A lot of people rely on their fantastic voice to make a living.
I'm not talking about just singing; I am talking about doing voice over work.
It is a professional job that requires skill and clear articulation of words.
It also requires you to have a distinct and authoritative speaking voice tone that frankly, not all of us are gifted with.
You can learn how to use your voice and make a living with it, but being born with a powerful voice is a great advantage.
If you are a voice actor and want to capture your voice in the best quality, make sure you invest in the best microphones for voice over work.
You might become the next Morgan Freeman or James Earl Jones, and before you know it, more clients will be hitting you up for work.
There are a lot of benefits to investing in high-quality gear, such as a good microphone.
It will bring out your voice's full potential and give you more opportunities.
Your voice might sound good with any mic, and you would think that buying a microphone is just a waste, but you will be surprised by how the best microphone can help.
If you are worried about spending too much on a microphone, there is no need to worry.
You can get what you paid in the form of work and opportunities to earn.
Plus, not all microphones are as expensive as you think.
Of course, high-end microphones will give you a plus advantage, but on this list, I will show you a lot of choices based on your needs and budget.
Alright, let's get back to the article!
Selecting the Right Microphone for You
The best microphone or most expensive microphone does not always mean it is the right one.
Choosing the right mic depends on how your voice and how you use it.
Some microphones will work best with your voice, unlike any other.
Do you ever notice that sometimes your voice sounds good with a specific mic?
That is because microphones have different specifications that do not cater to every tone.
Some microphones capture different ranges and vocal registers differently.
Make sure you choose a versatile mic with frequency options or presets that will accommodate your vocal tone.
Aside from your voice, several other factors affect audio quality, such as the acoustics in your home studio, and the surrounding noise.
Having a soundproof room is not always the solution; you will also have to work on treating the room by adding diffusers, bass traps, and acoustic panels.
However, choosing the best microphone for voice-over work does help a lot in canceling or reducing background noise even with minimal acoustic treatment.
In this list, I will show you a variety of different microphones that you can choose depending on your voice, home studio, and budget.
After the list, I will also feature a buyer's guide that will show you how to choose the right mic for you and a list of accessories that you will need.
11 Best Microphones for Voice Over Work of 2021
Let's take a look at our top contestants:
#1 Rode NT1-A
The Rode NT1-A is a fantastic and inexpensive option.
It is one of the best microphones I ever had the pleasure of using.
It is an XLR microphone, which requires an audio interface for it to work.
It is a quiet mic that works great in reducing unwanted background noise even if the room is untreated.
In my experience, this microphone works well with recoding vocals because of its low and mid-range frequency response.
It is a versatile mic that you can use for recording acoustic instruments as well.
If you are a voice-over artist and musician, you will truly appreciate its versatility.
Overall, the Rode NT1-A is an excellent choice for beginners and pros alike.
It is built with a durable frame, a pop filter, and a shock mount.
In addition to that, it also comes with a 10-year warranty.
#2 Neumann TLM 103
The Neumann TLM 103 microphone is preferred by many professional musicians, music producers, and voice over artists.
It may be expensive, but it provides users with only the best quality.
Just like the Rode NT1-A, it is an XLR microphone that requires an audio interface for it to work.
With its low self-noise and cardioid polar pattern, it does an outstanding job of canceling unwanted noise.
To get the best quality and maximize this mic's potential, I suggest doing a little bit of acoustic treatment in your vocal booth or bedroom.
#3 Blue Yeti
The Blue Yeti is a highly rated microphone, and it should be.
You will most likely find the Blue Yeti on almost any best microphone list, primarily because of its versatility.
You can use the Blue Yeti for virtually any type of recording work.
It continues to receive a lot of praise from YouTubers, podcasters, and live streamers throughout the internet.
It includes 4 different polar patterns to cater to most applications.
It features top-notch audio quality and all-around functionality.
It is also equipped with extra features such as a headphone jack and volume knob, which works great for live broadcasting.
Unlike the Neumann TLM 103 or Rode NT1-A, the Blue Yeti is a USB mic that you can plug in directly to your computer and begin recording in no time.
#4 Blue Yeti Nano
If you want something more portable than the original Blue Yeti, you can opt for its little brother, the Blue Yeti Nano.
It is a stripped-down version of the Blue Yeti that kept the best of its features in a durable and compact package.
Many first-time YouTube content creators and voice-over artists picked the Blue Yeti Nano as their first microphone and did not regret their decision.
Because of its compact build, you can place it anywhere on your desk without taking up a lot of space.
#5 Audio-Technica AT4040
This microphone is one of the most attractive mics on the list.
It sports a sleek design that would look great in any studio.
Enough with the looks, let’s talk about what this mic has to offer in terms of sound quality.
The Audio-Technica AT4040 can deliver crisp and clear audio that makes for an excellent voice-over mic.
This affordable mic can work wonders, but keep in mind that it is an XLR output which requires an audio interface to connect it to your computer.
It may be a little too sensitive to noise.
Still, just like any condenser mic, you can always clean the audio during post-production.
#6 Audio-Technica AT2100
The Audio-Technica AT2100 is a handheld mic option.
It sports a simple design that features the essential functions of a trusty microphone that you can use for any occasion or purpose.
You can choose to connect it to your computer via its USB port or use the XLR jack to connect to an audio interface or preamp.
It has an LED light that indicates power.
It includes features like a headphone jack for monitoring and a knob for volume control.
It has a cardioid polar pattern that helps in eliminating background noise.
The audio quality is pretty impressive.
It can record clear audio that works for vocals and acoustic instruments as well.
#7 Apogee Mic 96K
The Apogee Mic 96K is a high-end microphone that can record high-quality vocals.
The best thing about this mic is that it works with smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices.
It is a portable choice that allows you to record anywhere, even without a laptop.
It has a built-in soundcard and preamp, making it a good choice for recording on-the-go with minimal equipment.
Overall, it is a pretty versatile mic option that you can use in any occasion or any studio setup.
#8 EV RE20 Studio Mic
This dynamic microphone can produce excellent audio quality, thanks to its great frequency response.
In my experience, this microphone works best with low vocal registers, as it does a great job of capturing the low-end.
The EV RE20 may be a dynamic mic with the same recording qualities of a condenser mic, making it a great addition to your home studio.
It can pick up audio like a condenser mic, with low sensitivity to background noise.
#9 Sennheiser MD 421 II
The MD 421II is one of Sennheiser's most popular microphones.
It is a versatile microphone that you can use to record vocals, instruments, and voice over work.
It features a bass roll-off switch that makes it the best all-around mic on the list.
It also features excellent feedback rejection that makes it suitable for live recording and broadcasting.
The bass roll-off settings can also be used to control the proximity effect to reduce clipping even when speaking really close to the mic.
The sound quality of the MD 421 II is nothing short of fantastic, making it one of the best dynamic microphones you will ever encounter.
#10 Shure SM7B
The Shure SM7B is a dynamic microphone that is excellent for live broadcasting and recording voice over work.
Dynamic microphones have a lower sensitivity to noise, making it a great choice in rooms with poor acoustics.
The SM7B does not require phantom power, making it an outstanding all-around mic that you can use for radio broadcasting or live vocal performances.
It produces a clean and natural sound with low noise.
If you want to start recording voice overwork without worrying about an untreated environment, be sure to check this microphone out.
#11 Samson Meteorite
The Samson Meteor is another compact microphone choice.
It may be small, but it can produce a big sound.
Because of its large diaphragm, it is another excellent choice for voice over work, podcasting, and live streaming.
It is a cardioid mic equipped with features such as a headphone output, an Intelligent LED, a mute switch, and a headphone jack with volume control.
You can quickly start recording by connecting it via USB.
It may have a built-in desk stand, but you can also mount it on any mic stand if you prefer standing up when recording.
BONUS PICK: Blue Snowball
As for a bonus pick that I couldn't resist adding to the list is the Blue Snowball.
This unique looking microphone is a USB condenser mic with a built-in sound card that you can use to start recording right out the box.
You can switch between a cardioid or omnidirectional pattern with a flip of a switch, making it another versatile choice.
The cardioid pattern is excellent for reducing off-axis noise.
At the same time, the omnidirectional mode works great for recording podcasts with more than one speaker.
The Blue Snowball can produce decent audio quality, and you wouldn’t find anything better in its price range.
Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose
the Right Microphone for Voice Over
I know it can be challenging to pick the best microphone, especially if there are tons of options lying in front of you.
In this guide, I will show you some important factors to consider when trying to choose the right microphone for you, depending on your budget, purpose, and the specifications you might need.
First off, you need to figure out your purpose for buying a microphone.
Since this article is about the best microphones for voice-over work, I assume that you are looking for a good mic to record your speaking voice.
In most cases, you should choose a mic that is made for recording vocals.
These types of mics have an excellent dynamic range, which can clearly capture every nuance of your speaking voice.
You can also check out the choices above for streaming, recording vocals, and podcasting.
Condenser vs. Dynamic
Most items on the list are condenser microphones because these types of mics are excellent for recording voice over work.
Because of their sensitivity to quiet sounds and cardioid polar patterns, they do a great job in recording your speaking voice.
The primary difference between a condenser and dynamic mic is the built-in phantom power and sensitivity.
A condenser microphone will need phantom power to operate except for USB condenser microphones, which is powered by your computer’s power supply when connected.
It is more sensitive to sound, making it a good choice for recording vocals and acoustic instruments.
On the other hand, dynamic microphones have a built-in power source and preamp, which is useful for live broadcasts and live performances even without a preamp or audio interface.
Dynamic mics are also less sensitive to loud instruments such as acoustic drums and electric guitar.
If you are in a metal band with aggressive vocals, a dynamic mic might also be the best choice when recording.
XLR vs. USB
Another factor to consider is the output and connectivity.
USB microphones are more convenient in terms of connectivity.
You can start using a USB microphone right out the box by plugging it in your computer's USB port.
Without extra equipment like an audio interface, you can record voice-overs anytime and anywhere, especially if you are using a laptop.
XLR microphones might need an audio interface to connect to your computer, but it is not necessarily bad.
Most audio interfaces have built-in phantom power, which can boost the performance of your microphone.
Although USB microphones made significant improvements throughout the years, some people prefer using an audio interface.
Not all mics share the same features.
The addition of extra features such as multiple polar patterns, a bass roll-off switch, a built-in headphone jack, and volume knobs can make or break your decision.
Although the audio quality is the most important factor you should consider, it is nice to have a few extra features for versatility.
The price, ideally, should the last thing you worry about.
However, as consumers, we always tend to look at the cost of a product first.
High-end mics are generally better, but it will still depend on your voice.
High-end microphones might have a better dynamic range.
Still, you can always save money by purchasing the mic that will suit your vocal tone and register.
In other words, you will still be able to find the right mic, even with a limited budget.
Although, if you are willing to spend money on a microphone, I suggest you choose the Neuman TLM 103.
It is crazy expensive, but it can make any voice instantly sound better even with minimal acoustic treatment in your studio.
What Else Should I Purchase?
After purchasing a microphone, you can start recording voice-overs.
However, there are ways to improve the sound quality much further.
Most mic bundles come with almost everything you need to start recording, but here are a few extra accessories that you might need:
Acoustic Treatment Panels
Treating the room and improving the acoustics can significantly improve the audio quality of your recording.
By adding a combination of acoustic foam panels and placing them in the right spots, you can decrease flutter, and add natural reverb to your voice.
Some people prefer to remove the natural reverb altogether and add artificial reverb in post-production using VST plugins.
If you record voice-overs in your bedroom or living room, you can opt for an isolation panel instead of modifying your walls with acoustic foam.
If you live in an apartment and want your security deposit back, an isolation booth is your next best option for creating a better recording environment.
Headphones are essential when recording voice over work.
Without headphones, you wouldn't be able to monitor your voice in real-time.
Plus, recording vocals using studio monitors is not a good idea.
The sound of the source would get caught up in the mix and decrease your track's quality.
Make sure you grab a pair of headphones on your way out of the store.
Computer or Laptop
It goes without saying that you will need a computer or laptop to record, store, and edit audio.
If the microphone you choose does not have USB connectivity, you will need an audio interface to convert analog signals into digital.
It is recommended to use an audio interface, especially for microphones with an XLR output.
For recording vocals and any other audio, you will need a trusty DAW or digital audio workstation.
Computer software allows you to record and edit audio tracks with the use of VST plugins.
There are tons of free recording software that are excellent for recording voice over work.
Pop filters help in avoiding plosive sounds that your microphone picks up when recording.
It can help improve your speech and work well with condenser microphones and control the airflow from your P's and S'.
Pop filters are pretty affordable, and most bundles will already include one.
Some microphones on the list come with a standard desk stand, but some voice-over artists prefer standing up when recording.
If that is the case, you are going to need a floor stand.
Shock mounts help in reducing the vibrations and rumbling from accidentally hitting the mic when recording.
Shock mounts are usually mounted on the end of your boom are or mic stand.
Most voice-over artists, podcasters, and YouTubers rely on a shock mount to reduce unnecessary noise you don't want to get in the mix.
A microphone preamp is entirely optional, but it can significantly improve gain and levels, especially for condenser mics.
It helps in amplifying the sound and taking your audio quality to the next level.
Choosing the best microphones for voice-over work is essential, especially if you want to make a career in this line of work.
If you have the voice for this kind of work, I suggest you try it out.
With technology at our grasp, you can record your voice in the comfort of your home.
I hope this list helped you find the right mic for you, and maybe I will come across some of your work someday.
Last update on 2021-02-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API