Tired of having little kids in the chat room yell at you for having a crappy mic? Looking to get into the world of game streaming and want to sound like a professional?
Well, it might be high time for you to upgrade to a better microphone. 🎤 🎮
Good microphones come in all shapes and sizes. From more bulky builds that command attention on your desk to little microphones that can attach to your favorite headset, the look and functionality of your microphone will really depend on what you are looking to do with it. Make sure to look at the buying guide at the bottom of this article to give you some helpful tips for what to look out for when buying your new mic.
Without further ado, here is our selection of the best microphones for gaming that will help you sound as good as Ninja in no time. (Warning: The microphone that Ninja uses isn’t listed here. He needs to read Game Gavel more often.)
Best Choice: Razer Seiren X
Pros & Cons
- Full, deep, crisp sound quality
- Easy setup. Sound is great out of the box
- Very compact size
- Ports on the bottom of the mic allow you to hear your audio in real-time
- Included mount is a little flimsy
- Only one nob on the mic (for volume)
- Condenser microphone
- Supercardioid pickup pattern for ultra-precise voice clarity
- Zero latency monitoring
- Both USB and audio jack on mic
The Razer Seiren X Review
If you are looking for a great microphone for game streaming or podcasting, then the Razer Seiren X should be towards the top of your list.
The Razer Seiren offers a supercardioid pickup pattern, which means that it is only going to pick up sound coming directly in front of it. This makes the Razer Seiren great at blocking out any background noise happening around you. No more loud keyboard clattering or the sound of people yelling elsewhere in your house.
For its lower price, it gives a nice, clear sound and truly has that “professional” quality. One huge plus is that you can plug both your computer audio and your headphones into the mic, so you can hear your voice and game audio in real-time. Don’t expect a lot of customization options though, as you’ll only be able to mute or adjust the volume on the mic.
Another plus to the Razer Seiren X is how easy it is to set up. You can pretty much just take it out of the box, plug the USB port into your computer, and go. The sound is great out of the box too, so you won’t have to mess around with any settings to have your voice sounding great.
One of the best parts of the Razer Seiren X is its small profile. It won’t take up a ton of room of desk, like some of its competitors do. This microphone even comes with a stand, which is a nice little bonus.
Overall, this is our “best choice” mic because of its combination of high-quality sound, small build, and affordable price.
Premium Pick: Blue Yeti USB Microphone
Pros & Cons
- Nobs on the mic allow for great customization
- Has multiple polar pattern options
- Picks up wide ranges of sound
- Ports on the bottom of the mic allow you to hear your audio in real-time
- A little big on your desk
- Takes a little setup to get the right sound
- Multiple polar pattern selections
- Multiple controls on mic: Gain control, mute button, zero-latency headphone output
- Audio jack on mic allows you to hear your audio in real-time
The Blue Yeti Review
The Blue Yeti has been a go-to microphone for gaming streamers for many years. It offers some great versatility in its use, lots of customization options, and studio-quality sound. Although it comes at a higher price point, you certainly won’t be disappointed by what you get in return.
The Blue Yeti’s great versatility comes from its ability to switch between multiple polar patterns. You can choose between having it pick up sound just from in front of it (cardioid), on both sides of it (bi-directional), or from all sides (omnidirectional). So whether you are streaming by yourself or doing a LAN party with a whole room of people, the Blue Yeti will be able to pick it up.
Just like the Razer Seiren X, the Blue Yeti allows you to plug both your computer and headphones into the bottom, allowing you to hear everything in real-time. The Blue Yeti goes slightly beyond the Razer Seiren X in customization though, as it allows you to adjust control of the polar pattern, volume, instant mute, and microphone gain right on the microphone.
If you are looking for a versatile, studio-quality microphone for your game streaming channel, the Blue Yeti would be a great high-end option for you.
Best Value: Fifine K669B USB Microphone
Pros & Cons
- Physical controls on the front
- Great voice quality for a low price
- Great range for a cheap mic
- Lacking in noise isolation
- Non-detachable USB cable (can’t replace it if cord goes bad)
- Cardioid polar pattern for streaming, podcasting, etc
- USB cable for easy use with PC
- Tripod stand included
- Volume knob on front
The Fifine K669B Review
Coming in at around $30, the Fifine offers a great budget gaming microphone for those who are looking for a cheaper upgrade to their microphone. For the amount of money you are spending on Fifine, you are getting some high-quality sound.
The USB plugin makes for easy use with your PC and the fact that it comes with a stand makes that it much better. Is it made of the most high-quality material out there? No, but it certainly isn’t too bad for $30.
The Fifine has a cardioid polar pattern that does a decent job keeping out background noise as you are streaming. The Fifine’s noise isolation is not as good as some of the higher models, but it should be good enough for those just starting out in their game streaming careers.
It might be a good idea to invest in a microphone mount to keep it away from your keyboard to reduce keyboard clatter though.
Best Attachable: AntLion Audio ModMic 4.0
Pros & Cons
- Great option for those who prefer to just use their nice headphones
- Clear, reliable sound
- Magnet installation on your headphones is somewhat permanent
- You end up with two wires: one from the mic and one from your headset (unless you have a wireless headset)
- Attachable, magnetized microphone
- Uni-directional microphone to reduce background noise
The AntLion Audio ModMic 4.0 Review
The AntLion Audio ModMic 4.0 offers a very unique option on this list for those that don’t want a standing mic on their desk. Instead of being a big standing microphone, this is a small microphone you can simply attach to your favorite pair of headphones.
AntLion provides you with a little magnet that you can adhere to one side of your headphones, which allows you to attach or remove the mic from the headset any time you want. It’s pretty slick and it works well.
As for the microphone itself, it gives a sound that’s clearer than the mics on many gaming headsets on the market. Pretty impressive for something so small and simple.
So if you have a pair of headphones that you already like for gaming, then the AntLion Audio ModMic 4.0 would be a great option for you.
If you don’t already have a good pair of gaming headphones, here is a list of the best gaming headsets under $100 to get you started.
Best Design: Blue Snowball iCE Condenser Microphone
Pros & Cons
- Great sound for a good price
- Stand included
- Nice, unique look
- Doesn’t have an audio jack
- Odd shape makes it tricky to shock mount without buying their expensive mount
- Tough with softer voices
- “Plug and play” with your device
- Custom condenser capsule for “crystal clear audio”
- Desktop stand included
- Foam padded internals for noise isolation
The Blue Snowball iCE Review
The Blue Snowball iCE is another great option for those on a tighter budget. The Snowball iCE’s small profile won’t take up too much space on your desk and it sports a very unique, retro look.
What matters though is how it performs, and the Blue Snowball iCE certainly does a great job at that. The Snowball gives a clear sound and has some solid noise isolation due to the foam padding that Blue has added on the inside. It has a unidirectional voice pattern so it is a great mic for streaming or podcasting.
Where the Blue Snowball iCE loses some points, however, is its lack of a volume control knob. There isn’t an audio jack either, so you won’t be able to listen to yourself talk over your game.
Even though it may be missing some of the bells and whistles of higher up mics, the Blue Snowball iCE offers a great option for those on a budget with its studio-quality sound, good noise isolation, and unique look.
Gaming Microphone: Buying Guide
So how do you decide which microphone is the right one for you? Here are some tips to help you decide.
It can be daunting to figure out which microphone fits you best when they come in so many shapes and sizes. It really comes down to three things: what you will be using your microphone for, how much room you have on your desk, and how much you are willing to spend.
Most of the microphones on this list are standing microphones. If you are looking to go the headset route rather than a standing mic, check out our article on the best gaming headsets to find a good fit for you.
What's that? You're on a tight budget? No worries. There are some top-notch gaming headsets under $50 with built-in mics that possess superb quality.
What are you going to be using your microphone for? Check for the microphone’s polar pattern options.
Which microphone you choose depends on what you are going to use it for. Are you just going to use it for personal streaming? Do you think you will be doing any interviews with other people? Will you ever be filling a full room of people and trying to capture that sound?
All these questions are important to answer because of the way that microphones capture sound. Each microphone has a “polar pattern” for how it captures sound. Some microphones can switch between multiple polar pattern to accomplish different tasks. Here is a quick list of terms that you should know as you are shopping for your microphone:
Cardioid (unidirectional): The microphone only captures sound directly in front of the microphone. This pattern is great for game streaming, podcasting, and Skype calls.
Bidirectional: The microphone picks up sound on both the front and back of the microphone. This is great for interviews between two people.
Omnidirectional: The microphone captures sound equally from all directions. This is great in gaming if you have a room full of people and want people to feel like they are in the action. If you are looking to have some LAN parties, then this is an option to watch out for.
Stereo: The microphone captures sound using both the left and right channels of the mic. Creates a realistic sound if there are multiple sources of sound in a room.
How much space do you have on your desk?
If you don’t have a lot of room on your desk, it might not make much sense to go out and buy a larger mic, like the Blue Yeti, that you are going to have to really cram on your desk. If you already have a good pair of headphones, consider going for an attachable mic to save space.
When considering space on your desk, you also want to make sure you have the room on your desk to position your microphone correctly so that you can get the highest quality sound possible. If the only space you have available is way off to the side of your desk, you should find a way to rearrange your setup to make sure your microphone is close enough to pick up your voice well.
One final piece of advice when considering your setup is to try to keep your microphone away from your keyboard when gaming on a PC. Keeping the mic away from the clicking of the keyboard is one reason why many game streamers buy rigging for their microphone. You don’t necessarily have to do go out and buy microphone rigging right away, but do your best to reduce keyboard clicking as much as possible.
How much are you willing to spend to get a studio-quality sound? As this article shows, you might not have to spend too much. The higher you go in price, you will generally find that the microphones get better at capturing a clearer sound, cutting out background noise, and creating a more accurate sound profile, making people feel like they are there.
Gaming Mic: Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some commonly asked questions that people have when buying a microphone:
How much does a decent microphone cost?
When it comes to finding a decent microphone, it really doesn’t have to cost that much. As you can see from the choices above, you can find great sounding microphones as low as $30 (see the Fifine 669B). The game streaming life might be closer than you think.
What microphone is best for streaming?
When finding a good microphone for streaming, pay attention to those that have a cardioid pattern. This means that the microphone only captures from one direction and cuts out background noise coming from other places, like your dog barking in the background.
Whether you're looking to become a professional streamer or just have fun discord sessions with your buddies, getting the best microphone for gaming is a must. Not only will those who listen to you enjoy a more pleasant audio experience but you will also be able to communicate more clearly what you're thinking about.
I mean, imagine being a raid leader back in WotLK ICC 25 and getting wiped out by the Lich King just because your guild members didn't understand your orders. You can't have that happening...