In this post, Hooke Audio will be discussing the best budget microphone in the world for use in a home office. These best microphones are perfect for people who want to record lectures or presentations and have no need for something of professional quality. They also offer excellent sound quality at an affordable price.
This blog post discusses what features you should look for when purchasing a budget microphone, some of the top brands offering these products, and reviews five different models that we feel are worth your consideration. Hopefully, this information helps you find the right product!
Things to Consider When Buying a Budget Microphone
The most important aspects of any microphone are its quality audio. Don’t get a microphone that’s just cheap; you’ll regret buying it in the long run.
You might be able to find a $20 mic with great sound quality, but don’t expect a fantastic experience for gaming and streaming/recording sound.
Consider this: if your goal is to create high-quality content (in other words, as good as possible), invest more than just a few bucks on the best microphone.
If you can spare around $40-50, buying an entry-level professional or semi-professional microphone is worth doing since the overall improvement will significantly impact your results.
Another essential aspect of the best microphones to keep in mind is compatibility. Your microphones should be compatible with your streaming software of choice and any recording interface you might want to use.
Best microphones come bundled with an audio interface that has a USB connection, but sometimes buying or using a separate one can still be preferable, particularly if it supports multiple input/output configurations, so you can switch the audio source easily between inputs (like analog or digital) without having to buy entirely new hardware.
It’s essential to check out what kind of polar pattern the best microphones have. If you don’t know what that means: a contrasting pattern is basically how sound gets picked up by the microphone, and it’s related to it being directional or non-directional (omnidirectional).
It can be very useful when buying a USB microphone for gaming. Many use omnidirectional microphones, which might pick up unwanted noise from different directions around you (like your monitors) during gameplay.
Good options for best microphones are cardioid and super-cardioid polar patterns; these will pick up audio from directly in front and ignore noises coming from everywhere else.
When buying a microphone, look at its specifications guide (usually available online), particularly whether it has cardioid or super-cardioid polar patterns.
If buying a condenser mic, make sure the polar pattern is compatible with your computer’s configuration and sound source (for example, if you play games through Steam or Origin).
The last but not least important aspect to consider is how the microphone connects to your PC, as most people use it for gaming purposes as well as streaming.
Most USB microphones connect directly to your computer via a USB port, while some may include a separate audio recording interface for connecting the microphone (usually by XLR cables).
This is particularly useful if you want to record from multiple sources or have multiple soundcards in play and need to switch between them easily and quickly.
Summary: Consider buying an entry-level microphone if you are buying your equipment for the first time, particularly if it’s only needed to record voiceovers. Entry-level or budget microphones should be avoided when buying a cheap microphone for streaming purposes.
However, based on the price/quality ratio, these would be the best option for purchasing the best cheap microphone under $50.
Consider buying an omnidirectional mic (using cheap mics) or patterns cardioid mics designed explicitly for gaming, respectively. Make sure that the best microphones are compatible with your operating systems and streaming software used before buying.
Top Best Budget Microphones
1.Shure SM48 Cardioid Dynamic Microphone
The Shure SM48 cardioid is excellent for live applications, particularly for singers, is supported by its audience.
This is a less expensive version of the Shure SM58, one of the great dynamic mics, which is the industry standard for live vocal microphones. Shure’s SM48 is a top-quality option for budget-minded users.
- For off-axis sound rejection, use the cardioid pattern of pickup.
- Brightened mid-range and bass roll-off to reduce proximity effect
- For reduced handling noise, shock-mounted cartridge
- Pop filter built-in
- Includes a stand adapter, storage bag, and a case.
Many of the same characteristics are shared by the Shure SM48 and its more expensive sibling, SM58. Both mics share the same form factor, build quality, and essential sound signature.
The main difference between the SM48 and SM58 is in the frequency range. The SM48’s bandwidth has a narrower band with high frequencies reaching 14kHz, whereas the SM58 can reach 15kHz. The SM48’s low-frequency range is 55kHz vs. the SM58’s 50kHz. This isn’t a significant difference for many.
The SM48 might seem to have a wider bandwidth than the SM58, making it easier to use proximity effects, pops, and plosives. The SM48 is half the price of its more extensive and more well-known sibling, making it ideal for live use.
Overall, the SM48 dynamic microphone is a sturdy, reliable, and affordable option for live applications. It is also an excellent value for money, making it one of the best cheap microphones available.
2. Behringer Ultravoice XM8500
Is there a budget option in a range of the best cheap microphones? You bet!
The Behringer XM8500 cardioid dynamic microphone can be purchased for less than a meal (including dessert). The XM8500 is yet another proof that Behringer has a solid reputation for providing musicians with valuable solutions.
This Behringer cardioid dynamic microphone is perfect for tight cash but still wants to rock it.
- For excellent voice projection, smooth mid-frequency presence rises are a must.
- Transparent sound with a comprehensive frequency response
- High signal output
- For feedback and background noise, the cardioid characteristic is minimal.
- To reduce handling noise, use a shock mount system.
Behringer Ultravoice XM8500 has a frequency range of 50Hz to 150kHz, a 150-ohm impedance, and a pop filter.
Although it is designed for live vocals only, you can also use it on drums or other demos and home studio recording instruments. It is similar to the Shure SM58 handheld vocal mic.
The Ultravoice XM8500’s rock-bottom price is undoubtedly its most attractive feature. Although it may not be as durable, the Ultravoice XM8500 is still very affordable.
This would be a great backup microphone for studio or gig use, even if you don’t have the budget. The Behringer Ultravoice XM8500 is a great budget option and delivers more than expected.
3. Peavey PVI 2 Dynamic Microphone
- Unidirectional cardioid pattern
- Switch on/off
- Casing made of steel
- Low handling noise
- Finish in low-gloss black
Peavey is a long-standing brand producing great quality guitars, amps, and effects for over a century. Because of its reliability and rugged construction, Peavy gear is often used in live sound applications.
The Peavey PVi 2 dynamic microphone is an excellent solution for singers and bands that perform regularly and require gear that can cope with that lifestyle.
The mic includes a cable and an on/off switch. Overall, it provides an excellent sound quality mic for the price.
Peavey PVi dynamic microphone is also based upon the Shure SM58. It has a dynamic cardioid design that is a little different from an SM58 but not too familiar.
The PVi has a dynamic range from 50 Hz to 16 kHz, a sensitivity of – 50dBV/pa (3.2mv/pa), an output impedance of 500 ohms, and a silver-plated, XLR connector. The PVi also features a die-cast metal case and an on/off switch.
The mic is well-respected as a durable piece of equipment, which is an advantage for live gigging. The Peavey PVi offers a great vocal sound, low price, and durability that will keep you comfortable for many years. Reliability is essential for any stage vocal mic.
4. Samson Go Mic Portable USB Condenser
- Plug and Play USB Mic for Mac and PC
- Built-in headphone output for zero-latency monitoring
- 20Hz – 18kHz frequency response
- Polar patterns are both cardioid and omnidirectional.
- 16-bit/44.1kHz recording quality
The Samson Go Mic USB condenser mic is perfect for today’s world.
This condenser mic allows you to record podcasts, face time, Zoom meetings, and much more by simply plugging it into your computer.
The Go Mic USB mic is compact and can be clipped to your laptop or placed upright on your desk. It has a built-in microphone output that allows you to listen while you record. This USB mic makes it an affordable mic for podcasting or creating a studio.
Two different polar patterns are available on the Samson Go Mic to suit various recording requirements. The flip patterns cardioid mode can be used to create a narrow pickup pattern. This mode helps record vocals, acoustic guitars, and other close-miked instruments.
You can also flip the camera into the Omnidirectional mode to capture sound from all directions.
The Samson Go Mic compact microphone is capable of recording studio recordings. It can also clip onto your laptop, making it an excellent choice for voiceover recording, podcasting, Zoom meetings, and other uses. It’s one of the best cheap microphones worth a try.
The Samson Go Mic USB microphone records CD-quality 16-bit/44.1kHz sound and is compatible with both Macs and PCs. The Go Mic comes with a USB cable as well as a zipper case. It’s easy to carry around if you are doing interviews or recording demos in your practice area.
5. MXL 2008 Large-diaphragm Condenser Microphone
- 30Hz – 20kHz frequency response
- Patterns cardioid polar
- Sensitivity to 18mV/Pa
- 150 ohms Output Impedance
- Maximum SPL for.5% THD – 130dB
MXL is a well-respected company that offers low-cost microphones for people on a budget.
MXL 2008 large-diaphragm microphone is another proof of the company’s mission. It offers excellent value for such small amounts of money.
The MXL 2008 is a studio condenser mic that’s a fraction of what it costs. This makes it an attractive contender for the best affordable microphone on the market.
The MXL 2008 has a 32mm diaphragm condenser microphone that captures the subtleties and details of vocals, acoustic and electric guitars, cabinets, and even percussion.
The condenser microphones have sound quality that is excellent for the price. It also features Class-A circuitry and balanced, transformerless output that can be used in live recording studios.
The MXL 2008 has a signal-to-noise ratio of 78dB (Ref. 1Pa A-weighted, max SPL 130dB and 48V +-4V Phantom power.
The MXL 2008 comes with a durable carrying case and a high-isolation shock mount. These are features typically found in higher-priced mics. The MXL 2008 is a simple, effective solution to recording that allows you to capture the flavor and flair of large condenser mics without having to spend a lot.
6. BLue SnowBall USB
- Frequency response between 40Hz and 18 kHz
- 44.1 kHz/16-bit recording quality
- Warranty of two years
- Compatible with Mac and PC
- Includes tripod
USB is a fashionable condenser mic that can be used on your desktop. The Snowball iCE USB microphone comes with a tripod, USB cable, and a microphone stand so you can quickly record vocals and even play acoustic tracks.
It can also be used for podcasting, virtual meetings, live transmissions, and any other applications related to the world we live in.
Blue Snowball iCE USB custom condenser capsule provides crystal clear audio for many desktop applications such as podcasts and virtual meetings.
Snowball’s most outstanding feature is its ease of use. Recording in a matter of seconds once inspiration strikes. It also provides excellent sound quality.
Blue Snowball iCE USB microphone has a cardioid pattern and frequency response of 40 -18 kHz. It is compatible with Mac or PC with no drivers required.
The mic has a sample/bit rate at 44.1 kHz/16 bits and comes with a 2-year warranty. This mic is affordable and stylish and can be used for recording high-quality vocals or guitar, as well as your desktop needs.
7. Fifine K669 USB Condenser Microphone
- Condenser USB mic
- Cardioid polar pattern
- 20Hz – 20kHz frequency range
- 48kHz sample rate, 16-bit depth
- 30dB (at 1kHz<=1% T.H.D) maximum SPL
Fifine K669 USB condenser microphone comes with a tripod desk stand and a 6-foot USB cable.
The mic has a robust enclosure, making it an excellent choice for recording at home studio or in desktop applications such as live streaming and virtual meetings. The mic’s body has a volume control that allows you to adjust the volume on the fly.
If you are tight on cash, the Fifine K669 condenser microphone USB is your best option.
The K669 is highly affordable, and its durable metal construction makes it seem more expensive than it is. The K669 will look great on your desktop. It can handle streaming and virtual meetings and is even perfect for recording vocals while on the move.
The Fifine K669 USB microphone is an excellent value for money and has excellent sound quality.
It is one of the condenser microphones that is great for beginners and those who need an inexpensive, quick solution recording on the fly and desktop applications.
8. HyperX SoloCast
The HyperX SoloCast budget microphone sounds as good, if not more, than microphones twice the price. The design is less flashy than HyperX’s other microphones, but I do miss the RGB lighting.
This mic is $60, and the sound quality is fantastic. This mic more than compensates for the loss of some quality-of-life features.
The JLab Audio Talk GO, Razer Seiren Mini, and Razer Seiren Mini offer great sound. However, the HyperX SoloCast is still one of the best cheap microphones. It provides the same audio quality as its QuadCastS counterpart, but at a fraction of their price.
The HyperX QuadCast microphone is stylish and sturdy. It’s perfect for gamers who don’t like headset mics or want to stream. Recording straight away with the QuadCast condenser microphone.
It has a shock mount and stands built-in, so you don’t have to wait until your computer is connected via USB. While most users will want to use the cardioid setting, it also offers omnidirectional, bidirectional, and stereo audio patterns. This allows you to bring others into your recording studio if necessary.
HyperX QuadCast microphones are excellent for gaming, as most of their features can be used analogy. You won’t need to mess with software to adjust the audio pattern, gain, or mutes the microphone.
The lighting is very aggressive with black and red colors. Whether you like the gamer look or find it a bit outdated will depend on your personal preferences.
The Audio-Technica AT2020 Cardioid medium-diaphragm Condenser Microphone is an excellent microphone for podcasting and video. It’s also a very affordable option. This microphone is a popular choice for podcasting professionals and beginners alike. It is highly cheap and easy to use.
The side-addressed condenser mic is visually stunning and gives you the confidence to work with a high-quality microphone. Audio-Technica is another company that has established a standard for microphones at an affordable price.
This microphone is an XLR (rather than a USB) mic, but Audio-Technica will be worth the inconvenience for those who want the best quality.
The AT2020 has a high SPL, which allows for a wide dynamic range, ideal for video and home recording. The AT2020 has a comprehensive frequency response that allows for deep audio with both crisp highs and warm lows. This microphone is an excellent choice if you are looking for a cheap and reliable microphone for podcasting.
11. Razer Seiren Mini
Razer Seiren Mini is one of those hardware pieces that I want to have on my desk. The Mini’s unique pill-shaped design and variety of colors give it a personality that isn’t found in other options on the list. It sounds fantastic, too.
We mentioned earlier that some best cheap microphones had to compromise certain features. The Seiren Mini gives up all of its features. You get an excellent mic for $50, but some people won’t mind. Some people will not get over the fact there is no mute button. It is the most beautiful budget microphone
12. Razer Seiren X
- The shock mount is built into this mic and can absorb distracting sounds.
- Both a volume control and mute button are available. They are located on the front of the recording device, which adds to its cool aesthetic.
- The model’s comprehensive frequency response is one of its most significant advantages. However, we haven’t yet mentioned the Super-Cardioid pattern, which can record any audio at a razor-sharp level.
- This model has a few drawbacks, which are very similar to the Blue Yeti Nano. It does not have a shock mount, but some background noise can still be heard.
- This can be not very pleasant, especially if your playstyle involves a lot of crucial smashing.
- You should be able to solve this problem with some editing and fidgeting.
- This best microphone is an excellent choice for Twitch as it offers outstanding quality audio, numerous features, and all for a very reasonable price.
- This should be on your list when looking for the best microphone to use with your Twitch streaming.
This microphone is approximately half the size of the original Seiren microphone design to be placed on any desk streamers they might use.
It is small, but it delivers excellent audio quality. This mic is very affordable and suitable for new streamers. It is a worthy competitor for any other budget streaming mics on our list.
This microphone is excellent for streaming to Twitch. The microphone has a high-frequency response range, making any noise or sound from the game crystal clear.
This product can help you improve the quality of your streams. This microphone does a great job filtering background noises. It also has a shock mount that reduces vibrations.
The design is very slim and won’t interfere with your gaming setup. You will be more visible to your audience. The Razer Seiren X is our top-rated budget streaming microphone.
13. Shure SM58
An SM57 can perform vocals well, but if you are a singer, you will need something more easily customizable to your needs. Shure has your back. Shure’s vocal equivalent to the SM57 is the Shure SM58.
It features the same rugged construction and reliability but has a slightly different frequency response. This means it boosts mid and high frequencies to make your voice sing.
The live arena is where SM58s shine. Their ruggedness allows them to withstand all kinds of abuse and still sound great.
14. Blue Yeti Nano
This miniature blue yeti version is ideal for the best cheap microphones for streaming beginners. The Blue Yeti Nano microphone has an excellent sound quality for a price under $100.
Blue Yeti Nano has a small size and light metal construction makes it easy to transport (approximately 40 percent smaller than its larger counterpart). Although the Blue Yeti Nano is the most expensive budget mic on this list, it offers more features than other mics.
Blue Yeti Nano is easy to see the difference in 24-bit, 48-kHz recording sample rates. Comparing audio from the Blue Yeti Nano with the original Blue Yeti reveals that the latter is by far superior. The Blue Yeti Nano has only two polar patterns, omnidirectional and cardioid. However, Blue Yeti Nano makes up for this with all other aspects.
15. Rode NT-USB-Mini
The best microphone to use for content creators at entry-level.
Rode makes many best cheap microphones with high quality. However, to experience its brand and the prosumer audio is often a financial investment. Robe’s NT-USB Mini microphone has been voted the best $100 mic you can buy right now.
The NT Mini not only sounds fantastic, but it is also a simple-to-use microphone that anyone can plug and play. Rode Connect software, a digital mixer, allows up to four NT Minis (or more) to be plugged into a single computer.
The Rode Connect software is compact, portable, and, most importantly, looks fantastic. It shares the same design philosophy as the mini mics.
16. JLab Audio Talk GO
The JLab Audio Talk GO is a good microphone that can be used by streamers and podcasters who are on a tight budget. The Talk GO’s compact size and companion stand make it ideal for those looking for a mic that can travel well and takes up little space on their desk.
Even though I only have one pair of Condensers on the GO, my voice sounds better than I expected. However, it is a little bit less clear than I would prefer. Although you won’t be recording the next big hit with this microphone, it’s great for dipping your toes in the streaming and podcasting world.
JLab Audio has several mics that I have tested. The Talk GO’s history in affordable audio means that the USB microphone impressed more than the Talk Pro and Talks Pro. The Talk GO microphone is a great budget option that doesn’t feel or sound cheap. It is the best cheap microphone for beginners.
17. USB Podcast Condenser UHURU
- This mic has the most significant advantage: a high-end chipset. This mic can record at 192KHZ/24 Bit, which provides smooth audio unmatched by other mics.
- The job of the cardioid polar pattern is to remove background noise so that you can record clearly.
- The kit also includes a pop-filter-in to help you make a better sound with harsh words such as p, b, and f.
- You don’t require any additional driver software to make it easy to set up.
- The software is compatible with Macs, Windows, as well as other laptops.
- Because of its strength and solid metal, the scissor arm is easily adjusted. The mic can be folded to transport it.
The UHURU Professional PC microphone is another model worthy of a spot on our list of best microphones for streaming.
This mic uses a more advanced chipet than other mics on the list. It isn’t typical for mics this price.
It has a sample rate four times greater than any other model. Although it may not be as popular as the Razer Seiren Mini or Blue Yeti Nano for streaming, that doesn’t make it less worth your consideration.
Professional podcasters are more likely to use it, so if you do this as a side-gig, great!
This studio-quality USB microphone is perfect for Twitch streamers that are also podcasting to generate revenue. It costs only 50$ and can provide crystal clear recordings that match the source.
You can also rest assured that there will not be unwanted distortion or coloration. This mic can also reduce unwanted sounds if a lot is happening in the background.
You don’t need to spend extra money on equipment for the microphone. The kit comes with a mic stand and shock mounts. It is easy to set up, and you can stream whenever you like.
18. Samson G-Track Pro Mic
- This mic is ideal for Twitch streaming because it has robust and multi-polar patterns USB.
- The Samson G-Track Pro’s greatest asset is its 1/4-inch audio input. This makes it a 2-track audio mixer.
- This allows you to plug in an additional mic, a second audio source, or even a keytar without purchasing a separate mixer.
- It also comes with three sound modes. The cardioid mode allows you to record your voice while speaking directly into the microphone.
- You can also record in a bidirectional mode (8-bit) that picks up sound behind and in front. This is useful if you are streaming with a partner.
- The omnidirectional mode also picks up any ambient noise in an area. This mic has three sound modes, which is quite unusual for budget mics. It makes this mic even more appealing.
This streaming mic is a top pick. The Samson G-Track Pro’s main benefit is its adaptability.
You have the option to choose from one of the available recording patterns, and you can also add a two-track audio mixer. This microphone uses a USB connector. It’s compatible both with Macs as well as Windows.
This microphone is specially designed for podcasters, content creators, Twitch streamers, and more. Twitch streamers love this microphone at all levels. It’s 130$, which is a little more than the majority of our other products.
Few best cheap microphones can capture the details and nuances in your voice, but they’re not as affordable as this microphone. This model is very detailed and offers many features. It can also produce high-resolution audio for a fair price.
Are expensive mics worth it?
A good mic can be hard to find, and the investment you make in a microphone will define what results it delivers. While some mics are top of their class and expensive as heck, they often live up to expectations with ease.
However, an inexpensive model might outperform its more costly counterparts when recording specific instruments or vocals, so keep your eyes peeled for deals!
How can I make a cheap mic sound professional?
There are a couple of things to consider when making a cheap microphone sound professional:
- Quality microphone (your microphone can only ever be as good as the microphone that you use)
- Microphone stand and pop filter (if you intend on doing vocal work, your vocals will suffer if the microphone is placed too close to your mouth)
- Microphone cable (make sure it isn’t made out of thin metal wire… invest in one made with something thicker, like copper – makes for better signal conductivity. Can make or break the difference between excellent sounding performance and a distorted mess.)
How do I choose a good microphone?
A microphone’s frequency response refers to the range of frequencies from low to high that a mic will pick up. This is referred to by its lowest and highest frequencies measured in hertz.
An excellent vocal mic should have an 80Hz-15kHz spectrum for capturing vocals without distortion or artifacts like popping (highs) or muddy mids (lows).
We hope that after reading our list, you will have a better idea for yourself! Whether you need something professional grade for studio recordings or just want a quick and inexpensive solution for your work, there should be plenty here to choose from. In the end, it is all about personal preference- so take some time to find what suits your needs best!
Last update on 2021-09-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API