It is the year of podcasting and online gaming. There are so many USB microphone options out there, so I figured I would put together a small list of my favorites to help you choose one.
Shure MV7 - $249
I had to start the list off with a bang. Shure just released the MV7, a dynamic USB and XLR microphone very much inspired by the legendary SM7B. You can control this with the app, ShurePlus, and have options like compression, EQ and even Auto Level Mode that automatically adjusts gain and compression settings for you so you don't have to think about it.
The app can host two microphones at one time, so it's easy to have a guest on your podcast. If you're like me and don't like using an app, all of the controls are on the side of microphone as well. Settings can also be locked so that accidental button pressing won't change your sound.
There is also an XLR output to use with an audio interface or mixer. This future proofs the mic and allows you to keep growing into something like the Zoom P8. If the MV7 is in your budget, it is my top recommendation. It sounds similar to an SM7B with the HPF and Presence Boost switches engaged and it is future-proofed to last a lifetime.
AKG Lyra - $149
Also new in 2020 and packed with class is the AKG Lyra. This one has been very popular for both the look and the sound. There are 4 different capture modes including Front, Front + Back, Tight Stereo and Wide Stereo. These capture modes have been incredibly popular for music lessons in the last few months. Lyra is also compatible with phones and tablets using the USB-C port, so you can be on air anytime you need to.
As far as sound, it's hard to beat the clarity of the Lyra. That's exactly why many of our customers are using it for music lessons. You can hear every note as it should be, not a watered-down version of it. Being a condenser, the Lyra will pickup more of the room sound, so a little treatment can go a long way.
If you want a great set of headphones along with the mic, check out the AKG Podcaster Bundle. This comes with the Lyra and a set of K371 closed back headphones with a total discount of $49.
AT2020USB+ - $149
Audio-Technica's 2020 has been a staple in home studios for years. It was only a matter of time before they added converters and a USB output. Audio-Technica put together a great video earlier this year showing how easy it can be to setup and get a great sound. Check it out below!
Zoom H5 - $279.99
This one may come as a surprise to many readers. Zoom's H5 is not something typically looked at as a USB microphone, but it works as that and so much more. In its stock form, the H5 comes with a stereo condenser capsule. These microphones are interchangable with shotgun mics, mid-side mics, and even more mic inputs. There are also two mic inputs on the bottom with phantom power available for condenser mics. The USB output connects directly to your computer and act as an audio interface. You can use the mic capsules on the top to record directly into your computer as well as the mic inputs on the bottom.
Better yet, this is a mobile recording device that allows you to record on the road. Again, you can use the mics on the top, or the mic inputs on the bottom to record an entire podcast literally anywhere you go. The versatility and overall clarity of these Zoom devices is why they made it on the list.
To prove that you can use these anywhere, we used the Zoom H6 (same quality, just more inputs) to record a podcast on a boat!
Thanks for checking out our list of top USB Microphones in 2020. Don't forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel for some great sound samples and gear talk!