When the business world lives and dies by Zoom; if you want to be a boss, you got to sound like a boss!
For that reason I decided to test out several microphones and share the BEST options for Zoom calls below $50 in this video here. These decisions were made after testing countless microphones over the years for podcast, instructional and video projects (along with Zoom calls).
Click to play video above or read on!
Audio samples of all mic's in video.
Microphone Placement is VERY IMPORTANT
I can't stress this enough, if you want to COMMAND the Zoom call, there are two key elements of placement you must achieve. First the microphone should be out of the shot so the audience can see the most of of your face and you can make a natural connection. Second, the microphone must be close to your mouth. Close is better. Getting the microphone close to your mouth and out of the shot, is the tricky.
The Best Sounding
This goes to the Fifine K669 microphone ($30) on a desktop gooseneck mount ($18).
The K669 microphone is a great microphone but by itself, with the included tripod, you will not get it close enough to your mouth to sound good. That's why you need the gooseneck. Both pieces combined are less than $50 but they allow to optimally place the microphone outside of the shot but close enough to your mouth.
The K669 has a gain knob on the front which gives you control to make it louder or quieter and a pivot knob to adjust the tilt. The base itself is solid, and minimal compared to a boom arm that is just obnoxious on a deck.
Best Overall Microphone For Zoom (simplicity and cost)
Here we go! This Fifine K054 microphone doesn't get quite as a good audio as the K669, but it is still pretty damn good! And the best part, you don't need a gooseneck piece, because well it is a gooseneck microphone.
Besides the audio quality and the price (only $20), it's a very slim and compact microphone so it doesn't take up much space on your desk and is basically 'out of site, out of mind' when you're not on a Zoom call (not in use).
Best Headset Microphone For Zoom
I don't like wearing headset microphones due to comfort, but they do have the benefit of keeping the microphone constantly positioned properly. For only $20 the the Logitech H390 is your ticket for getting great quality audio on Zoom call with a headset microphone for less than 50 bucks.
It doesn't sound as good as the other options, but it does sound MUCH better your laptop microphone.
Best Lavalier Mic For Zoom
Finally the lavalier microphone. The perk of a lav microphone is that you don't have anything in in front of you which might make your nervous or anxious like you would other styles of microphones -- cavalier microphones are basically 'out of site, out of mind' for you as the user.
The Fifine K053... I know another Fifine... is the best lavalier microphone that I have tested for less than $50.
I compare it to the Rode Smart Lav+ Mic which I have. The Rode Mic costs about $80, yet the Fifine lav here sounds better. The only problem with the Fifine lav is 'cable noise'. If something touches the cable while you move around a noticeable thud is heard in the audio. I demonstrate this in the video above.