1. #1

    Microphone for gaming commentary etc.

    Hey!
    I'm in the market for a new headset/microphone combo and I think I might want to try making some commentated videos such as guides and beta-footage from games and such and I have a few questions.
    Is it a good idea to get a good headset? Do they have a good enough mic?
    Or should I go for a stand-alone microphone and get a pair of headphones for sound? Does this cost a lot?
    Is it bulky to use in a raiding environment for Vent and Skype?
    Got any suggestions on brands and models?

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Fluffy Kitten Marest's Avatar
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    For proper audio recording, you need a proper microphone. The more you spend, the higher quality recordings you will get. A professional microphone can easily cost $300 and beyond, and offers superb audio intake and quality.

    Depending on what level you want to do your commentary on, I'd either suggest a cheap stand-alone microphone like the Logitech USB (which I have) as it offers far better quality than most headset mics.

    The Blue Yeti is very common with amateur Youtube commentators that aren't willing to go into professional equipment but still want something that differs from the average. I believe it goes for around $80-100, and is a bit overpriced considering that it is a USB computer microphone. For that price I would probably look into a sE Electronics 1000A (condenser) or Beyerdynamic TG V50d (dynamic), which are borderline professional microphones that goes for around the same as the Yeti, however they do require that you have a proper recorder (putting the total price far above the Yeti).

    Beyond that is out of my knowledge range.

    Also mind that high-quality microphones pick up a lot of ambient sound, details, textures and so on. As such, you need to work with the raw recording to cancel out all the noise and extra sound, but with some filters a quality microphone sound by far the best. Oh, and make a cheap pop-filter out of a pair of pantyhose and a circular frame.

    If you want cheap, get a Zalman clip-on for like $5 and go with that until you feel the need for something better.
    Last edited by Marest; 2012-03-03 at 11:51 PM.

  3. #3
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  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Marest View Post
    For proper audio recording, you need a proper microphone. The more you spend, the higher quality recordings you will get. A professional microphone can easily cost $300 and beyond, and offers superb audio intake and quality.

    Depending on what level you want to do your commentary on, I'd either suggest a cheap stand-alone microphone like the Logitech USB (which I have) as it offers far better quality than most headset mics.

    The Blue Yeti is very common with amateur Youtube commentators that aren't willing to go into professional equipment but still want something that differs from the average. I believe it goes for around $80-100, and is a bit overpriced considering that it is a USB computer microphone. For that price I would probably look into a sE Electronics 1000A (condenser) or Beyerdynamic TG V50d (dynamic), which are borderline professional microphones that goes for around the same as the Yeti, however they do require that you have a proper recorder (putting the total price far above the Yeti).

    Beyond that is out of my knowledge range.

    Also mind that high-quality microphones pick up a lot of ambient sound, details, textures and so on. As such, you need to work with the raw recording to cancel out all the noise and extra sound, but with some filters a quality microphone sound by far the best. Oh, and make a cheap pop-filter out of a pair of pantyhose and a circular frame.

    If you want cheap, get a Zalman clip-on for like $5 and go with that until you feel the need for something better.
    That's a lot of good information in one go.
    I don't think I'll go full-pro at start, so maybe a Blue Yeti is something to look into.
    Where do you position such a mic? Does it have to be straight below the mouth or can you put it behind the keyboard? Is it clunky to have when raiding or just casually talking on skype?

  5. #5
    Fluffy Kitten Marest's Avatar
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    The Yeti is a good microphone, but it is a bit expensive considering what it offers - especially since there are professional microphones around $100. What's good (and bad I guess) with the Yeti is that it is USB which means that it's basically plug and play. The bad part about this is that the audio controller (sound chip) is located in the microphone so if you get an expensive and sophisticated soundcard later on the Yeti will not be effected by it.

    Anyway, the Yeti comes native with a table stand afaik and as it is a very sensitive microphone it will pick up vibrations from the desk/table it stands on. This isn't an issue if you are just recording speech, but if you are gaming or typing at the same time it will come out very clearly in the playback. AS I said earlier, the raw recording needs to be properly filtered to sound the best (unless you got a proper studio).

    To counter the vibrations from your table/desk you need a proper microphone stand. These can be fairly expensive though, and a cheap solution is to buy a lamp from IKEA (for example http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/20370383/) and modify the stand to fit your desired microphone. Also, as I mentioned earlier, create a cheap pop-filter from a circular frame and a pair of pantyhose.

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