Over the past 7 years, I’ve used a number of microphones for podcasting, and what I’ve learned is that you generally get what you pay when it comes to sound quality. When I first started podcasting, I was on a budget and used a couple of inexpensive Behringer XM8500 mics. For the price, these XLR mics sound great and I still recommend them to people who are on a very small podcasting equipment budget. In my opinion, you’re better off going with these mics than any cheap USB headset mic out there.
Many of you know I’ve been a huge Heil-PR40 fan for a long time. I own two of them, and I’ve used them to record over 300 podcast episodes. I first learned about this microphone from long-time podcaster Cliff Ravenscraft years back, and was hooked.
But recently, I needed to add another mic to the mix and decided to test out a number of different ones that are being recommended by other podcasters. I tried the Shure SM7B, but was not overly impressed with the sound. You can hear the SM7B test up against my Heil here.
Next I picked up the Electro Voice RE-20 microphone. This mic was definitely an improvement on the SM7B. One thing that I noticed on this mic was that it offered a more natural sound to my voice which I really liked. I also decided to try the Electro-Voice RE27 at the same time. Of the two, I found the RE-27 to be the best sounding mic for my voice. Also, it is well built and as solid as tank. I’ve noticed that this mic is being used by many radio talk show hosts including Rush Limbaugh and Mike and Mike from ESPN radio.
With the RE27, I found that I get a very clear sound, and the truest to my voice. It has a built in wind filter screen, so you really don’t have to buy a pop filter for it. With the Heil, I do need to add a filter to keep the “popping” sounds down.
To give you a clear comparison, here is a an audio test between the two:
Considering the price, I still believe the winner is the the Heil PR-40 when it comes to sound quality for the money.