.
However, that story changes if you happen to be in search for a new gaming microphone. The Yeti X provides a more versatile choice and better audio performance overall.
There are some gadgets that you buy because of how they make you look and consequently feel. In the case of microphones, one of such devices is the Rode NT USB for the way it can make you look like a professional immediately. Your friends are going to have a whole new perspective about you after one glance of you sitting with this gaming mic.
The Rode NT USB looks like a studio microphone, the sort used by your favorite radio talk show host. And because it comes at a reasonable cost, it is the logical choice for many who seek to advance their gaming further than a mere hobby.
But you shouldn’t consider this microphone solely on the premise of aesthetics; it works great too. The sound quality of the Rode NT USB is on par with the Blue Yeti’s if not better, and it comes with a free pop shield which many users appreciate.
This gaming microphone comes with only the cardioid polar pattern. It also sports some interesting design choices like smooth dials to regulate different features.
If you are a fan of streaming or intend to start streaming your gameplay online, you want a gaming microphone like this that offers studio quality audio without the price burden that comes with getting it.
Small, compact, and lightweight, this miniature version of the original Blue Yeti is perfect for people who are just starting out with the gaming microphones. If you are just getting into streaming and are not sure what to expect or what the options are, take the safe route and choose the Blue Yeti Nano.
For a relatively low price, you get excellent audio quality and a few other features that make this microphone worthy of our list. Even though the Blue Yeti Nano comes with only two polar patterns—omnidirectional and cardioids—it makes up for it by getting so many of the basics right.
Plus, it is so much smaller and lighter than the original Blue Yeti and other gaming microphones, so definitely worth considering if you move around a lot.
The Razer Seiren X is half as small as the original Seiren, but brings audio that is just as good. Its small size makes it portable and attractive—you might be reminded of canned beer when you see it standing on a table.
Feature-wise, you can say a lot of thought went into the creation of the Razer Seiren X. For example, it has a built-in shock mount meant to absorb the spikes and movements that are inevitable when you are seriously gaming. Volume control and a mute button are also added to give you the needed control over volume levels.
Speaking of volume levels, one noticeable feature of the Razer Seiren X that could be counted as a downside is its ability to pick up ambient noise. Granted, this is thanks to a powerful microphone (which is what you would want) but without proper noise cancelling you may realize your audio is riddled with a lot of keyboard clatter and other ambient noise.
When it comes to making microphones, the Sennheiser brand needs no introduction. The Sennheiser ME-2 II simply continues a fine tradition of quality products from a world renowned manufacturer.
This lapel mic for gaming is considered a must-have by many working in the broadcasting industry, and, given its quality and features, it is not hard to see why.
In spite of its small size, the ME-2 II lavalier microphone still manages to punch above its weight because of its circle polar pattern which enables it provide extremely clear sound and near-perfect noise cancellation.
Made to fit any type of clothing, this lapel microphone also comes with a heavy duty cable and mini jack that enable it work seamlessly with most wireless devices.
In fact, you’re more likely than not to have seen this lapel mic being used by professional journalists and on TV shows broadcast from all corners of the world, since across the board it’s considered among the best devices for capturing voices and cutting out ambient noise.
Beyerdynamic is a well-known brand among audio circles, known for their expertise in manufacturing professional audio products. This same expertise served them well while creating this USB gaming microphone. Gamers who particularly love to sing during their Twitch sessions would love the Beyerdynamic FOX to no end.
Unlike most USB microphones, the Beyerdynamic FOX comes with high-resolution audio quality (96kHz/24-bit), which immediately places it at the front of the pack.
Naturally, all that extra quality might not be useful for platforms that compress audio, for example Twitch, but if you are into podcasting you would be in for a treat with such plug n’ play audio goodness.
The FOX also comes with controls for mix and volume; as well as a minijack port for inline monitoring. You also have mute button at the top which you can simply tap in order to activate, and also a high-low gain toggle at the back of the mic.
You can also take advantage of the metallic pop shield to clip the mic onto its stand, before you angle it towards or away from yourself.
There is considerable usability built into the Beyerdynamic Fox which further serves to amplify the experience of using one for your gaming station or home studio.
Looking for a mic that would not clutter your gaming desk any further? Go for a clip-on mic like the AntLion ModMic. These mics save you from the stress of worrying about where you mic would fit on your already cluttered desk.
The AntLion ModMic sticks on the side of your gaming headphones so that what you have is like a built-in headset mic, only with better quality audio. And the best part is that attachment is magnetic and super easy to set up.
The AntLion ModMic sounds better than any headset microphone you have come across, so you want to check it out if you happen to be a fan of the audio quality of gaming microphones and also headset microphones. You can have the best of both worlds.
The Samson Meteor Mic USB Studio Microphone is perfect for you if you are on a budget but would still like crisp, clear audio while you talk during gaming sessions.
This microphone costs less than $100 and comes with some useful features.
For example, the Samson Meteor Mic USB Studio Microphone comes with large 25mm diaphragm condenser meant for producing top-notch audio. You also get a cardioids pickup pattern and a smooth frequency response.
With a 16-bit resolution, this mic is great for other audio related activities like Skype calls, voice recognition software, and home studios.
And then there is the design. The Samson Meteor Mic USB Studio Microphone comes with a chrome-plated body and a fold-back leg design that allows you to position the device as you see fit.
And to top things off, this microphone comes with a stereo 1/8-inch headphone output, a mute switch, and a headphone volume knob, all of which add to the versatility and usability of the device. The Samson Meteor Mic USB Studio Microphone is the ultimate budget gaming microphone.
Features to Look At
This is a feature that you want to crops up several times in our list, and refers to the area where a microphone picks up noise. For example, a hypercardioid pattern creates a very narrow cone around one side of a microphone—meaning that the mic is listening only in that severely narrow area and ignoring sound from other areas. Gaming microphones are built with different polar patterns. These include:
- Cardioid: This is the polar pattern that is most common and it is best suited for recording one source of sound. Variations exist like supercardioid and hypercardioid that narrow the field of recording even further so that you can point your gaming mic at one source and pick up sounds only from that one source.
- Bidirectional or Figure 8: This polar pattern is called this way because of the two fields of polarity which it creates with one on each side of the microphone. You can think of it as having two hypercardioid mics joined together and facing opposite directions. As you can imagine, this is a polarity that allows you to record two voice sources at the same time—one on each side of the mic—if you can’t go for the better option of using two separate mics.
- Omnidirectional: As you can guess from the name, this polar pattern picks up sound from every angle around the microphone, both front and back. It is particular efficient at capturing ambient noise or crowd chatter. In a gaming environment, it can lead to unnecessary distracting sounds creeping into your audio. However, it is particularly useful if you want to record several sound sources at the same time.
USB Gaming Microphone or Studio Microphone?
As a gaming streamer, you need not rely only on USB interfaced based microphones. You have another option in XLR-based studio microphones. When used in the right manner, studio microphones can actually offer better audio quality and more versatility.
- USB Gaming Microphones: These are gaming microphones that interface with your gaming PC by way of a USB port. Thus, a key feature of theirs is an in-built ADC that alters the analog microphone signal into digital signals. Their major advantage is the ease with which they can be set up and operated without the need for special drivers. Most of them also come with automatic noice suppression.
- Studio Microphones: These interface through XLR, which means that you are going to need a sound card with the XLR input jacks to connect them to your gaming computer. Prices for these may vary from lower-end $100 models to higher-end premium models that go for thousands of dollars (the sort you find in professional recording studios). Because they lack ADC or DAC features, you won’t find noise suppression with these devices.
It helps to be able to hear the direct input signal, and there are a handful of gaming microphones that offer this option through headphone jacks on the mics themselves. You can plug in to hear the raw audio free or any lag and compression or other effects.
Frequency Response Range
This is a crucial aspect to consider for any microphone. It signifies the lowest and highest pitched sounds that the microphone’s membrane is capable of capturing. Usually the baseline range stretches from 20Hz to 20Khz since these are the limits of human hearing.
However, some microphones break these boundaries and go beyond—even though it is unnecessary since your ears won’t notice the sounds that lie out of those boundaries. However, it is possible to feel the extra depth provided by these higher-pitched and lower-pitched sounds, even if you can’t hear them. It’s the same as you can feel the wind and its effects even if you can’t really see it.