All the best podcasts, live streams and let's plays all have one thing in common, one thing that most people probably don't notice. They all sound good. No one really thinks about audio until you listen to something with bad audio. A good microphone can make or break your content. Imagine spending hours getting the perfect lighting for the perfect shot on your stream only to have viewers bail because you sound like a muffled mess.
It's no surprise that 2020 has had no shortage of great-sounding USB microphones. The biggest surprise, though, was the rise of budget microphones for under $100 that sound good and, in some cases, better than more expensive mics on the market. Yeah, you lose out on many features to justify the low-cost but the way your voice sounds more than makes up for it.
The nominees for the best microphone of 2020 are affordable, easy to use, and, most importantly, sound great. These plug-and-play microphones don't require you to be a sound engineering or special software, just a USB port, and a dream. Be like the great Biz Markie and make the music with your mouth with the best microphones of 2020.
Best Microphones 2020: the nominees
Shure MV7 Podcast Microphone (opens in new tab)
Shure's first hybrid USB/XLR microphone blurs the line between consumer and pro-grade audio. The MV7 is one of the most versatile microphones you can pick up right now. It's also one of the most expensive mics, too. Though, if you value sound quality and cost be damned, Anyone serious about audio shouldn't pass over this incredible sounding microphone.
Razer Seiren Mini (opens in new tab)
Out of all the budget microphones we messed with this year, the tiny Razer Seiren Mini left the biggest impression. This cute $50 pill-shaped microphone is criminally easy to use and sounds just as good as microphones double (and some cases triple) the sound.
Elgato Wave 3 (opens in new tab)
Elgato's much-anticipated microphone does not disappoint by providing not only a decent-sounding microphone but also provided a digital audio mixer giving you unparalleled control over your stream's audio.
Check back on New Year's Eve, where we will reveal the winner of the Best Gaming Monitor of 2020 along with the other victors in the PC Gamer Hardware Awards 2020. In the meantime, you can check out the rest of the best microphones for streaming, gaming, and podcasting throughout the year right here.