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The best microphones for streaming and gaming

The best streaming microphones boost the audio quality of your live streams, gaming and podcasting. We've tried and tested the best mics on sale in 2023.

The Audio-Technica AT2040USB microphone on a desk being tested

Having the best streaming microphone is important if you want to improve your audio when streaming on Twitch, YouTube, and TikTok. Headset microphones are fine if you’re just starting out, but a dedicated mic will give you crystal-clear audio and create an immersive experience for your followers. We’ve tested the top microphones available in 2023, including more affordable and advanced options so you can tailor your choice to your streaming level.

To find the best streaming microphone, it’s a good idea to work out how much you want to spend. Then you’ll have to choose between USB and XLR connectivity. While some XLR mics cost a premium of over $150 (£150) and require you to have a mix amp or deck, cheaper alternatives like the Blue Yeti or Joby Wavo Pod simply plug straight into the USB port of your PC or Mac. Because they’re generally cheaper and easier to use for beginners, we’ve focused on USB mics in this guide.

We suggest working out whether you want to stream on different devices, as some of the mics in this list are also compatible with the best gaming consoles. Some of the products in this list are great for general uses like podcasting, while the gaming microphones feature RGB lighting and a striking look.

Having a proper microphone is vital for making your streams more engaging and professional, and if you want to boost your whole streaming setup, check out the best streaming lights too.

These are the best streaming microphones today:

A hands-on image of the Blue yeti streaming microphone

1. Blue Yeti

Best microphone for streaming overall.

Blue Yeti specs
Type Condenser
Audio patterns Cardioid, Omni, Figure 8, Stereo
Connection USB
Size 11.6 x 4.9 x 4.7 inches
Sample rate 48 kHz


  • Low price
  • Great sound quality
  • Choice of modes


  • Can’t adjust mic stand

The original Blue Yeti is a bestselling microphone for streaming, gaming, and podcasting. And we can see why. It isn’t the cheapest microphone for streaming on this list, but we’ve put it at the top because it balances audio quality, features, design, and price – making it the best streaming microphone overall, and for most buyers.

The Yeti has four pickup patterns (Cardioid, Omni, Figure 8, and Stereo) which means you can dial in the perfect sound– whether you’re on a Discord call, Twitch, or gaming. The studio controls on the mic allow you to change between these modes instantly, adjust the audio sensitivity and mute yourself instantly if you need to.

The Blue Yeti X is compatible with Logitech’s free Blue VO!CE software, you can also add fun vocal effects and audio samples. The design of the Blue Yeti is iconic too, and you can choose from three different colors to match your streaming setup perfectly.

Read our full Blue Yeti review

2. HyperX SoloCast

Best streaming microphone for beginners.

HyperX SoloCast specs
Type Condenser
Audio patterns Cardioid
Connection USB
Size 6.9 x 3.8 x 3.1 inches
Sample rate 96 kHz


  • Easy to set up
  • Affordable option
  • Well-reviewed


  • Picks up room noise
  • Basic build quality

While some new streamers may be satisfied with the microphone capabilities of their webcam, many others are going to want to buy a dedicated mic. If you’re one of those streamers, then we recommend the HyperX SoloCast.

The SoloCast was made specifically for use with streaming and works on a basic plug-and-play principle. Compatible with PC and Mac, once you’ve got it connected, it’s easy to start recording and you can use it for streaming, podcasts, Twitch, YouTube, and Discord. It also works with popular streaming platforms like Streamlabs OBS, OBS Studio, and XSplit.

Its compact design is also in its favor. It fits with 3.8-inch and 5.8-inch threaded setups and can be used with the majority of mic stands or boom arms, meaning that however you want to position yourself and your microphone on the camera, you should be able to do so without too much trouble. Its own stand is fully adjustable and can even fit under monitors on most desktop setups.

It uses a simple tap-to-mute sensor with an LED light that indicates whether or not your microphone is on. So if you find yourself with any unwanted disruptions while live streaming, you’re just a tap away from total audio privacy.

The Elgato Wave:3 streaming microphone on a table

3. Elgato Wave:3

A premium streaming microphone for advanced setups and mixers.

Elgato Wave:3 specs
Type Condenser
Audio patterns Cardioid
Connection USB
Size 6 x 2.6 x 1.6 inches
Sample rate 96 kHz


  • All-in-one solution
  • Can be integrated with Stream Deck
  • Sounds great out of the box


  • Too much for some

The Elgato Wave:3 is a brilliant streaming microphone if you’re creating an advanced setup, and it combines broadcast-grade components with the ease of a plug-and-play device. Out of the box, the mic sounds great, which means you won’t have to mess with settings too much (if at all) to optimize your vocals.

Feature-wise, we’re super impressed with Elgato’s anti-distortion technology, Clipguard, co-developed with LEWITT. When active, Clipguard ensures your microphone won’t peak, no matter how loud your voice gets – perfect for those players who get a little bit heated while climbing the League of Legends ranks.

If you don’t have a dedicated hardware mixer then the integrated Wave Link software has you covered. Ultimately, this all-in-one solution requires minimal setup and takes away all of the efforts of getting stream-ready sound.

Read our Elgato Wave 3 review.

Best microphone for streaming: the HyperX Quadcast S

4. HyperX QuadCast S

Best RGB microphone for streaming.

HyperX QuadCast S specs
Type Condenser
Audio patterns Stereo, Omnidirectional, Cardioid, Bidirectional
Connection USB
Size 9.8 x 5.1 x 4.1 inches
Sample rate 96 kHz


  • Great sound quality
  • Customizable lights
  • Tap to mute


  • Costs more than standard QuadCast

HyperX has made waves in the USB microphone market and with good reason: the HyperX Quadcast S is a fantastic bit of kit.

With multiple features on the mic itself, including gain control, an internal pop filter, and some flashy lights. This mic also comes on a stand, so you do not have to worry about purchasing an additional microphone mount. The Quadcast S is exceptional for the price and will more than satisfy your needs for a quality streaming mic.

Best microphone for streaming: the Razer Seiren X

5. Razer Seiren X

Best streaming microphone for gaming on PS5.

Razer Seiren X specs
Type Condenser
Audio patterns Supercardioid
Connection USB
Size 3.5 x 3.5 x 7.3 inches
Sample rate 48kHz


  • Good price (and regularly on sale)
  • It’s pretty compact
  • Licensed for the PS4 (and PS5)


  • Not Xbox compatible

The Razer Seiren X is one of the cheaper USB microphones on the market for gaming but it still packs a punch.

If you’re looking for something fairly compact that won’t take up much room on your desk, then the Razer Seiren is for you. The microphone boasts an ultra-precise pickup pattern allowing you to deliver your message loud and clear. It’s also compatible with best gaming consoles – the PS4 and the PS5 – a win-win if you’re looking to stream from your console too.

The Audio-Technica AT2040USB microphone on a desk being tested

6. Audio Technica AT2040USB

A best-in-class streaming microphone for highest audio quality.

Audio Technica AT2040 specs
Type Dynamic
Audio patterns Hypercardioid
Connection XLR microphone
Size 5.72 x (2.05 inches
Sample rate N/A – analog


  • Sleek design
  • Top audio quality


  • Requires mixing board

You can do no better than the Audio Technica AT2040USB for audio quality, which is broadcast-level and as clear as any professional microphone we’ve tested.

Being a dynamic microphone rather than a condenser, it can minimize other noise in the room noise – which is perfect if you’re just streaming in your bedroom rather than a proper studio. The AT2040USB gives a warm sound to your voice, and its construction is probably solid of all the streaming mics on this list.

On the downside, it doesn’t come with a stand in the box, so you’ll need to buy a mic stand, boom, or mount separately – depending on your intended use. If you want the best audio quality and don’t mind getting the accessories separately, the AT2040USB is the microphone for you.

Read our Audio Technica AT2040USB review. 

Best microphone for streaming: A blue microphone sits on a desk next to a monitor

7. Blue Yeti X

The best premium streaming microphone.

Blue Yeti X specs
Type Condenser
Audio patterns Omnidirectional
Connection USB
Size 4.3 x 4.8 x 11.4 inches
Sample rate 48kHz


  • Very well reviewed
  • Tactile dial and controls


  • Pricier than rivals

The Blue Yeti X has proved to be a hit among streamers. It is smaller than its predecessors and has an improved design and an adjustable dial on the front. This dial allows streamers to change their audio output on the fly, meaning you don’t have to mess around with any software if things sound a bit off.

Compared to the Yeti microphone at the top of our list, the X version has an LED to allow you to check your volume levels at a glance, while the gain switch is easier to reach on the front.

The price of the Yeti X for the audio quality you get is very reasonable. It is easily one of the best plug-and-play streaming microphones on this list, mainly for the fact you don’t have to tinker too much with software to get things right. It’s a little more than other microphones on this list, but a truly premium microphone for Twitch streaming and pro gaming.

A hands-on image with the Joby Wavo Pod streaming microphone

8. Joby Wavo Pod

Best plug-and-play streaming microphone for beginners.

Joby Wavo Pod specs:

Sample rate 48kHz
Frequency response 20Hz-20kHz
Audio patterns Cardioid, omnidirectional
Connection USB type C, type A
Size 3.94 x 3.94 x 9.45 inches (10 x 10 x 24cm)
Weight 0.72kg


  • Plug and play useability
  • Cheaper than competitors
  • Integrated pop filter


  • The mic body feels plastic (it is)
  • Lacks a little in the bass

If you’re an amateur streamer looking to make the step up to a dedicated microphone but want to spend less than $100, the Joby Wavo Pod USB microphone is a great choice. It comes with a pop filter (often an additional extra with mics) and it’s easy to combine it with Joby’s other content creator products, like a boom arm. It matches the Joby Beamo Studio Key Light in its striking design.

The Joby Wavo Pod is so simple to use. From box to recording takes seconds, regardless of what platform you are using to stream or record your audio. You can even plug it into a phone and use that as a recorder.

The audio quality from the Wavo Pod is good for its price. While the two audio pickup patterns are half as many as the Blue Yeti, they both work excellently. For streaming, the vocal tones are crisp and clean with very little environmental audio picked up. Some louder background sounds like traffic are picked up but for the most part, the Wavo Pod does a great job of isolating your voice. It’s the best streaming microphone for beginners and those who don’t want to spend a lot.

Read our Joby Wavo Pod review.