Whether you just want a good microphone for gaming or the absolute best computer microphone, don’t worry: we have you covered. In this article, we’re going to go over 6 of our top picks for best gaming mic. Whether you’re on a thin budget or want something truly high-end, we’ll have a choice for you below.
Each of our six entries will include a quick list of specs, a pros and cons list, and our own thoughts on the product in question. If you feel confused by anything listed, we’ve also included a buyer’s guide below our reviews that you can reference at your leisure. You don’t need to be a mic expert coming into this article: we can still find the right hardware for you.
How To Buy The Best Microphone For Gaming
If you don’t understand all the specs and jargon listed above, don’t worry: most people probably don’t. In this section, we’ll help break it down so you can understand it more easily.
The most important tech specs are the polar pattern and frequency response, which we’ll explain below.
Polar pattern refers to the directions in which the microphone picks up audio. The two main polar patterns you’ll see out in the wild are cardioid and omnidirectional.
Cardioid functions in a curve where the front of the mic is the most sensitive, the exact rear of the mic doesn’t pick up noise at all, and the sides progress from loud-to-quiet as they go front-to-back. In other words, cardioid mics are best used with the front pointed in the direction of what they’re recording, and generally won’t pick up much of (if anything) placed behind them.
Omnidirectional mics are…well, omnidirectional. They pick up sound with equal sensitivity in all directions, which can be ideal for capturing the sounds of a room for, say, ASMR. Without proper configuration, though, they are more likely to pick up unwanted background noise in game comms and voice calls.
To hyper-simplify this, frequency response refers to the range of audio the mic can pick up. You want the first number to be as low as possible, and the highest number to be as high as possible (well, technically humans can only hear up to around 20 kHz, but still)… at least in theory.
For most voice applications, especially gaming and VoIP, you don’t need as large a range for clear speech. Unless you speak in barely-perceptible screeches, you don’t need to get a crazy wide range on your microphone.
Where you will want the highest range possible is for professional voice recording, ASMR, and recording music.
What Do You Need?
If you still aren’t sure what to pick, let’s break down what to prioritize depending on what kind of consumer you are.
- An ideal form factor that doesn’t interfere with headphones (clip-on or portable)
- Preferably cardioid mics
- Decent frequency response for clear in-game comms
- Wide frequency response for clear voice in streams and videos
- Preferably cardioid mics
- Noise-cancellation, via software or hardware
- A form factor compatible with custom mounting solutions
- XLR compatibility (for musicians)
- The widest possible frequency response for clean vocals, music, and anything else that needs to be recorded
- Cardioid if recording voice; omnidirectional if recording music or anything else