With the recent surge of people working from home, ensuring crystal-clear communication during online meetings is more important than ever. And when it comes to audio quality, built-in laptop microphones are seriously lacking.
USB microphones combine the convenience and mobility of laptops with the sound quality of a broadcast studio. However, with so many options available, it can be a little intimidating trying to find out which USB microphone is right for your home office.
Whether you’re looking for a microphone to use for Zoom meetings and conference calls, recording interviews or even just capturing your thoughts, we’ve got you covered. Check out our recommendations for the best USB microphones for working from home below.
Yeti USB microphone for online meetings
Whether you’re chatting on Zoom, Skype, Google Hangouts, GoToMeeting or even WebEx, you need a USB microphone that’s easy to use and delivers high-quality sound.
If you’re looking for a mobile desktop solution to use at your desk or move it around the house with you, check out Yeti. Yeti has been the #1 USB microphone in the world for over a decade due to its simple controls and broadcast-quality sound.
Thanks to its compact design and included desktop stand, Yeti is easy to move from room to room. And with a built-in headphone output, you can take a meeting anywhere without disturbing others.
If you prefer something a little more stationary, check out Yeticaster, which includes a Compass microphone boom arm and Radius III shock mount. Compass lets you mount your Yeti to your desk on a flexible boom arm for quick and easy placement, while Radius III protects it from accidental bumps and thumps that can distort your sound.
Yeti X USB microphone for conference calls
For conference calls with large groups of people, you may need a microphone that offers some additional control.
Yeti X is a state-of-the-art USB microphone that comes equipped with advanced Blue VO!CE audio software, a suite of broadcast vocal effects that makes it easy to dial in a professional sound during conference calls.
To eliminate background noises, simply open up the Sherpa or G HUB software and engage the noise reduction effect. You might even use the gate effect to automatically mute the signal when you’re not talking, or the compressor effect to make sure your vocal levels stay consistent.
Yeti Nano USB microphone offers a smaller footprint for interviews and online calls
Sometimes your line of work may require you to record an on-location interview. Or maybe you just need to get out of the house for a little while before you go stir crazy. In either case, you’ll need a super-simple USB microphone that’s compact, portable and durable enough to take with you anywhere you go.
Yeti Nano is the perfect solution—from meeting someone online for an interview to joining a board meeting. With a built-in headphone output and options for both cardioid and omnidirectional pickup patterns, Yeti Nano is versatile enough to use in many situations, but its compact size makes it easy to toss in a backpack.
Even with the built-in metal stand, Yeti Nano is just eight-inches tall, making it small enough to fit in your bag and stay out of your way when sitting on a table or desk—it even folds up to save space while traveling.
Snowball iCE USB microphone for dictation and reference
Sometimes you just need a quick and easy way to capture your thoughts or record meeting minutes—in which case, we recommend Snowball.
Plug-and-play on Mac and PC, Snowball features a compact design and a built-in desktop stand, which makes it easy to tuck out of the way while recording meetings or workshops. With options for cardioid and omnidirectional pickup patterns, Snowball is even versatile enough to use for Zoom calls.
If you’re just looking for the most affordable way to capture your voice, Snowball iCE is the way to go. Snowball iCE delivers crystal-clear audio quality that’s light-years ahead of your built-in computer microphone. It’s even Skype-certified, so you know you’ll always be heard loud and clear during online meetings and conference calls.
And at just $50, Snowball iCE one of the most affordable USB microphones on the market. Don't worry, Snowball iCE still delivers the same broadcast-quality sound as Snowball—it’s the cardioid-only pickup pattern that keeps the price down. As long as you don't need to capture multiple people around a table, Snowball iCE should be more than sufficient to capture your voice.
Looking for more advice on how to improve your online meetings and conference calls? Check out our guide on How to Make Professional Sounding Conference Calls from Home.