Top 3 Condenser Microphones For YouTube Videos And Vlogs: Making Audio Recording The Least Of Your Worries

If you’re a vlogger, a filmmaker, or any other person who makes videos that require high-quality audio, these are your top three options for condenser microphones. They’re all under $100, easy to use, and require minimal setup — a win-win-win!

The quality these mics deliver is very good considering their costs, and they offer options that help you fine-tune your recordings, like pads, low-cut filters, and pop filters.

So, let’s take a look at why these are the best.

Top 3 Condenser Microphones For YouTube Videos And Vlogs:

Audio-Technica AT2020

4.1 Stars
  • Audio-Technica AT2020 Review – A Solid Starting Point
  • Audio-Technica AT2020 Review – A Solid Starting Point
  • Audio-Technica AT2020 Review – A Solid Starting Point
  • Good quality.

  • Versatile.

  • 10dB pad (flat, roll-off switch)

  • Can lack brightness needed for some settings.

The AT2020 comes from a good family of mics, and it carries the Audio-Technica name well. This large-diaphragm gives you a large sound. It’s very versatile, so you can use it to record vocals, acoustic guitar, or even drums. And with a 10 dB roll-off switch, you can cut out lower frequencies, giving you a much crisper sound.

AudioRumble rating 82/100

Zoom H1

3.95 Stars
  • Zoom H1 Review – Vlogging, Podcasting, Or Interviewing
  • Zoom H1 Review – Vlogging, Podcasting, Or Interviewing
  • Zoom H1 Review – Vlogging, Podcasting, Or Interviewing
  • Great audio quality.

  • Options for low-cut filter, Auto Level, and the recording format (WAV or MP3).

  • Build of mic is delicate, cheap-feeling plastic.

This mic is a great buy for under $100 -- you’ll get clear audio in stereo recording. But the build of the mic is on the flimsier side, so you will need to be careful with it.

AudioRumble rating 79/100

Rode smartLav+

3.6 Stars
  • Rode smartLav+ Review – Is This Upgrade Any Good?
  • Rode smartLav+ Review – Is This Upgrade Any Good?
  • Rode smartLav+ Review – Is This Upgrade Any Good?
  • Designed to be inconspicuous.

  • 3.5mm connection works even with a phone case.

  • Not durable.

  • Compatibility issues.

  • Pricey for what it offers.

Although a good try and an ideal design, the smartLav+ falls short of expectations, especially considering the price. If you have an iPhone and all goes well with it, then this can be a decent microphone for making videos.

AudioRumble rating 72/100

In the studio, on the go, or in the field

The thing about these three microphones is that, between them, you have options, whether you’re shooting a video with audio indoors, on the road, or out conducting interviews. When going through the top mics for YouTubers and vloggers, these three stood out for these very reasons.

Below, we’ll break down why we chose each one.

Audio-Technica AT2020

Engineers often use the AT2020 in their recording studios, usually using it for recording guitar or vocals. But you, too, can have the studio-quality for your video.

It’s a mic that works best indoors. The cardioid (heart-shaped) pattern cuts out room noise and focuses on picking up your voice and the 10 dB pad helps rolloff lower frequencies (e.g. cars rumbling by, your neighbors music, etc.).

It does require an audio interface as it has a XLR connection, and a decent interface can cost anywhere from $100 to $200. But you’ll end up with much better audio quality than the other two top mics.

So, if you can afford it, this is a smart choice for those who do video interview, vlogs, or commentaries. Basically, if your video can show you with a mic at your lips, this is probably your best option.

Zoom H1

The H1 is a nice little handheld recorder built with unidirectional mics set in an X/Y configuration so you capture stereo audio. This means that as you speak into the mic and move side to side, the audio will output to your headphones or speakers in correlation with that.

Despite its small size and cheap-feeling plastic body, it gives you very good audio quality. It’s design simply so the setup and use is very easy. This would be a mic best suited for either on-the-go recording or for doing interviews, but, with an included tripod stand, it will work well as an in-studio mic.

You do have the option of a low-cut filter, which cuts our those lower frequencies. You have Auto Level to keep your audio from peaking/distortion from loud noises. And you can also choose between WAV or MP3 as your recording format.

Overall, a reliable mic that’s perfect for recording while traveling.

Rode smartLav+

The best thing about the smartLav+ is that it’s not conspicuous. It’s not distracting, which is perfect for filmmakers. The omnidirectional pickup pattern helps it be a very sensitive mic — one that captures a lot of background noise.

The 3.5mm connection allows it to work with iPhones and other smartphones, even if you have a phone case. Although the durability and reliability of this mic are sketchy, this can be a good fit for making videos indoors or outdoors. If you’re needing to be doing things with your hands, the smartLav+ is a decent option.

Conclusion

When we scoured the world for the top mics for making videos, we kept in mind all the different situations you may be in: in a chair in front of your camera, outdoors in all types of weather, and capturing audio while moving around.

We kept in mind the three lity’s: versatility, affordability, and quality. We believe you’ll be happy with the top three we’ve found.

HOW IT WORKS

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