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Best Vocal Microphone for Recording: 2019 Home Studio Guide

Best Vocal Microphone for Recording

Quick Summary 

Throughout the years, many musicians have been able to ignite their careers directly from their own homes. These individuals have been able to obtain their success, by recording their songs directly in their living rooms, basements or bedrooms.

These people have been able to achieve their goals, because of their own home recording studios. Without the best vocal microphone, these individuals would have been unable to obtain their dreams.

There has been some outstanding microphones and below you will find our top 10 picks and reviews for the best vocal microphone for recording.


In a hurry? Here are our top picks for the Best Vocal Microphone for Recording


Editors Pick -

Best Value Cheap Mics - Pyle-Pro PDMIC58 Microphone

Best Professional High Quality Mic - Rode NT1 Microphone

Best USB  Mic -  Blue Microphones Snowball iCE

Best Under £50 Mic - Behringer C-1 Microphone

Best Dynamic Mic - Shure SM58 Microphone

Best Studio Condenser Mic - Audio-Technica AT2020

Best Studio Starter Mic - Blue Microphones Bluebird LG

Best Seller Mic - Audio-Technica 20 Series AT2035

Top 10 Vocal Mics

Title

Price Range

Rating (1-5)

Brand

Pyle-Pro PDMIC58

Under £40

4.3

Pyle Logo
Rode NT1 Condenser

Under £200

4.8

Rode Logo
Blue Microphones Snowball iCE Condenser

Under £70

4.3

Blue Microphones Logo
Behringer C-1

Under £40

4.3

Behringer Logo
Shure SM58

Under £100

4.7

M-Audio Logo
Audio-Technica AT2020USB

Under £170

4.5

Focusrite Logo
Alesis iO4

Under £250

5.0

Blue Microphones Logo
Audio-Technica 20 Series AT2035

Under £180

4.8

Focusrite Logo
MXL 770 Condenser Mic

Under £100

4.8

MXL Logo
AKG D5 Dynamic

Under £90

4.7

Mackie Logo

Best Value Cheap Mic

1. Pyle-Pro PDMIC58 Microphone


A high-quality microphone can make a huge difference in your music. While a low-quality microphone will get the job done, a high-quality one will do the perfect your music like no other.


The Pyle-Pro PDMIC58 is very affordable, but it is designed to offer longevity. It is constructed out of zinc alloy metal, which is very durable and will withstand normal wear and tear.

If you are looking for professional sound quality, then you will appreciate the XLR input.


Many musicians may be skeptical about the Pyle-Pro’s ability to produce a quality sound. You should not, because the coils move in uni-directionally for better sound quality.

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • Constructed out of heavy duty zinc alloy material
  • Suitable on and off stage use
  • 600 ohms impedance
  • All connection cables are included in the package
  • Compatible with PC

Cons

  • Is not equipped with an on/off switch


Overall, the Pyle-Pro PDMIC58 is designed to produce a crisp, clear sound quality. It is very affordable and will make a newbie a great microphone for testing their skills.


Amazon Customer Reviews

"Pleasantly surprised!" - By Marcela Aguilar
"This mic is excellent, real pro mic no childish karaoke mic" - By Mr. Philip E. Wilson

Best Professional High-Quality Mic

2. Rode NT1 Microphone

When attempting to find a professional high-quality mic, you should realize that you might need to spend a little extra, in order to obtain the best.


Of course, splurging a little is generally well worth it and will help to ensure that your microphone is capable of recording your vocals to perfection.

The Rode NT1 Valve Mic is undoubtedly one of the best in this genre. This microphone has won many awards and is utilized by thousands of professionals all around the world.


The microphone’s HF-2 capsule is highly innovative and allows the unit to deliver unparalleled audio quality. The unit is designed in a manner, which guarantees unwanted noises are eliminated, before the audio is transmitted to the recording software.


The microphone’s ultra-wide dynamic range allows the musician to hit all of the right notes, without losing any integral sounds. Below, you will find the pros and cons associated with this microphone.

Pros

  • Comes with a dedicated power supply
  • Keeps noise incredibly low
  • Capable of delivering an incredibly wide range
  • Manufactured from very durable steel mesh
  • Comes with a 10-year extended warranty, when the unit is registered
  • Class A valve circuitry provides unparalleled audio quality

Cons

  • A little costly


All in all, the Rode NT1 is one of the best microphones on the planet. If you truly wish to take your music to the next level, you’ll need to equip yourself with a professional microphone and the Rode NT1 should not be neglected.


This model was also featured in our Best Mic for gaming guide, so it truly is a top all rounder 


Amazon Customer Reviews

"Excellent value. So impressed I bought a second" - By Graham Sergeant
"Great livestreaming bundle." - By David Lee Webster

question

FAQ's

Q: How do I record straight to laptop?

A: Generally speaking, you'd need an audio interface of some kind (but which has the option of phantom power) which connects between the NT1-A microphone and the laptop. 

Best USB Mic

3. Blue Microphones Snowball iCE

A USB microphone can be exceptionally beneficial, since it’ll allow you to easily connect the mic to your computer.


When purchasing the best USB mic, you will want to ensure that the microphone is specifically designed for musicians. 

The Blue Microphones Snowball iCE fits into that category excellently. The microphone’s innovative condenser capsule guarantees that your audio is transmitted clearly and with perfect clarity.


The microphone comes equipped with its own stand. This enhances the unit’s overall value and allows you to keep the microphone stationary, while you spill out your heart.


The microphone is more than capable of recording vocals and instruments. Once you’ve obtained your microphone, you will be able to plug it up and begin using it right away.


Suffice to say, you won’t have to worry about installing any drivers or software. More details will be provided below.

Pros

  • Incredibly affordable and won’t break the bank
  • Comes with its own tripod
  • Can be used, as soon as it arrives
  • Delivers HD quality audio
  • Offers crystal clear studio quality audio
  • Compact and won’t get in your way

Cons

  • Red light never shuts off and may become irritating
  • Somewhat basic for advanced musicians


All in all, the Blue Microphones Snowball iCE is an excellent option for the majority of musicians.


The microphone is affordable, durable and more than capable of delivering high-quality audio. For the price, it could easily be called a steal.


Amazon Customer Reviews

"Looks and sounds fantastic for this super cheap price - very happy with my snowball" - By Amazon Adam
"Perfect USB mic for anyone getting started with podcasting." - By C. Gleeson

Best Under £50

4. Behringer C-1 Microphone

When attempting to scour the market for cheap microphones, you will definitely be able to find an abundance of options.


Of course, some of these models offer an affordable price tag, but no other real benefits.


Although you may be seeking an affordable microphone, you definitely want one that can enhance your vocals.


The Behringer C-1 is definitely affordable, but it can deliver a professional quality sound, which will be sure to satisfy the majority of musicians.

The microphone’s large diaphragm condenser can deliver high-quality audio, which is thoroughly impressive for the price.


The microphone is more than suitable, as your studio’s primary model. The flat frequency response is excellent and will help to ensure that your audio is delivered with unparalleled clarity. 


The unit also comes with a phantom power LED meter and a swivel stand mount. Both additions help to deliver more value and a more convenient usage.

Pros

  • An incredibly impressive value
  • Capable of delivering high-quality audio
  • Perfect for recording, as well as live performances
  • Comes with a swivel stand for easier use
  • Includes a phantom power LED indicator

Cons

  • Doesn’t include any cables
  • Phantom power is a requirement


Although the C-1 Studio Microphone might be affordable, it delivers impressive audio and comes with many beneficial features.


Despite a few flaws, the unit is more than acceptable for the majority of musicians. Be sure to check this one out in greater detail right now! It is undoubtedly the best under £50!


Amazon Customer Reviews

"Top quality mic / little money" - By Mr. Stephen J. Webb
"Excellent value for money. Very good sound. Will buy more." - By P.N. Hoult

Best Dynamic Mic

5. Shure SM58 Microphone

If you are searching for a high-quality microphone that will offer superior sound quality, you should look no further than Shure SM58.


It is designed to withstand normal wear and tear. You can use the Shure for live or studio vocals and will produce an intimate and warm sound quality like no other.

Shure is a very well known brand that develops microphones that are solid, but affordable.


You can also use the SM58 for doing voiceovers, because it is capable of rejecting external noises and you do not need to have your lips right on top of the microphone. The SM58 has a sturdy construction and will great in your hands.

Pros

  • Superb quality
  • Extremely durable and will offer a long service life
  • Rejects feedback and external noises better than the more expensive brand
  • Suitable for on and off stage vocal work
  • Includes a carrying case and microphone holder
  • Mesh grille is constructed out of steel, so you can use it outdoors

Cons

  • Slightly more expensive than the competitive brand
  • Does not include a stand


Overall, the Shure SM58 is designed to offer superior sound quality and a long service life. You will need to purchase the XLR and stand, but this is a high-quality microphone that will withstand the test of time.


Amazon Customer Reviews

"Perfect Vocal Microphone" - By Antony Allen
"Excellent sound. Ideal for recording bands" - By Michael J. Ward

Best Studio Condenser Mic

6. Audio-Technica AT2020

There are many musicians, who are willing to pay a little extra for a better microphone. If you fit into this category, you will certainly want to explore the Audio-Technica AT2020, which is regarded as the best studio condenser mic.


The unit is a little more costly, but it comes with some excellent features, which more than justify the price increase.

For instance, the microphone comes with its own stand, which keeps the mic stationary, at all times.


The unit also comes with its own mix control, which allows you to make adjustments, as necessary. The internal amplifier guarantees that your audio is delivered with superior clarity and precision detail. For digital recording purposes, the microphone is equipped with a USB output.


The unit also comes with a headphone jack, which allows you to monitor your audio, as it is recorded. The microphone is equipped with its own 4m long cable, which delivers an immense amount of freedom.

Pros

  • Very well built and won’t break easily
  • Frequency response is excellent
  • Front facing controls make life easier
  • USB connectivity delivers more convenience
  • Comes with a microphone jack
  • 44.1/48 kHz sampling rate ensures high-quality audio
  • Easily controllable mix controls

Cons

  • Slightly more costly


Overall, it is truly hard to find a flaw with the Audio-Technica AT2020.


The microphone is definitely impressive in all categories and will deliver an astounding audio quality, which will be sure to satisfy nearly all musicians. Check it out for yourself today!


Amazon Customer Reviews

"Good Quality Sounding Mic" - By Jamie
"Clear sound and convenient!" - By Buck Godot

Best Studio Starter

7. Blue Microphones Bluebird LG

If you’re looking for the very best studio starter and you don’t mind splurging, you will definitely want to spend time examining the Blue Microphones Bluebird LG.


This microphone is absolutely perfect for those, who are building their own studies, as we speak.


The large diaphragm capsule helps to guarantee that your audio is translated into your recording software, without distortion or hiccups. 

The unit’s tonal character enhances its versatility and makes it perfect for recording musical instruments and vocals.

When compared to immensely more expensive alternatives, the Blue Microphones Bluebird LG is capable of matching and exceeding their performances.


This microphone comes with a flat frequency response, which ranges from 20 Hz to 20 kHz. This guarantees that your audio is picked up and transmitted, without dips and drops.


The unit is truly beautiful and produces very little noise, so you can guarantee that your audio is recorded with pristine clarity.

Pros

  • Capable of matching and excelling the quality of more expensive models
  • Flat frequency response of 20 Hz to 20 kHz is excellent
  • Delivers astounding clarity, which cannot be beat
  • Self-noise remains at a minimum
  • Incredibly stylish and will not look out of place in the studio
  • Comes with its own pop filter

Cons

  • Price may be out of reach for some


All in all, the Blue Microphones Bluebird LG microphone is truly impressive. It may be a little more costly than many of the alternatives, but the price hike is more than justified.


The unit can deliver audio quality, with unparalleled clarity, which will be sure to satisfy all of your desires.


Amazon Customer Reviews

"Amazing on vocals" - By Zebedee
"Too much fun. I highly recommend taking the step up" - By La Rana

Best Seller Mic

8. Audio-Technica 20 Series AT2035

The Audio-Technica 20 just happens to be classified as the best seller and this is probably linked to its superior design.


This microphone is equipped with a large diaphragm, which will pick up the slightest noise frequencies. The cardioid polar pattern will help reduce external sound pickups.

The AT2035 has a sturdy construction and will be able to endure the test of time. The quality is undeniably superb, but this says nothing about its ability to produce a quality sound.


The microphone is suitable for podcasting, live streaming, and studio recording. When combining the high SPL handling and dynamic range, you will find that the Audio-Technica 20 Series will offer unmatched versatility unlike the competitor brand.

Pros

  • Heavy duty construction
  • Includes a carrying bag
  • Shock mount also included in purchase price
  • Threaded adapter 5/8-27” to 3/8-16”
  • Embedded with an 80 Hz filter

Cons

  • Little more expensive than the competitor brand


Overall, the Audio-Technica AT2035 is designed to provide crisp clear vocal recordings and a long service life.


Amazon Customer Reviews

"Expensive but fabuloussssss piece of kit (Yes, that's "kit.")" - By SettleYoKettle
"Smooth and detailed" - By Mabuk

Buying Guide

Why Do You Need a Vocal Microphone for Recording?

What’s the point? Well, I can tell you that there certainly is one. A microphone isn’t just something you can pick up from the shelf and just get started with; you need to put time and research into it.

There are different microphones for different circumstances, and there are plenty of models out there that are suited to specific tasks. When you are recording vocals, you need a mic that is going to be able to capture your sound and the music that you want to create.

A vocal mic is able to do just that, but before you can just go out
and buy one, there are some things you need to take into consideration. It is in the little sections below that I really get into the details to help you figure out exactly what you need at a price you can afford.

Type of Microphone

The first thing you should be asking yourself is what you are going to be using your new mic for, as this will have a massive impact on what you choose. Is it for your recording studio, on the stage, or
multiple situations? It’s something we forget about quite easily, and this can lead to choosing something that is completely wrong for you.

Dynamic vs Condenser

There’s a lot that goes into these two types of microphone, and some pretty key differences between them. I will also note that these are known as transducer types. The dynamic models are a
lot more rugged than their condenser counterparts, and this is why they are most commonly used on the stage.

The condensers are more sensitive, delicate, and this makes them ideal for use in the studio recording tracks. Of course, there are dynamic mics that are used for studio recording, and condensers that are used for the stage; exceptions to the rule.

I will also make note of another major difference between the two of these. The dynamic mics are able to operate without a power source, which makes them more versatile when you want to move
around and get funky. On the other hand, the condenser mics need either a battery or phantom power supply if you want them to function properly.

Diaphragm Size

Many mics contain a diaphragm, but the difference in size only tends to be found within condenser microphones. Both large and small sizes are great, and there isn’t really a right or wrong answer; it all depends on what you are going to be using the mic for.

The small diaphragms are perfect for those who consider themselves to be realists, and they can capture sound beautifully and in an unaltered manner. The sound itself is detailed, neutral, and suited to a whole range of different situations, which is why it is such a popular choice.

The large ones are more like they are partially instruments, and they are made to create sounds that are bigger than they are. They are more engaging, showstopping, and produce something that gives you that record feel. Vocals and lead instruments find themselves in the spotlight here.

Polar Patterns

What this refers to is the shape of the microphone’s field of sensitivity; otherwise known as the direction from which it either ignores or accepts incoming sounds. You can select a specific
microphone according to the kind of pattern you need in order to get the sound and use you want.

An omnidirectional mic will respond to sounds that are coming from every direction, whereas a bi-directional mic will only pick up sounds from the east and west. This is also known as a figure 8 mic.
If you choose a unidirectional mic, it will take sounds from one direction and exclude those from all others.

These are actually the most common type, and there are three polar patterns:

  • Cardioid. This is a heart-shape that makes the mic most sensitive to sounds that are coming from the sides and straight ahead, but rejects sounds that are 180-degrees opposite.
  • Supercardioid. This one accepts more sound from the 180-degree radius, but rejects more from the sides.
  • Hypercardioid. This works similarly to the above, except that it takes even more from the 10-degree zone and rejects an increased amount from the sides.

Sound Pressure Level

You may also find this displayed as SPL. It refers to the maximum volume that the mic is able to happen, and you will find that it is labelled in decibels (dB). This is an important aspect to look into if
your mic is going to be around loud instruments and needs to be able to cope with it. You will find the average level is around 100dB, while a high SPL is considered to be 130dB.

Budget

No matter what your dream mic may be, you do need to remember to stick with something you can afford. It is possible to pick up a good quality vocal mic for an affordable price, and you shouldn’t
have to feel like you need to spend a fortune. That’s why I work so hard to bring you fantastic deals on high-quality models that will bring the best results.

Conclusion

When it comes down to it, you should remember that the best vocal microphone for one individual might not be the best for another. This is why it is imperative to figure out precisely what you desire out of a microphone.


Once you’ve done that, you will want to scour through our list above and choose the microphone, which will be sure to satisfy all of your desires and preferences. This will help to ensure that your music soars to new heights.


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