When it comes to starting out in Podcasting, I’m a big fan of the ‘start small’ approach. Too many people dive in headfirst, spending a whole lot of money on digital recorders, XLR mics and mixers, creating a home studio of their own to boost their podcasting efforts.
While this can result in really excellent audio quality, it also introduces a whole load of complexity. And, to me, complexity gets in the way of ‘just doing it’ as our tick based sporting friends would say.
To a beginner it puts up barriers, lengthens the recording process and makes it pretty likely you’ll never get into the swing of releasing regular content.
To this end, I think one of the best ways into Podcasting is to get yourself a decent quality headset microphone. They’re super easy to use, they’re generally pretty inexpensive, and they serve double duty by also helping you out with better quality when you’re using Skype or Google Hangouts day to day.
Best of all, because they’re always connected, always easy, and you can record new episodes in no time, with no barriers. This means you’ll be putting out your weekly episode with ease and regularity. Achieving that aim will put you far ahead of those with much better kit, but less regular content.
The Showdown: 7 of the Top Headset Microphones for Podcasting
In this article I’m aiming to review some of the most popular headsets on the market. I want to provide a bit of my own input into what I think of them, and I’ll provide an audio sample from each so that you can judge for yourself. In the audio sample I’ll read a little extract from one of my articles as a comparison, so each mic will go through the same test, and then I’ll go through a few of the features as I’ve found them.
If you have any feedback on these mics, or you know of another that’s good enough to be included, then please do let me know. Just drop a comment on the bottom of the article letting me know what you think and I’ll keep this article updated with new microphones over the months and years.
What are we looking for in a Good Headset Microphone?
In this showdown I’m looking primarily at audio quality. That’s the main yardstick by which each headset will be judged, as that’s what we’re looking to deliver in the final product: our podcast.
Having said that, there are other things that matter. Build quality, for one. There’s little point in having a great sounding mic if it falls apart after 3 recording sessions. I’ll be commenting on how well they’re made and the quality of their components, hoping to refine the list down to long-lasting headsets.
I’ll also be looking at comfort. I’ve used some pretty uncomfortable headsets over the past few years, and it does have an effect on your Podcast quality. When your head’s hurting due to badly made earpieces or a hard little headband, then you’ll fidget and lose concentration. Neither is great for your Podcast.
Apart from that, I’ll mention anything that’s unique about the headsets, but rest assured, audio quality in first and foremost.
Is it possible to be truly wireless?
Laptop = Wireless
Phone = Wireless
Microphone for podcast= NOT Wireless
Stereo/TV Speakers = NOT Wireless
Plasma/LCD Screen = NOT Wireless
Projector = NOT Wireless
ConferenceSpeakerPhone= NOT Wireless
Can anyone prove me wrong, please?!
How long do you think it will be?
Good question, thanks for bringing it up.
Microphone for podcast: Wireless mics are available. I'm still looking for a wireless mic/headset. Bluetooth is supposed to address this.
Stereo/TV Speakers: I think there are some that use FM band. But I haven't of any real hifi wifi speakers.
Plasma/LCD Screen: Not sure what you mean here. Obviously broadcast is wireless, but cable isn't. Oh I guess you mean DVR to screen. That would be cool but requires huge bandwidth.
Projector: Not sure this would be that cool. Most conference rooms have fixed projectors. Same problem as above