7 Best Cheap Mics in 2022 – Light on Budget Heavy on Performance

Best Cheap Microphones
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Are you are looking for the best cheap mic for your newly started podcast or YouTube channel, we have just the right list for you. These mics will ensure that you don’t have to scream a lot to get your voice picked. Moreover, they are easy to use without any bad boost sounds. You can also use these for your discord chat and streaming. So, let’s get it started.

What Type of Microphone Is Right For Me?

Before we go any further, it is essential that you know what kind of microphone is good for you. The nature of audio recording dictates the selection of the right microphone. Dynamic and Condenser are the two general types of microphones and each of them has different applications.

Dynamic Mics

These mics are ideal for live performances and loud instruments like electric guitars and drums. Such mics are generally less sensitive but are tailored for vocal recordings to deliver crisp audio in live settings. But because of restrictive sensitivities, they cannot capture enough details and hence are not ideal for indoor vocal recordings.

Condenser Mics

Condenser Mics are highly sensitive which enables them to capture more detail and makes them ideal for vocal recordings and voiceovers. Because of their sensitivities, they can also capture background noise and so need to be used in a controlled environment. Their circuitry is delicate which cannot withstand loud sounds and consequently deliver distorted output.

The Best Cheap Mics

1. AKG P120 – An All-Round Microphone For Premium & Dependable Performance

AKG P120 High-Performance General Purpose Recording Microphone

Specifications

Type Condenser
Polar Pattern Cardioid
Sensitivity 24 mV/Pa
Frequency Range 20-20000 Hz
Signal to Noise 75 dB -A
Equivalent Noise Level 19 dB -A
Max SPL (Sound Pressure Level) 150 dB
Connector Type XLR

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AKG P120 is an all-around condenser microphone suitable for a variety of applications. It houses a 2/3-inch diaphragm in a metallic body that offers outstanding performance and excellent value. With its wide dynamic range, the mic delivers a clear sound with accurate details for voiceovers, instrument recording, and general speech.

A combination of bass-cut filter and cardioid pattern ensures clarity in sound by eliminating the noise. Cardioid pattern offers off-axis rejection while bass filter allows audio-only above a certain frequency. Consequently, the output is clear of noise, sounds natural, and rich in details.

Thanks to the switchable attenuation pad, P120 is one of few condenser mics that are great at instrument recording as well. With a max SPL of 150 dB SPL, it works very well with loud instruments like electric guitars and drums. The capability to record vocals and instruments with great details makes it the best microphone for recording music.

2. Audio-Technica AT2020 – Feature-Rich Cheap USB Microphone

Audio-Technica AT2020USB + Cardioid Condenser USB Microphone

Specifications

Type Condenser
Polar Pattern Cardioid
Sensitivity -37 dB
Frequency Range 20-20000 Hz
Signal to Noise 74 dB -A
Equivalent Noise Level 20 dB -A
Max SPL 144 dB
Connector Type USB

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AT2020 is a condenser desk microphone ideal for online streaming and vocal recording with the added convenience of a USB connector. It boasts a wide dynamic range that remains consistent throughout the spectrum and enables detailed recordings. Rapid sampling rate also contributes to it.

Mix control enables the blending of pre-recorded audio with a microphone signal. You can also monitor the latter using a headphone jack in real-time. Off-axis rejection with a unidirectional polar pattern ensures clarity by reducing the noise input. Like all condenser mics, it offers a high sensitivity that needs a controlled environment for recording. In the said setting, the output is high-fidelity, accurate and crisp.

All the required accessories are available in the package and setting it up involves no hassle.

3. Blue Snowball ICE – Simple and Effective Cheap Mic

Blue Snowball iCE Plug 'n Play USB Microphone for Recording

Specifications

Type Condenser
Polar Pattern Cardioid
Sensitivity N/A
Frequency Range 40-18000 Hz
Signal to Noise N/A
Equivalent Noise Level N/A
Max SPL N/A
Connector Type USB

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Snowball ICE is a stylish retro-design condenser mic with a custom capsule to deliver crystal clear audio. USB connector offers an added convenience of plug and play making it ideal for live streaming and the best cheap mic for discord.

Being a cardioid microphone, it needs to be in the correct position in relation to the sound source for efficient recording. The adjustable desktop stand enables the users to optimize mic position to improve sound quality. The pattern also eliminates the background noises from other sound sources in the room.

This microphone exhibits a decent built quality and has no bells or whistles attached. It delivers articulate and clear output on the live streams and video calls. And Skype and Discord certifications second that. It is also a cheap mic for users who dabble with live streaming and have to conduct interviews or conferences online.

4. Shure SM48 – Durable and Reliable Cheap Mics For Churches and Schools

Shure SM48 Cardioid Dynamic Vocal Microphone with Shock-Mounted Cartridge

Specification

Type Dynamic
Polar Pattern Cardioid
Sensitivity -57 dB
Frequency Range 55-14000 Hz
Signal to Noise N/A
Equivalent Noise Level N/A
Max SPL N/A
Connector Type XLR

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SM48 features a typical dynamic microphone design with built-in shock mount cartridges and pop filters. The frequency response has been tailored for vocals with bass roll-off and brightened midrange to control the proximity effect. Moreover, a unidirectional polar pattern in combination with a pop filter and shock mount keeps the audio clear of noise and reduces explosive breath sounds.

As a dynamic microphone, it is ideal for live performances and loud instrument recording. That said, it offers XLR output which can be connected only with professional-grade equipment. You can use an XLR to USB adapter to connect with a PC but doing so compromises the audio quality.

You would love it if this microphone is structurally strong and can withstand occasional accidental falls. As another plus, replacement parts are easily available from Shure. As for the sound quality, it is rich, smooth, crisp, and natural. This product is ideal for people looking for the best cheap mics for churches, schools, and colleges.

5. Samson SAGOMIC Go – Portable Microphone For Live Streams and Video Calls

Samson SAGOMIC Go Mic Portable USB Condenser Microphone

Specifications.

Type Condenser
Polar Pattern Multipattern
Sensitivity -57 dB
Frequency Range 80-18000 Hz Cardioid, 20 – 20,000 kHz Omni
Signal to Noise N/A
Equivalent Noise Level N/A
Max SPL N/A
Connector Type USB

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SAGOMIC Go is a compact and portable mic that you can attach at the top of different screens. USB output and compatibility with Windows and macOS make them ideal for live streaming, video calls, and voice-to-text dictations.

Dual polar patterns, cardioid and omnidirectional, make them versatile and enable multiple applications. Cardioid is a great option to have and you can use it to minimize background noise while omnidirectional pattern can be utilized for capturing the ambiance.

The output of the mic does not need post-production edits to clean up vocals and background noise. Additionally, when used in an optimal environment with the right setting it delivers crisp audio that is rich in detail and has high fidelity. In comparison with Blue Yeti, it fares much better both in terms of convenience and audio quality.

6. MXL Instrument Condenser – Leaves No Detail From Vocals and Instruments

MXL Instrument Condenser Microphone

Specifications.

Type Condenser
Polar Pattern Unidirectional
Sensitivity 15 dB
Frequency Range 30-20,000 Hz
Signal to Noise 80 dB
Equivalent Noise Level 20 dB
Max SPL 130 dB
Connector Type XLR

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MXL 990 is the brand’s most innovative creation that offers a sweet spot between performance and cost. It features a large diaphragm and traditional condenser design with decent finishing. Moreover, the frequency response is wide and flat that captures the finest of details in the vocals. Off-axis rejection by cardioid polar pattern ensures the elimination of background noise.

The package also includes a custom shock mount to absorb the vibrations and prevent unwanted bass in output. Self-noise is low enough to not be a cause of concern while recording vocals and light instruments. That said, it takes some time to adjust the mic in an optimized position to reduce ambient sound and maximize input from the sound source.

With its supreme output quality and effective noise reduction mechanism it has the potential to become a decent music microphone.

7. Blue Blackout Spark – Quietest Microphone For Vocal Recordings

Blue Blackout Spark SL XLR Condenser Mic for Recording and Streaming

Specifications.

Type Condenser
Polar Pattern Unidirectional
Sensitivity 39.4 mV/Pa
Frequency Range 20-20,000 Hz
Signal to Noise 73 dB
Equivalent Noise Level 16.4 dB
Max SPL 136 dB
Connector Type XLR

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Blackout Spark is a premium microphone featuring one of its kind design with a sleek body and a tiny diaphragm at the top. With a self-noise of 16.4, it is one of the quietest mics. That together with the cardioid pattern, the output is crisp and clear. Shockmount also comes bundled in the package to eliminate unwanted bass by absorbing vibrations.

What is more to like about it is its high pass filter and -20dB pad that improves the clarity. This also prevents the stream from distortion amidst all the noise. All these features make this budget mic versatile and not just the best microphone for streaming but also the best mic for podcasting.

With the exceptional detail capturing and effective noise reduction mechanism, it delivers professional-grade output. The tonal character of the mic is all about capturing the natural and flat sound that flatters the performers. Be it vocal recording or casual live streaming and podcasts this microphone never disappoints.

What Else Will I Need To Record?

A microphone is a crucial element in the home studios but it needs help from other accessories to deliver quality output. These accessories include:

  • Digital Audio Workstation
  • Computer
  • Headphones
  • Studio Monitors
  • XLR cables
  • Mic Stand
  • Pop Filters
  • Ear Training Software

Conclusion

The quality of the microphone can make or break the content. Be it podcasts, voiceovers, or even music videos a decent mic goes a long way in enhancing the content quality. But, a decent mic does not necessarily have to be expensive as well. The enlisted best cheap mics offer premium sound quality without breaking the bank. You can pick any of them to get the best results. We hope this piece was helpful. Thank you!